[Dixielandjazz] Why musicians don't talk to fans

TCASHWIGG at aol.com TCASHWIGG at aol.com
Tue Dec 14 14:40:06 PST 2004

In a message dated 12/14/04 9:55:37 AM, sign.guy at charter.net writes:

> I try to be very polite to people because you don't know when that person
> will be the employer or will give your name to someone who will hire you.   
> I
> make it my business to talk to at least the people who are setting close to
> the band.   They love it and good PR will never hurt you but then again
> that's from the band leader, business point of view.   Sidemen don't
> necessarily share that point of view.

That Larry is the professional way to approach the situation, and even though 
it is very difficult to deal with a fan like Bob, he should even be treated 
with kindness and tolerance, who knows how many other people he will bring to 
see the band the next time or cause to buy your recordings, etc.

Yes, they can be a pain in the butt and no doubt a bit irritating to many 
players, but if you stay in this business long enough you learn to recognize them 
quickly and develop ways to slip out of the circle to go take care of some 
emergency situation.   I try to find two of the same kind of folks if possible 
and when they show up at every gig I find a way to get the two or more of them 
together after the first encounter, and they can talk record numbers and 
sidemen compilations all night if they wish.

I just organized an event for a celebrity from Star Trek, and watched a 
master of 35 years do it for two hours straight at an autograph session.   He 
tolerated some real jackasses who kept getting back into line trying et him to sign 
everything from playing cards to downloaded photos from the Internet.

This artist was wonderful, and never lost his cool or his temper even when he 
looked up from the article he was signing and recognized the same overzealous 
fan again, he also graciously posed for photos with anyone who asked, shook 
hands and wished them all well.    Yes, he said it was a pain in the butt, but 
liked the way I had organized it to keep the chaos down and the Treckies under 
reasonable control so that other regular fans and their children could get a 
chance to meet him and get a photo.

His explanation to me was that it was part of his Job and it was the least he 
could do to make some people happy.   Yes, the freakies who were getting 
everything signed were doing it to post it on EBAY TO SELL AN HOUR LATER, THEY 


Tom Wiggins

More information about the Dixielandjazz mailing list