Key reading for bands and venue owners alike…

Recently, our friends over at High Voltage Magazine (Namely Trina Green and Chelsea Schwartz) started a series of notes that BANDS & VENUES really need to have a look at. Many of you may be doing these exact things, which aren’t going to help you on the path to becoming successful (Whether you are a band or venue). Be aware of how you’re representing yourselves, you want to establish and keep GOOD relationships. Jo compiled all 3 notes here for your enlightenment….

1: Top 10 Reasons Venues/Promoters No Longer Want To Book Your Band!

By: Chelsea Schwartz (@UncoolRockstar) & Trina Greene (@dharma69)


10. You still use the old MySpace as a promotional tool (and include your MySpace link as the place to listen to your music). This goes for SonicBids as well.

9. You don’t put any effort into advertising/promoting your show.

8. You book four shows in the same market in a 10 day period violating your agreed upon radius clause. FYI – the radius clause exists to help both you as a band and the venue/promoter. When executed well, it helps your draw, your fan base growth and at the end of the night more money in both parties pockets.

7. You tend to cancel your show one week out (or less!) while offering no solution to help your“problem.”

6. You regularly turn down a perfectly good show in hopes Muse calls to bring you on tour.
Exception To This Rule: Dead Sara

5. There was only one Guns N Roses and you’re not it. And today’s version isn’t it either.

4. You’re a brand new band and you’re demanding a high guarantee and a weekend headlining slot. This only works when your name is Paul McCartney or Dave Grohl, etc.

3. Your name is Kate Crash. Sorry, just no.

2. You draw is less than 10 and most of those people are on your guest list or you snuck in as “crew.” Your girlfriend (or boyfriend) is not a roadie, so do not give them one drumstick to walk into the venue.

And the number one reason your band is never getting booked again…

1. You treat your 100 capacity club show like a sold out Madison Square Garden event complete with a list of demands (i.e. a bowl of Green M&Ms).

This has been High Voltage approved.

Original Note:

2: Top 10 Reasons Why Industry Won’t Listen To Your Band’s Submission

By: Chelsea Schwartz (@UncoolRockstar) & Trina Greene (@dharma69)


There’s probably a very good reason why media outlets (High Voltage, included) take one look at a press release/band submission/music pitch and almost instantly hit *DELETE*. First impressions are golden, so let’s take them seriously.

Wrote a note about it. Wanna read it? Here it goes:

10- Only providing music that, in order to listen to, has to be downloaded. You have no idea how much hard drive space my delicate MacBook Pro has so please DO NOT assume that I have ample space for your mastered/unmastered/remixed/alt-version/demo of songs, or that it’s even wanted. Stream it kids; that’s what Soundcloud and Bandcamp were invented for. Use them and we will thank you for it.

PS: Actual CDs are always an option, actually appreciated and often preferred. #oldschool

9- Your press release/music pitch is overrun with embarrassing spelling/grammar errors. Oh, wait…that shit was intentional? You really meant to write: “R u ready for these killa jamz?”

Well no, but I am ready for you to get that long overdue GED.

8- Your press release/music pitch has wording like, “We turn your mama’s panties into Niagara Falls! What?!?” Devoid of class or common sense in any shape or form is a great way to turn someone off. We’re a potential source for coverage, not your pot-smoking homie.

7- That link to your music that you provided is actually a link to a video. No. I listen with my ears, not my eyes and don’t want all of the shiny visuals distracting from what’s actually important: how you sound. Plus videos stall, buffer, etc, and if the wifi is crap, chances are I’m giving up halfway through it.

6- You describe your sound via a mish-mash of genre bending/blending. What the hell is hardcore-indie-pop-electro folk-rock-cybergrind-drum & bass exactly? If you can’t effectively (not to mention simply) describe your music, you have no business making music and we have no business listening to it.

5- You send unwanted (and unsolicited) attachments that clog up one’s inbox. Didn’t really need that 300 MB hi-res photo, one sheet, album’s worth of MP3’s, spreadsheet, etc. Just a simple email with your basic information (2-3 paragraphs) and a streaming link to hear more ourselves. This also goes for those of you who reach out daily for weeks on end, that’s almost a guaranteed “IGNORE/DELETE.” Persistence is great but you’ve reached a DEFCON level of annoying.

4- Your band name is spectacularly God-awful: Anal Cunt set the standard but runners up =  Goatwhore, Vaginal Spasm, oOoOO, HRVRD (This trend of band names with no vowels? Stop.), etc. Band names also fit this category when they’re unpronounceable or couldn’t be spelled if one’s life depended upon it. (I know they’re popular but I’ve never listened to !!! on principle, alone.)

3- You’ve emailed a submission that barely includes the name of your band! No Facebook, no website, no date listed for this show you want us to attend, not even your Twitter handle. Let me take some time to root around the interwebs in order to find your band, which, by the way, has the most generic name ever (i.e. try searching for the band “headphones”), and, if I’m lucky, I’ll find your music.

On second thought, let’s not. We shouldn’t have to work that hard to hear you and we assume that you really want your music to be heard. So please make your music as easily accessible as possible.

2- Oh no you did not just use the line “The next Guns ‘n Roses”  to describe yourself.

And the #1 reason why I probably won’t listen to your band’s submission is:

1- Your press photo looks like this:


(they scare me)

This message has been HIGH VOLTAGE approved.

Original Note:

3: Top 10 Reasons My Band No Longer Wants To Play Your Venue

By: Chelsea Schwartz (@UncoolRockstar) & Trina Greene (@dharma69)


Alright, time to turn the table’s around today and show the other side of the story. As much as we want the bands to “help us, help you” it has to work the other way around too. We know that and without further ado we give you…

10. You don’t give us enough drink tickets or any at all. We’re playing a show for you often for free or little money, you could at least hydrate us.

9. While we’re busting our asses off you haven’t even posted our show on your web calendar. Actually, you haven’t mentioned it anywhere. Not even one retweet! Show promotion is a two-way street – let’s work together to make it the best night possible.

8. You booked our indie rock band between a country duo and a death metal band. WTF?!

7. Your staff/security is just plain rude. There’s just no need for that.

6. You regularly reach out 24 hours prior to our show we booked three months ago to let us know: A) You can’t have live music that late (neighbors complain) and we’re now an acoustic actor B) You double-booked the night and have to cancel our set.

5. We understand the convenience of having backline, but your backline is a piece of shit. Please don’t make us use it.

4. We’ve played several shows for you (10+) at shitty time slots on shitty weekdays that brought 100+ heads in the room for barely any pay AND you refuse give us a weekend slot or better pay.

3. Your sound system might as well be made of duct tape, sticks and a megaphone. You can’t be serious with this. Not to mention, your sound guy couldn’t care less about his job.

2. Money. You conveniently leave the venue before it’s time to pay us and then never return an email or phone call again OR short us on payment ($50 instead of $100).

And the number one reason my band no longer wants to play your venue…

1. Three words: Pay-To-Play

HONORABLE MENTION: We show up to our gig (at your venue) to find an EDM DJ set-up. You thought you booked a DJ act. *facepalm*

Original Note:


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: