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MR. Goodcents
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Join date: Aug 2008
282 IQ
#1
So? On average how much do you get paid for playing a show? Just wondering what the norm is because I am new to getting paid to play. We got 400 for the band tonight.
Artemis Entreri
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#2
I tend to get up to about 200. But I play in a...non-professional band. The singer and I are good and the drummer is solid but nothing special. Our rhythm guitar player and bassist have only been playing a few months.
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CODE
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#3
Wow, that is a good show. We have gotten anywhere from $200 to nothing. We used to get nothing unless we played in our hometown because the only other places we could get booked are shitty youth centers. We have gotten some better shows recently where we actually get gas money and some extra, like an average of $40.

We always try to get paid, but we don't let it stop us from playing shows. We just did a show like 4 hours away out of state for no money. And we got a parking ticket, so we lost a ton of money. Still a sweet show, worth it.
SSDDPunkRocker
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#4
Our band (and the bands we normally play with) don't even care about money. Sure, it's cool if we get a few bucks, but that'll just either go to eating after the show or towards the "guild bank" (that will go to recording and merch). We've made about $30 after eight shows so far. Not totally bad for a crappy hardcore band.
Crizzle
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#5
Quote by SSDDPunkRocker
Our band (and the bands we normally play with) don't even care about money. Sure, it's cool if we get a few bucks, but that'll just either go to eating after the show or towards the "guild bank" (that will go to recording and merch). We've made about $30 after eight shows so far. Not totally bad for a crappy hardcore band.


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chokmool
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#6
I don't think there really is a norm. I know a cover band that plays weddings and big private parties, and they can take down $2-3K/gig. If you play bars and clubs(3-4 hours), probably $200-$500. If you're playing with other bands to fill the time, you'll get little to nothing, unless you arrange/headline the show. If you're in charge, you decide what to pay the other bands.

I'd say you did pretty well at $400.
CODE
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#7
Quote by SSDDPunkRocker
Our band (and the bands we normally play with) don't even care about money. Sure, it's cool if we get a few bucks, but that'll just either go to eating after the show or towards the "guild bank" (that will go to recording and merch). We've made about $30 after eight shows so far. Not totally bad for a crappy hardcore band.


What's your band called? I am also from Minnesota, we might have crossed paths at a show or something. Mine is myspace.com/torobathief
krehzeekid
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#8
I play in a functions band and, as stated above, we tend to make a little more. We average about $2000 a night but have made up to $4000 for festivals (we are a ukrainian band, which is in extremely high demand in western Canada). That being said, everybody in the band is a trained musician (all of us save for me has a university degree concerning music) and we all have 15+ years experience, so we are less of a liability than other bands. When we play as a rock/metal band (we cut 2 members and go as a trio under a different name) we still manage to pull in no less than $1500 for a night.

If you want to make more money, market yourselves as something more than dudes who play music: get fans, have a cool stage show or anything else that sets you apart from the mass of other bands.
WyvernOmega
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#9
Quote by krehzeekid
I play in a functions band and, as stated above, we tend to make a little more. We average about $2000 a night but have made up to $4000 for festivals (we are a ukrainian band, which is in extremely high demand in western Canada). That being said, everybody in the band is a trained musician (all of us save for me has a university degree concerning music) and we all have 15+ years experience, so we are less of a liability than other bands. When we play as a rock/metal band (we cut 2 members and go as a trio under a different name) we still manage to pull in no less than $1500 for a night.

If you want to make more money, market yourselves as something more than dudes who play music: get fans, have a cool stage show or anything else that sets you apart from the mass of other bands.

What's your band's name!?

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Roxor_Mc0wnage
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#10
When we first started playing since we are an all original band, we played for peanuts (figuratively speaking), but after a while when we had a little bit of name and song recognition, we quit playing for less than $500 for a 1 hour set. It went up for out of town gigs. I know that is far from the norm, but we valued what we did, and until you value yourself, don't expect others to, I always say. $400 is pretty good all in all for a gig IMO.

Some buddies of mine are in an original band and they pull down $1500 for a 1 hour set nearly every night, but that includes full lights and sound production. That is way above norm I'd say but they have been at it a long while.
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Silveroon009
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#11
You guys get paid? What do I have to do to get paid? Or do I have to like become well known or anything?
Afterhours
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Join date: Oct 2006
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#12
It varies depending on the venue and what's negotiated. My band normally gets $600 per gig, but sometimes we also get a percentage of the bar sales.....typically 10%.

That can be pretty good if the crowd is large and thirsty....
Declan87
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#13
€100-200 a night. Hoping to get slightly more for our next gig in a more popular pub.
lespaul1216
Usered Register
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#14
nothing, i do it for the love of the music...

okay, actually the only gig i've ever played was opening up for a band from my high school and we didn't sell enough tickets pre-sale for them to pay us...
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axemanchris
Awwww.... NOW what?!
Join date: Aug 2006
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#15
There are SO many variables, but there are some generalizations:

1. Original bands without an established name (ie. radio and video play, signed to a major label, etc.) make the least. We made anywhere from $50 to $700 for a show. Most of them were in the $100-$200 range. (with some radio play even!) Expect to play for anywhere from 6-60 people for the lower end, depending on a lot of factors. It is difficult to get people to come out - and stay - for a band they've never heard of, and who plays songs the people have never heard.

2. Cover bands make more because they're an easier sell, and therefore draw a bigger crowd. Around here, $400-$600 is the norm for a night's work. (for the band, not each) People will stay and drink when you fly out "Do You Want to Be My Girl?" by Jet or whatever.

3. Tribute bands, for similar reasons, do slightly better than 'regular' cover bands, and may do considerably better, depending on name recognition, production value, etc. Maybe $600-$1000, but could be less or even considerably more.

4. Weddings and corporate gigs pay the best. Usually $1000+. You establish a reputation and you're hired (or more to the point, SELECTED) for the event. The organizers bring the audience, but you are expected to play to suit them. Chosen smartly, that will be the reason they picked you - because of your setlist and your reputation to play it well.

CT
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scguitarking927
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Join date: Oct 2007
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#16
We average like $50 with the most being $100 . There's really only one place to play in my town for newer unsigned bands, and you play a 30 minutes set with 3 or 4 other bands. Then you get a percentage of the door sales depending on who came to see you (they ask who your here to see when you walk in)

So $400 for a gig would be doing fairly well in my book.
brysonisbeast
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#17
I've never gotten paid before but then again I don't think any church band ever gets paid.
MR. Goodcents
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#18
Thanks for replies guys. Like I said just curious? And for those of you who say for the love of music, come on if someone said here take this money after playing a show you wouldn't turn it down
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#19
depends on how many presales we sale..
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Lt.DanHasLegs
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#20
My band made 140+ tonight, and i consider that a success. I'm really surprised to see all these freakin 500 dollar numbers thrown around, I didn't think that even happened for moderate warped tour level bands when they try to tour.
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SSDDPunkRocker
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#21
Quote by CODE
What's your band called? I am also from Minnesota, we might have crossed paths at a show or something. Mine is myspace.com/torobathief


Our name is Ateeth: www.myspace.com/ateeth

I think maybe we've talked on MySpace or something at one point or another, because your band sounds familiar. Hmm.

Quote by MR. Goodcents
Thanks for replies guys. Like I said just curious? And for those of you who say for the love of music, come on if someone said here take this money after playing a show you wouldn't turn it down


Actually, we've been able to keep all of the money one night because the headliners are really good friends of ours and just wanted to play, so they turned it down and gave the cash to us. Sure, it wasn't a lot, but it was a good gesture showing thanks for getting them on the bill.
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#22
Quote by axemanchris
There are SO many variables, but there are some generalizations:

1. Original bands without an established name (ie. radio and video play, signed to a major label, etc.) make the least. We made anywhere from $50 to $700 for a show. Most of them were in the $100-$200 range. (with some radio play even!) Expect to play for anywhere from 6-60 people for the lower end, depending on a lot of factors. It is difficult to get people to come out - and stay - for a band they've never heard of, and who plays songs the people have never heard.
CT

Was your band on a major label, Chris?
axemanchris
Awwww.... NOW what?!
Join date: Aug 2006
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#23
Goodness, no....

