My first bar gig

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by MisterFabulous, Nov 24, 2021 at 2:54 PM.

  1. ...practically my first indoors gig.

    I play bass in a band of no particular ability, but we are the sole entertainers this Friday at the taproom at a local microbrewery. I've seen bands there before; band is in a little corner of the barroom. The room would feel quite full at fifty people.

    We've done outdoor stuff like porchfests and opened for a local music festival. I've always wanted to do a bar gig. I will keep you updated.

    RyanOh, oldrocker, MrLenny1 and 48 others like this.
  2. Good luck on the gig, rooms that seem full at 50 people can still be alot of fun.

    Look forward to a gig report. :thumbsup:
    SoCal80s, MarMar, Bluesrock and 3 others like this.
  3. Crusher47

    Crusher47 Tattoo'ed Freak

    Apr 12, 2014
    Fort Worth, TX
    Good luck, have fun
    MisterFabulous likes this.
  4. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    Congrats! Hope you have an absolute blast.
    More Cowbell!

    Don't stress, have fun, it's contagious.
  5. Thanks for the well-wishes. I will post all I got after the gig!

    Our main concern is volume control. We tend to play at arena volumes, not sure why. We've been practicing with a dB meter to keep things quieter (We'd like to get invited back). Playing at lower volumes has made us better.

    We're trying to put a volume scout out in the audience to tell us if we're coming across as loud.
  6. Best wishes. Looking-forward to your gig report.
    MisterFabulous likes this.
  7. I learned when playing in bars to never play louder than a bar tender can hear the drink requests. If they can’t make out the orders (and ring those registers), trouble ahead.

    Have fun at your gig!!!
    IamGroot, SoCal80s, DJ Bebop and 3 others like this.
  8. themickster


    Oct 4, 2015
    Have a blast
    MisterFabulous likes this.
  9. dBChad


    Aug 17, 2018
    Daytona Beach, FL
    I'm looking at the picture you posted trying to figure out your overall vibe. You and the drummer both radiate 90's vibes, the duo on Tele's could be either classic rock or Jimmy Buffet, and I can't quite place the singer at all.

    Could you clue me in to your band's style? Also looking forward to the gig report!
  10. lbbc

    lbbc Supporting Member

    Sep 25, 2007
    Seaford , DE
    I love playing at breweries. Always a great time.have... fun!!!
    MisterFabulous and Aceman like this.
  11. Brilliant. All the best of luck for it and I'll be looking out for the report. Going the other way, I've done countless bar gigs but would really like to do more outdoor gigs.
    MikeMig and MisterFabulous like this.
  12. Bunk McNulty

    Bunk McNulty It is not easy to do simple things correctly. Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 2012
    Northampton, MA
    Get that volume scout! A band that plays at a level where the servers can hear drink orders without shouting is a band that gets asked back again. Learn the names of the bartenders/staff. At the end of each set, "Please remember to tip your servers, they do it all for you." You want to get set up carefully but quickly. Same for load-out. The longer you take, the longer the staff has to hang around to clean up. (I've been doing this for a long, long time.:D)
  13. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Go get 'em! Have fun!
    MisterFabulous and Spidey2112 like this.
  14. Tim Skinner

    Tim Skinner

    Nov 6, 2018
    Our 'home field' venue is just such a brewery. We have a good relationship with them and can generally play there when we like. We often use it for warm up gigs prior to something else. Usually we pick Sunday late afternoons there which are their quiet times and pack it with our friends/family. Always a good time.

    MisterFabulous likes this.
  15. Jefus

    Jefus that... Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2008
    Sacramento now...
    Ah, they get to have "the talk." I always felt it wasn't really a band until this conversation takes place.

    What is "the talk"? It just takes one if you to instigate it, and there may be members who resist, but it will make having the conversation easier for each gig going forward. But it starts with that one, simple, but surprisingly important question, "so, what are y'all wearing to the gig?"
  16. Good luck! And in addition to the above good advise about volume and band cohesion, move that mixer off to the side. In a room that packs out at fifty people, at some point that mixer will end up on the floor.
    SoCal80s and MisterFabulous like this.
  17. Aceman


    May 1, 2020
    Tampa Bay
    Outstanding! Playing live for the people is what it is all about!!!
    Get out there play, entertain, and have fun.

    Pro tips:
    - Print setlist large enough to see from floor. On paper/sharpie; No digital failures or signal crap. Keep sharpie near for edits.
    - Extra bass, extra strings, extra cord. String change tools!
    - Tuner!!!! Stand for breaks.
    - Have a bass DI handy and cord for it to the board...just incase amp death/blow.
    - Small powerful flashlight. Never know when setup-trouble shoot in dark will happen.

    Make a load up checklist so you don't forget anything.\

    Rock!!!! What's on the setlist?
    SoCal80s, DJ Bebop and MisterFabulous like this.
  18. ProbablyTooLoud


    Aug 1, 2020
    How'd it go?
  19. Wherestheone


    Feb 19, 2019
    Lots of great tips in here!!! Most important one----have fun!! It's supposed to be!!!
  20. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011
    When you are an animated jukebox, whole house muzak as it were, the only concern once load out commences is did you up alcohol sales. Once you accept your role in a bar is not to be the object of everyone’s attention, it’s easier to accept the reality of no one in the house cares what you’re wearing as long as you are providing danceable music as a prelude to “can I buy you a drink”.
    If it’s a stage show where tickets are sold to those seeking musical entertainment, visuals matter, and while there is often a stage involved in being a human beer add supplying it’s own soundtrack, it is not a stage show and trying to make it one only serves to further complicate an already much too involved method of making a little mad money. Trust me, there are much easier ways to earn an average of $14.29 a day ($100/7) or making much more money for the time and effort put in. Making what your bandmates are wearing into an issue only creates unproductive friction in what is essentially a multi dimensional relationship whose success is wholly dependent on cooperation among all involved. If it's attention you seek, become a rodeo clown. When you are working you have the undivided attention of an audience paying for a show, The risk is comparable to playing in your typical gut bucket, the money is much better, and no one really cares what you wear.
    IamGroot and El Thumpo like this.
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    Primary TB Assistant

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