1. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    http://goodonpaper.org/entries/state-of-the-nation/

    Andy thinks so. I've got to agree. Discuss!!
  2. avatar tinpot anto
    No, most bands play too little, write too little and stop working hard long before they should.

    We've clocked up a dangerfields-esque gig total over the years, and really pushed the limits on audience tolerance, but it was absolutely necessary to shape the sound, test new material, tweak old material and generally go from being a shambles to a razor sharp machine.

    Too many bands spend a year introducing a new song into their set, and 5 years down the line their set list is 80% exactly the same. We always followed the Elvis Costello method, you play every song you write live at least once, even just as an acoustic show, then you know if it's a good song. If it's no, move on and write another. That's how you get better.
  3. avatar my-angel-rocks
    I'm not sure that bands play too much, but I think that due to the relatively small circle of people who go to gigs bands don't have a chance to refine songs as people will be complaining that a band always plays the same stuff, which could be detrimental to a bands progress.

    So in answer to the question: maybe...bands play to the same people too much?

    [shameless plug: 29's Fell Shadow are looking gigs...]
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  4. avatar Recycled Alien
    As I understand it, the article makes two points:
    1. bands should be prevented from gigging until they "deserve" it, and
    2. bands shouldn't play lots of local gigs

    I disagree with both. Provided the punter knows to expect something a bit rough (say, a band's first ever performance at the Front Page), playing that one gig will improve their performance and music more than any amount of practice or recording. So, go for it.

    (Unless the band are already convinced they are wonderful and thus will learn nothing.)

    On the second point, I know from experience than a steady stream of gigs tightens up your playing no end. Even if you're already good, you do get better with playing live more. But you've got to work at it and keep bringing on new material and make every show good enough to bring in an audience next time.

    I think the whole thrust of the article that here should be an "industry" to "guide" musicians is very much dated (and a bit insulting). Music now is more about doing it for yourself.
  5. avatar goodonpaper
    Okay, the entry isn't about bands playing too much - or the bands being at fault - but about the changes that the emerging industry will need to begin to make to support a healthy music scene. The industry shouldn't be "guiding" bands like they are morons, rather creating a healthy environment in which they can prosper. It certainly isn't intended to be insulting either.

    Bands shouldn't be "prevented" from gigging until they "deserve it" - but wouldn't you agree that it would be best that they work their way up the ladder? My point is that it's becoming increasingly easy to not only play constantly (to a point where new material is often forgotten about for an elongated period), but to play in bigger and better venues almost immediately. Isn't the reward of moving from the Front Page to The Limelight not technically important - and maybe even crucial in a bands development?

    And yes, DIY does exist (and essentially bypasses what I was saying) and is a great way to get the gigs you want by doing it yourself.
  6. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    How long have TPO being playing for?
  7. avatar JTM
    There are scores of bands here with tonnes of potential who have "made it" but who need now to make the jump to the next level if they really want to achieve wider success. The only way they can do that is exactly as Anto and Alien say - by writing, gigging, experimenting with old stuff, and working *hard*. I also feel there aren't enough people here challenging bands to get better.
  8. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    I totally agree with this.

    There are alot of bands who make it to 'headline' local status and leave it at that.

    Yet there are alot of bands like FWW, Oppenheimer, ICOF etc etc who have played the local circuit, made an impact, and made a conscious decision to move up a rung. 3 of the hardest working bands i've ever heard of too.
  9. avatar goatboy
    I don't see it as a problem as such. At the end of the day, if you think that a band is playing too much, then don't go and see them.
  10. avatar Desus
    I think a lot of bands here play too much.

    Once a month is enough I think. Especially bands, to borrow from Joe, who are at local headline level.
  11. avatar thesacredhearts
    Theres no hard and fast way for how it "should" work. All the bands you've mentioned Joe have come with a lot of experience and we're nearly ready to go from day 1. They've learnt a lot along the way.

    If anything more bands should think about what they are starting out with rather than what they might grow into (no one can really predict the way a band will organically grow).

    As for playing too much, isn't a bit of a chicken egg scenario, would the bands play as much if there wasn't as many band nights on, which are effectively fighting for the same crowds?

    In my opinion, a band should seek to maximise they're crowd attendance by playing fewer, more select shows. To be cynical about it, play to often and you give people too many chances to experience the band as a product.
  12. avatar JTM
    I agree with the above, but in the interim weeks between gigs, bands should be working their arses off so the next show is fresher, and worth going to see - not just a repeat of the last. Same product, but now with improved quality.
  13. avatar thesacredhearts
    Indeed, there's more than one way to skin a cat. Working on promotion, writing songs, practising etc are all about making the product you put out live next time both a)better b)different.
  14. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    True about those bands Jonny.

    I agree with the comment about select gigs too - very true.

    New new bands like A Plastic Rose / 2 Door Cinema Club etc. have done a great job building up a profile
  15. avatar goodonpaper
    Exactly! Again, I'm not saying theres a formula for success - but there are certain things that do help you improve as a band - like working on promotion, writing songs, practicing etc.

    On a tangent - my passion for music and interest in local bands got me into promotion. Do you think if similar new faces (or rightly, old hands) got more involved in other sides of supporting the music scene here, like band management, labels etc, that that would cause any sort of "improvement"?
  16. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    Good point. There is alot of emphasis put on playing gigs. There are almost no band managers in NI. And label-wise, short of No Dancing + Smalltown America (which isn't even NI), noone has enjoyed much success.

    If there were more people doing this work, surely the scene would be much more vibrant.
  17. avatar luke
    I see it as really about striking a balance. There's so much more to being in a band than just playing live, and you need to be incredibly active in all aspects - radio, TV, mags and papers, web, myspace, writing new songs, remixes etc, these are all things that give the band it's public face. You have to be experts at all these things to step it up a notch. I think it's hard for bands who are at that headline level, for them it is easy to overplay, but if you're fresh, then I don't think you can play too much.
  18. avatar tinpot anto
    TPO played their very first gig in the Front Page in October 2003!

    The ONLY thing that would be useful from a centralised industry point of view is management companies, even if they are clueless amateurs.

    and I think the modern view of what a manager should be about is very different from the old school version. The democratisation of the industry means that one person or group of people can be a hub for booking gigs, promoting, online presence maintenance, getting CD quotes, postering, press etc, etc, etc. Leaving the band to get on with playing, writing and rehearsing.

    That makes sense to me, and there's much more money in it for a manager, who could see a percentage of sales, merch and all that jazz rather than just ticket reciepts.
  19. avatar goodonpaper
    The original topic of the article was not that bands necessarily play too often (yes, some do), but that there are too many club nights in Belfast - increasingly happy to book anyone and not necessarily propagating the idea of improvement. Whether bands play too much or not was a secondary, related rumination.

    Any thoughts?
  20. avatar goatboy
    [quote:e9cf794ee2="goodonpaper"]The original topic of the article was not that bands necessarily play too often (yes, some do), but that there are too many club nights in Belfast - increasingly happy to book anyone and not necessarily propagating the idea of improvement. Whether bands play too much or not was a secondary, related rumination.

    Any thoughts?[/quote:e9cf794ee2]

    So what you're saying is that local club nights should take a leaf out of the Two Step book?
  21. avatar T Entertainment
    [quote:db27f64fff="goodonpaper"]The original topic of the article was not that bands necessarily play too often (yes, some do), but that there are too many club nights in Belfast - increasingly happy to book anyone and not necessarily propagating the idea of improvement. Whether bands play too much or not was a secondary, related rumination.

