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Scramble
active member


Joined: 11/09/02
Posts: 2211
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: tex]
      #1019047 - 17/11/12 05:19 PM
The fact remains that there are a lot of places that have shut down recently, much more than the normal shut-down rate.

On the other hand, there are new places opening up, or pubs that never used to be much cop with original music who have started getting into that, and, as I said earlier, there are now lots of promoters trying their hand at promoting. Anyone trying to gig now needs to do some research and find the new places. One way of doing that is to look at where similar bands are playing. Or by becoming part of a genre, and getting on that circuit. And just doing lots of internet searches to find places with live music and seeing which ones look suitable for your band. (And yeah, by being entertaining, afraid there's no getting away from that).


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Wease



Joined: 17/07/03
Posts: 2239
Loc: Sunny Walsall
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy [Re: Bungle1]
      #1019055 - 17/11/12 06:01 PM
as an addition to scramble's post

in brum there is a healthier scene than say 5 years ago - with a definate 'gig' circuit (rainbow, miners arms, actress and bishop, flapper etc) and a spreading of venues willing to put original music on in the surrounding areas.
minor venues....entrance for free, or promotors running the 'live' aspect
then there are the bigger venues like the institute and carling academy
then the nec's and nia's

we've seen a shedload of pubs closing - but those staying open are moving towards music.

as always, it's easier if you find like-minded bands...but there is a good scene re-developing...honest!

--------------------
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Scramble
active member


Joined: 11/09/02
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Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: Wease]
      #1021118 - 27/11/12 08:00 PM
Article about the Forum in Tunbridge Wells in The Guardian recently.


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Folderol



Joined: 15/11/08
Posts: 3731
Loc: Rochester, UK
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: Bungle1]
      #1021141 - 27/11/12 10:40 PM
well it's definitely not my scene, but it's great to see there are still people out there doing this kind of grass-roots stuff, and genuinely doing it for the music and not for money.

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Beat Poet



Joined: 21/01/12
Posts: 174
Loc: Hertfordshire, UK
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: Scramble]
      #1021206 - 28/11/12 01:14 PM
Quote Scramble:

Article about the Forum in Tunbridge Wells in The Guardian recently.




Good to hear that place is still going, bad to hear what a desperate situation they're in. Near me, the Hertford Marquee and Chelmsford Army & Navy are gone and nobody notable passes through the Harlow Square anymore.

--------------------
Do you need real drum tracks? http://www.drumtracksdirect.co.uk/


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Frisonic



Joined: 27/01/10
Posts: 3787
Loc: London, United Kingdom
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: Wease]
      #1021243 - 28/11/12 06:06 PM
Quote Wease:

as an addition to scramble's post

in brum there is a healthier scene than say 5 years ago - with a definate 'gig' circuit (rainbow, miners arms, actress and bishop, flapper etc) and a spreading of venues willing to put original music on in the surrounding areas.
minor venues....entrance for free, or promotors running the 'live' aspect
then there are the bigger venues like the institute and carling academy
then the nec's and nia's

we've seen a shedload of pubs closing - but those staying open are moving towards music.

as always, it's easier if you find like-minded bands...but there is a good scene re-developing...honest!




Watching the trends since the mid 70's (for many the 'golden age' for live pub music) one of the things I've noticed was that live music was a loser to the late 80's/early 90's trend for big screens and sports broadcasts. Which became all powerful. Perhaps music audiences had mostly disappeared to the all night raves and clubs by then, to drop 'E' and dance to House. So for the pubs it became cheaper and easier to do sport, and they sold more beer that way. It was also more blameless because if the game was not particularly entertaining nobody was going to point their finger at the pub! But of course now so many people have that facility in their own home, so for the pub operators its lost much of its luster. Music has regained some of its competitive edge as a result and Amen to that.

However, the economics of the whole thing are fragile to say the least. For many going out to the pub at all is a very expensive proposition compared to what it used to be. More like a treat these days. Outside urban areas there is also the complication of logistics (not least because of the change in culture towards drinking and driving since the 70's). Venues everywhere still provide platforms for bands/artists that sill perform for audiences that remain passionate about music. But its mostly done for love, which doesn't pay the rent. And the pubs still have to pay the rent etc. which is why most are more concerned with getting their food right.

