Booking Agents and call backs


Gold Member
Is it just me, or is someone else having trouble getting booking agents to call back, email back, or just make contact? I'm having trouble now getting a bar manager to call me back even after I met with the bar owner and passed him our biz cards and the owner said he'd have the manager call me back. The guy's boss told him to call me and the dude STILL is not calling!!!!! I mean, is this the way this business is, or what!!?? I'm pulling my friggin' hair out just to get a reply or response.

I've sent emails the way venues say to email them for booking and not ONE yet has replyed in the several months I've been doing this, or trying to do this.

How hard is it to hit the reply button on an email program, type in a few words and hit "send".

Is this normal and can I expect this from this business?? Should I keep trying and persist?? It seems like it's a fools errand. We have our own website, we're on facebook, myspace, have demo CD's, a press kit, business cards. I mean, sh*t, what else is there to do??!!? Keep trying???

I need to mention that in my day job, I am used to people returning my calls promptly, emailing me back promptly, even letting me know whenever they need to reschedule meetings.

I'm beginning to realize now why this music biz is so screwed up and starting to believe all I hear from people yelling and screaming. Hell, I'm about to twist off myself and we're just a local act. But, whenever we play, we always get good responses from the audience. We played an impromptu mini-concert Monday and were asked to play more when we tried to leave the stage. People liked what we played.

The frustration is beginning to take it's toll.........


Gold Member
youre not listening to what he's telling you. Read between the lines..... Youre getting the cold shoulder...why? dont know. But getting blown off usually means they didnt like your stuff or dont want to pay your fee. Whatever the case, move on and find another bar.
I've had it happen hundreds of times to our band over the 25+ years weve been together...dont take it personally. Come back in a year or so, maybe there will be a change of personnel or theme.



Platinum Member
oh man! i feel your pain on that one! my experience is that if a bar/club/venue owner or manager doesn't know you personally, you will never get a reply to an email, no matter how many web pages you send them. you might get a callback on the phone if you leave a voice message, but probably not. if you don't know them, it seems like the only thing that works is meeting them and talking to them in person at a time when they're not too busy, like in the middle of the afternoon. talking to them on the phone can work too.

the best thing is to know them personally so there's automatic trust in place. that takes some time and perseverance.


Silver Member
In my experience, bar websites are put online and never updated.

You can email the crap out of the contact email they put online, but there usually isn't someone checking it.

The best approach (i've found) is to call up, ask for the person who does the band booking (if they're not there then keep calling back till you catch them) and talk to them directly.

If they say they're interested, try and nail down a date in the first conversation. Grab all possible details (personal email address).

Then call them back the next week.

Then the week after.

You need to stay in the back of their minds, remember, these guys could have 100s of bands calling up over a 2 month period, if YOU don't keep pushing, they'll give it to someone who does.


Gold Member
Thanks everyone for sharing your advice. I spoke with my bandmates, in fact I just got off the phone with one, and they all agree that we need to just keeping at it and keep calling them and persist. Go by the bar or venue at an off hour and start asking who does their booking and see when a good time is to catch them. Or keep calling back until we catch them and have a chance to talk.

I need to get out of the "corporate" mindset and start thinking like a bar owner.

I was emailing all these places but now it does make sense that maybe they don't check their email regularly and don't update their sites.


Platinum Member
i don't really like messing around with this booking stuff, but someone's got to do it, and everyone else in my band is completely hopeless when it comes to this kind of thing. i feel like a door to door salesman, but if we want to play out anywhere and afford our practice space it must be done!


Gold Member
That's the way I feel. A door to door salesman. Everyone in our band has a job, and since I have the most business experience, guess who does all this stuff? Me! The rest of the guys write good stuff, come up with good covers to play, make contacts with other bands, bag us good rehearsal spots, direct our rehearsal progress, or do whatever else comes up, like order and pay for business cards, burn CDs, etc.