We were much too old by the time we got our stuff together to even think about that. I was the youngest, and I was 36 when we released the CD.

Not only that, we all have pretty secure jobs and wives and families and stuff. Realistically, even if we got signed, I would be looking at a pay cut and no job security or benefits instead of the guaranteed professional income, economy-proof job security and solid benefits I have now. Taking a chance on that sort of thing when you're single is one thing. Risking the livelihood of your three kids is another thing entirely.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
CODE
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#25
Quote by axemanchris
Goodness, no....

We were much too old by the time we got our stuff together to even think about that. I was the youngest, and I was 36 when we released the CD.

Not only that, we all have pretty secure jobs and wives and families and stuff. Realistically, even if we got signed, I would be looking at a pay cut and no job security or benefits instead of the guaranteed professional income, economy-proof job security and solid benefits I have now. Taking a chance on that sort of thing when you're single is one thing. Risking the livelihood of your three kids is another thing entirely.

CT

Gotcha, that makes sense.
xyal
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#26
I was in a successful local cover band for years and was also a free agent for a few years. I gigged all the time, but still was lucky to make $100 myself per gig. This article would be a good read, it talks about the mistakes that bands made including my own and it breaks down hourly wages of local cover bands. http://marcnicholasmusic.com/how-much-do-local-cover-bands-make/
flexiblemile
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#27
the most we ever did was 200$ for a Canada day gig at a festival. Usually it'll be between 0 and 75$ with up to double that in merch sales.

Unknown original bands don't really rake in the dough, but I don't care, it's fun and people buy me shots every once in a while
Cajundaddy
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#28
We get between $300-$1200 depending on where, how much music we need, and how much sound we need.

Bars and backyard parties tend to pay the worst. Reunions, company parties, and festivals pay the best.
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Rickholly74
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#29
Great thread. I have been at this for 40 years now playing in cover bands. In my area a cover band will get an average of $100 per player. I do slightly better because we downsized many years ago and went the midi route eliminating a keyboard and second guitar so we generally get $150 per player for a four hour gig but we will work with a club if they book us more frequently (once or twice a month regularly) and come down to $125. This past weekend we played a new room (an old room for us but under new ownership now) and they only wanted music 8:30-11:00 so we came down to $100 per person. We like to work (we average 50-60 jobs a year) so we will bargain for less hours or do $100 for new rooms that look promising for future booking. These jobs vary from room to room as far as the type of material we play. Some are classic hard rock rooms and some are restaurant/lounge rooms requiring much lighter (quieter) material.

I also get involved occasionally in corporate shows, in fact I have one this Wednesday. I will get $250-300 for these. I only get a few each year as I am not the bands regular guitarist for these gigs.

I would also add that there is often this thought that you can't play in cover bands and still do other things like original material. Many bands I know who play mostly covers throw in a few originals each night. It's a great opportunity to get your songs heard. I try to keep my playing money separate from my day to day family expenses. The money I make playing is reserved for buying new equipment (without guilt) and going on the occasional vacation.
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Last edited by Rickholly74 at Sep 29, 2015,
AlanHB
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#30
It's been a while since I've worked the covers scene, but we used to walk away with $800-$1200 for pub gigs, around $2000 for private functions.

In originals, we used to get $100/gig, but after building up a fanbase and charging door/selling merch, we made significantly more. The most amount I've made from a single originals gig was $2500 (door and merch).

There are venues paying $400-500 for a covers band, but we didn't play them for long, amd moved to the higher paying rooms.
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Last edited by AlanHB at Sep 28, 2015,
AlanHB
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#32
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My experience is not the norm for originals, it's only due to us working really hard to build our name, put money into advertising and gigs, generally getting our music out there and letting people know when we have gigs on. And then charging entry for the gigs.

