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The Advocate’s Corner
Attention Festival and Benefit Promoters: You rely on artists to make your event a success, the least you can do is treat them right.
It is outrageous the stories I could share. Event Organizers play a key role in making or breaking an event. Make sure the company you hire has an effective history in promoting successful events. Make sure they have an understanding of artist relations and how to best accommodate the very acts that are going to generate the income and bring the people.
If you are putting together any kind of event that involves music, whether it be a benefit for your favorite charity or fundraiser for a local community member; and you rely on the talent that you book to draw attention to your cause; or let’s just say you need those popular bands to help you pull off a successful three-day weekend festival. Regardless of what the event is, simply commit to taking care of the talent and work your way out from there. Commit to taking care of press! Include hospitality for all. They are taking time out of their tour to be a part of your event. Be gracious and roll out at least the royal blue carpet!
Consider how you will promote your event and what kind of promotions each act will be granted, as part of being on your agenda. Let’s not sugar coat it either; it is an agenda. Usually, that agenda involves making money! Unfortunately, it seems many only focus on the dollars and forget how to effectively manufacture revenue via considerable hard work.
Who is creating and managing the social media sites, who is keeping the website up to date? Who is reaching out to other media outlets? Who is available for tv and radio interviews? Can you align your acts with such exposure?
Well organized festivals take time and plenty of planning to be successful. There is generally a team of players that work well together in the many stages leading up to said event. If you create a good event and it becomes an annual expectation; you should expect to work on that event all year. Given that consideration, there should be a website developed for the event and it should cater to the talent that you plan on presenting to the people. It should highlight the community where it is being held and it should be available and up to date throughout the year.
There can be additional pages too, that highlight the vendors who will be taking part in displaying and selling their wares at your event. If they are paying to be there, treat them like they matter, because they do!
Rules and expectations of the public are another good thing to have spelled out on the welcoming page. Are umbrellas allowed? How about cameras? Do you want to remind people that coolers are welcome, or should we tell them about the vendors selling food and drink on site? And remind them coolers are not permitted. What about pets? Is there camping? Do we add a reminder about sun block? Is the event family friendly? What will there be for the kids?
What about the talent? You need these acts to help sell tickets, so please invest in the time it takes to create their platform for your event. Give them the most curb appeal! Include links to their website. Add a page for each act of the website allows! Add video. Be creative with your staff and write your own bios and explain how and why this act ended up on your ticket.
If you are a fair and reputable event organizer, you will allow the act to sell their merchandise and products on site at your event and allow them to keep 100% of the sales. You look shady if you want a % of the acts personal merchandise sales.
If you are organizing a benefit, you must also consider how you are going to provide for the acts that will generate the money needed for your cause. You should never set out and think, “Well who is going to play my breast cancer benefit for free?” Yes there are plenty of talented players who are all about a good cause and will play for nothing. But don’t allow them to do that. Cover their expenses. Even if it is a great exposure gig! Everyone has expenses to meet. Even you in organizing this great event. If you do it with live music talent, expect to offer some compensation to these players and the sound company that runs the stage for your event.
Chances are if you dot these I’s and cross those T’s you should be able to host a great and meaningful event with awesome entertainment for your community. Happy planning.
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Open Mic Madness
Over at the Korner Pocket Bar & Grille, 8508 Capital Blvd. Raleigh, NC, open the stage for the weekly open mic! This jam is an acoustic and or electric, so pack up your gear and come out
Plug in and play between 9 pm til 1 am! All players are welcome. Come early and enjoy some good grub and sign up to entertain us all! Hope to see you out there.
Also going down in the capital city is open mic night at The Big Easy, located at 222 Fayettevlle St. Raleigh, NC. New musician in town? Looking for new talent to add to your band? Looking for a new local band to see live? We have what you’re looking for! Come out EVERY Thursday night to the heart of downtown Raleigh, from 10-1 and join the fun!
What’s up, all my music makin’ friends out there! Come join us this Thursday for Open Mic at The Spring! Acoustic guitar, bass, and percussion are provided for anyone to use, but feel free to bring your own gear if you like. Acoustic acts and full bands are both welcome. Craft beer is on special for $3 and live streaming to Facebook is available. There’s also free pool tables, a full bar, a nice stage to jam on, and plenty of room for all your friends. Located at 3616 NC Highway 42 Willow Springs, NC. This event starts at 7 pm and lasts til 10 pm.
The WatersView Restaurant, located at 2107 Eaton Ferry Rd. Littleton, NC, says this on their recent Facebook post:
We are hosting “OPEN MIC NIGHT” Thursday, April 6th starting at 6:00pm. Bring your instrument, your vocals and your friends to show off your skills!!
