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  #1  
Old 09-05-2014, 01:44 AM
petey petey is offline
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Default How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

I recently got asked to play with a start up 70's tribute band with connections to some pubs and bars, a few nightclubs, some parties...

Only thing is, most of the gigs will be about an hour away from me and pay around $80 to $100 a night maybe 3 to 4 times a month

Sounds fun but thinking about the distance and gas and doesn't seem like it's worth it for the money..

Curious to hear from any of you paid guys
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  #2  
Old 09-05-2014, 02:10 AM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

An hour away in D.C. is like 25 miles tops.

How far is an hour away where you live?

Over the years I have developed certain criteria as to what type of gigs I will be playing.

A short list:

Dining spots
Festivals
Music under the stars events
Events (wedding receptions etc...)


Bars? Straight out bars... too much hassle, hustle, smoke, drunks. My sister owned a saloon for a number of years and I have seen it all, dealt with it all.... and I don't need to go into detail.

I absolutely LOVE piano trio rhythm section work with a vocalist. Those are special.

It is not always paycheck driven.
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  #3  
Old 09-05-2014, 02:31 AM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

That's normal for todays market. There is no money in music. I get $100 to play at campgrounds that are an hour or more away. The local clubs pay about $80.
I even get stiffed sometimes if the club is empty.
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Old 09-05-2014, 02:46 AM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by petey View Post
I recently got asked to play with a start up 70's tribute band with connections to some pubs and bars, a few nightclubs, some parties...

Only thing is, most of the gigs will be about an hour away from me and pay around $80 to $100 a night maybe 3 to 4 times a month

Sounds fun but thinking about the distance and gas and doesn't seem like it's worth it for the money..

Curious to hear from any of you paid guys

Beats sitting at home watching TV. If you play drums, if this is what you do, or your main hobby, driving an hr or two is part of it.

I agree driving is the biggest waste of time I know of, but until GOOGLE gets their cars up and running we're stuck behind the wheel wasting time concentrating on the road.
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  #5  
Old 09-05-2014, 03:53 AM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

My standard musicians' rate for my 5-hour gig at a reputable theme park is roughly $150 - and that's with an actual playing time of roughly 46 minutes while I'm there for five hours.

So on this gig, my note-to-dollar ratio is really good. I try not to do your standard club/cover four-hour gig for less than $100, and that's with traveling up to 90 minutes in one direction. Weddings and special events can bring in as much as $300 a person, and I don't mind driving up to two-hours to get there.

And then of course, there are those occasions where you're traveling across the country, borrowing a drum kit and playing for FREE....just because you love the people you're with....

You gotta decide if its right for you though. Lately I've been calculating out how much I make if I don't go out and play (just keeping to my regular jobs), and of course, this can lead you to depression as you discover you're spending more time in rehearsal and marketing your band for what the payback is - but the thing of it is, you've always wanted to make money doing something you love, and not everyone gets to love their regular jobs, either. So you must strike a balance. I like where I'm at simply because I don't always have to say 'yes' now to questionable gigs and bands.
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  #6  
Old 09-05-2014, 04:28 AM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

Well stating the obvious I think, the more they pay, the further I would go. I think we all have a price in our heads where we say, "yeah for that amount I would travel there and play"
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  #7  
Old 09-05-2014, 08:49 AM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

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Originally Posted by psychosiz View Post
Well stating the obvious I think, the more they pay, the further I would go. I think we all have a price in our heads where we say, "yeah for that amount I would travel there and play"
Exactly. I typically take that decision in a band context, so there's 5 opinions to muster. To save communication time, we have set rates, & only have a "discussion" if the offer falls outside of that agreed.

It's a combination of hassle/cost/time vs. fun factor. Essentially, the more fun the gig is likely to be, the less we're prepared to go out for.
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  #8  
Old 09-05-2014, 01:10 PM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

I did a tour a few years ago where we drove for 10 days and probably averaged less than$50 a show. So I dont think I am a very good person to ask this question to. In the end it is a very personal thing and its really a question you must ask yourself.
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  #9  
Old 09-05-2014, 01:34 PM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

I used to drive 1.5 hours to work and 1.5 hours home again. An hour's drive to do something fun wouldn't even register on my consciousness.