    Any thoughts?[/quote:db27f64fff]

    That would seem fair comment, IMO.
  22. avatar Gogs
    I agree with that, too.
  23. avatar JTM
    You can argue for and against the volume of club nights in Belfast, but how would you propose (or cite an example of how) an existing club night improves or has improved a band?
  24. avatar JTM
    Whoops, double posted :?
  25. avatar dirty stevie smitty
    Do local bands play Belfast to often?

    Yes


    Is there too many band nights put on?

    Yes also, and I say that as someone who runs a monthly gig in the Bunker.


    But the simple fact is that well organised nights with decent promoters that are prepared to put the effort in, are the ones that survive and flourish...Gifted and Two Step are the two best examples. They are run by people who clearly know excatly what has to be done in order to make things viable.

    The Club NI:NG nights took at least at year to make any decent sort of progress, but even we are getting more punters in the door.

    The thing that bothers me, is there seems to be a mentality among a lot of the newer bands that they don't have to put much effort into drawing up a bit of interest, and they still expect a crowd to appear from nowhere and watch them.
  26. avatar TheJaneBradfords
    we only gig about once a month but I pretty much work full time on the band clocking up a minimum of 40(usually 60)hrs a week on writing, practicing and promoting.

    I always find that bands that gig every week are judged to be 'hard working' but I think there's more to it than that.
  27. avatar luke
    Exactly. That's what I meant, there's really so much more to be done that makes you hard working and will pay off in the long run. Just gigging constantly in Belfast won't do you much good on its own. Anyway, this is a bit off topic, sorry.
  28. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    Smitty's on the money there i think.
  29. avatar dirty stevie smitty
    Another thing for bands based in and around Belfast that seriously want to develop, is to get your backsides out of Belfast and play places such as the many venues that are in Derry, The Retro in Portrush, The Square Peg in Warrenpoint etc.

    Ask questions on this website, take the time to build up networks and contacts across the country in order to get gigs and develop as a band.

    Bands that have moved on from the local level to a bigger audience such as Oppenheimer, Fighting With Wire, The Answer, etc have all been busting their knackers of for the past few years.

    Newer bands such as ASIWYFA and Panama Kings are also going down the same route of hard work coupled with the talent.
  30. avatar esotericeric93
    Not all bands play too often, the best bands play as little as possible like, once every 3 years, which makes them more appreciating & worth waiting for.
  31. avatar JTM
    I don't think I can add any more except to agree wholeheartedly with what Smitty has said, and that a gig a month seems to be the currently accepted norm.
  32. avatar Daveitferris
    Cool topic.
    to reply to tinpot anto. I, personally, never understood the whole 'test a song out strategy' LOCALLY. I dont know a lot of people who follow local bands so closely as to notice a new track from a set, and moreso is the fact that, what exactly from the audience makes the song a 'keeper' or a 'binner'?. For bands like coldplay and bon jovi, im sure that it's different.

    Im defintly in the minority that would think that playing live constantly wont 'improve' your band, solely. there's defintly alot to be said for playing for lots of punters, but i personally believe that rehearsing to the point of sheer tightness in a rehearsal room, [i:df0380c924]then[/i:df0380c924] playing a show, is alot better all round. I personally, dont want to catch bands who want to 'get tight by playing alot of local shows' all the time.

    I dont wanna offend anyone at all. I appreciate all our local music, but i'd personally hope that alot more bands would just STAY in their rehearsal studio for a few more weeks, rather than display off-tune harmonies live, constantly.
  33. avatar tinpot anto
    it's not strictly a matter of audience reaction, it's more in the feel of the band when a new song "clicks".

    Try as you might you cannot replicate this in the rehearsal room. We've never been about polish, but passion so our audience don't mind a few bum notes in the excitement of something new. Just saying it's working for us.
  34. avatar trepanner
    Playing brand new tracks live is also a good way to get over the boredom of playing to the same people in the same venue every week. :wink:
  35. avatar Ooopsapocalypse
    Cool indeed,
    What Smitty says there is sound enough.

    I've noticed that a lot of the nights are putting on the same bands, obviously enough because the bands in question have a following, therefore ensuring the survival of the respective events who use them.
    Therein lies the problem.Too many promoters fighting over the same bands, over and over again.
    Can this be attributed to the industry aspect?There's a fair few bands who have demo's and get no response from varying promoters.As has been mentioned before on this forum, it's the promoters call as the music may not fit the promoters agenda but is there a case that most of the promoters are looking to put on very similar events with very similar lineups?
    Ultimately, I don't think that leads to any kind of sustainability and will lead to events closing.
    I'd therefore say it's a responsibility of the bands, as well as the promoters, to space the gigs out to avoid clashes with other promoters and therefore maximise attendances.
    On a side note...
    Any other promoters noticed an upturn in bands pulling out, with or without notice, or being really slow to respond to emails and such?
    I'm not bitchin' here as it's par for the course for me but I reckon I've experienced more of that in the last year than I've had in the previous three.Just curious to know.

    Anyway, generally I don't clash with Two Step, NI:NG or anyone to think of it.
    I deal with the bands who are younger,don't have demo's or can't get the bigger gigs for varying reasons.
    Someone mentioned something about trying to help out the bands with advice and such.
    If someone asks,seems approachable or open to constructive critcism I'll either point them in the right direction or show them what they're doing wrong(anything from Mic control,pedal setup and where the jack lead goes,doh).I fear I may have made some cry but if even one musician goes on to do something worthwhile then I'll put up with any amount of crap, and I've heard a fair amount.

    Bit off topic but maybe related to the ladder comment...
    If there's one thing I don't think there's enough are people who will be honest with bands, especially when they're young.If there were more all ages gigs, especially for younger bands to play at, could these be used as a workshop to bring these musicians up to speed faster?
    There's definately a market there and the kids who'd attend, ie. school mates and such, and don't care what it sounds like.Trust me, I know.
    Basically, there's quite a few feeding off the top but hardly anyone doing the donkey work.
  36. avatar cruz
    I've been playing gigs in Belfast since ooh, 1991 :shock: but I think I might be right in saying that I've released almost as many CDs as I've played gigs over the years. Which isn't some braggadocio claim, I'd love to have played more gigs, in fact releasing so much music has probably been to my detriment, but I can't help it. Just putting my perspective on the definition of hard working. Like Deci (the jane Bradfords), I spend almost all my free time working on new material, doing the necessary to get the CDs ready and rehearsing for my occasional forays into the live circuit.
  37. avatar thesacredhearts
    We're putting on an all ages show in may with that in mind Iain. We recently played a support at an all ages show with an established touring band, and we were absolutely bowled over at the reaction of the crowd and their enthusiasm at just getting out and hearing music. It reminded me what it was like to be that age and the wide eyed enthusiasm i had for music. The only thing that would worry me is knowing that demographic, trying to give them what they want without seeming patronising.

    As for offering criticism, im sure you're aware though, it can be difficult for people to accept criticism, and indeed to offer it without seeming arrogant. When i said previously there is no way things "should" be done, i think what the vast majority of people can offer isn't necessarily the right way to do things, but a few lessons on the mistakes we've made. Its constantly a learning process no matter what level you are at.

    Edit: Just as an addition as i saw their post appear, there are people doing some great stuff with younger folk at a grass roots level such as the Urban Arts Acadamey guys. I went on one of their courses when i was 20 (i was a bit older than most there) and it was reassuring that there was people offering help and advice, in a genuine manner, to get young people educated in real tangible skills in many facets of the arts in general. Genuinely something to be lauded.
  38. avatar Ooopsapocalypse
    "The only thing that would worry me is knowing that demographic, trying to give them what they want without seeming patronising."

