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Official TB salary survey thread

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by jive1, May 11, 2010.

  1. jive1

    jive1 Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    Since there's always a thread for how much a band gets paid in this forum, I figure we may as well have an official to be stickied. That way we have a running reference point.

    Please post what type of band you are in (cover/original/genre), as well as your location and an average per gig. Also, to be even more helpful, you can write how much you got paid for a specific gig, and the details such as type of venue and draw.

    This information will help us to price ourselves, as well as see trends, and see where the money is.
  2. jive1

    jive1 Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    I'll start.

    5 piece cover band with a female singer played a gig at a Boat Club in Alexandria, VA. We did about 2 1/2 hours of music, and had a draw of about 80-100. Brought our own PA. Got paid $500.
    BluesOnBass and Jimmy4string like this.
  3. First gig and played w/ one other band... <100 person room pretty packed, we're a 3 piece original stoner rock/metal. Got $130 and three pitchers of beer for a 35 min set. :D
  4. sleeplessknight

    sleeplessknight Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2002
    Subbing with a 12-piece funk/disco band this Saturday in Somerville, MA, they've packed the place pretty tightly in the past (no reason to think it would be any different this time around) and I'm getting paid $100 for 2 hours of music.

    (if anyone comes up to me at Johnny D's in Somerville this Saturday at 10 and says "Howdy, I'm from Talkbass!", that's a free beer right there!)

    I also play with a 3-piece classic rock-type cover band out in the Norwood/Dedham, MA area, and that's $100/man plus free dinner for 3-4 hours of music.

    There's also a cabaret troupe that I play with (both electric and upright) that usually nets me $200-$300 a night, and my jazz quartet doesn't even pack up our gear for less than $150/man.

    Last year I did a really fun show for an amusement park up in New Hampshire, that was something like $1500 for 3 40-minute shows a weekend all through October for their Halloween season. I got to wear the costume out on Halloween too, which was great!
  5. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    4 piece cover band. Bring PA. Generally $400-$500 for 2 1/2 - 3 hours. Maybe 100 people.
    4 piece jazz group Bring PA. Generally $300 for 2 1/2 - 3 hours.

    I ain't getting rich, but the guys I play with are pretty good musicians and it's pretty fun. The Jazz group is starting to get a small following which is nice.
  6. crusie


    Oct 19, 2009
    Djursland, Denmark
    cover band - 4 piece
    singer, bass, drummer, guitarist

    standard fee: 1050$ (converted from DKK) for 2x45 min set plus extras in the end. we bring all gear needed.

    this is in Denmark and our average wage
    troy mcclure likes this.
  7. jive1

    jive1 Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    Here's a TBer who wanted to remain anonymous, so as to not offend venues he works at. Makes sense to me. If anyone would rather be anonymous, just send me a PM with details.

    region is michigan/ohio area.

    5 piece cover band Bass, Guitar, Drums, Vocalist, and Soundguy. We play rock. Pretty much '80's till present. Everyone makes at least $100.00 a night for a 2 night gig. (More for a one nighter) A performance is 4X45 minute long sets usually.

    We probably average 200-300 people in attendance on any given night.

    This weekend we have 2 one nighters out of town, I expect I'll make around $240.00 for the weekend. ($600.00 a night for the band)
    BassikLee likes this.
  8. I'm in two bands, a blues-rock cover band and a original pop-rock band. We usually draw between 50 and 100 folks and get paid $100 - $150 per player (both bands are 5 piece) in and around Chapel Hill, NC.
  9. CosmicRay

    CosmicRay Supporting Member

    Actually, I'm not too comfortable letting the IRS know how much
    money is being made off the books....
    twinjet, Oddly and Bunk McNulty like this.
  10. Jonyak


    Oct 2, 2007
    Ottawa, Ont
    I was in a 5 piece original rock band.

    our money intake ranged anywhere from $300, to $1500, a trailer/rider, all the free beer we could drink and catering.

    all for about an hours set.
  11. 73jbass

    73jbass Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2004
    Hudson Road ,4 piece rock/variety band, with male lead vocalist. Classic rock,Motown,80's,new Country,etc.. 3 sets averaging about 1hr 20 minutes.We get a minimum of 600/night for bar gigs. Private parties and weddings start at 1500. Our typical club gigs will bring in from 100 to 200 people.
  12. CapnSev


    Aug 19, 2006
    Coeur d'Alene
    8 piece Soul/R&B/Funk cover band in Salt Lake City.

    Bars= ~$80 per man.
    Weddings/Parties= ~$150+ per man.

