[Dixielandjazz] The Phat Band - School Gigs & Young Fans
TCASHWIGG at aol.com
TCASHWIGG at aol.com
Fri Mar 11 11:13:20 PST 2005
In a message dated 3/11/05 9:37:45 AM Pacific Standard Time, Custode at aol.com
> Here is my question to Mr. Barbone: who pays for your band(s) to perform in
> such venues. In my neck of the woods (Western NY) we have no funding
> (besides "Young Audiences" that I am aware of) that would enable a group of
> professional musicians to perform in the schools. How do you go about
> payment for these concerts? I am most interested...please advise.
> Lewis D. Custode, Jr., CLU, ChFC
> _LDC Advisory Services_ (http://www.myfinancialpro.net/custode)
Dear Lewis and all:
All Beauracracies like School boards Districts, etc., continually cry poor
and say they have no money and need more and more money from the taxpayers year
after year, and threaten to lay off teachers, and close schools if they don't
get it. But in fact most of them are lying and have more money than they
actually need to operate the schools efficiently.
They are only competent at one thing, Begging for more and more money to
waste and pay the administration employees more and more every year driving the
costs of the school systems through the roof.
They all have secret pots of money set aside to do with as they wish, you and
others have to be smart enough to go out and work a bit and find where they
are hiding it. Get involved with every Parent Teacher Association you can find
at every school in your area. Find out who the MUSIC parents are, organize
your own army to attack these folks and find the money. Trust me it is there.
Go out of your way to befriend the MUSIC teachers and make them help you.
Most schools are begging for groups like us to come there and perform, but
"THEY HAVE NO IDEA WHO OR WHERE WE ARE" it is up to us to get off our lazy
butts and go find them and be persistent to make things happen, start new
Organize a fundraising event with the Music Parents and the PTA Don't get
greedy right off the bat, let them make a little money by splitting the take 50%
Most schools have assembly programs for elementary schools, you can arrange
to go there and do a volunteer program to start if you have to. ( Most schools
can find $100.00 to $250.00 laying around to pay your "expenses" for
volunteering the program for 45 minutes.) Make the most out of it, and take along
professional printed flyers about the music and your Group with a GOOD photo and
booking information on the flyer, if you have a date booked in the area in the
near future, let them know about it on your flyer and insist that every kid
takes one home to his parents in his FRIDAY FOLDER.
Negotiate with the school to use the auditorium or gymnasium for a concert
for and with the music department, in the spring and summer you can do them
outdoors. Parents & grandparents and friends of theirs pay to get in and kids with
parents come free.
Works better than cookie and candy sales for any school to raise money for
Now once you get the kids turned on at the assembly they will go home and
sell the idea to their parents, about this great band that came to their school
and played and they are having a big concert Mom and dad and it's FREE can we
go huh Mom huh can we go pleeeeeze Mom, and can grama come too.
Now at the concerts you can solicit further donations to support your program
by offering to "GIVE them a CD or a Band T-Shirt for say a $10.00 donation,
and you use the money to build up a treasury to pay your band for all those
assembly programs to promote your band and music. Another ploy that works well
is to also give everyone who buys a ticket a free CD, or better yet get the
PTA to buy 100 to 200 of them and offer them free to the first 100 or 200 people
who buy a ticket, what do you care you got an audience and $1000. to $2000.
if you sold them the CDs for $10.00 each. beats moving them around the garage
for ten years. And you still have a promotional and advertising write off
for doing the gig.
Now say your normal gig price is $600.00 or even more, you should keep a
record of all the assembly programs you play and at what amount of income you
received for doing them from the schools PTA or where ever you derive funds. Now
the difference between your normal appearance price and what you did that
little program for is a legitimate advertising and promotion expense that can be
kept track of and deducted from your income tax under advertising and promotion
on your Schedule C.
Another tip for you for an advertising deduction folks, if you play for free
at Churches, keep track of all such performances and deduct those free
performances as promotion and advertising costs as well at your normal performance
fee rates. Sometimes Playing for Free is not a bad thing if you know how to
turn it into promotion to book other paying gigs from it. But you can't be lazy
and sit around and wait for somebody to come find and hire you.
Play a local Wine and Art Festival for Free if they have no money, but get a
receipt from the chamber of commerce in the form of a contract that says you
donated XX amount of Dollars in services as an advertising and promotion costs
for your band.
I know you say what about my sidemen? They all insist on getting paid, so
pay them and deduct that as an expense as well, treat you band like a business,
and if the others players refuse to participate then just pay them what they
are willing to work for and keep all the rest for doing the work and being
smarter and less lazy than they are.
When you go out to play a Wine and Arts/ Farmers Market event, etc., Sell CDs
and T-shirts and if your sidemen want to get paid then pay them by the hour
just like a regular union scale gig. If you are any good and you can turn on
an audience you will sell enough CDs, etc., to make more money than the event
would have ever paid you to be there anyway and you can write off the
performance as promotion and advertising and book paid gigs from being there and being
seen and heard by others who might never otherwise have heard of you.
What Jazz Societies in this Country need to do is stop preserving the music
and hire guys like Steve Barbone and Me to come to their Festivals and do
workshops on how to book and market the music to build wider real audiences. (But
no, that would defeat their reason to exist to keep preserving the music for
free or less than liveable wages for the players they purport to be helping.)
Teaching ten million more kids how to play an instrument that most will never
get a job paying them to do is wasted without teaching them something about
how to actually make a living doing it. Why is this not done? Because most of
the Music teachers are so caught up in teaching music and most have NEVER
actually gone out and made a living playing it so they have no idea how to teach
the kids anything other than theory? Well, folks you can't pay your bills and
eat on Theory.
Ford did not sell all those cars just because he built them He had to go out
and promote them and advertise them to get people interested in buying them.
That is Called BUSINESS, and MUSIC IS A BIG BUSINESS, if any of you can't be
part of it then do the rest of us a favor and get out of it so we can make a
living and teach the next generations how to do so.
I have done almost nothing but Music for a living for 45 years and it has
served me very well because I treat it like a business and market it for my own
group as well as many others over the past 45 years.
Rev. Tom Bob Sermon of the week again.
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