The main reason that original bands generally don't have that experience is because they are under the impression that if they practice hard and show up to a gig, the audience will magically appear, cash in hand. It's simply not the case. If you want your originals band to make money, you simply need to change your focus from "how do I get paid" to "how do I get people to come to my gig". The money will come with the people.

I've had supports who don't even post on their Facebook that they have a gig on. That's cool - we don't rely on supports to draw people. However if you expect people just to show up magically....well, they don't
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Phil Starr
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#33
It was the cover bands bit that hit me. $4-500 is more the norm and very hard to get more in the UK.
Quote by AlanHB
It's been a while since I've worked the covers scene, but we used to walk away with $800-$1200 for pub gigs, around $2000 for private functions.


There are venues paying $400-500 for a covers band, but we didn't play them for long, amd moved to the higher paying rooms.


And your rugby team play as a team
AlanHB
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#34
Quote by Phil Starr
It was the cover bands bit that hit me. $4-500 is more the norm and very hard to get more in the UK.

And your rugby team play as a team


Oh right
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#35
We make about $500 in a classic rock band I play in sometimes but I'm also in a band that charges $1500 a gig. It's an oldschool Country/Fiddle band, the old people around my area love it and are more than willing to pay for wedding and parties. We have talked about charging around 2k a show though soon.
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esky15
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#36
One of my bands charges $1500, the other depending on what the gig is, anywhere from $800-$1500
john.hoos.3
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#37
I play in a covers band in Scotland (west coast - fairly rural). Been in the same band for a few years. When we first started gigs were hard to come by and not well paid ($150-200 total, not each). But now we are established (plus proven to be dependable and polished enough) we get very regular gigs at around $360/gig. If we played in the bigger cities, I'd expect more, but its harder to get those gigs (more competition from good bands). We also play weddings at about $1,000/gig - but they are more work (usually take more time, need to take lights, dress up smarter and learn/play songs you dont want to play). If we were to play only original songs in our area, we'd only get 1-2 gigs a year which would be close to unpaid (its too rural to support original music).
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Rickholly74
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#38
I live in a very urban area not far too from New York City and even in my area there is no regular work for bands that just do their own material. In times long gone bands that do originals would often get together and find a place where they take over the club for the night and charge a cover that they all split but it's been a number of years since I have heard of this happening. Maybe I'm just out of that loop.
I play in a cover band because I like playing gigs regularly and making a few bucks a month that I blow on guitars and other equipment. I just want to play to an audience so unfortunately I leave my originals to the home studio. For better or worse that's the choice I choose to make. I also realize my originals are not the kind that will blow anyone away.
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Last edited by Rickholly74 at Nov 20, 2015,
Powerslave1724
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#39
I've been in and out of cover bands for about 5 years. For a little over a year now i've been in a solid gigging cover band who plays out on average twice a week. We average about $100 per person and there is 6 of us (Me on guitar, 2 vocals (guy and girl), bass, drums and keys). We have done one wedding and a bunch of private parties where we pull in more ($200-$300 per person) but most of the time it's $100 per person. The money doesn't matter to me though, I just love to play. The fact I get paid to do something I love is bonus. Sure, i'm not a fan of all of the songs we cover but it makes me learn stuff that I normally wouldn't which is never a bad thing if you want to grow as a guitarist. Plus I get to play live and nothing beats that!

Now the original band i'm in doesn't make any money and we are fine with that. We do that for fun and all like the same style of music (hard rock/80s metal). It's with a completely different group of guys and we are just having a good time with it.
Rickholly74
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#40
You are right. Playing in a cover band usually means playing songs that I normally would never learn on my own but it is actually a great experience in the learning sense. It's often challenging because it moves you out of your comfort zone and makes you learn (or re-learn) different rhythms and chords that you don't normally use and I agree about playing in front of people. There is no substitute for a live audience. You get that instant feedback.
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Last edited by Rickholly74 at Dec 15, 2015,