There is an open mic event taking place tonight at Bottega’s, located at 723 N 4tth St. Wilmington, NC. This acoustic open mic night starts at 9 pm and ends around 1 am. All players are welcome to participate, so come early to sign up tonight! Don’t forget to bring those talented friends of yours either.
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~ Rocking Around The State ~
Starting things off at home, David Robinson will be live offering some smooth jazz at The City Laundry, located at 901 Pollock St. New Bern. Music starts at 6:30 pm and the horn and soothing jazz sounds continue til 9:30 pm
Justin Castellano will serve up the music accompaniment with dinner this evening for folks dining at The Saltwater Grill, which is located at 99 N Church St. Swansboro, NC. Music starts at 6:30 pm and JC will entertain you til 9:30 pm.
Live tonight at The Plank Road Steak House, located at 3689 E Wilson St. Farmville, NC, you can enjoy the folk offerings of Lipbone Redding ,who will play live tonight from 7 -10 pm.
For fans of jazz looking for music to chase down the dinner, come out to Michael’s Showside Grill located at 102 N Pine St. Spring Hope, NC, is where you can enjoy the sounds of Jacob Biddle, who will be live in the lounge from 6:30-9:30 pm.
Monte Tippette returns to Westgate Grill, located at 3639 Sunset Ave. Rocky Mount, NC, to entertain those looking for another dose of great tunes to go with supper. Music starts heating up at 7 pm and Tippette will entertain til 11 pm. He plays all the familiar favorites that fans love and looks forward to seeing you groove later!
Josh Misner will be live at Hux’s Billiards, located at 1028 E 10th St. Roanoke Rapids, NC, this evening from 9 pm til 2 am. This Va based band plays it all and loves making people dance. So come on out and enjoy tonight!
It’s bike night at Dunkenfield’s Bar/TAVERN, located at 4285 Gum Branch Rd. Jacksonville, NC and live on stage will be local country players Steel County Express from 7-10 pm
Thursday nights, tunes are being offered at The Village Steakhouse, located at 5662 US Highway 70 Goldsboro, NC, courtesy of John Toppings, who offers many familiar known songs from 7-0 pm
Heading down 70 W a little more, we find Lorraine’s House Band offering the music tonight at Lorraine’s Coffee House & Music, located at 101 Timber Pointe Ln. Garner, NC. Music starts at 6:30 pm and they play til about 9:30 pm.
Mark Eitzel and Howe Gelb share the ticket tonight at Kings. Al Riggs is also on the bill. Here is what I learned of the two featured artist:
Mark Eitzel’s tenth solo album and his first in three years, Hey Mr Ferryman, will be released on January 27, 2017, by Merge Records.
Hey Mr Ferryman is Eitzel’s first full studio album recorded entirely in London. It was made at 355 Studios with Mercury Prize winner Bernard Butler (ex-Suede,McAlmont & Butler), who has produced and/or recorded albums with Tricky, BenWatt, Bert Jansch, Edwyn Collins, and more.
Howe Gelb’s Future Standards Began in Amsterdam ended in New York City and in between, was all Tucson. These are ‘Future Standards’ by The Howe Gelb Piano Trio, taking an outsider view of early gospel and rhythm and blues, both part of the American musical socialization that he touched on with 2006’s ‘Sno Angel’. Now he’s on a jazz-tinged trip, bending the genre, taking it back to his shack, giving an innovative fine tune in the lean-to garage. Don’t forget, Gelb is a man who’s done acoustic sets where he sings into the pick up of his guitar, he’s rocked out with Giant Sand, re-shaped alt-country and has a back catalogue that’s nothing short of “im-press-ive”. He knows a melody when he plays it.
Kings is located at 14 W Martin Ave. Raleigh, NC. Doors open at 8 pm and the show starts at 9 pm. The cost is $15 at the door.
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That is all my news and the gigs that I found for your dancing pleasure for the evening. I hope you get out and enjoy the sounds of live music sometime soon. I am dedicated to making sure you know where to go to find it. If you like this blog please sign up and get an email each time we publish. I appreciate my readers, the musicians and the venues who all do a part in keeping live music alive! Thanks for keeping me informed!
Please take kindness with you today and hug strangers. Don’t forget that life is short and could end in a moment, so make sure you take time to enjoy the dance.
Send all of your event invites to me on Facebook so I know where you are playing in the days ahead. I can be found on Facebook by following this link:
I also read emails daily. You can send those to:
Please include the day, the date, the time of the event, the time of your scheduled performance, what time doors open and the price of tickets. Pictures are also helpful. I share links to band websites, so send those along as well. Thanks so much for taking the time to fill me in on the details, together we will reach the people!