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#154607 - 11/04/02 12:25 PM Re: Solo gigs
tony mads usa Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 01/16/02
Posts: 13195
Loc: East Greenwich RI USA
Zuki ... One bad gig and you sold your gear?!?!? ... supposedly, Elvis was laughed out of the Grand Ol' Oprey!!! .... now what are you going to play on if you COULD get a good paying gig ??? ... Along with the advice and comments above, depending on the type of music you play, you should also check with local newspapers, catering halls, bridal shops, tuxedo rental stores, full service wedding coordinators, etc. for schedules of 'Bridal/Wedding Showcases', and get a space to 'show your stuff', live and perhaps by video ... Maybe you could pick up some small gigs, cocktail receptions, whatever..... BUT ... if you're not ready for some hard knocks, don't go into the entertainment biz ... partime, fulltime .. NO TIME !!!
t.
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t. cool

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#154608 - 11/04/02 06:57 PM Re: Solo gigs
zuki Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 09/20/02
Posts: 4223
Loc: Michigan
Thanks all for your replies. I think The Pro hit it best...how badly do I want to play? I've played off and on for years, but not for many until the debacle at the vacant coffee house. Deep down, I know it is very difficult work and I find myself torn between writing or playing out. Besides all this, I have a demanding 'other' job. So, advice taken and I'll continue the self evaluation.
Zuk
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Korg PA3X / Yamaha P125 / Yamaha MX61 / QSC 8.2s / Zed mixers / Blue mics / Roland BR800

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#154609 - 11/05/02 02:27 AM Re: Solo gigs
MacAllcock Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 03/02/02
Posts: 1157
Loc: Preston, Lancashire, England
In this business you get good gigs and bad gigs. Nevertheless, good can come of almost any situation. Me + my mate played a restauraunt once, for a serious fee (for the area and time). We played to the staff. Thats it. No punters. We played staff requests all evening and attempted to play as if the place was packed. I even ad-libbed a duet with the owners wife!

However... we picked up 2 private parties and the local annual dance because the owner was impressed with our music and attitude and broadcast our name.

All you can ever do at a gig is play your best. If no-one turns up thats a publicity or marketing problem (unless you really are terrible!). My sole measure of success is "the rebook factor". If places re-book you on a regular basis, you are getting somewhere.

remember - in this business there are no instant successes, even if it looks like it. The Britneys of this world paid their dues as kids.
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John Allcock

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#154610 - 11/05/02 05:04 AM Re: Solo gigs
Uncle Dave Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 12/01/99
Posts: 11459
Loc: Philadelphia Pa, USA
Britney never paid a due ever. Her people are selling a cute smile and a killer body. ANYone can sell that. Music is NOT a part of the equation. Kids buy anything new and pretty ..... much like beer drinkers.

As for selling art - that's a tough order. There is no way to fairly price the value of art because it is not worth the same to everyone. As an artist, you must FIRST be satisfied with the creation of your work. If it sells, then that's a bonus, but the true joy comes from the creation itself. Performing arts are a rare and unique gift that need to be shared, but they are not always a source of financial gain.

In order to market a successful career in music - your own needs and wants are SECOND to the needs and wants of the client. maybe you were playing for yourself?
(not a bad thing ...... just maybe not what people in that shop are willing to listen to)

Don't give up ....... search your soul to find the center of your desire, and then see if it can fit into the harsh, cruel world of the entertainment industry. Even at the coffee house level - it's still show BUSINESS, not Show "art". It's a beautiful thing when art is appreciated, but it's MORE important that someone actually CREATE the beauty. What people buy, will change so fast - your head will spin, but the creation of beauty will last forever.
Good luck, my friend .... it gets easier with time.
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Every instrument, every voice, every sound in nature ... these are are all my private tutors ... 24/7 for free, and all I have to do is listen.

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#154611 - 11/05/02 05:46 AM Re: Solo gigs
The Pro Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 07/09/02
Posts: 1087
Loc: Atlanta, Georgia
Uncle Dave said: "In order to market a successful career in music - your own needs and wants are SECOND to the needs and wants of the client. maybe you were playing for yourself?
(not a bad thing ...... just maybe not what people in that shop are willing to listen to)".

