[Dixielandjazz] Side Man pay & Websites

Stephen Barbone barbonestreet at earthlink.net
Thu Mar 11 16:04:07 PST 2004

Re Kurt's question on sideman pay: Union scale in the 1950s in NYC for
Friday Night, 6 hours and Saturday night 5 hours, steady every weekend
was $32.00 total. Just about $3 per hour. Gas was about 19 cents a
gallon and a full size Cadillac cost less than $5000. Figuring gas and
the Caddy now cost about 10 times as much, scale in NYC for the same 2
night steady should be about $320.

Re Websites, I agree with Tom Wiggins. You can program your own
"keywords" into your website. Some that are useful are "Jazz" - "Hot
Jazz" - "Weddings" etc. "Jazz" as a keyword is much more important that
"Trad Jazz" as a keyword.

Also in your local area, for example: "Delaware Valley Jazz",
"Philadelphia Jazz" etc.

And, if you use sentences on your website that use the above words, to
will find that the general public in searching google for "Philadelphia
Jazz" will come up to your website and it will result in solid hits for

If visiting a strange city, google for "Jazz in Des Moines" etc., and
you will find everything you want to know about jazz gigs in the area.
Some modern, of course, but also links to the trad gigs.

Also, post your schedule on your web site, rather than all the cutesy
graphics. That will do more for you than all kinds of graphics which
take several minutes to down load. And mention that you play for Dances,
Weddings, Corporate Parties etc.

Best thing to have is a very quick down load to the site, and some
relevant information that will make people want to contact you. Do not
try to sell the band on the site, sell the REASON viewers should contact
The number of hits in not as important as the number of actual e mail ,
snail mail, or phone contacts which will result in GIGS.

My own site is very plain, often gets criticized by elites, doesn't have
much to look at except the schedule, the kind of music we play, some
venues where we have played in the local area, some performance comments
by fans and clients and a description of who the players are. It has no

BUT, It downloads IMMEDIATELY, is simple to navigate, and results in 15
to 20 gigs a year. Some weddings, some private parties, some public
concerts. Mostly from people who live in the local area that I would not
know from a hole in the wall and are not on my radar as prospective
clients, and/or venues. It even resulted in high paying gigs from a
corporate event planners in St Louis who was doing a major corporate
event here in the Delaware Valley, and Milwaukee who likewise had a
convention event here.

It is part of my earthlink net package, was designed by my daughter
after input from me in less than an hour and is included in the $20 cost
per month, of my internet service.


Steve Barbone

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