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where did our fan base go?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by One_Dude, Dec 13, 2018.

  1. I play in a Bluegrass band that seems to have lost our fan base. I suspect there are a couple of reasons for this; we are mostly without our banjo player in the last year. He's either on the road or ill and misses most of our shows. Another possibility is that our music is a mix of bluegrass and old time, with some country thrown in which may not satisfy some of the bluegrass audience. And of course, maybe we just suck. Whatever the reason, I think we have just lost our house band gig because of low attendance.

    Any suggestions on how to identify our problem. The folks that attend our shows tell us how much they enjoy the music, there's just not enough people coming to see us.

    Thump on,

  2. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011
    How long have you been a house band.
    The only house band i’ve been in that enjoyed any long term draw was a C&W dance band.
    saabfender likes this.
  3. House Band sounds like a great steady gig to get, but the truth is, you saturate your audience with weekly shows. No one has incentive to see you, if they know you’ll be there again in a week.

    Also, it is in the venue’s best interest to rotate their entertainment, rather than continually offer the exact same thing.

    A house gig is just a fan-base killer waiting to happen, and a guaranteed replacement when it does.
    OldDog52, Bodeanly and petrus61 like this.
  4. Clark Dark

    Clark Dark

    Mar 3, 2005
    Does your guitarist play any slide?
  5. tb4sbp


    May 9, 2017
    North East
    To be a house band you need to change up your song list all the time. And keep the audience dancing and drinking. A lot of work. Best of luck
  6. Slater

    Slater Leave that thing alone. Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2000
    The Great Lakes State
    House band gigs don’t last forever. I had a house band gig for over four years. We were fortunate enough to know quite a few local musicians, so we would often invite them to sit-in, which kept the show fresh.
    saabfender and btmpancake like this.
  7. Several years ago , I was in a roots rock n roll band. Think Elvis , Carl Perkins , Jerry Lee , Roy Orbison and the like. Crowds over the years got smaller and smaller. I think most of our fans just died.:sorry:
    Alik and oldrocker like this.
  8. btmpancake

    btmpancake Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2015
    Apollo beach, Florida
    A smoking hot sexy female lead/front-person that can sing and croon the audience will work wonders and breathe new life in a band with a fresh look, different show and sound. I realize there's not a lot a lot 'em around but man if you can find one...
    Bodeanly likes this.
  9. Bodeanly

    Bodeanly Supporting Member

    Mar 20, 2015
    I’m listening.
  10. btmpancake

    btmpancake Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2015
    Apollo beach, Florida
    When we changed our format to a very talented and beautiful young lady,the locals came out of woodworks to check out our new show. I'am not sure if they were listening with their eyes or ears.
    Bodeanly likes this.
  11. Assuming that we have lost the house band gig, which at this point is likely but not definite, we have been the house band at this new venue for about 14 months. We have been rotating our material but it's certainly possible that the suggestions about "house band boredom" makes sense. We started playing there twice a month and then changed to once a month which kind of fits in with the house band saturation theory. I understand the venue owner's decision to bring in other bands and I would do the same thing to boost attendance if I was the owner.

    I also like the idea of a new "hot female singer", but since our BL is a female I don't see that happening. If fact, one of our members is talking about retiring, and I suggested a female singer we know from playing at other venues with her. This was immediately nixed by our BL; too bad because she's a great singer and pretty easy on the eyes.

    Thanks for the input. In retrospect I wouldn't always want to see the same band all the time either. Please keep the suggestions coming if you think of anything more.

    Thump on,

  12. saabfender

    saabfender Banned

    Jan 10, 2018
    All awesome stuff from the group about house bands. When I was in one, a way to keep it fresh way to essentially become different bands periodically. The drummer in the full 7-piece would do an evening on the piano playing jazz with me and a sub drummer and maybe the chick singer sitting in to do a half dozen songs.

    The occasional absence of your banjo player is a perfect opportunity to focus on trad country and newer stuff. You purify the songlist for the bluegrassy things that play to his strengths and fans. Save the other songs for the other configuration.
  13. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011
    There is also a very strong chance you are playing to a bluegrass audience who won’t put up with any variation from that. IME playing bluegrass, you can play any song you want as long as you do it like a bluegrass song, i’ve heard bluegrass versions of Elton John songs, Julian Lennon songs, etc and as long as it sounded like a bluegrass band folks loved it, but toss in some country, even traditional country, and they go to the consession stand or the restroom.

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