Band Gear Fund


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jakesc8
02-28-2011, 10:02 PM
So, If my band had a gear fund and we used it on gear(duh) and someone had to move, like, out of state, how would that be handled? Im not going through this, but the problem may present itself.

Hail
02-28-2011, 10:19 PM
Establish it ahead of time.

There are a lot of ways it can be seen:

a) Informally, everybody can get back as much as they've put in if they have to leave. This wouldn't really hold because of gear that could possibly only concern their instrument - do they get to keep them?
b) Command, everything that belongs in the band, stays in the band, and all gear stays with the organization. This makes it stronger as a whole, but bones the person leaving.
c) Normally, you'd just divide the amount of the funds and give 1/4, 1/5, whatever to the one leaving the state, then subtract if they want to keep certain gear that 'belongs' to the band.

Legally, c) is the assumed way things work, but all 3 are feasible if the members involved all agree with it ahead of time. It's just a matter of figuring out what's important to everybody.

(But it'd probably be better if someone who feels like using more concrete diction described c; I just wanted to provide certain alternatives depending on whether the band really needs that money.)

jakesc8
02-28-2011, 10:26 PM
Oh. Ok, C is what I was thinking. What if we were to all pay for our own gear, so this wouldnt happen? Is that reasonable? Also, do you think that money spent for CD burning and advertising the band would kinda be, non-refundable, cause its for the welfare of the band?

AlanHB
02-28-2011, 10:35 PM
Oh. Ok, C is what I was thinking. What if we were to all pay for our own gear, so this wouldnt happen? Is that reasonable? Also, do you think that money spent for CD burning and advertising the band would kinda be, non-refundable, cause its for the welfare of the band?

Indeed, it wouldn't occur.

If it's any guidance, in my bands everybody bears the costs for their own gear. The guitarist pays for his stuff, the drummer for his, the bassist for his etc.

If we get paid for a gig, we put this money aside for the following costs:

- Recording
- Producing CDs
- Hiring PA for public performance
- Petrol money (in certain circumstances)

And that's it. The difference between say, buying a guitarist's strings and recording a CD is that the recording is for the benefit of the whole band, and everyone benefits equally. Would the guitarist have to pay for the strings were it not for the existence of the band? If the guitarist quits the band will he have to pay for the strings? Are strings an expense reasonably incurred in the practice of playing guitar? Of course he pays. If you paid for strings before the band, guess what, you still pay for them now.

Now consider the recording of a cd. Would the guitarist have to pay if he wasn't in the band? If there were no band, would the guitarist have to pay? If the guitarist quits, will he have to pay for the recording? Is paying for a recording a normal expense in playing guitar (as opposed to being in a band)?

You can see how you can easily determine what are "band costs" and "self costs".

jakesc8
02-28-2011, 10:42 PM
Yeah, you should be responsible for paying for your own sticks, picks, and strings. I was talking more about things like audio equipment such as mixers and upgrading current gear.

AlanHB
02-28-2011, 10:51 PM
Yeah, you should be responsible for paying for your own sticks, picks, and strings. I was talking more about things like audio equipment such as mixers and upgrading current gear.

Ok well generally if your band breaks up, you'll have to sell the items bought and give each person a percentage of the amount recieved that represents the amount they invested at the start. Alternatively the person who uses the gear the most, (eg. guitar amp) will have to buy the other guys out for the full amount it cost initially.

You can see though how a mixer would differ from the guitar amp. I don't think anybody would use the mixer more than the others, it would probably be sold and you guys get whatever money from that. With the guitar amp, the guitarist would use it more than say, the drummer.

But really, do you want to pay for someone elses guitar amp? I sure wouldn't. As for a mixer, hire one if you need to. It'll be cheaper. Alternatively purchase a full PA yourself and get the boys to pay you for the hire per show. That's not uncommon.

Anyways, why do you think you need a band fund? If it's because you don't have enough money to upgrade your amp, that's a REALLY BAD start.

jakesc8
02-28-2011, 10:56 PM
No, I dont want one for other people to buy my stuff. I heard about it and it sounded like a good idea, but I see now that its not. Seems now that any split pay should go into transportation and being able to advertise ourselves. Thanks for the help.

AlanHB
02-28-2011, 11:59 PM
No, I dont want one for other people to buy my stuff. I heard about it and it sounded like a good idea, but I see now that its not. Seems now that any split pay should go into transportation and being able to advertise ourselves. Thanks for the help.

No worries. You can see how it can create a lot of problems if not dealt with thoughtfully.

frameandcanvas
03-01-2011, 12:14 AM
I've never used band money to upgrade equipment. In my bands, if we take money from the band fund, we have to pay it back in, so we used it as a system for loans. I snapped the neck on my Les Paul, so I used part of the fund to have it mended. I put the money back in as soon as I could. When bands broke up, we just split the money evenly. Worked pretty well.

jakesc8
03-01-2011, 12:20 AM
That makes sense. Emergency only fund, I s'pose.

AlanHB
03-01-2011, 01:47 AM
I've never used band money to upgrade equipment. In my bands, if we take money from the band fund, we have to pay it back in, so we used it as a system for loans. I snapped the neck on my Les Paul, so I used part of the fund to have it mended. I put the money back in as soon as I could. When bands broke up, we just split the money evenly. Worked pretty well.

I would have used my own money to mend the guitar, and the band fund to hire one for a gig (or just borrowed a mates, or used a spare guitar). But it seems like you were all professional about it and it ended well.

