After a brief hiatus, I’M BACK! Can’t get rid of me that easily.
It’s that time of year again: festival season. Summer tends to be one of my favorite times of the year. I just love the third degree burns you can get from touching a seatbelt that has been in direct sunlight in your car all day… What? That’s not your favorite, you say? Gotta love Texas summers.
In all seriousness, it’s one of my favorite times because less stress and more pool. Work tends to be busier for me, too. This month brings the highly anticipated Pegasus Music Festival on the 21st (I’ll be at the VIP table, so come high five me!) which segues into a full schedule for July and August. We’re welcoming back our friends in Restless Streets (a NY based band who can be found in my photo above this article with all the arms) on July 18 and so much more. You can find our full concert calendar at www.ghostlightconcerts.com under the “calendar” button. Keep checking back because we add new shows all the time and you don’t want to miss any.
This episode of my article is going to be geared toward advice for local bands. I used to play in a (very small) local band like 800 years ago and I don’t play anymore so you’re probably thinking, “Why would I ever take advice from this girl?” I’ve seen a lot in my time working for Ghostlight and HighHorse before the merger and I’ve worked alongside a lot of bands from everywhere so I feel pretty much qualified to talk on this subject. Also please remember that these opinions are strictly my own and do not represent the beliefs held by Static Magazine or Ghostlight Concerts in any way. Or maybe they do, but I’ll let each individual speak for themselves on that one.
If you really want to be added to the lineup of a show, you should prove your worth.
That probably goes without saying for a lot of you that have had experience with playing a lot of shows in the past, but sometimes I get the feeling that some people just don’t understand this. You need to make the promoter or the venue believe that you’re valuable and your band can bring something to the table. Ask not what the promoter can do for you, ask what YOU can do for the promoter!… that’s what JFK said, right? …Something like that… For example, presale tickets. I know that selling them sucks. I used to have to do it too. If you’re constantly begging to be put on a show and you’re finally given a shot and you don’t sell hardly any presale tickets OR bring anyone to the show for you at the door, you’re probably not going to get booked again. If the promoter is giving you a shot, don’t mess that up. There are usually other bands that would have liked to take your spot that can’t now because you wasted your opportunity. Be serious.
With that said, don’t show up late to the first show you’re playing for that promoter/venue.
Load in is at a certain time, so make it on time ESPECIALLY if you’re a local. And if you sold two presale tickets to your parents only, don’t ask the promoter to book you again or ask about getting paid. That is the fastest way to ruin a business relationship. Sometimes you work with awesome promoters who will pay you for bringing a certain amount of people after you sell a certain number of tickets. In order to build that relationship, you have to start at the bottom most of the time. That also means don’t try to book a huge tour across the nation if you’re just starting out. That rarely works for bands and you don’t want to get halfway to your first show, break down in the middle of nowhere with no money and no food, and have to call someone for help. #tourlife. Build somewhat of a fan base and then work on touring. It can wait. Enjoy showering and sleeping in a bed while you can. Those things are awesome. #goodpersonalhygienelife
Be thankful and be humble.
I think that’s pretty self-explanatory. Don’t only make new fans, but make new friends. I’ve made so many awesome new friends through my job and I get so stoked knowing that I have people I can hang out with almost everywhere across the country. If your head and your heart are in the right place, playing music can be one of the best times of your life. Know when to say thank you.
There’s plenty more I could say about this, but we’ll save it for another time. Who knows- maybe I’ll meet your band while you’re on tour one day! Keep up the hard work.