    I dunno about being patronising.When I was younger I'd go see bands and I'd always give them a go, if they were metal'ish.After all, music's in the ear of the beholder.
    My biggest concern would be actually getting them to the gig in the first place.Methinks the best way to do that is to get a young, preferably a local school age band to play at the event.A school's a self made publicity machine.
    Secondly, once you have your kid band, it's probably not a good idea to stray to far away from their genre.No point putting on a twee indie band to a crowd full of rock kids.
    When I was a kid I was damn fussy about music and if it wasn't Metal, it was crap.I daresay that same mentality still exists today.

    "As for offering criticism, im sure you're aware though, it can be difficult for people to accept criticism, and indeed to offer it without seeming arrogant. When i said previously there is no way things "should" be done, i think what the vast majority of people can offer isn't necessarily the right way to do things, but a few lessons on the mistakes we've made. Its constantly a learning process no matter what level you are at."

    Yeah, I agree it's hard not to come across being arrogant but when, for example, a emo/screamo singer who holds a mic away when he's singing softly and vice versa, then complains he can't hear his vocals...
    If time's taken to show how a mic works it gives the singer an opportunity to change his style accordingly which generally results in a better performance.I don't say "Do it this way", I just show folk how it works and let them take it from there.All the silly stuff really and it's all about the learnin', some do, some don't.

    "Edit: Just as an addition as i saw their post appear, there are people doing some great stuff with younger folk at a grass roots level such as the Urban Arts Acadamey guys. I went on one of their courses when i was 20 (i was a bit older than most there) and it was reassuring that there was people offering help and advice, in a genuine manner, to get young people educated in real tangible skills in many facets of the arts in general. Genuinely something to be lauded."

    Yep, heard good things about that as well.More of that says I.
  39. avatar goodonpaper
    Whether a band chooses to debut new songs live to test the water is inconsequential (and I agree, crowds don't react so much to new stuff, if anything to the more established stuff they remember - and even thats only with the bigger bands really). Practicing by playing a song live for the first time is still important, but surely not more important than preparing for that performance itself?

    This is really braking off on so many tangents related to the initial discussion, even I can barely remember what this is about, never mind what we should be doing about it!
  40. avatar Ooopsapocalypse
    Like I said...

    "I'd therefore say it's a responsibility of the bands, as well as the promoters, to space the gigs out to avoid clashes with other promoters and therefore maximise attendances."

    Obviously enough you need everyone to play ball for it to work may it mean bands having a wee bit of patience and not play every gig that's offered to them.Likely?

    Then again, you could always do the proverbial knee-jerk reaction and start barring bands who don't play ball.
    Or do their knees.Just kiddin' now.

    One other thing...
    Can I ask how many first-timers have played at Two Step over the last six months.Maybe things just need freshened up a bit, y'know find some new blood.
  41. avatar p-t-rebel-mc
    We played two-step last month and it was the first time we had played it.
  42. avatar Ooopsapocalypse
    Groovy.
  43. avatar JTM
    [quote:d6bb9a8a0d="goodonpaper"]

    This is really braking off on so many tangents related to the initial discussion, even I can barely remember what this is about, never mind what we should be doing about it![/quote:d6bb9a8a0d]

    To quickly address point about spacing gigs out - there's an unspoken agreement between promoters that big nights and/or bands won't clash. Principally because they share venues and it isn't physically possible, but also because it's bad for business.

    To address the original point and the original article, we've already covered the "Do bands play too much" point but the original premise was flawed. It might seem like it, but I don't believe any band worth listening to forms overnight and gets booked, I believe the core promoters understand this won't work in the long term, due to the points we've discussed.
  44. avatar Steven Dedalus
    I just don't see how a band can justify playing in the city more than once a month, both from the perspective of the band and the audience.

    If you really want to 'make something' of your band, then it's really up to you to understand the best way of maximising your appeal. If you play all the time, no matter how good you are, you're only going to get a smattering of people coming to your gigs. After all, if I know for certain that I could see you next week (or even later this week, with some bands) then why should I go and see you tonight? Also, if I saw you last week, do I really want to have to spend money to see you play the same set of songs again? Once a month means you get everyone who's going to see you coming down at the same time.

    BUt in terms of the idea of bands taking to the stage before they are 'ready', I speak as someone who recorded before they played their first gig, and maintain that this was the wrong thing to do. Our 'demo' sounded absolutely rubbish, seriously affecting the confidence of the band, and nearly threw us off course. A gig came up by conincdience, and we jumped at the chance, happy that they hadn't heard our demo. After the experience of playing our gig, it completely changed the sound of the band, gave us a confidence we didn;t know we had, and allowed us to find out who we were. In the end, when we finally recorded our first 'proper' cd, the live experience had changed us so much that we were able to record the whole thing live and have it resemble a multi-tracked studio recording (and it was all over and done in one night, saving us a ton of money).

    In summary:

    Don't play so much.

    But when you do play, learn from the experience, and use that knowledge wisely.

    Fairly elementary stuff, I suppose.
  45. avatar JTM
    I entirely agree.

    And, as if by coincidence, [url=http://fastfude.org/topic.php?id=20123]this thread[/url] appeared on the front page. Interesting reading.
  46. avatar dirty stevie smitty
    Here JTM, this thing about an unspoken rule by promoters not to clash with each other, isn't excatly true. Let me explain.


    Club NI:NG had ASIWYFA and Cruz playing on a Saturday a couple of months ago, and within 4 days the same line up was at Queens Radio's birthday bash.

    Now this doesn't bother myself, as the way I look at it, both nights and venues get different punters. Queens Radio, of course get the core student base that love their live music and are a little bit knowlegable about what is going on.

    We get ramdon spides, occassional hen parties, and a core base of punters that come down once a month to our nights, plus fans of whatever bands may be on that night.

    If a bit of wit is used, then there shouldn't be a problem, and everyone should be happy enough, and from end of things it worked out as a really good night, and was decent crowd, with everyone getting paid for their efforts.
  47. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    Two Step has been running for 3 years (every month, with additional shows in there too) with the minimum of repeat performances.

    We had a number of bands twice, and a few 3 times. But in 3 years, thats not bad.

    Blueprint (with the exception of about 1/2 bands) haven't repeated an act in 5 years.

    And with regards to freshening up, NI bands who played two step for the first time in the last year include:

    Panama Kings, A Plastic Rose, Steer Clear, Julip, Gaju, Cutaways, Mojo Fury, Dangerfields, Nice N Sleezy, Saint Dudes, Remains of Youth, The Jane Bradfords, Escape Acts, Boathouse, Black Tokens...

    I think the bottom line is, it's quite tough to sustain quality shows. I think it's necessary for less frequency in the band nights. Who agrees?

    (NB, i dont run two step anymore, goodonpaper does)
  48. avatar dirty stevie smitty
    I agree Joe, but it also goes back to the arguement, that decent well organised nights will survive and grow.

    I've also no problem with lesser known bands putting on their own individual nights, in order to try to drum up a bit of interest.
  49. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    Also, re. clashes, promoters should be talking about bills.

    There is a great gig guide on ATL with all announced shows, and most promoters would have the good sense to let you know if they're booking the same bands that month.

    Since two step started i have asked the band's do not confirm until they agree not to play shows 7-10 days either side. Blueprint do this too, and probably Gifted. It should really be the norm, no?

    EDIT (jesus, i'm out of posts) - I'd never ask a band to turn down a support. The 7-10 day thing is for billed local appearances only.
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  50. avatar thesacredhearts
    Thats a difficult thing to do from a bands perspective Joe.

