Why Booking Shows on a time constraint can be hell. And it really doesn’t have to be; with help from Bar Owners..
When it comes to booking shows, those who know the deal, would rather just not. This would be easier to write. Correction, it wouldn’t have to be written at all if bar owners and club talent buyers would just simply get back to you in a timely manner.
For me personally, when I started in this business, I thought it was rather ridiculous to try to book shows more than 1 month out. Yes, 1 month out. That was of course, 18 years ago.
In the market of today, you have to literally be 3,4,5, some times 6 months ahead of the game. But here’s why that’s extremely tough to do Mr. Bar Owner.
#1. When bars don’t update their calendars… Come on man, you can’t blame me for wanting a date in your club when it says it’s open on your calendar because you just didn’t feel like maintaining it. Then try to say “It’s booked already”.
#2. When Bar Owners/talent buyers don’t respond. Look, your time is valuable, so is mine. I don’t want to badger and beg and pull my hair out because you, the talent buyer can’t simply reply to an email. You need a lead time to review, ok, if I have that kind of time to wait, sure. Take your 10 days. Just don’t get mad when I book a club who responded on the same day as my inquiry.
#3. I booked it somewhere else! Don’t get mad at me. I about pulled my hair out booking a tour as it just became a nightmare in some states. It just makes me not want to ever try to book entertainment for your state ever again. I’m dead serious on this. I started looking for ways to reroute the tour because it took forever for these people just to simply return a phone call. Ya know when you’re trying to book a tour for April and you start in December contacting people it literally shouldn’t take until the end of January to get it all wrapped up.
#4. But your band isn’t known here. Ok this is the first time, and hopefully the last time I’m gonna cuss in this article. “Well no shit, Sherlock!”. Why do you think it’s called a TOUR? Yes, I’m being facetious. Yes, a little bit of an A-hole. Ok, yes they aren’t known here. BUT, IF, I’m contacting you with a band that A. Is willing to SIGN A CONTRACT: B. Has a LABEL and Management behind them willing to support promotion of the show, and C. Has hired a publicist, there’s a pretty good chance we feel that we can have people walk through your door to enjoy what we offer. Especially if we have local band support.
#5. Where’s your draw? No, where’s YOUR built in following? If you have a good club, people WANT to come out and be in there. No matter WHO is playing. But that’s if A. You’re putting money into promoting the shows coming through as well as daily specials/deals on going and B. Your hometown patrons know that it’s gonna be a good time every time they show up. If the only time people come to your bar is when the band brings them, you have to ask yourself why.
Why are you not attracting a daily average 100 or more regulars passing through to your bar whether the band is playing or not? This is a 2 way street. If you’re relying on the band to bring the people, then be willing to pay them HANDSOMELY. Not just the door but a percentage of the bar as well. Everything I just wrote in #5, is pre-Covid. However, as we get back to normal, this should apply and soon. People are tired of being cooped up and want to party!
#6. You’re ignoring me. This is about to get tough. Because after being in this business 18 years, nothing. I mean NOTHING makes me angrier than someone who doesn’t take me seriously and just turns their nose up at me. As much I want to work with people, I’m like Joe Burrow. Remember what he said in an interview about people not taking him seriously and then in 2019 he led LSU to the greatest football season in College Football history? I’m just like him.
I’m driven to succeed. I want to work with you, but I will get there and get my bands there without you. So let’s get it done and build a profitable business partnership.