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Wants to enter the world of the paying gig:

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by furiously funky, Jun 21, 2003.

  1. furiously funky

    furiously funky Guest

    Dec 28, 2002
    when all of you were paying gig virgins, how did you get yourselves established, and actually start making money? what techniques worked for you, how did you approach the situation? what advise would you give someone about to attemt to make some money and play "real" gigs.
  2. you should read up in thge articles & lessons in the TB homepage, about contracts etc...


    Basically, I'd would just to go bar managers and clubs, and ask if they need a band to fill an open spot, or if they wuld let ya'll play.

    Once you got a spot, start negotiating the contract (money, time, date, set time). Be as nice as you can. Remember, you're selling yourself to this customer, and he or she must know that they are going to get their money's worth from you!

    A demo CD is important, but yea, that can be expensive, but it will go further than a tape! (or vinyl! :eek: )

    Also bring posters, and may sure its OK to hang it up on a bulliten board are whatever they got. make sur eyou have numbers and email addresses etc on it! make it eye catching and funny!

    also hang up your posters in music stores on their 'Wanted Muscians' board (if it's OK, of course).

    Be as polite as you can, and always make sure you have permission! Nothing like a good rep!!


    hope that helps some!
  3. Also...to add to Microbass' post(very good one) I'd like to say be as professional as possible...like,be on time...actually earlier. And just be a really nice group of guys...they'll love you,who knows? you might get a nice steady paying gig going.

    good luck

  4. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta (Grant Park!)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    I agree with the above posts. Most importantly, whomever you open for, put your foot in their arse and break it off in there! Once you hit that stage, kill 'em all and let God sort 'em out! Trust me, if you do that, you WILL be back!
  5. furiously funky

    furiously funky Guest

    Dec 28, 2002
    thank you for your replys, but i was thinking of getting to play paying gigs personally with an already established band. would i make "bassist for hire" signs? talk to band leaders, which approach would yeild best results (i read a great book with a section on getting gigs for your band)
  6. OK, I see where you are coming from.

    Put up a 'bassist for hire' sign, and list your 'rules' - no drinking during rehersals for example - but try to be good natured. You may put someone off if you come across as bossy.

    Look out for 'Bassist Wanted' signs too! :)

    g'luck! :smug:
  7. I'm very tempted to print up a "Bassist for Hire" T-shirt.

    It'd just have "Bassist for Hire" and some contact details on the front in large, simple letters, and I'd wear it whenever I'm out playing with any random people.

    Kinda, a moving advert I guess. The TB T-shirt I have works a bit too - certainly works as an ice-breaker; "oh, you play bass..... that's handy....." etc, etc.
  8. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    It's simple. You're playing a free gig. Someone walks up and says, "Hey! You guys are fantastic! I'd like to get you for my husband's 50th birthday party. How much do you charge?" You reply, "$350." I don't recommend this if you don't have four FULL sets of music (40 to 50 songs). This happened to us three times at our last (paying) gig. It was a retirement party for four teachers.

    Of course, the music you play is going to play a big role in the size of your potential audience (recall a thread named "I hate my local music scene"). Also, you'll make more money if your audience is the type of people who have any money.

    You're not going to end up playing at the local country club Holiday Party for $2,000 if you play head-banger originals. Or originals of any kind, for that matter. The money-paying public doesn't want to hear some local wankers who think they can write tunes. They want to hear the music they already love. Translation: In a local scene, you'll make a LOT more money as a covers band.
  9. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    If you're trying to break into freelancing, I've got my Top Ten list for becoming a working freelancer:

    1. Read. Your ass off.
    2. Play great time.
    3. Be versitile.
    3. Read. Your ass off.
    4. Know a lot of songs.
    5. Be personable.
    6. Be professional.
    7. Read. Your ass off.
    8. Have solid, professional sounding, appropriate gear.
    9. Read. Your ass off.
    10. Get a teacher. Easily the fastest way to break into a working scene is to take lessons from someone who's working. (Trust me on this, I made a boatload of money in Atlanta doing this, and the San Antonio scene is doing the same thing for me) Once a working pro gets a chance to sit down and hear you play, knows what you can do, he'll be far more likely to recommend you. Think of it as an investment. And if you're a good player, it's an investment that will pay off.

    Oh, and since there were only 10 spots on the Top Ten list, I might have failed to mention number 11:

    Read. Your ass off.