    A lot of tour supports/special events are only offered very close to the event. Things that can be of benefit to the band gaining greater exposure, even with the same kind of gig crowd, is always going to taken even if this can irk a local promoter.

    (although we'd drop you a bell and check you didnt mind)

    Unless this is just for "local" nights?

    Edit:Not necessarily so Smitty. Theres plenty of gigs under the tenner mark that lots of local bands will play along side established acts. Indeed the band will probably not see a sniff of the money involved, so the benefit they can hope to see is (at the local level) is increased punters at a local show.
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  51. avatar dirty stevie smitty
    A band getting a decent support slot, should still be able to do a local gig within the 10 day rule in my opinion, as chances are that the ticket price for support slot would be well higher than the local gig, and that would put people off at short notice.
  52. avatar George W Best
    Another factor in this is how many bands should you have on the bill?
    Should you put 4 bands on when 2 will do?
    Should gigs end earlier (before 11 say), reducing the number of bands needed and further putting the emphasis on quality bands?
  53. avatar dirty stevie smitty
    Well over the last year, we have gone with only 2 bands, and it fits nicely with being a gig that has to be wrapped up for 11pm, due to a club night.

    The only time we have gone with 3 acts is to put on a singer/songwriter first and it has only happened twice and at the request of the headline acts.
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  54. avatar Mickeycolensoparade
    Great topic. I was thinking about this the other day as well. Last year, we gigged consistently in belfast, average once a week like, and promoted to the best of our limited knowledge (which in hindsight was very limited). It's only since we started getting a bit more recognition as a good band that we've stopped this. I agree belfast is too small and there may be too many nights on for bands to be playing so regularly. At the same time I wouldn't change how we did it because it's kinda built character within the band just helped us grow and develop.


    We've worked hard for it like and I think we earned our slot in the speakeasy and twostep (even though twostep was filling for someone). I know we still have that extra step up to achieve the success that other local bands have earned as well. I only feel now that our songwriting is coming into its own and the band is heading in the direction we always hoped. Hopefully in the next few months we'll be able to prove this.
  55. avatar JTM
    [quote:e0df23e7dd="dirty stevie smitty"]Here JTM, this thing about an unspoken rule by promoters not to clash with each other, isn't exactly true. Let me explain.

    .. <snip>
    [/quote:e0df23e7dd]

    Good explanation Smitty, thanks, my perspective was based on my own previous experience of other cities.

    Also, I like this "7-10 day rule", at least for the city centre(s) - nothing stopping bands booking gigs in the provincial towns in between times, sure as we've covered, maybe they *should* be doing that more.
  56. avatar thesacredhearts
    Yep i genuinely didn't think that would be the case Joe, im sure you can see how its beneficial to the promoter as well as the band for them to be playing a high profile show.

    Can we start drawing up the "The Fastfude big list of gigs rules for promoters and bands"? We can file it along side "Flypostering: A beginners guide" :D
  57. avatar dirty stevie smitty
    From a promoter's perspective, I totally agree with the 7 to 10 day rule in a small city like Belfast.

    and if bands want to make a few quid out of it, then they would be better putting a bit of effort and push into one local Belfast per month, maybe less, depending on the band.
  58. avatar cruz
    The two gigs I played with ASIWYFA recently were both very different nights, both very enjoyable I might add. I doubt if there was any more than half a dozen people who were at both gigs, so we played to very different crowds. Gigs are often like buses for me, I go for ages without one then two come along at once. When this happens I like to call it a tour. :lol:
  59. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    I really do think there are a few rules of thumb that make local shows much more worthwhile.

    Like 7-10 day rule, communicating with other promoters on gig clashes etc.

    Another thing that continues to mystify me is the bad quality of print + design opted for in some gig publicity. It can be very very cheap to get something good designed + printed, yet most bands / promoters dont bother. Branding is such a strong part of marketing too.

    Am i the only person who cares about this?
  60. avatar bernard
    i'm with you mate
  61. avatar Ooopsapocalypse
    Hey Joe,
    Thanks for the update on Two-Step's past gigs and efforts there Joe.That's really impressive you've managed to sustain the event and have a constant influx of new talent, my hat of to the both of you.Now if only you had of been sending your emails to the right email address I wouldn't be asking silly questions. :wink:

    As for the 7-10 day vibe.Yep, down with that as well.I've knocked a few things back in the past because of similar issues to try and give other promoters a fair go especially when the promoter is taking a fair financial risk, touring bands etc.

    As for the 2 to 4 bands, I always go for 4 basically due to demand and if it doesn't clash then there's no problem.
    From a punters perspective I'd rather see more than 2 bands but that's probably just me and what I'm used to.Too old to shake it anymore at ye olde indie disco. I do understand why you'd want to limit it though.

    "I like to call it a tour."

    Now there's something that's been going on for years around here. Bands, especially the one's I'd deal with, tend to organise a run of gigs, say 5 ot 6 over a period of a fortnight.4 of those can be in Belfast and I'd just like to say it's not the wisest thing to do.
    You may make the effort to get people to go but it's unlikely they'll go to each and every gig. You may actually do more harm by putting people of, especially if you're not up to standard.I've, unfortunately, seen that happen on more than one occasion.
    As has been mentioned here, write, rehearse and record because that is the best way forward and what this guy said...
    "Don't play so much. But when you do play, learn from the experience, and use that knowledge wisely."
  62. avatar TheJaneBradfords
    We usually try our best to not book anything in the same city within 10-14 days of each other. Also, if we've got a support with a band that have sold out a venue we will push the 'local' gig more than that. It's a bit of common sense I guess and a lot of bands book gigs without thinking. Always best that the promoter asks them, just like Joe does.
  63. avatar Desus
    I'd say most of the established nights follow that 7-10 day rule. I'm fairly sure Gifted have a longer period? I think its important especially if you're headlining a gig. Some of the smaller, less established bands who are maybe first on in a bill I've seen do 2 a week.

    I've been having this conversation with a few promoters, Joe included, for about 6 months about the volume of band nights. There are too many out there. But what do you say to someone who wants to start one?
  64. avatar cruz
    My "I like to call it a tour" comment was very much tongue in cheek. I have never been "on tour" and doubt very much if I ever will. Just to clarify.
  65. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    Have to say i do get most of the bands i book calling asking about gigs they've been offered in the 7-10 days. Which at least shows the clause is having an effect, since when i started out there were a few surprises. 'Sorry we're late, we were picking up gear up from The Empire. Oh did i not mention that?? etc...' Cue poor turnout.

    For people thinking about staring their own new regular band night, maybe ask them to read this topic first and then decide :)
  66. avatar sixtypeoplemark2
    "we only gig about once a month but I pretty much work full time on the band clocking up a minimum of 40(usually 60)hrs a week on writing, practicing and promoting.

    I always find that bands that gig every week are judged to be 'hard working' but I think there's more to it than that."

    Spot on Deci. Couldn't have put it better myself! Gigs are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to keeping a band afloat. We gig once/twice a month MAX. It's the graft put into all that 'behind the scenes' stuff which (hopefully) really pays off in the end. A must, if you want to make that leap forward from local to......wherever :)
  67. avatar sixtypeoplemark2
    Just spotted 'iceberg' and 'afloat' in the same sentence there...the pun was completely unintended - urk!
  68. avatar Amz
    ok... i've read most but not all the post...

