#1
I couldn't find a thread on this.

What do you guys think about "pay to play" gigs? For those who are not familiar with the concept, basically a venue will let a band play there, but will charge a deposit for the tickets, so they basically sell the tickets to them, and if they cannot make the money back, or sell the tickets, they do not get to play there.

Here is a link with a better description-
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-lancashire-12607737

Personally, i can partly see the venues point, as they want to make a profit, and it becomes less likely that the band will drop out at the last minute, but at the same time, it is really bad because musicians are skint most of the time anyway, and if a band isn't very well known, it makes it difficult for them to make the money back, and it is even worse if they aren't getting paid to do the gig themselves.

EDIT: Also, venues and promoters do not say up front that it is a pay to play gig until they discuss the finer details.

I know it isn't really a new thing, but my friend is doing a gig soon and they are basically doing it under these conditions, and another guy in the same band said that on the day, even if they do sell the required amount of tickets, if less than 30 people show up to see their band (it is a night of about 4 bands, so i guess it is calculated on amount of tickets handed in), they do not get to play.
WHOMP

Think of that next time you are not allowed to laugh.
Last edited by donender at Sep 10, 2011,
#2
i think that system is shit. it's the venue that should take the risk. he let's bands play to get customers, if they don't come that's not the bands fault. greedy ******* venue's..
#3
I have a couple big problems with pay to play

1) The "Promoters" at the venue do absolutely nothing to promote the bands, other than putting them on the calendars on the website. Meanwhile, the bands are working their asses off to sell tickets. It's basically like saying "play our venue. We'll sit back while you raise $500 dollars and none of that money goes to you".

2) Venues would have better reputations if they only booked quality bands, instead of booking anyone and having them pay to play. People would go to venues just to hear music, because they'd trust that good artists would be there. Unfortunately, venues don't want to take time to build a reputation, and they care more about fast money than the bands playing.
Thus, it's almost impossible to gain a fan base through shows, since the only people coming are friends and people usually don't want to stay to hear other bands
Ted: [Whispering to Bill] Your stepmom is cute.
Bill: Shut up, Ted.
Ted: Remember when she was a senior and we were freshmen?
Bill: Shut up, Ted!
#5
It's definitely an understandable move by the venues, but it puts bands, especially touring bands, in a less than favorable position.

I don't really like it, but like I said, it makes sense.
#7
My band's relatively new to the local scene and we've had to play 90% of our gigs under these conditions It's fucking horrendous, especially when you take fuel and accomodation costs into account.
Quote by element4433
What if the way their wieners were positioned they could only pee into each other's mouths?

And one had his finger joined to the other's butthole?

PLAY
UG
MINECRAFT



Or don't. Yeah don't.
#8
the local uni pub does something like this.

You put down the deposit, and a percentage of the drink sales goes to pay off your deposit. And I think if your cut is more than the deposit you get the extra cash.
sigh...
#9
I've never known anyone around the scene here to actually get denied to play a gig for not selling enough tickets. Usually the promoter doesn't book you again if you don't.

That being said it, I really don't like selling tickets. Not that I mind hard work, but I feel like I have to sell my band and my music to people. I have to constantly let people know I'm playing a show, and I basically ***** the band out. I really want to be more casual about it, but there's only one promoter here that books decent shows, and they are pretty strict about ticket sales.

It's cool that they pay us a certain percentage of the ticket sales, yet at the same time I wouldn't mind playing gigs for free if it meant I didn't have to be a slave to the promoter.
#10
Quote by Crimson Ghost
I have a couple big problems with pay to play

1) The "Promoters" at the venue do absolutely nothing to promote the bands, other than putting them on the calendars on the website. Meanwhile, the bands are working their asses off to sell tickets. It's basically like saying "play our venue. We'll sit back while you raise $500 dollars and none of that money goes to you".


I thought this as well, really, promoters are paid to, well, promote, and instead they leave it to the bands to harass their mates. When people ask me to go to their gig, if they are a good friend, or if they play good music, then i try my best to make it there, but if i have other plans that i can't get out of, then it turns from me saying "sorry man, i can't make it" and them being understanding, to me saying "sorry man, i can't make it" and then they try to persuade me to get out of whatever else it is i was doing, or just making me feel bad.

Even though it sounds like i have bad friends when i say that, i have had people do it to me, whether they are my best friend or an acquaintance, and part of the reason is probably because they have to hit a certain target.
WHOMP

Think of that next time you are not allowed to laugh.
#12
Quote by SG_dave
This is how it was done in the 80s, It worked back then as long as the guys wanting to play the gig weren't batting out of their league.


The difference between now and the 80's is that back then, people would have to go to clubs to hear new music. Now, the internet gives people such easy access to bands that curiosity is gone
Ted: [Whispering to Bill] Your stepmom is cute.
Bill: Shut up, Ted.
Ted: Remember when she was a senior and we were freshmen?
Bill: Shut up, Ted!
#14
I was once in a gig where we had to sell 25 tickets at least to be able to play, and we get to keep the money for any more we sell. We sold around 40 (maybe more), but the manager stole most of our money. Bastard.
#16
Pay to play gigs... **** THEM. Worthless wastes of time.
Current Gear:
LTD MH-400
PRS SE Custom 24 (Suhr SSH+/SSV)
Ibanez RG3120 Prestige (Dimarzio Titans)
Squier Vintage Modified 70s Jazz V
Audient iD22 interface
Peavey Revalver 4, UAD Friedman BE100/DS40
Adam S3A monitors
Quote by Anonden
You CAN play anything with anything....but some guitars sound right for some things, and not for others. Single coils sound retarded for metal, though those who are apeshit about harpsichord probably beg to differ.
#17
Quote by Crimson Ghost
The difference between now and the 80's is that back then, people would have to go to clubs to hear new music. Now, the internet gives people such easy access to bands that curiosity is gone


I didn't say it hasn't changed. I'm just pointing out that this is an old way of doing it.

Whenever I see this topic pop up on here people automatically call it a scam and seem to believe it's a new revelation in booking gigs.
#18
I understand running a venue comes with a ton of its own costs, and that's fine...I just wish there was a way for people in bands to just play fun shows with no strings attached.
#19
It's lazy booking that keeps the venue relatively safe while screwing the artist. Pretty good metaphor for the whole music business really

[IN PHIL WE TRUST]


Quote by Trowzaa
I only play bots. Bots never abandon me. (´・ω・`)