Punk_Ninja
03-01-2011, 05:12 AM
AlanHB has hit most of the points I was going to say.

If you have each member responsible for their own stuff and have the P.A or whatever you buy with band funds stay with the band (as it'd be stupid to give some guy who's moving away your mixer, then you're left with a power amp and your speakers with nothing to use 'em with) as they are, the band funds.

I mean, I'm sure if you like, used money from gigs to help out one of the members with some gear they can't quite afford that'd be best sticking with them (what use would a new shiny snare be to a guitarist/bassist if the drummer leaves?).

But anyway, if you're not in this situation I think you're overthinking it a bit!
I mean, it's not liek you're in a band with a bunch of lawyers! Make sure to all just act sensibly about money and you shouldn't get into too many problems.

axemanchris
03-01-2011, 07:37 AM
While I agree entirely with what AlanHB has put forward, I will add this: If there is damage to a member's equipment while on a gig, we used band money for the repair.

Based on the same logic: If he was just playing guitar in his room, would his amp have fallen off the dolly that another member was pushing? No. We coughed up and paid the repair.

Otherwise, think of it like this:

Your band is a business. The money the business pays out should be for business-related needs. In general, this could be advertising, salaries, product development, etc. It could mean equipment, but then that would mean that the equipment belongs to the business, not the employee. When you quit your job at Burger King, you don't get to take the french fryer with you, do you?

CT

AlanHB
03-01-2011, 07:41 AM
While I agree entirely with what AlanHB has put forward, I will add this: If there is damage to a member's equipment while on a gig, we used band money for the repair.

Based on the same logic: If he was just playing guitar in his room, would his amp have fallen off the dolly that another member was pushing? No. We coughed up and paid the repair.

CT

It's a good point. What would occur though if the member's gear was insured for such damage?

axemanchris
03-01-2011, 07:44 AM
Interesting question.

Two thoughts, I suppose:

1. If the member has his own equipment insured, and it is covered, then it is mostly a non-issue. Perhaps the band could pay the deductible.

2. Perhaps insuring of equipment might be something that the band considers paying for all members. Deductibles to be negotiated, whether paid by the band or the members.

I like option 1 the best.

CT

AlanHB
03-01-2011, 08:17 AM
Interesting question.

Two thoughts, I suppose:

1. If the member has his own equipment insured, and it is covered, then it is mostly a non-issue. Perhaps the band could pay the deductible.

2. Perhaps insuring of equipment might be something that the band considers paying for all members. Deductibles to be negotiated, whether paid by the band or the members.

I like option 1 the best.

CT

Just to be a pain..... :D

With number 1, should that person then be liable to pay for other member's gear if it gets damaged?

axemanchris
03-01-2011, 08:33 AM
That member's insurance covers him/her whether the gear gets damaged in a band setting or not. It's not like, "I paid to have my gear insured, so you should have to too. Why should I be a sucker and have to pay insurance on my gear when you don't have to?"

Maybe?

CT

jakesc8
03-01-2011, 09:33 AM
But at Burger King, did you help pay for the fryer?

TrueBlues
03-01-2011, 09:40 AM
But at Burger King, did you help pay for the fryer?
If you're operating the band as a business, this doesn't matter. If the band gets paid a fee, that whole fee is put into the band fund, out of said fee some will be kept for gear and some is paid to members, so the individual doesn't buy any equipment, the company (the band) does. As long as nobody puts their own capital in to the fund, this would work.

Mephysteaux
03-01-2011, 01:45 PM
Here's how my old paintball team worked it, maybe this will be helpful to you.

Everyone had their personal gear, their guns, masks, etc. All of that stuff was entirely the responsibility of the person who owned it. But there was also team gear, like tables and canopy tents used by everyone for staging before games, those were bought with team funds.

Team funds were acquired in a lot of different ways. We got some from sponsors, selling prizes we won, profit from the sale of uniforms, and some contributions from team members. Regardless of how the funds were acquired, they belonged to the team, regardless of who came and left. For example, the old captain left the team, and asked that the team give him a radio that he had contributed the money to buy. He didn't get it. I left before he did, and in addition to contributing money, I also did a lot of work to earn money for the team that I was never compensated for. I recognized that these contributions were not loans, and that as I had never raised any concern about getting it back, I shouldn't ask for it back.

So, what I'm getting at, establish something beforehand so that everyone knows what to expect when they leave the band. "Once we have it, it's ours," as mean as they may sound, is simple, and fair if everyone agrees to it. If you want some sort of return on your investment of time and money, work that out before someone leaves and demands the value of 1/4 of your PA system.

jakesc8
03-01-2011, 05:47 PM
Ok, so as contributing out of pocket is not required, if you fund out of pocket, you have no right to get that back. Ok, so, the band being payed would definitely stay.

axemanchris
03-01-2011, 08:48 PM
"Once we have it, it's ours," as mean as they may sound, is simple, and fair if everyone agrees to it.

So if two members leave a four-piece band, who keeps it?

At some point, you have to consider the possibility of either buying people out or liquidating assets.

CT

The Harvester
03-13-2011, 10:52 AM
The only logic I see is if you, say got a 1200$ mixer(just using easy numbers) which would mean in a 4 piece band that everyone paid 300$. If one member had to move Id say the remaining 3 member should pay that amount to the leaving member. Otherwise, just state beforehand what would happen if one should leave.