    I LOVE playing live, but i have made a conscious decision to do fewer gigs, as it just ends up me draggin my mates (or whoever i can find!) out to support me at another poorly attended gig (actually thats a lie - i've pretty much stopped playing solo - but when the time comes again - less is more et all). It gets disheartening, and then you have a good gig and its amazing... Anyhow, I guess I'm saying yes, bands can play too much, or more accurately, play one town too much. Agree with whoever said bands should only play belfast once a month.

    ON another note, with regards to line ups - do you think maybe sometimes line ups should be messed up a bit more? Allow for different crowds to see different bands - just think looking around there are bands that are always put together on bills, that have a very similar "fanbase" and therefor the gig wont get as big of a crowd (like shared supporters i guess)... of course, i'm not talking about putting Shiro with Marys Great Idea or anything..There's gotta be some sort of cohesive line up but just mix it up a bit more... maybe that would work... but ya know...i dont.. so hopefully you do...

    This hasn't really added to the debate... to bed i go....
  69. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    Agree with this yeah, it's always a winner when the lineup doesn't stick to 1 genre.

    One of the best two-steps had Kowalski w/ ASIWYFA. I think it sold out, and it was one of the best nights of local music i've seen.

    Likewise there was a Radar bonanza a few years ago with ROSS, Skibunny, Delawares... and i dont think i've ever had more fun at a local show.
  70. avatar Amz
    [quote:e2a290aea8="Joeplaysthedrums"]Agree with this yeah, it's always a winner when the lineup doesn't stick to 1 genre.

    One of the best two-steps had Kowalski w/ ASIWYFA. I think it sold out, and it was one of the best nights of local music i've seen.

    Likewise there was a Radar bonanza a few years ago with ROSS, Skibunny, Delawares... and i dont think i've ever had more fun at a local show.[/quote:e2a290aea8]

    Both of those do indeed sound like fun gigs! Most of us are happy to hear more than one 'genre' in a night... again - within reason - but eclectic bill brings a bigger/more diverse crowd? I'd go...
  71. avatar Baelmammon
    This topic always comes up, and when reading through all the comments I have so much to say. You could write a bloody dissertation on it. As someone who has been going to local gigs for the past 12 years or so it’s changed a lot. There is definitely a lot more band nights when Gifted started it seemed fresh, bringing new bands to the forefront, but now (and maybe this is age talking) I just can't be bothered, you see the audience is a fickle bunch some want to get value for money when going to see bands play and others (usually with some disposable cash) will go along for the craic. I do understand promoters take a risk financially, (and I do understand this not that I've ever put on a band night but have attempted with another to create a label back in the late nineties which without money fell flat) but it does seem to be the same old faces out there and not enough promotions of new talent. I could go on and on but who would read it. :D
  72. avatar fopp
    Most of the points are pretty valid, and I'd agree that too much gigging will inevitably result in a band playing to the same audience which may do more harm than good. Bands that are selective (without appearing sporadic or unenthusiastic) about their gigs can fare pretty well, Tracer amc would be an example I think. But for these bands it's only because of their status that they can be selective.

    The problem is with fresh-faced bands who have a null status, whose name is yet to attract any audience, they kinda need to earn any sort of recognition. Mostly likely by playing a big load o' gigs. The last bit can kind of be a catch 22.
  73. avatar tinpot anto
    I think bands go through phases like this

    Phase 1
    The band starts up with an idea of how they want to sound and start writing tunes, or arranging older tunes the members bring to the table.

    This is a point where the members are still finding their space and sound etc.

    This is for the rehearsal rooms, but gigs should be booked to make sure the band is ready.

    Phase 2
    gig like crazy. no one knows who you are, play every dive going in every town you can reach. play new songs at every opportunity. This will cement the sound, no one is following you, or gives a damn. just make sure you get it right. The crowds for all the nights are different. Play charity gigs, odd venues, tour if possible.

    Phase 3
    build a fan base. A few deranged people may have seen something in you they like and have followed from the start, but now is the time to hook the rest. Play big profile shows, less often, plead for support slots.

    the thing is phase 2 can last 4 or 5 years, at least it did with us, thinking you are at phase 3 before you really are is the most common mistake.
  74. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    It's possible there are a few more phases also.
  75. avatar tinpot anto
    Well we can dream... :)
  76. avatar Mickeycolensoparade
    [quote:8dfd808eeb]the thing is phase 2 can last 4 or 5 years, at least it did with us, thinking you are at phase 3 before you really are is the most common mistake.

    [/quote:8dfd808eeb]

    That's what I was saying happened us, oh the gift of hindsight.
  77. avatar tinpot anto
    The only way to really know is to start acting like you are and see if people still call.

    Thankfully that's working ok for us, so far!
  78. avatar barrypeak
    Related point...

    Local bands play for too long...

    Seven songs or half an hour is more than enough for an audience who don't know your material and you want to come back for more.
  79. avatar JTM
    Stage 3, to quote TPO's Anto:"[i:cd5476429b]A few deranged people may have seen something in you they like and have followed from the start, but now is the time to hook the rest.[/i:cd5476429b]"

    My Two Cents says that bands who don't get out of Stage 2 and into 3, don't do their homework and can't be self-critical of their material. Sure that song needs a bridge, but why change it now? Sure I could make that chord progression sound better, but it's hard to play. That bridge and that tricky chord is the difference in hooking everyone else, eejits like me for example, and just being A.N.Other band.

    </2cents>

    PS Barry, good point.
  80. avatar tinpot anto
    That's a terrible point barry, and is setting your expectations very low.

    In the context of a multi band showcase line up like Gifted or Two Step maybe, but being able to hold your own and play for an hour and a half without pissing off the crowd is what any band should be aiming for. It's what cover bands do and many venues outside Belfast and off the very narrow indie bridge will expect it, and you will also be paid for it if you can pull it off.

    Also if you are touring, especially in germany.
  81. avatar himynameissween
    i think the article is kinda right but i really dont agree with the "prove yourself" method.

    some bands DO play too much, but i think its the lack of venues and variety that make people become bored. ive become bored of the places in this shitty town (attending AND playing) because of a few different reasons. i mean we have:

    the front page: great venue, great craic when people can actualy be arsed showing up, but seems too far out of the way for some people to bother going to.

    the bunker: again great when people show up, friendly bar staff etc, but the whole "early gigs due to club nights" i think would cut a significant portion of interest, due to work/travel. i mean what's the point of a gig when you only get to see 2 bands and then the rest of the night is loud crappy music that has nothing to do with the gig.

    the pavilion: see the front page. also quite small so people dont really seem to like it.

    the black box: never been there, have yet to find out where it is exactly, but seems a very dodgy area of town at night so i think that would put off a lot of people too (myself included)

    limelight/spring and airbrake: never played there, and the few gigs ive attended were ok, but only a few local bands really get the chance to play there, unless they're supporting bigger acts, and even then the support choice, it seems, goes to the band with the most history/demos/albums/money/stuff to offer the promoter/promoter's friends.

    those are the main venues in belfast i can think of that put on local bands most frequently, and a lot of them seem to have a population problem. i ask you, how can a local band be heard by a larger audience when there's fuck all audience besides friends who come because they are friends? this is a problem i've found with the gigs lando! have played at. we are always on first, and a lot of people turn up AFTER we have played, so hardly anyone hears our set. and i know that someone's gonna say about "record stuff etc" but we havent really got the funds right now to record, so we have no real way of properly reaching people that, frankly, can't be arsed going to see the full line-ups of a gig night, preferring only to turn up for the band they really want to see.

    i mean whats the point of support bands if no-one realy goes to see them?

    **that ended on a different subject than i first started out on, but its the same principle. how can local bands "prove themselves" with the state of the gig scene (from my observation) as it is - people basically can't be arsed.**
  82. avatar thesacredhearts
    himynameissween - Simple answer is its up to the band and the promoter, to make people be arsed, on an individual gig basis. On a wider scale, its down to the band to be promoting themselves. And the best promotional tool you'll have in the earlier days is a good demo tape.

    Its not a god given right to get any attention.

    (a four track tape recorder can be bought for buttons, and you can put together a rough demo, just enough for people to hear the songs and get an idea.)


    Anto - What Barry i think is saying is, if you haven't made yourself felt in half an hour, then whats the point in playing a ridiculously long set? 35-45 min sets are exactly what you need. To be ready to play longer is a completely different idea, and there are handful of bands, that would be able to do that, at the drop of a hat.
  83. avatar Steven Dedalus
    [quote:d9de626cfe="tinpot anto"]That's a terrible point barry, and is setting your expectations very low.

    In the context of a multi band showcase line up like Gifted or Two Step maybe, but being able to hold your own and play for an hour and a half without pissing off the crowd is what any band should be aiming for. It's what cover bands do and many venues outside Belfast and off the very narrow indie bridge will expect it, and you will also be paid for it if you can pull it off.

    Also if you are touring, especially in germany.[/quote:d9de626cfe]

    Just don't agree with this at all.

    Sure, have enough material for an hour and a half, if you ever needed it, but please don't play that long!

    Any band in a local setting that plays for longer than half an hour is seriously testing the patience of the audience. Personally, I've always aimed for 24 mins (don't know why we picked 24 rather than 25..). It just seems to make more sense.

    And the whole thing about being paid for it if you can churn out a mammoth set? I've toured, and it's never been expected of me. I'm not saying that's always going to be the case, but it's never been expected in my experience.

    In fact, most promoters seemed to prefer a punchy half hour set.
  84. avatar barrypeak
    I can think of very few bands I could watch for over an hour.

    Playing a different set or length of set at the request of a promoter is when music stops being about music and becomes just another commodity and generally I lose interest.

    I feel an argument coming on here which I'm sorry for starting. I'm away to sit in the sun but I'll get back to you later.
  85. avatar Amz
    I agree with Barry here. Though I think 40mins is about right for a headlining local act. Some bands are put in the position where they have to drag old material up to headline and it shouldnt be that way.

    Hopefully, if things go well, you will end up touring and doing longer sets, but at that stage you should a) have a bigger source of material B) people in the audience will know at least some of your tunes.

    Same as touring bands that I love playing 2 hours - sometimes its amazing and you think what a great gig it was. More often than not, it was GOING to be amazing before the set dragged and you found yourself yawning during the last 5 songs. Less is more and all that.
  86. avatar churchwarden
    [quote:3552c8cf4d]the front page: great venue, great craic when people can actualy be arsed showing up, but seems too far out of the way for some people to bother going to.

    the bunker: again great when people show up, friendly bar staff etc, but the whole "early gigs due to club nights" i think would cut a significant portion of interest, due to work/travel. i mean what's the point of a gig when you only get to see 2 bands and then the rest of the night is loud crappy music that has nothing to do with the gig.

    the pavilion: see the front page. also quite small so people dont really seem to like it.

    the black box: never been there, have yet to find out where it is exactly, but seems a very dodgy area of town at night so i think that would put off a lot of people too (myself included) [/quote:3552c8cf4d]

    As I don't play in a band, I had avoided posting on this topic, but in terms of the venues lsited above I would add my 2 pence...

    The Front Page - Great venue, friendly staff - but I have not been in ages, as I never know what is on. I presume they advertise somewhere ( it doesn't appear to be here ). People promoting gigs should actually promote them, not expect customers to actively seek out the infomation. Any hints on what is on in the front page, would be much appreciated

    The bunker - gigs and clubs can co-exist - the "its not live , so its crappy" music line is not true - look at the nights Diston etc. put on. The club and the live music part working towards the same ambience is optimum, but a decent DJ would be much better than an under rehearsed off-tune band. One of the reasons that audience numbers for local gigs are low is that there is a perception that local bands are dire. This is NOT true in a great deal of cases but I have sat through enough bands who can barely play to understand why the general public would not risk going to see a band they have not hard of - becuase it is a risk.

    The pavilion - it is great, although it does seem difficult to get a crowd to ( I have no idea why ) ( see also Errigle, Rosetta - great venues, public not keen to journey to outer reaches of ormeau road? )

    The Black Box: The area always seems safe enough to me - I have never had any hassle around the whole cathedral quarter. I do wish they would get smirnoff behind the bar, but the cafe and the main room are perfecct gig spaces ( they are screening 3D movies tonight if anyone is interested... )
  87. avatar Mickeycolensoparade
    I agree with the 30-40 minutes thing, at least I do now anyway, but as is the usual case had to discover that by going over the limit.


    and not drink driving, you know what I mean like.
  88. avatar Seamy ALB
    How much do you get paid for a 30-40 min set?
  89. avatar Steven Dedalus
    [quote:77e18f3ca1="Seamy ALB"]How much do you get paid for a 30-40 min set?[/quote:77e18f3ca1]

    Really depends on the gig, doesn't it?

    I've been paid over £100 on several occasions, or, on one memorable occasion, £4.50.
  90. avatar luke
    We've had a fiver thrust our direction before, and the promoter said "maybe next time you'll be worth a tenner" with a smirk. moments like that make it worthwhile being in a rock band.
  91. avatar ryanego
    that's not all you've had thrust in your direction, etc.
  92. avatar the dirty weed
    [quote:e23411ab4f="luke"]We've had a fiver thrust our direction before, and the promoter said "maybe next time you'll be worth a tenner" with a smirk. moments like that make it worthwhile being in a rock band.[/quote:e23411ab4f]

    sh*tty attitude from the promoter. i've had scundering occasions where i've only been able to throw a local support a few quid due to having to cover the touring band's guarantee. in scenarios like this, it's paramount that the band's endeavours are appreciated and hopefully no-one goes home feeling like a mug.
  93. avatar Niall Harden
    yes but it's [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Invisible_hand]the invisible hand[/url], innit.
    i know which band nights which put on under-rehearsed, crappy bands, and i don't go to them. anyone with any sense will do the same. easy.
    Last edited on , 1 times in total.
  94. avatar bernard
    i heard it's a long way to the top, if you want to rock'n'roll
  95. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    I totally agree with Barry Peake on the shorter set thing. I think it's embarrassing when any local band plays for more than 45 minutes, unless they have a record out and are pulling in a genuine fanbase of non-local band gig-goers. (Hope that doesn't sound harsh!)

    Again, using Two Step for example, we paid the bands very well (i think). On grim nights in the past i lost considerable amounts of personal cash honoring fees. It's the promoter's job to ensure there is a crowd, if this isn't the case, it's not the bands fault (usually :))

    When i was in Fallout we got paid 4 quid for a gig once. It's expensive enough being in a band without something like that.
  96. avatar Deevolution
    [quote:d0359eff0c]Any other promoters noticed an upturn in bands pulling out, with or without notice [/quote:d0359eff0c]

    When running the pointblank nights in Laverys this was a regular occurance! in fact i had 2 bands pull out twice with little or no notice :roll: ...and then there were alot of bands who would confirm only to cancel a while later. I tried to keep the lineups varied and fresh - but faced with situations like that i needed bands i could rely on! I usually booked 4 bands each month and ended up with 2 by the time of the actual night.

