[Dixielandjazz] INSURANCE >> A Major Problem for Bands

Patrick Cooke patcooke at cox.net
Thu Jul 15 16:36:33 PDT 2004

Perhaps the reason for the high liability insurance at a "live" performance
is due to the rowdy audiences at some of the rock concerts.  They do tend to
get carried away!
     Pat Cooke

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Stephen Barbone" <barbonestreet at earthlink.net>
To: <BudTuba at aol.com>
Cc: <dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>; <scottspencer7 at hotmail.com>
Sent: Thursday, July 15, 2004 12:35 PM
Subject: Re: [Dixielandjazz] INSURANCE >> A Major Problem for Bands

> BudTuba at aol.com wrote:
> >   A club which we have played at for the last 4 years has informed me
> > that they
> > are cancelling all music (including DJ's) because their annual
> > liability
> > insurance increased by $15000 and that DIDN'T INCLUDE live
> > performance!!  After
> > searching for a different insurance company, they refused to even
> > issue a new
> > policy which included live music to which people could dance.
> >
> > I asked the owner about how he learned of this change in policy.  He
> > said it
> > was merely a terse notation on his renewal contract...no advance
> > notice or
> > anything.  He had to have his attorney search out a new insurance
> > carrier, who
> > conceded to place the NO MUSIC coverage.
> >
> > The writing on the wall is painful.  Last year, a the Fingerlakes
> > Dixieland
> > Jazz Festival here in NY state was cancelled because of extremely high
> >
> > liability insurance for the one-day event.  Other club owners will
> > also only find out
> > their mode of business is changing when their policies run out.  I'm
> > not sure
> > if this is another reflection of 9-11 damage or just exploitation by
> > the
> > insurance companies of that event.  In NY State, worker's liability
> > Insurance rates
> > have also gone through the roof because their is no longer any
> > provision for
> > worker complicity or blame.  This is forcing many small building
> > contractors
> > out of the business.
> >
> > I would recommend any band that has a regular gig ask the club manager
> > about
> > the future of music at that club.  Will their liability policy also be
> >
> > recinded when the new insurance policy renewal is implemented??
> > Feedback from DJML
> > listmates on what is learned would be greatly appreciated.
> Interesting comment on insurance rates.
> I am involved in the organization group of horse eventers who sponsor an
> annual event involving 100 competitors, 200 horses and 3 to 5000
> spectators over three days of competition, on farm land here in Chester
> County PA, USA. Our insurance rate for the event is less than $15000 and
> the possible liability much higher than that of a club owner. It
> involves horses, carriages, cross country driving, gallop speeds through
> hazards with spectators relatively close etc. , etc., etc. Possible
> injury includes run away horses, people getting trampled, etc. The
> insurance is placed through the USET (US Equestrian Team) and/or the
> ADS, (American Driving Society) using a tie in to their carriers.
> My band performs there every year for two days. Dancing happens. We
> don't cost any additional liability insurance rates because of our
> presence, and this year we are producing a swing dance exhibition in
> addition to our concerts.
> Perhaps this is something the AFJS could become involved in if that
> organization is still viable?  Failing that, perhaps an entrepreneur
> among us could figure out some form of umbrella coverage for festivals
> and tie the various organizations into it?
> I should think the major rate hit on bar or club owners involves serving
> drunks who go out and kill themselves and others on the highways
> afterwards. Whether or not a club has live music matters very little in
> that equation and we might further investigate whether the club owner is
> telling it straight or not.
> Right now, every restaurant we play at has canned music in addition to
> live music. What is the difference, insurance wise?
> If dancing is the culprit, then all the Discos are doomed and I don't
> see that happening.
> Cheers,
> Steve Barbone
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