Show Booking

Meet the Music Booking Agents

**Guest post written by Louise Dodgson, Editor at The Unsigned Guide.

 

"Working with a booking agent is a topic we’re often asked about by artists and bands who wonder whether they should still undertake all gig bookings themselves or acquire the services of an agent who can bag those lusted-after festival slots and tour supports. Do I need an agent? At what stage should we approach one? Will a booking agency even work with an unsigned or emerging band? If you’ve ever wondered about any of the above, this blog is for you!"

How to Open For Nationally Touring Artists

**Guest post written by Joy Ike, creator of Grassrootsy.com and Independent Musician, as featured on Grassrootsy.com.

 

"Nailing big opportunities is one of the major things that kickstarts the career of an independent artist. Sometimes it’s having a video go viral. Other times it’s falling under the good graces of someone who knows someone. But sometimes it’s getting to open for a national touring act and getting your name out to a larger audience of new listeners...here are 7 excellent tips for making it happen."

5 Ways to Impress Venue Bookers and Get More Gigs

**Guest Post written by Dave Cool of Bandzoogle.com.

 

"I spent three years as program director for two venues here in my home city of Montreal, overseeing 500 shows during that time. Here are 5 ways that you can impress venue bookers and give yourself the best chance to get more gigs..."

Here's The Pitch, Pt. 2: The Follow-Up

**Guest post written by Joshua Powell, singer-songwriter, DIY musician, and frontman for Joshua Powell and the Great Train Robbery, as featured in his blog Fearsome Folk.

 

"Your bobber just exploded and somebody took the bait. Now it’s time to let out on the line. One of those thirty-four venues replied to your excellently crafted pitch email and now you’re in negotiations to set the stage for your impending show. But the thread of your line is steadily unspooling, and sure, your cast was masterful, but there are other things to which we must attend. We’ll do that here—in the follow-up..."

What's Your Draw?

**Guest post written by Paula Tolly, one half of the Boca Raton based Americana duo 33 Years.

 

"You know the scenario.... you’ve been trying to get into this local bar for who knows how long and your buddy just gave you the name of the new booker. You email him or text or whatever his preference is and you get the dreaded dead end comment back: "How many people can you draw at my venue....?" Your heart sinks, your confidence dwindles and you think, "Hey, is there anyone out there who really cares about the music nowadays?""...

4 Ways To Get Your Band Booked When The Booker Ignores You

**Guest post by Chris "Seth" Jackson, a bass guitarist and composer and founder of HowToRunABand.com.

 

OH no! I can't get a show! I keep sending out booking emails that never get replied to. What do I do?...

How Do I Follow Up With a Venue That Hasn’t Returned My Email?

**Guest post written by Joy Ike, creator of Grassrootsy.com and Independent Musician, as featured on Grassrootsy.com.

 

THE QUESTION: I have a question that I hope someone here can help me with. After you’ve sent an email and you don’t hear back for a week or two, is it ok to resend the same email in the case that it got lost in the shuffle? I don’t want to come off as being pushy, but I want to make sure that they actually received the email.

 

THE ANSWER: Art, this is a really great question that I think a lot of people struggle with. It’s hard to know how to follow up on a email when you don’t know if it was ever read, if it reached the correct person, or if the receiver purposely didn’t get back to you. So we’ve got a few suggestions on what you can do...

How to Get From “Local Artist” to “Touring Musician”

**Guest post written by Joy Ike, creator of Grassrootsy.com and Independent Musician, as featured on Grassrootsy.com.

 

"STEP 1: Perfect your performance. Play as many open stages as you can to network with others and solidify your stage presence. Become a familiar face and make sure you get to really know the people. Give this a 6-month time period." Click the title to read numbers 2-7, including an in-depth description of each crucial step...

The Truth About NACA: 
Gigging on the College Circuit

**The following is an excerpt from MusicBizAcademy.com's "The Truth About NACA: Gigging on the College Circuit" by Fran Snyder, originally published in 2001.

 

"The National Association of Campus Activities, established in 1960, is a non-profit organization that puts on regional conferences where music acts, comedians, lecturers and other entertainers showcase in front of campus activities programmers from around the country. There are 1200 member colleges and 600 associate members (talent or agent) which makes NACA the largest organization of its kind." So how do you land one of these coveted showcase slots and secure college bookings with fantastic guarantees?... 

How To Make Sure You’re Booking a Good Venue

**Guest post written by Joy Ike, creator of Grassrootsy.com and Independent Musician, as featured on Grassrootsy.com.

 

Booking a tour can be a difficult process. Not only are you spending hours upon hours emailing venue after venue, but you’re also taking a major gamble on the venues you’re contacting. It’s often hard to know if the spot is a good fit for your band, if there is decent foot traffic, how hard you will have to work for your draw, and how well their booker will work with you to make the event a success. It’s just one huge gamble.

Should You Pay to Play

**Guest post written by Ari Herstand, a DIY singer-songwriter from Los Angeles, CA with 500+ shows under his belt, as featured in his blog "Ari's Take". 

 

"...But what all the non-superstar musicians in LA have in common is, when we play a show in town we accept shitty shitty deals...This isn't going to be a post about LA (as that could fill a book), but rather the issue of "pay to play" clubs. Let's explore some of the many scenarios bands get offered by venues and promoters every day..."

How Do I Plan a Tour?

**As featured in Indie on the Move's Touring Tips section.

 

Whether you’re planning a two-week mini tour or a two-month tour, first and foremost you should sit down and write up a mock itinerary. This will include the cities you plan to hit and the dates you plan to be in each city...

What's My Sales Pitch for Booking?

**As featured in Indie on the Move's Touring Tips section.

 

When communicating with a booker, be as concise and informative as possible. Remember, he probably receives A LOT of emails every day, so the last thing he wants to read is a long-winded message. Try to keep it to 4-5 sentences while still hitting on all your main selling points...