    I also charge $75-$100 (depending on the time rented) that I pocket myself, if I have to bring my PA along.
  13. modulusman

    modulusman Banned

    Jan 18, 2004
    Four piece cover band in Montana. We have gigs this year ranging from $600.00 -$3500.00 a night playing bars, weddings, guest ranches, street dances and fairs. Probably averages out to about $1500.00 a night. We provide PA about 90% of the time.
  14. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    For a Trio in Ct playing classic rock generally averages $100 each for the typical 9:30 or 10:00 - 12:30 or 1:00 - couple short breaks (we could take longer ones). This is for the bar scene. CT has kind of a dead live music scene for any genre and way too many bars so the local population is spread out and doesn't congregate anwhere in particular. PA almost always our responsibility

    For a 7 peice flower power mamas & papas trib band playing fairs, so far it's been about 150 a person and the leader skims from the top for PA and promotion first. These are usually 2 hour gigs. WE provide the PA about half the time which is too much.

    In CT, unless you have a huge following and can pack a place silly or get into one of a handfull of premier clubs (which are still not so great) the bar scene pays about 200 - 500 for most bands, higher in some areas. The economy has made quite a few venues rethink live music.
  15. How the hell do you guys make all this money? Where i live (Bournemouth, United Kingdom) its all run by promotors, who get paid by the venue to supply bands, but the bands rarely get played.

    Looking at supply and demand, there are a lot of bands that will play for free just for the chance to play.

    Really sucks.

    Any tips on what I should be asking fee wise?

    Im the bassist/manager
    Were a 3 piece original Rock, grunge band
    Can play for about 60mins all original and then another 30 mins of covers if required.

    We dont have a PA though which is the only problem.

    Any help would be appreciated.

    (Apologies if this is in the wrong thread. Thought it would be good to post here as you guys certainly seem to be doing well for yourselves!)
  16. Rickett Customs

    Rickett Customs

    Jul 30, 2007
    Southern Maryland
    Luthier: Rickett Customs...........www.rickettcustomguitars.com
    Most places we play (Which is usually a handful of clubs in SOMD, usually pay around 800 (places we pack).
    4 of us, our own sound system+ lights, manager runs the board. Classic rock, Dance songs and Nu metal.
  17. Jive, Might I suggest a poll with different pay ranges that people can see graphically?
    Clarence Walker likes this.
  18. jive1

    jive1 Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    Here's another anonymous

    Four piece cover band, 4 -45 minute sets. Lately, pay has been $67-75 bucks a man. In six months, only one $100 a man gig, and it booked as a $75 a man . Tips have been running 10-18$ more per man on top of that, making up for it a bit.

    South Florida region. Venues are all small tiki type places, and honestly currently couldn't afford more on a regular basis. Nice thing is, they've all been steady gigs.....so at least we're working. Last band that held out for $100 a man only worked 8 times in 12 months.
  19. jive1

    jive1 Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    I thought of that, but there's so many other factors such as genre, venue, # members, region, etc. it would skew the numbers.
  20. CapnSev


    Aug 19, 2006
    Coeur d'Alene
    IMHO, good paying gigs don't come to 3-piece grunge-rock bands, especially writing original material. Originals are the killers of paying gigs. It's possible to be payed while playing originals, just be prepared to work 10x as hard, and have a really good hook that people will latch onto. A 90 min. set isn't enough time to ask for $100+ per man either (again IMHO). Not having a PA will severely limit your venue/gig opportunities as well.

    Here's my personal business plan for being paid to rock out:

    1. Give the people what they want. The people want popular cover tunes that they can sing and dance to. I especially believe that danceable tunes are priority A here, because the more dancing involved, the more fine young ladies that show up, then more dudes show up, then more ladies etc.

    2. Be professional. Treat your band like a business, not just you and your buddies trying to get drunk for free and have a good time (having a good time is still the point here though). Have business cards, an easy way to book, contracts, dress the part, etc. Having a good PA that you can bring out (and charge extra) for your gigs falls in this category too.

    3. Be better than the next band. This one is obvious, but you need to play tighter and better than your competition in order to demand a nice sum when you are booked.

    4. Be personable. Don't be a jerk, and make the audience your best friends (to a point). Get the audience to sing along, dance, give out swag for people doing stupid tricks for you- stuff like that.

    5. Get out of the bar whenever you can. The money/time ratio for bar gigs still doesn't even out very well, even if you're making $100 per person or so. Private events, weddings, and festivals are way better paying and involve a way shorter set with less drunken jabronis.
    aborgman likes this.

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