I can't disagree with you Jer, because you're right, bands can and do make new fans on the road. Maybe the people were there to check out the local talent on the bill, and were then pleasantly surprised by the support act from out of town. But much better to show up somewhere where you have some
fans (who should bring other friends). Use the Internet to target areas in advance; make some new fans online and then let them know when you will passing through – whether this is done through a personal message on some social networking site; whatever it takes. Those few people should hopefully mobilise a few more heads to come with them to the gig. The alternative is just hitting the road hoping people will just happen to show up because it's friday night and they have nothing else going on. Maybe, but there's about 50 other things people could be doing than just hitting the local bar in the hopes that some unknown band is going to blow them away. How often does that happen? Everyone's experience will be different.
Originally Posted by jer
Yes, the internet has had a huge impact on how bands get out there, but not everyone (yet), gets all their new media this way.
Are flyers and adverts in magazines/local papers obsolete? Certainly not! They have their place. But at the same time, I don't know that many people who listen to music and attend gigs that don't
have a Facebook page or who use the Internet in some capacity. And if they didn't see it themselves online, and instead heard it from a friend, chances are the friend heard it from someone else who saw it online, etc. If you trace the genesis of word of mouth, the Internet is the fastest way to get news around the world.
Originally Posted by jer
To sum this up and tie in my first thought on having fun, if you always approach a band from a dollars and cents point of view, you may miss out on the fun of hitting the road, meeting new people and making new fans. This also impacts how you are perceived, which again, probably ties in with what I mentioned above.To the average person, a band that has been on a tour will be viewed differently than a band who has not.
Maybe, maybe not. There's this niche band from Norway called Ulver. Ever since they went progressive (I heard they were once a metal band), they have played very few gigs but are extremely popular. It's only now, something like 10 years later, as more and more people have gotten into them, that the band are starting to play more places (because there will be fans to go see them). Plus, the live show is a sight to behold. It's a seated gig, something a little bit different that suits their music. Plenty of other niche bands could have toured the entire world, playing every little sweat box that supplies elecricity and still not come close to the following Ulver have, who achieved this without having to tour.
I don't think they are less respected because they didn't tour. They let their wares mature enough until they knew there would be a subtantial following in every city they would eventually play.