[Dixielandjazz] Unwritten rules

David W. Littlefield dwlit@cpcug.org
Thu, 12 Sep 2002 16:47:42 -0400

I also wouldn't be worried about Bill Gunter passing out his own cards on
my gig, he's too much of a gentlemen.

However, his arguments push to the wall what is basically a general
principle of civilized behavior and proper deportment. As it happens, these
are many of the same arguments used by the sleazebags in the business, as I
found on several occasions, and also on a couple of time when I talked to
bandleaders who went behind the back of agents who had gotten them gigs.

As a couple of folks noted, I too wouldn't take it amiss if a sideman
approaches a venue about his own band the day after my gig; he'd have to
provide a promo kit, and then the venue booker would make choices. Now if
he utilized "inside information" I provided, offered to play significantly
cheaper, or dissed/lied about me, I would be seriously offended.

There is one vital aspect that hasn't been mentioned. If booking agencies
outside the DC area do like the ones who book my bands, there are CLAUSES
1. only agency cards shall be given out on the gig; the sideman is hired by
me, so if he gives out his card, the agency can legitimately hold me in
violation of the contract. All my regulars have been told this so they
won't give out my cards without asking me; usually I have agency cards at
hand. But a sleazy/thoughtless substitute sideman could royally screw me up
with the agency--you'd be amazed at what the bookers find out!!

(2. BTW. For a certain period--it used to be 12 months, increasingly 13,
now sometimes even 18 months--all gigs any Agency bands contracted to play
for that client shall handled by the Agency.)