    I had Rigger on [i:d0359eff0c]nearly[/i:d0359eff0c] every other month 'cause they can play at short notice, provide all the gear and are a treat to work with!

    I feel the live band/club format works very well - get 2-3 bands playing a half hour set each - bands over by 12 - and a decent DJ playing before, between and after bands - catering for the style of bands playing and audience [not just a CD on in the background!!!]
  97. avatar T Entertainment
    Mr Peake's point about set duration is bang on and a long-standing bug bear of mine about local bands.
    Unless they are literally ('they' being a crowd and not your mates and girlfriends) screaming for more it's just crass to play a long set (certainly anything more than 40ish mins, preferably 30-35).
  98. avatar Niall Harden
    there's only one E in Peak, innit.

    more relevantly, for all that i don't understand the appeal at all, i've recently seen ASIWYFA play for over an hour and still have a sizable crowd asking for more.
    so they must be doing something right!
  99. avatar T Entertainment
    But Es are good, did the Shamen teach you nothing?


    I've seen bands getting nothing more than occasional (and diminishing) polite applause dragging it out for well over an hour with material completely unfamiliar to anyone outside of their social group...and it really does them no favours.
  100. avatar himynameissween
    [quote:ed0901ff69="thesacredhearts"]himynameissween - Simple answer is its up to the band and the promoter, to make people be arsed, on an individual gig basis. On a wider scale, its down to the band to be promoting themselves. And the best promotional tool you'll have in the earlier days is a good demo tape.

    Its not a god given right to get any attention.

    (a four track tape recorder can be bought for buttons, and you can put together a rough demo, just enough for people to hear the songs and get an idea.)
    [/quote:ed0901ff69]
    i agree totally, especially with the "god given right" statement, but what i meant was, if hardly any people go to gigs in the first place, how will they get a hold of a demo tape? i dont think word of mouth really counts that much in the local music scene anymore...

    (sorry i dont think i really explained myself very well in my last post!!)

    as for the venues/clubs thing, i didnt mean to slag any of the clubs, i dont mind clubs etc, i mean its not my thing but when you have people wandering in having arrived thinking they are going to see a full night, whereas they discover they've missed all but one band, they tend to walk straight out when they are asked to pay full fee for one band. true that's not really down to the club, but to the person for not checking the times, but on top of the "get people out, so we can get people in ASAP" aspect of it, it causes stress on the promoter. i mean ive been about the bunker after a gig where the girl who was manning the door for the club - which was due to start half an hour AFTER the gig - was having a wee bit of a hissy fit when there were like 5 people milling around grabbing equipment and deconstructing drums 25 minutes before her club was supposed to start. i mean the place was tidy, the staff took care of that, and all the people there were just recovering items (you know what it's like after a gig) but this girl was completely out of line.
  101. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    Why do bands pull out of gigs? Like, what reason would they have?

    I had 1 band pull out in 3 years, and it was because of a family bereavement.

    If 2 bands are pulling out per-bill surely something is badly wrong?
  102. avatar Niall Harden
    sounds like you've been lucky.
    in my experience people in bands are flaky bastards, and go for excuses like "my brother needs me to drive his gutties to our house in ballynahinch, as i borrowed them and he needs to go to the gym" or "i forgot i'm working that night, sorry" or "i forgot crystal castles are playing that night, sorry" or "our bassist quit"
  103. avatar goodonpaper
    Three times - twice the band split up and once they "couldn't be fucked getting on the plane".
  104. avatar Ooopsapocalypse
    Ref. The Front Page.

    www.myspace.com/thefrontpagebar

    As for bands pulling out.
    Yep, happens all the time.
    It's fair enough if you're given plenty of notice to get another band but last minute pull outs have been steadily on the increase over the last year, well for me anyway.
    Reasons have been similar to what Niall's said there but there's been a couple of occasions where they've pulled out from the FP, only to have another gig in a different venue the following day.
    Then there's the communication factor.
    It always helps when bands get back as promptly as possible whether it's to confirm/deny their availability for a gig or availability of backline. On multi band lineups, if one band stalls then there's a knock on effect where the promoter doesn't have the information they need to organise the gig properly.
    Anyway, probably affects me more as I deal with bands who don't have a full bankline available or have transport problems.
    Just a couple of pointers for those who want to take them on board.

    As for set lengh.
    If a bands got a lot of good material then that may warrant a longer set though I'd say crowd reaction is definately a factor.
    I'd agree 30-45 mins is the accepted norm.

    From Cruz:
    "My "I like to call it a tour" comment was very much tongue in cheek. I have never been "on tour" and doubt very much if I ever will. Just to clarify."

    Aye, wasn't havin' a go, just reminded me that some bands play loadsa gigs in Belfast in a short space of time.
    Last edited on , 2 times in total.
  105. avatar tinpot anto
    This really is dopey.

    "I hate bands who play for more than 30 minutes"

    Seriously if you paid £60 for a Radiohead ticket and they played 30 minutes you'd have a pucking caliption.

    What you hate is watching a band you don't know for longer than half an hour. Fair do's. But it really is telling on the aspirations and expectations of bands and promoters here that the idea of playing for longer fills both with dread.

    On many occasions we've played much longer than that. The reason that we were there to provide the entertainment for the night, and the bar closed when the music stopped, and people were dancing and calling for more. Entertaining people is what music is for, and bands should learn how to do it, most bands settle for the "Perfect" industry showcase every gig. Bugs me that.
  106. avatar Steven Dedalus
    Yeah, but I'm not going to pay £60 to see Tinpot Operation, and I don't want to watch them play for more than an hour.

    That argument just doesn't work in this situation. I've been bored by 'big' bands that have played for ages. Half an hour or less allows you to deliver a strong set of brilliant material that you can hone and perfect until your heart's content.

    In all honesty, I would rather watch Radiohead (or whoever) for half an hour, rather than see them dribbling on for ages.
  107. avatar rentaghost
    Joe. Please don't take this the wrong way - I'm not on the attack or anything, but can you see how it might confuse people if you are on one thread giving off about bands playing too often and on another thread advertising yet another series of local band nights?

    How does running another new event tally with your thinking on too many gigs in Belfast and the overall quality of bands?
  108. avatar Seamy ALB
    I agree with Anto 30-40 minutes is not a gig. It is not enough time to build a rapport with an audience and it is definitly not a long enough set to negotiate a fee with a bar/promoter.

    Bands who set themselves up to play these kinds of sets are really limiting themselves as performers, creatively and commercially. I think that there is to much of these Showcase nights and not enough quality gigs. Showcase gigs limit performers ability to learn how to entertain. All professional gig's have a short support followed by a sustained lenghty performance by a main act, this is to enable the main act to reach into and entertain / move the audience. Instead of 30 min of good show a band should be able to perform two hours.
  109. avatar Steven Dedalus
    [quote:dec4637a95="Seamy ALB"]

    Instead of 30 min of good show a band should be able to perform two hours.[/quote:dec4637a95]

    Different strokes for different folks, I guess.

    Like I said earlier, I wouldn't want to watch my favourite band of all time play for two hours. It just doesn;t interest me.

    In fact, I'd go as far to say that one of my favourite gigs in recent years was the Oh Yeah Computer event where each band only played one song. I'd rather see 12 bands play one song each than one band play 12 songs.

    And in terms of generating a rapport with the audience, the best performers were all able to do this within the space of one song. The best performers on that night were able to truly connect with the audience in the space of four or five minutes, and I personally think that is a far more difficult task than stretching yourself over two hours.

