Based on all of what you say I don't think we're very different at all in how we approach music and paying gigs. The only difference may be our price tags. I'm not really competing with those players who are making a living in clubs either because around here there are damn few of them left any longer if any. My price is based on the fact that I can eat at home after the gig if I choose because I seldom if ever eat before one and I don't drink any alcohol when I gig. So providing me with free food and four or five shift drinks isn't enticing when a venue figures them at retail value as a part of the payment we're getting. I'll take the $30-$50 they count that as in cash please. Just as aside. I've played many weddings and private parties where the band was fed and there was an open bar but never had to take less than our usual and customary fee for doing the gig because of it. I'm sorry but the food and drink thing is only a way for a club to trade wholesale cost for retail cash. Pay me my usual rate and if I'd like a drink or burger I'll be more than happy to pay for it at their usual rates just as I do everywhere else. But, my honest belief as that each of us should do as we please. We have that right. What you're quoting out of context is only my stating that the poster it was directed to was confirming what the OP posted. I agree with the OP but I'm not foolish enough to believe it's gonna change the way someone else conducts their business. You all have a right to do it your way just as I have to do it mine. No one needs to get defensive about it.