In this episode, Jared provides some tips on how to prevent communication breakdowns between musicians and venues. He advises musicians to communicate their expectations ahead of time, and stresses the importance of effective communication. Jared also discusses the importance of professionalism in everything musicians do.
What's up gigging pros. It's Jared and welcome to another episode of The Gigging Musician Podcast. I've got a bone to pick with some of you. In fact, I'm not calling anyone specifically, but I am thinking about something I heard at that wedding expo that I was at last night. Yes, I recorded two podcast episodes in one day, I'm on my way back from the next venue tour. But at this wedding expo, you know, if some of you maybe missed a little piece of strategy, the hidden benefit of being at a wedding expo is that there are other potential partners at a wedding expo. So venues that could potentially have you in wedding planners that could recommend your services and all that. Think about that. And listen back to the partnership strategy episodes. And you'll discover why wedding expos are more than just about getting people to book you on the spot. But the bone that I have to pick is something that one of the venues that I play at fairly regularly, something that story that they told me, because you know, I met somebody new from their, their venue at this expo. And I said, Yeah, we love playing at your venue. And then she said to me, we love having you guys, you are definitely the most reliable musician that we have in there. And I said, Oh, really, like I was obviously happy to hear that because reliability and professionalism. It goes so far when people are thinking about who they want to book, or who they recommend to their, you know, potential clients. So I said, Oh, really, tell me more. And she told me that for one of their weddings a couple months ago, they had a musician in that they were a piano player. And as soon as they got to the venue, they came up to her and said, hey, just got here, ready to play? Where's the piano? And she was like, What are you talking about? You? We never talked about us providing you a piano, we do not have a piano on site. And the musician is like, well, you know, I just kind of expected I play piano, I don't bring a piano with me everywhere. And, you know, frustrated, she there was nothing she could do. You know, she can't make a piano appear out of thin air. And nor could he seems like, okay, I can call my buddy and pick up his keyboard within 20 minutes. And I might be a little late for their wedding or whatever the event was. And she was just absolutely flabbergasted that a musician would not think to communicate with her prior and asked what, you know, what, what can they provide? Are they providing your instrument? Now I totally get that pianos like piano players deal with something that me as a violinist does not have to deal with. You know, typically, if you're used to playing a piano and even a grand piano or an upright, those things are 1000s of pounds. And, you know, I would bring one to every single gig. So it's also not a completely out of left field expectation that some venues would have a piano. But the assumption that all venues have a piano that they're willing to let that musician play that is a bit unreasonable. The the thing that I think would have solved all of this is communication. You know, as a bandleader or as somebody who runs your own live music business, like even if you're an individual pianist, trying to make it you're still running a live music business, you have to know what you typically provide, you know, what equipment do you provide, and make that a set list. Like for me, we provide all of our instruments we provide music, we provide music stands, and we also provide music stand lights if we need them. What we do not provide is simply just chairs. So we need chairs for our String Quartet to play. For piano player. You know, I'm obviously not a pianist, but I would have a set thing that I bring that every gig, if that's my like, Nord stage keyboard, and a keyboard stand and a piano bench, and then at least one speaker and a stand for that speaker. You know, I would have that that's my gigging outfit. That's what I bring. And then I would ask and communicate, say, Hey, here's what I typically bring to venues, some venues, might have a piano, I wanted to see if yours has won. In that case, I will not bring my my keyboard. But we just I want to make sure that it's tuned first. But the key is communication. So before the gig, establishing the expectations, this is what I bring to gigs, and then asking the question, is it possible for you to provide that piano and this doesn't just apply to equipment and it doesn't just apply to you weddings too. There's a big gap in communication a lot of the times. And it's not just the musician's fault for sure. Like I know many people. In fact, if you listen to this podcast, you're probably not even guilty of this. But if you, you know, I chatted with a bunch of musicians who play bars and club gigs, too. And they tell me that there is a huge breakdown in communication with the venue's specifically about who is expected to market the gig, who's expected to bring the crowd. And I know that that's kind of like, musicians don't really want to be put in the position of bringing the crowd because, you know, we're not necessarily trained marketers. Although if you listen to this podcast and you read the Gigging Secrets course, you know, that you can be and there's huge benefits to being the marketer. But, you know, when you're playing a bard bar club, typically you want the venue to promote the heck out of that concert for you. But they don't talk about it. So there's this breakdown in communication. And if neither of them talk about it, and then you show up, and you don't bring a following, then the venue gets pissed that, hey, nobody showed up to your gig, you must not be a good musician, we're not going to hire you again. And that's a darn shame. And it truthfully can be headed off by communicating with them ahead of time. And the communication is your responsibility, if you want to prevent it, like you can't shove these problems off on somebody else, and expect them to, you know, fix these problems. So that's just my little rant about lack of communication and how that could literally, like, stress out a venue owner and make them not want to hire you. And, you know, the problem is, is deep because if one musician, even if it's just one musician shows up without a piano and expects them to provide a piano creates a whole headache for them. That becomes the story. They tell themselves about all musicians. They say all musicians are unreliable, which to me this this venue manager that I was talking to at the wedding expo, I'm sure that's the story that she tells herself because, you know, why else would she say you are the most reliable musician that we have in our space, if the majority of the stories that she has is that musicians are unreliable. So we got to change that narrative. It is on us the gigging pros, to you know, bring professionalism to what we do in everything that we do. And it all starts with effective communication. So thanks for listening to the rant. I hope that you are part of the solution. I'm sure you will be. And if you haven't heard, we're giving away a free copy of the Gigging Secrets book. All you got to do is go to GiggingSecrets.com pay a couple bucks in shipping and handling and the underground playbook to making a living performing, known as the Gigging Secrets book will get shipped right to your doorstep. So get your free copy today at GiggingSecrets.com Remember, you are just one gig away. Thanks for listening