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Need Advice

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by pmorlen, Jan 10, 2012.

  1. pmorlen


    Feb 2, 2009
    I'm going to try and be objective about this situation. Would like your opinion on how to handle.

    My band booked a gig a month and a half in advance with a venue here locally. Yesterday, lead singer states she wants to attend a concert held on the same day of our gig with some out-of-town friends and wants to know if we are available to switch nights with another band or reschedule the gig for another day.

    I sent her an email stating I felt this was unprofessional to cancel a gig because of a concert she wanted to attend (the concert is Van Halen, if that matters).

    She said our booking agent was fine with us cancelling the gig (the reason she gave him was our drummer's baby's baptism which is on the same day of the gig).

    Lead singer says she received an email from the venue asking if we could do some other date.

    The other side of this story is that she is raising concerns about gig opportunities and our availability for them.

    Am I making too much out of this or am I out of line in calling her unprofessional? She says the booking agent and the venue's management is okay with us cancelling and rescheduling.

    Thanks for reading. I thought I was done with band drama.
  2. Personally I think this would be bad if you could not reschedule. If you can, it's not a big deal unless the new schedule adds even more conflicts.
  3. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal
    I dislike any time someone wants to cancel a booked date, personally.
    I can understand certain situations can't be gotten out of, but going to a concert is not one of them, IMO.
    Regardless of whether or not it can be rescheduled, it just appears unprofessional to me, and I dont want to be a part of an unprofessional band.

  4. f.c.geil


    May 12, 2011
    TFB for the singer. You committed to do a show, you do the show. If you get a reputation for canceling gigs, you stop getting gigs. Plus, she basically lied to the booking agent, and if that comes out, more black marks against you guys. Besides, IMHO if you would rather watch someone else perform, then you're not a performer. Personally, I'd draw a line in the sand over this: go to our show or you're fired. Even though this is a part time job, and not a primary money maker, it is still a job. At any job, if you choose not to do the job, you lose the job. It really is that simple to me.

    Yes, the fact that it's Van Halen matters. To her. Only to her. To anyone else, all that (should) matter is that she is skipping out on a job.

    Wow, I must type slowly! There were no responses when I began crafting the above, and there were two by the time I was done? I need to type faster...
  5. pmorlen


    Feb 2, 2009
    I'm trying hard to see this from the lead singer's perspective but I keep coming up with "stick to our committment". I just can't imagine our booking agent being okay with this. We've turned down offers for 3 gigs in the past month due to scheduling conflicts.

    This has to be black mark against us - even if the singer says the venue and booking agent are okay.

    It's already a done deal. She has canceled the Feb gig.
  6. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal
    It may be worth mentioning the next time you all get together, and see if you can all come to a consensus on what is an acceptable reason to cancel on a commitment and what is not.
  7. First, pics or we won't believe there's a female singer.. :)

    Honestly, if she already worked out getting a friend's band to cover the date and rescheduled your band on another date, I'd say she was being "professional" about it. Unprofessional would be not doing anything at all and springing the fact that she won't be there on you last minute... That said, I don't change bookings once they're confirmed without really good reason (family emergency, health, etc.)

    Oh, I would also be more understanding of the reason to reschedule if Michael Anthony was slinging bass..
  8. Bluestribute


    Dec 21, 2010
    Well, you had over a months notice. If she took care of it and didn't leave the venue hanging, I'd let it slide this one time but talk about it making sure it doesn't happen again. And if it does, I'd search for a new singer =D Because a month in advance and still having to cancel is kinda ridiculous . . .
  9. Skarekrough


    Aug 7, 2006
    I think what bothers me is that it's purely for elective personal reasons; she wants to go see a show with her friends.

    Well...tough ****.....so wouldn't all of us. But the gig is booked and a great part of a bands reputation rides on the ability to book something and not complicate it by rescheduling.

    And I seriously question the venue just happening to ask that they want to reschedule. Seems entirely too convenient.

    She's brought enough collateral into this with the booking agent and checking with the venue. She is inviting drama for the sake of her entertainment.