Of course, these days I live on an island that's 28 miles long, so my opinion no longer really counts. ;-)
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  #10  
Old 09-05-2014, 01:44 PM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by petey View Post
Only thing is, most of the gigs will be about an hour away from me and pay around $80 to $100 a night maybe 3 to 4 times a month
I spend at least an hour and a half just getting home from band rehearsals. An hour's drive is a joke :-)
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  #11  
Old 09-05-2014, 02:26 PM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bo Eder View Post
...Lately I've been calculating out how much I make if I don't go out and play (just keeping to my regular jobs), and of course, this can lead you to depression as you discover you're spending more time in rehearsal and marketing your band for what the payback is - but the thing of it is, you've always wanted to make money doing something you love, and not everyone gets to love their regular jobs, either.
Most of us don't even want to go there, Bo! At the present, I could move to a new job in my company that would pay me $10,000-15,000 more per year, but I would lose the scheduling flexibility I have in my current position (I'd end up working a lot of weekends in the new position). **** news flash!!! **** I am NOT going to earn $10,000-15,000 in the coming year with my band. But, sometimes, you gotta sacrifice for what you love!
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  #12  
Old 09-05-2014, 03:45 PM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

An hour? Really? An hour is standard travel time to a gig or even to my regular electrical work for me. I have a gig tomorrow that's a 3 hour drive. For only 50 dollars more. 3 hours....that's a long drive in my book. An hour is not.
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  #13  
Old 09-05-2014, 03:54 PM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

So long as the cost of gas doesn't drive the paycheck into negative territory, I'm game. I did a two-hour drive up into the mountains a couple months ago for a winery party gig subbing for a band I'm friends with. It was a great time and they fed us, too. That's probably the outer limit unless I get a gig in Seattle or Portland.
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  #14  
Old 09-05-2014, 04:33 PM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

I drive minimum 3-4 hours everyday for my day job. Not a big deal. Tomorrow I play a fall fair in Tilbury which is almost to Detroit, a good 5 hour trip each way. So I play for free and expenses are covered, meaning I get $200 plus food and drink, which for the time on the road, waste of two days, basically donating my services. Two days because I leave Sat morning about 10 AM, play til 11 PM, and if I leave after, will get home around 6 in the morning Sunday, so Sunday will be wasted recovering.
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  #15  
Old 09-06-2014, 05:58 PM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

Wow, I see on here there is a LOT of driving and far for some gigs. UGoon, thats very dedicated of you to drive all that way.

personally, I don't do this for income so would drive an hour for $100 ...but no less.

But if this were a career, no way, unless that was the only gig I had. All-in ...the time there/back + the gig, HAS to be above minimum wage.
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  #16  
Old 09-06-2014, 07:16 PM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

For me, it would depend far more on how much I liked the music and how much I liked the people I was playing with.

If you listen to podcast interviews with various pro drummers, there is a common thought that many pro drummers use to judge a gig:

1) The Hang, i.e. if you enjoy hanging out with the people involved in the gig.

2) The music - Do you enjoy the music.

3) The pay.

And the thought is if you can get at least 2 out of 3 of the above, you're good, because the chance of all 3 being positive at once time is pretty rare.
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  #17  
Old 09-06-2014, 07:30 PM
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Default Re: How Far for a Paid Gig will you travel?

It's an age thing as well for me. When I was twenty two me and the boys piled into the van and hit the road for sixteen dates in through New England (in January) with no guaranteed money, on less than a week's notice. No way, not today. I'm forty-three now and I don't like driving up to Phoenix (ninety mins) to play the Hard Rock Cafe. My local gigs are cushy, casino and resort shows, close to home and they pay well. I'm still at the point in my life that I don't even want too many of those. In February I'm playing a show in Vegas, at Mandalay Bay. That show pays $5,500, airfare, rooms, and meals for a 90 min set. For that kind of money I'll go just about anywhere and as often as I can.
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