    Whenever I see a band playing an epic hour long set, there's always something of indulgence about it. I hate to say it, but the kind of bands that I've seen that play for over an hour are playing to themselves, rather than to the audience.
  110. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    Fair point!

    The run of gigs in The Stiff Kitten is the first run of its kind in that venue (which has an excellent soundsystem), and (i think) compiles some of the best bands in the country. So will be worthwhile for crowds + bands alike.

    The band's playing will be playing their only gig that month in the venue. So it's not adding to the saturation. There will likely be 5 (max) of these shows per year.

    But yes, point taken.
  111. avatar tenrabbits
    If it's a band who either has material with depth and variety to manage a couple of hours, or who has a back catalogue which I'm familiar with, then sure. Broken Social Scene were a prime example of this for me - I knew only one album when I went to see them, and spent two hours completely agog at how good they were. Having said that - they're a band with 15 odd members and various styles at play, who has a full touring setup.

    For every local band I can think of, half an hour is just plenty, although there are one or two I'd manage an hour with.

    Possibly.
  112. avatar dirty stevie smitty
    Are these gigs in the Stiff Kitten the Continuity TwoStep? :lol:
  113. avatar nonlogic liam
    [quote:7fdaed2701="Seamy ALB"]I agree with Anto 30-40 minutes is not a gig. It is not enough time to build a rapport with an audience and it is definitly not a long enough set to negotiate a fee with a bar/promoter.

    Bands who set themselves up to play these kinds of sets are really limiting themselves as performers, creatively and commercially. I think that there is to much of these Showcase nights and not enough quality gigs. Showcase gigs limit performers ability to learn how to entertain. All professional gig's have a short support followed by a sustained lenghty performance by a main act, this is to enable the main act to reach into and entertain / move the audience. Instead of 30 min of good show a band should be able to perform two hours.[/quote:7fdaed2701]

    A great band will make an impact even if their on stage for 10 minutes. I have seen this happen! Your "theory" only applies to bands that suck a person's will to live.
  114. avatar tinpot anto
    10 minute "impact" is A&R wa-nk speak and you know it.

    The Boss plays for 3-4 hours, and it's all country rock.

    I'm not saying bands should all play that long, but that's what they should shoot for. not the perfect industry showcase set.

    We practice on the basis of a hour and a half set as default, and have trimmed versions for 20 minutes, 30, 45 and 1 hour.
  115. avatar Seamy ALB
    [quote:97eb7785a5="nonlogic liam"][quote:97eb7785a5="Seamy ALB"]I agree with Anto 30-40 minutes is not a gig. It is not enough time to build a rapport with an audience and it is definitly not a long enough set to negotiate a fee with a bar/promoter.

    Bands who set themselves up to play these kinds of sets are really limiting themselves as performers, creatively and commercially. I think that there is to much of these Showcase nights and not enough quality gigs. Showcase gigs limit performers ability to learn how to entertain. All professional gig's have a short support followed by a sustained lenghty performance by a main act, this is to enable the main act to reach into and entertain / move the audience. Instead of 30 min of good show a band should be able to perform two hours.[/quote:97eb7785a5]

    A great band will make an impact even if their on stage for 10 minutes. I have seen this happen, this "theory" only applies to bands that suck a persons will to live.[/quote:97eb7785a5]

    Its not a "theory" that requires testing, its how all professional shows work. Off course a great band will make an impact in 10 minutes, 1 song, hell I've seen great bands make a huge impact just walking onto the stage.

    My point is that the industry paid gig standard is in and around 2 hours. If bands want to be pro this is what you need to be working towards or doing. The impact should be great for the 2 hrs.
  116. avatar The Donk
    Yeah but this topic is about local bands. I dont think there's a local band out there that anyone would enjoy after 2 hours.
  117. avatar tinpot anto
    Ever think that bands are dull after 30 minutes, simply BECAUSE they don't think they'll ever need to play any longer and don't make any effort to structure a set in that way?

    My favourite live gigs are where an audience connects with the band and the band responds the thing is participatory, organic and exactly what music is for. Stopping right on 40 minutes and walking off stage even though the crowd is baying for more, simply because "That's the rules man" is idiotic.

    We've stayed on stage for well over that time simply because the sudience were enjoying it, dancing, having a laugh and didn't want it to stop. We've done it for well over 90 minutes. Your problem you simply can't keep it up as long as the TPO. :lol:
    Last edited on , 2 times in total.
  118. avatar churchwarden
    [quote:9d94360d04]www.myspace.com/thefrontpagebar[/quote:9d94360d04]

    Cheers Ian
  119. avatar Seamy ALB
    My other issue with this showcase format is that it is simply not good value for money. 4 bands on a bill it takes 20 mins to change over and into the 2nd or 3rd song to get the sound right for each band if it even does get right. Less bands means proper sound checks plus more playing time and less faffing about. Its a better quality gig for performers and listeners.
  120. avatar Seamy ALB
    Anto we should do an ALB Tinpot 2 band 6 hour gig!! :lol: :lol: 8)
  121. avatar churchwarden
    [quote:f2bf89833b]as for the venues/clubs thing, i didnt mean to slag any of the clubs, i dont mind clubs etc, i mean its not my thing but when you have people wandering in having arrived thinking they are going to see a full night, whereas they discover they've missed all but one band, they tend to walk straight out when they are asked to pay full fee for one band. true that's not really down to the club, but to the person for not checking the times, but on top of the "get people out, so we can get people in ASAP" aspect of it, it causes stress on the promoter. [/quote:f2bf89833b]

    Sorry, misunderstood your original post - you are perfectly right in your point.
  122. avatar nonlogic liam
    [quote:d68e01c261="Seamy ALB"]Anto we should do an ALB Tinpot 2 band 6 hour gig!! :lol: :lol: 8)[/quote:d68e01c261]

    Please don't!
  123. avatar Seamy ALB
    [quote:0d5e7df483="nonlogic liam"][quote:0d5e7df483="Seamy ALB"]Anto we should do an ALB Tinpot 2 band 6 hour gig!! :lol: :lol: 8)[/quote:0d5e7df483]

    Please don't![/quote:0d5e7df483]

    Eh?? Why not?? :lol:

    Bass solo's, drum solo's, guitar solo's, vocal solo's, dancing midgets, giants causeway stage, explosions & a half hour Firework display!!!

    Class!! :D
  124. avatar tinpot anto
    [quote:62efcdea64]dancing midgets, giants causeway stage, explosions & a half hour Firework display!!!
    [/quote:62efcdea64]

    Liam keeps all of these things to hand in his bedroom closet.
  125. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    :roll:
  126. avatar goodonpaper
    So we've established that promoters shouldn't be booking bands more than once a month, and bands should be conscious of being booked too often (even though this wasn't really about bands playing too often!). Do you think this post is enough to change the habits of even a few readers?
  127. avatar JTM
    It's changed my outlook.
  128. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    I've established that i don't agree with Tinpot Anto on anything at all.
  129. avatar Zwaddap_deep_doo
    [quote:5b98285b1e="Joeplaysthedrums"]I've established that i don't agree with Tinpot Anto on anything at all.[/quote:5b98285b1e]

    Happens to all right thinking people eventually.
  130. avatar Mickeycolensoparade
    Maybe he'll show youse all someday
  131. avatar Joeplaysthedrums
    I doubt it.
  132. avatar Mickeycolensoparade
    Stand up to these fiends Anto!
  133. avatar tinpot anto
    It's never been necessary to agree with me, only to obey my desires. :)
  134. avatar Shane
    I'm fu@kin run off my mmbuckin feet here. I've played about one gug in the last twice the as many years!