Fw: [Dixielandjazz] Re: Mardi Gras >> Band Tips

BudTuba at aol.com BudTuba at aol.com
Thu Mar 6 11:26:20 PST 2003

In a message dated 3/5/03 5:37:27 PM Eastern Standard Time, zenith at ans.com.au 

> The Sydney-Zenith do not use any tip jar and we agree that some fans come up
> with money requesting specific numbers but we have not matched US $100 yet,
> only AUS $100 which seems to be rapidly approaching the US amount.

Well, now here's a subject that will divide us into two camps...the matter of 
tips.  Professional or Amatuer??  Our hybrid (amatuer and professional 
members) band has played at two locations each once a month for the last 5 
years and we HAVE to get tips...we hardly get any money at all from the 
restaurants (we do get eats from the luncheon menu).  So we openly leave a 
pot in front for 'tips' and once a night have to announce that the pot is 
being passed around.  We usually sympathetic with our patrons who may have 
never visited New Orleans and learned the custom.  Talk about  
unprofessionalism!  However, we do maintain a mailing list and have to pay 
about $300 a mailing for that 4 times a year.  Our fans appreciate that since 
there is no other way for them to really know what we're up to.

In the last year or so, I have made the pot passing more of a comedy sketch 
and that helps.  People have said they sort of look forward to what new spin 
I will come up with.  We played at our westside club on Lincoln's birthday 
and I dreamt up a story of Lincoln needing help with his cell phone bill..so 
of course, that address was to be provided by Abe himself, but instead was 
presented by a man (me)  in a black jacket  and tall black hat who 
represented himself as a member of the Homeland Security department (formerly 
Dept of the Interior).  Abe had written the letter on the back of his cell 
phone bill which mystified him...what was that little box that people talked 
into?  etc/etc  (Abe apparently had flown south for some Florida sunshine and 
could not make it to his party.)

Well, as it turned out the showing that night was slim due to a major 
snowstorm which we decided to ignore and our take was only about $35.  Given 
that turn of events, when we played at our east side gig two weeks later, I 
mentioned the Lincoln cell phone fund drive was still in trouble and the poor 
contributions were made by the hicks on the west side, etc. and without all 
the rich story generated, all I did was pop on the top hat and we pulled in 
about $150 out of about 60 patrons. 

I can now invision Jim Beebe and all the great professional musician 
contributors to this dialogue now frantically reaching to pull the plugs on 
their computer.   But...hey...you gotta know the territory.  Gasoline and 
postage ain't free.

Bud Taylor
Smugtown Stompers
Rochester, NY
Traditional Jazz since 1958
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