Another one bites the dust…

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by LGOberean, Sep 1, 2019.

  1. LGOberean

    LGOberean Doctor of Teleocity

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    Friday night I played a gig at a marina in a nearby coastal town. I’ve played there quite a few times before, and was actually booked to play lucky Friday the 13th.

    But I got a text from the owner this morning, which said…

    This caught me by surprise. I suppose I had a clue to this that night, when the owner’s husband (who usually is the one to pay me) said they didn’t bring in enough cash that night to pay me, and asked if I’d take a check. I agreed and didn’t think anything more about it.

    They were always great at booking me, and paid well compared to a lot of venues: $150 for 3 hours. The tips from the patrons were sometimes good, sometimes not. (Friday night, for example, I only made $21 in tips.) But the owners were gracious, paid well and booked me every few months, at least. And they recommended me to another venue in another nearby coastal town, and on the strength of their recommendation, I got that gig, at the same rate.

    I’m sure this is not an unusual occurrence, that many here have had venues close on them, or quit doing live music, or something similar. I’m not really ranting; just lamenting…
     
  2. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Well that is a bummer for you and the venue. The owners seem like good people Lamenting is good for the soul, so even though it is sad, remember the good times there.
     
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  3. wulfenganck

    wulfenganck Tele-Holic

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    Yep, it gets tougher to have venues with good conditions.
    But it's also due to an audience getting more and more saturated. We played a gig a week ago - it was nice, we enjoyed ourselves. But there were something between 4 - 10 people actually in front and dancing (from around 100 attending). Still we got plenty of people coming up and saying how much they enjoyed it. They were just sitting around....
     
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  4. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Poster Extraordinaire

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    Little consolation that it's not you.....the whole venue is shutting down. Sad. I haven't played "public" places in years. They mostly seem to be bars (in my experience) and with the alcohol fueled rowdy crowds, combined with (too often) the later hours, I just don't enjoy them anymore. When I play out now (and it's getting rarer and rarer) it's for private party-type things, and the "audience enthusiasm" can be hit or miss. Unlike some of you guys, I don't play for the money, although it has to be a WORTHY cause to get me for free anymore.
    Anyway, sorry about this, Larry. Anytime a nice venue shuts down, it's a blow to the musical community.
     
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  5. Stringbanger

    Stringbanger Telefied Ad Free Member

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    It sounds like you enjoyed the gig, and you liked the owners. Sometimes change can be a good thing. One door closes, and another one opens. CC seems like a pretty big area, so hopefully you’ll be able to fill that void. Best of luck. At least you’re gigging, and I wish I was, but my life is too full at this point to pursue it.
     
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  6. LGOberean

    LGOberean Doctor of Teleocity

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    I don't play bars, as a rule, for much the same reasons you mentioned. The gig I got back in February (that was on the strength of the recommendation of this venue that's closing) is a "brewpub." But they also have ties to the local fire police departments, so that probably makes for a better clientele. My one gig there (so far?) wasn't putting up with a rowdy crowd. But they were borderline indifferent. Only toward the last of the gig did anyone seem to be paying attention. The tips were mediocre.

    I am booking restaurants and such less and less. I play for various seniors communities, some on a weekly basis, some monthly. And I donate my time to these facilities as a way of giving back to a generation to which I owe so much. I get a kick out of such gigs, whereas restaurants, coffee shops, brewpubs, etc. are increasingly becoming less enjoyable and mostly about the money.

    The venue that's closing is/was owned by a couple with a couple of young kids, so their children and their children's friends often play in the patio area right in front of me.
    07-28-2018 - Dock Store gig.jpg

    This past Friday the kids danced, played with glo sticks, and would at will come right up on the stage and talk to me. For some musicians, that might be frustrating. And I confess it was at times for me, too. But since I know the owner's kids are involved and they let their children get away with it, I figured early on it was best not to challenge it. And so I'd embrace it.

    Friday night, one of them was talking to me about my guitar between songs, and asked to play my guitar. I went with it, just held out my pick and said, "Okay, you strum and I'll make the chords." That pleased the kids, and I let them each take a turn strumming away and hearing it through my system. Doing this for several children still didn't take more than 2-3 minutes, the length of a song, so I didn't feel like I was cheating the rest of the audience. Then I said to the kids, "Okay, your folks are paying me to play and sing, so I'd better get back to it." And they were respectful of that, so instead of a tense situation, it was fun for them and me.

    I had a regular that has talked to me before about my vocal range and what songs she thought would be good for my voice. She sat right up front and plied me with requests. That was fun, too. Then another patron came up making a request of her own as she put a tip in my boot. (As seen in the pic above, my tip "jar" is one of my old boots. It has a sign that reads "Philip D. Boot.")

    Yeah, I'm going to miss playing this venue.
     
  7. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    I bet you have a replacement gig in record time!
     
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  8. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Poster Extraordinaire

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    That sounds like a cool gig. I enjoy doing ANYTHING I can to encourage kids with music. Ever since high school, when my band played a couple of benefits for what we could then call "retarded youth", I have tried to do anything and everything I could as a role model for youngsters. When I started teaching later in life, I considered my being a good example for my students my first and foremost goal. I've been in situations exactly like you describe, where kids want to play my guitar, and I try to accommodate them, while being EXTREMELY careful, because they can unwittingly do damage without meaning to. I have a little 3/4 size Yamaha guitar that I used in my classroom for "music therapy". I admire and respect your letting them "try out" playing.....that can mean a lot to a child. Thanks again for sharing. ;)
     
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  9. 985plowboy

    985plowboy Friend of Leo's

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    Give it til spring.
    Somebody else who thinks they know what the last guy did wrong will reopen the same building with a whole new coat of paint on it.
    Be nice when you introduce yourself.
    Rock on.
     
  10. Ducerro

    Ducerro Tele-Meister

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    I'd invite you to play at the winery, but we're a couple of hours from CC. Sorry to see any business close. Hopefully they have other avenues to explore...
     
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  11. LGOberean

    LGOberean Doctor of Teleocity

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    @Ducerro PM sent.
     
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