[Dixielandjazz] You wouldn't wanna buy a Jazz band...

tcashwigg at aol.com tcashwigg at aol.com
Mon Oct 2 23:57:59 PDT 2006

-----Original Message-----
From: jazzmin at actcom.net.il
To: tcashwigg at aol.com; dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com
Sent: Mon, 2 Oct 2006 10:40 PM
Subject: RE: [Dixielandjazz] You wouldn't wanna buy a Jazz band...

   Hi Tom,

I'd be interested in your opinion and that of other experienced 
listmates on
this. While I can see clearly what not to do from the example you 
posted, I find
myself in a situation of wanting to target middle and lower income 
customers and
provide music for their events. A couple of reasons:

1) Their events tend to be lower pressure and more fun.

I understand and agree with you.

2) These people have responded better to our music than the big bucks 

again that is generally the case here as well.  their is a price to pay 
for the rich gigs.

3) They have been more willing to pay our somewhat below market price 

Then it is probably a little too cheap try going up 25% or so and see 
what happens,
promote yourself as quality, and reasonably priced according to 
expenses and livable fees.

4) They often cannot afford a more expensive band and will go without 
or use
amateur local talent instead if an alternative is not available.

Then is when you have to use psychology and smooth talk your way in to 
doing them a special favor for this one time and play for what they can 
afford. :))

Always ask what their budget is before quoting a definitive price, ask 
if they have allowed additional money for a P.A. even if you don't need 
one or have any intentions of using one, sometimes you get a surprise 
and they are willing to pay as much for the PA as they would for the 
band :))   I often turn local small band $600.00 gigs into $900. TO 
THE BREAKS if they want it.  Pay the Dj $100.00 and hire anybody like a 
roadie to do it.  Any idiot can play Cds during a break.  Heck I can 
put them on and walk away for that matter.

While I do not advertise us as cheap or even inexpensive, I am quick to 
inquirers know that we offer lower than market prices because we do not 
use PA
equipment. Often the "unplugged" aspect is a selling point in its own 

Yes it can be especially when you start at the top with P A price 
included, then you have a long way to let them bargain you down and you 
can usually still get more money than starting small.   Once they get a 
price that is what they will always offer you.   I often use the ploy 
that we tour all over the world for big festivals for a lot of money 
and expenses, but I know they probably can't afford our tour prices, so 
we have special considerations for gigs like their if they are local.  
Make them feel like thy are getting a ROLLS ROYCE FOR THE PRICE OF A 
VOLKSWAGEN, but making them swear to not tell anybody what they got our 
confidential price for.  :))   Yeah right they will tell all their 
friends but the price is high enough by that point to be what I would 
charge them minimum anyway.

Your people invented this game you know,  buy low Sell High :))   Since 
you already know what your sidemen are gong to cost on the minimum 
side, you get enough to cover them and pay yourself on top and all the 
expenses and hopefully about a 40% profit for future operations etc.  
Never split the money up equally, that will eventually break up any 
band because they will expect it every time.  You are doing all the 
work and getting all the gigs so you deserve to make more and keep a 
bankroll to cover them if and when you get stiffed on a gig or need new 
uniforms or instrument repairs etc.

have included phrases like "happy music at happy prices" or something 
similar in

So tell me how do we let a potentially large customer base know that we 
"low-income friendly" without sounding cheap or amateurish?

Slogans like Champagne at Beer prices,   A lot of playing it by ear and 
seeing where the money flows and where it is likely to stop, just try 
to manipulate it to the number you want to consistently keep as a 
minimum for doing a gig.



Dr. Jazz Dixieland Band
Tekiya Trumpet Ensemble
Jerusalem, Israel

-----Original Message-----
From: tcashwigg at aol.com [mailto:tcashwigg at aol.com]
Sent: Tuesday, October 03, 2006 12:20 AM
To: dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com
Subject: [Dixielandjazz] Fwd: You wouldn't wanna buy a Jazz band would
you?Oh didn't think so sorry!

This is a classic example of how not to market Jazz...

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