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remember your first paid gig?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by leanne, Aug 3, 2005.

  1. leanne


    May 29, 2002
    Rochester, NY
    How much did you get paid for your first (paid) gig?
  2. Dondabass


    Feb 25, 2005
    It was 1972. The band was the "BCLW Boogie Band"! Four guys about 15 years old playing at a catholic school junior high school dance. The rhythm guitarist and I plugged into the same little amp (Meteor). I was playing an old Sears Silvertone Bass that I would give my left one to have back. Our PA consisted of an old PA loudspeaker, I think. I was wearing a floppy hat, pink puffy-sleeved shirt, and purple pants! Songs included "Evil Ways" (didn't everyone play that in 1972?), "Proud Mary" (ditto), "I'm Not Your Stepping Stone", "Daytripper", "5 to 1" (the Doors) and "Purple Haze". The gig was my introduction to rock stardom with gaggles of little catholic schoolgirls gathering around us in the semi-lit gym. Haven't looked back since!
    The band stayed together for my high school years under the names "Pacific Sandlot" and "Devil's Laughter". LOL just remembering all of this!
  3. Dondabass


    Feb 25, 2005
    Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that we received the princely sum of $5.00 per man!
  4. Minger


    Mar 15, 2004
    Rochester, NY
    I can'tr remember mine...

    Oh wait, I havn't done a paid gig yet...:p
  5. Wesley R

    Wesley R Supporting Member

    If memory serves. Certainly not the most nor the least that I have been paid.

    I sometimes wonder what beginning Highschool band make now.

    Best of Luck,
    Wesley R.
  6. jazzbo


    Aug 25, 2000
    San Francisco, CA
    You can get money for gigs??!?!?!


    Jan 25, 2005
    Des Moines, IA
    My band, Sonic Prophet, worked out a deal where we got the door for this jazz club that was being sold to new owners.

    We told EVERYBODY we knew and thought we'd make out big time.....yeah, right. We wound up splitting $70 4 ways :crying: ...but the new owners decided to book us for 4 nights in the upcoming month@ $75 per person.....karma, gotta love it :hyper:
  8. 1970.

    Squash Club/ Social Club in Lincoln U.K.


    £40 ($80 ish ?) between the 5 of us.

    Oh happy days. :D :D
  9. Kronde


    Feb 1, 2005
    Charlotte, NC
    My first paid performance was an opening slot for a Minneapolis band called The Cows back in 1988 or so...Show was at the VFW in Green Bay, WI....I think we got $37.42 (all in change) for the four of us...

    Had a blast :)
  10. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    1979 at Shorty's Skating Rink in West Bend Wisconsin, USA. ..Not in the rink for the skaters; they had a seperate 'lounge'-like area in another part of the building.

    We were a rock trio, doing Jimmi and Stones and Santana and whatnot. I was a senior in H.S., and the other two guys were Juniors.

    The band's name was "Sardonicus", but the ad they ran said "The Sardonicas".

    I can't remember how much we made, but I remember that it WAS a paying gig. We had played a couple shows before that for parties or whatever, but 'those didn't count'. I think even back then in our first year-or-so of playing, we all agreed that "We can't really officially (or proudly) call our selves 'a band' unless we play for PAY!"

  11. rfalter


    Jul 20, 2004
    Pasadena, MD
    New Year's day(night). 10p-2a at a local pub. $55 per man after we paid a sub drummer, the soundguy, and the agent. Not too shabby. It was *my* first paid gig, but everyone else in the band had been there, done that already. It was a blast despite a big case of stage jitters. It seem like 100 years ago, now.
  12. bassontherun


    Jul 9, 2005
    First paying gig was at a cool artsy place in Galveston, TX, Cafe Horizons. We made about $50 each on that one.

    However, the one I remember best was me and my guitarist doing acoustic sets at a coffeehouse in Houston. The standard was to play for tips (generally $50 to $100 on good nights). Horrendous thunder storms opened up just as we got the gear in the door. Rained cats and dogs all night. Made $2! Couldn't even afford a cup of house joe without digging in our wallets.... ;)


    Jan 25, 2005
    Des Moines, IA
    They made you pay???? :eek: :rollno: :spit:
  14. Bassic83


    Jul 26, 2004
    Texas, USSA
    Too bad Cafe Horizon closed- it was a friend of mine's place. :( I often play right next door, at JuJu's.

    My first paid gig as a bassist was at the Sail Loft in Laguna Beach, CA playing with Michael Hamilton on a New Year's Eve. Mike used to play with Kenny Loggins and is one of the baddest guitarists I've ever played alongside. I had been playing for only a few months, and he threw a Real Book in front of me, talk about scared ****less...then he broke out a bunch of classic rock and funk and I was OK. But that first set, I think I took all of 6-7 breaths the whole 50 minutes! Got $300 for the evening.

    My very first paid gig was playing keyboards at a place in San Clemente, CA at the Wagon Wheel. Made $75 a man for a 4-piece classic rock band. In 1984, that was decent. Not great, but decent. The last gig I played in SoCal was at the Palomino, we ended up paying $800 to the club. And no, we didn't drink a drop. That was during the "pay-to-play" days. I was so disgusted I quit playing for 2 years. :mad:
  15. 1968 - a frat party at a lakehouse. Completely out of control and quite an eye opener for an 8th grader playing bass in a group made up of college age band mates.
  16. ryco


    Apr 24, 2005
    First paid gig at University HS in Tacoma, WA with band that had been playing the school circut throughout WA state. Made $135 for that gig each. 5 piece + 10% off thetop for the agent man. So $750 which was a lot of money in '72. Usually played two school gigs per weekend. A lot of times we'd have to drive across the state at night to make the next gig. Did that all through HS. Ah those were the days.

    I'm gonna confess here: first money I got was when some buddies of mine got a gig playing fo free in a church basement. I wasn't a very cool dude back then and I paid myself by finding the collection plate up in the chapel. About $5 I think. I went down to the Artic Circle down the street and bought a burger and onion rings - I'm definitely going to you-know-where for that one.
  17. I got payed in coffee before... does that count?
  18. yep i remember...it was at a church.....but i didnt play bass :bawl: ......i played oboe....for $75
  19. My very first gig was sometime when I played DB for one of my mom's (she is an orchestra teacher for the public schools) elementary school concerts when I was in 7th grade. I got $10 bucks for it.

    Right now I am getting paid $200 to play in a local theatre musical (Oliver!). It's not that great at all considering the time commitment, and the music director wanted to give me $300, but the theatre had to compensate for a couple adult profesionals that belonged to musician's unions or something like that (they get paid around $400). Maybe its because I'm still in HS...doh. Oh well, its my first real gig. And while I don't even get to really see the play, I'm enjoying it.
  20. Bass_Man61


    Jul 18, 2005
    I played drums in my first band we called the band Free Beer