We've had a similar discussion before, and UD's view on this is what the majority of people believe - but I don't. If you can produce something truly unique and beautiful, you just have to find the right venue for it. And that takes going out to nearly every place that has live music in your area and scoping the market out. If you can do your own thing within the context of your market, lucky you. If not but you believe in what you do then change markets. But again, this all assumes that you really want to play.
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#154612 - 11/05/02 06:51 AM Re: Solo gigs
tony mads usa Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 01/16/02
Posts: 13195
Loc: East Greenwich RI USA
The Pro... "If you can do your own thing within the context of your market, lucky you." .... I fully agree with that ... BUT if you are going to make a living in this business, you can't do your own thing unless you are satisfying the client ... If 'your own thing' is so diverse from what the market is calling for, even working 'one shot gigs' will run out in time ... AND if you are lucky enough to find the right market, aren't you then satisfying the client, which is what most of us believe is the key to making that living... even if we have to sacrifice some artistic desires in doing so ... I have done some gigs which musically I thought were crap, but the client loved it, so I consider it a successful gig ... Usually after a gig like that I'll spend the next day with headphones on, playing just for myself.. .. I've played in real nice piano lounges, providing music from the 'Great American Songbook', middle of the road pop, light jazz, bossas, etc. ... I've enjoyed high compliments, requests for a CD, good tips, etc. .... Come St. Pat's night and my joyfull pastime becomes WORK !!! ... I sweat out the night, and what do people say for weeks later? "Great music on St. Patty's nite... thanks ..." ???
and UD... We all know you've been getting by on that cute smile and killer body for years!!!
t.

[This message has been edited by tony mads usa (edited 11-05-2002).]
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#154613 - 11/05/02 07:22 AM Re: Solo gigs
trtjazz Offline
Member

Registered: 08/01/02
Posts: 2683
Uncle Dave,
I couldn't agree with you more....good post.

First of all the Britney's and dare I say the "boy bands" are merely created products for a market. Perhaps there is a bit of talent amongest them, but they are created and marketed goods like a can of Campbell's soup is.

My support of this point...Menudo, really the 1st boy band that I recall. One guy (Ricky Martin)in all those years of personnel changes as they got too old for a boy band made it.

IMO talent in many cases has very little to do with "making it" whatever that may be for each of us. In the traditonal meaning though, it is more about right place right time, luck and someone who's in the biz to say to themselves...."I think I can make a buck off this act."

I don't know how many of you recall Mark Kastabe (sp)....that's what he was all about in the fine arts, canvas painting. He set out to prove the point of what a sham the art world was built on BS as opposed to talented artists. Anyway he was a master at promoting himself and went from selling no paintings to selling the same work that everyone said was junk to celebrties for up to $100,000.00 or more.

Well, after he made his fortune, then he went on the talk show circuit and basically said what a bunch of idiots everyone was for buying these paintings for so much money as he got to the point where he was not even painting them anymore, but had art students painting them and the buyer was lucky if he even signed them.

Well people like S Stallone hating to be called a dope for spending $30k on one of these sham paintings demanded his money back, which Kastabe gladly gave him and resold for $50k because Stallone had owned it.

So his point was to appreciate art and the artist for who they are and their work rather then the hype and marketing.

I thought him a very arrogant guy but brought to light the plight of those of us in the arts for the right reason...IMO to create art, be it performing or fine, to share with the world.
jam on,
Terry
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jam on,
Terry
http://www.artisans-world.com/

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#154614 - 11/05/02 08:01 AM Re: Solo gigs
The Pro Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 07/09/02
Posts: 1087
Loc: Atlanta, Georgia
Tony: There are some fundamental differences in my performance philosophy and most other musos I know both in reality and on-line: I honestly believe in satisfying my own artistic values first and I prioritize that within a realm of acceptance. It's my belief that the audience, for the most part, is not the best judge of what represents quality in music. Much of what they request is what has been marketed to them by mass media or is stereotypical of what they expect solo keyboardists to play. If I based my performance solely on that, my best music would never be heard. None the less, I have found that with care I can balance my art needs with audience acceptance. The result is that I can deliver an eclectic mix of quality material that is unique, enjoyable, and even familiar but never cliche'. This is what seperates and identifies me from my competition, all of whom follow the safest and often the most predictable musical course. My greatest compliment isn't the "good job" or "we really enjoyed your music" (I get those too BTW) - it came from the girl in the front row one night who waited until a moment of dead silence to simply say "you're different...". And so far in the past year, I've only had one week off and that was by my own choice.
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Jim Eshleman

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#154615 - 11/05/02 09:10 AM Re: Solo gigs
MacAllcock Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 03/02/02
Posts: 1157
Loc: Preston, Lancashire, England
Maybe Britney was a bad example!

The point I was trying to make was that even the "manufactured" bands/acts usually have people in them who've been "out there" before - Micky Dolenz was a child actor before the Monkees were created (it was him, wasn't it?)
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John Allcock

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#154616 - 11/05/02 10:09 AM Re: Solo gigs
tony mads usa Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 01/16/02
Posts: 13195
Loc: East Greenwich RI USA
Pro ..... Based on your latest post, perhaps weare not THAT far apart in philosophy, but moreso in actual practise .... I have never hesitated to play something 'for myself' during a gig, perhaps you just do it more often ..... and isn't it great when you get a comment or compliment that lets you know that someone is really listening .... not too long ago a young lady was sitting at the piano bar for about an hour and a half ... as I finished the night she asked me if I did 'Taking You Home' by Don Henley, because she though it would fit my voice very well ... That was worth more than any tip in the jar and packing up the gear seemed a bit easier that night ....
t.
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t. cool

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