    The best that could come of this is that she gets to go but understands how incredibly unprofessional it is, how totally uncool it is to put everyone involved in it and that in the future she is so far under your thumb for all shows for the next year that she's showing up early for load-in and load-out, putting together set lists and buying coffee and donuts for any drive over 20 miles.
  10. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    Cali Intergalactic Mind Space - always on the edge
    Song Surgeon slow downer software- full 4 hour demo
    My question is, why does she get to cancel gigs w/o checking with her partners? Are you guys her sidemen? If you are, she should be paying you a weekly salary.

    This doesn't bode well.

    Seems to me that the she sees the band as something to do when she's not socializing?

    IMO, maybe 3 to 6 months and she'll walk over some other thing that she thinks is "no big deal, we'll fix it later" or some drama she creates.

    Good luck with that.
  11. jmattbassplaya

    jmattbassplaya Looking for a gig around East Islip, NY!

    Jan 13, 2008
    Long Island, NY.

    I personally hate any time someone tries to back out of a gig. Fortunately, however, you seem to be able to get by with it this time with no real issue from your agent or the venue so I probably wouldn't push it too hard.

    TBH, one thing I've learned over the years is that it's never a good idea to make a big deal out of something that has a good outcome coming from it. You'll still get the gig eventually. Be happy for that and don't worry about it too much for now. If she tries this again, however, then I think it would be worth pushing.
  12. Broadstbully22


    Dec 5, 2011
    It is Van Halen. LOL. At least it's not fergie or lady gaga.
  13. ChrisB2

    ChrisB2 Bass... in your fass

    Feb 27, 2008
    TalkBass > Off Topic
    The fact that her friends are coming in from out of town would make me a little more lenient in this one instance, but the fact that you've turned down so many gigs due to scheduling conflicts indicates long term problems for the band, IMO.

    How to handle? With this one situation (although it's already resolved) I would've reluctantly accepted her request since she's going to do what she wants to do and her friends were in from out of town. But the bigger question is what to do long term, and that depends on the personalities involved and their relative importance to the band, the type of band (originals, covers, genre), how hard she is to replace, gigging goals for each person, your ability to quit and find another band, etc. etc.

    How old is she? Young female lead singers, IME, can be the flakiest people to deal with. I'm guessing your band will face similar situations in the future. Good luck in handling that.
  14. + 1 to all Chris wrote above!

    Now about your young lady, "she must be one charming gal. I mean she'd have to be ten times more charmin' than that Arnold on Green Acres, you know what I'm sayin'?"
  15. Broadstbully22


    Dec 5, 2011
    I think we need pictures of said girl to make a precise opinion on what you should do. LOL
  16. Rule 4: Before booking a gig, look at the calendar.

    Personally unless you work for her, then she has no right to cancel anything without consulting the entire band first. Other than that if you can get a new date and time then it's not really a big deal. Expecially if you didn't get a guarantee payout from the venue.
  17. +1
  18. pmorlen


    Feb 2, 2009
    Put this in the "adding insult to injury category"...

    Received this email from singer the same day she cancelled our Feb gig.

    "We are really boxing ourselves into corners here with very few dates open in Feb & March. Makes T's [booking agent] job harder & in turn, my job much tougher in getting us good gigs. If there are any dates in Feb & March that are currently kinda "on the fence" for ya, please find a way to make them open for shows so we have more opportunities. Otherwise, you may want to give us permission to get fill-ins given that we don't fill the exact dates we all jointly have available right now."

    Longer term prospects for this band are looking dim.
  19. You need to sit down together and discuss the band scheduling rule as was previously mentioned. She seems to be the Band Leader though, so if you confirm that she is, then you either live with it or quit.

    From the looks of it, she has "her" schedule that you all need to fit into. Man, I miss the friends first before band mates situation.
  20. Skarekrough


    Aug 7, 2006
    Truer words have rarely ever been spoken.

    I don't know what social components exist that cause it, but almost every time I've been in a band fronted by a young female vocalist it's always the same....this sense of entitlement followed by lots of created drama, flakiness and inevitable belligerence.

    But by far the hardest part is the indignancy when you should have the gall to state that they're pulling this sort of thing.

    To the OP....start looking for a fill-in. The band has a reputation to uphold. The band can exist with or without her. Very likely you won't end up without her unscathed but if the band can maintain a professional presence as the result of being able to book and play gigs without this sort of **** then you're doing as best you can to retain everything you've worked to create.

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