Even the Rolling Stones have to 'cover' their back catalog to sell out their shows and know they would get booed off stage if they subjected their audience to more than only a few of their recent 'experiments'. A good friend does LV, rhythm guitar and writes all the original material for the band he is in. They can make any wedding rock for £1000 with their extensive covers set or they can play their OM to their small but dedicated fan base for more like £300 between them if they are very, very lucky. Its good stuff, respected by seasoned industry people. Bob Harris recently played their current single on his Radio 2 show. Mostly they do pub gigs and they try to combine a few of their own songs in between the covers. Say about two thirds covers/one third OM. "Some for you, some for us" he tells the audience at the top of the show "we'll all have a great time". Everybody usually does. The pub doesn't mind provided its full of happy people getting loaded.

--------------------
Strictly project and just for fun


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fletcher



Joined: 01/05/05
Posts: 1219
Loc: london
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: Bungle1]
      #1021264 - 28/11/12 07:48 PM
I hate playing pubs anyway....


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Folderol



Joined: 15/11/08
Posts: 3731
Loc: Rochester, UK
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: fletcher]
      #1021283 - 28/11/12 09:58 PM
Quote fletcher:

I hate playing pubs anyway....



Never tried it myself. Keyboards, Whistles, Accordion, Guitar, Harmonica, but a pub? How do you do that?

--------------------
It wasn't me!
(Well, actually, it probably was)


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fletcher



Joined: 01/05/05
Posts: 1219
Loc: london
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: Folderol]
      #1021305 - 28/11/12 11:37 PM


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Exalted Wombat



Joined: 06/02/10
Posts: 5831
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: fletcher]
      #1021383 - 29/11/12 02:09 PM
Quote fletcher:

I hate playing pubs anyway....




All-day opening killed one sort of pub gig. You used to load in through a reasonably fresh audience. Now it's into a crowd who've been drinking since lunchtime.


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balvenie



Joined: 28/03/11
Posts: 73
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: Bungle1]
      #1021623 - 30/11/12 06:18 PM
Sorrry Frisonic, the one rule of internet posts is, do not make it so long that everyone needs a top up...

The one group who are making so much money they don't know where to hide it are the DJ's/Producers.

I have watched a load of bands who are so good they should have been on Jools Holland but they don't get there. Once again I would subscribe to Bob Leftsetz who really tells it as it is.


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KuRu



Joined: 21/11/12
Posts: 41
Loc: uk liverpool
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: Bungle1]
      #1021650 - 30/11/12 08:42 PM
im in a North West based band we do all originals and have never had a problem getting gigs, we have one every week up until christmas and several booked for next year. I have noticed a lot of the younger bands coming through having a real prima donna type of attitude or not bringing the correct equipment and expecting other bands to let them use theres!! a short list off the top of my head of venues we have played.

lomax in liverpool, maximes in wigan, mello mello in liverpool, central station in wrexham, Brookers bar in chester, the zanzibar in liverpool, the swinging arm in birkenhead, revolver in birkenhead, the picket in liverpool, the guzzling goose in ashton under lyme, theres heaps more just got to look further afield for instance we are booked to play preston on tuesday with a possible southport gig as well. back in the day i played a lot in london really struggled there i think because every night of the week there is something bigger and better going on i.e. some major signed act


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Frisonic



Joined: 27/01/10
Posts: 3787
Loc: London, United Kingdom
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: balvenie]
      #1021652 - 30/11/12 08:51 PM
Quote balvenie:

the one rule of internet posts is, do not make it so long that everyone needs a top up...




Really? Maybe ten years ago, and even today I'd agree as far as texts, tweets and 56K steam modems are concerned. If such things exist anymore. But three short paragraphs dealing with three separate, relevant issues (technology, economics and audience expectations)? Sorry if that was too much for you but it was just a few sips for me.

--------------------
Strictly project and just for fun


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BigRedX



Joined: 03/09/04
Posts: 295
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: Bungle1]
      #1021704 - 01/12/12 10:47 AM
For balvenie's sake I'll try and keep this short ;-)

IME bands which musicians moan about not "making it" almost always have something fundamentally wrong with them which results in them being in their unsuccessful state. More often than not I find that while they might have "mad technical skills" as musicians they are incapable of writing a tune that the average audience member can relate to, or they simply have no idea how to perform in a way that is entertaining and worth watching.

Otherwise there is something wrong "behind the scenes". Maybe they are obnoxious people, but not in the way that will make for entertaining voyeuristic press publicity, just in a way that just makes everyone want to avoid them. Alternatively they may be simply to dumb or lazy to realise that there's more to being a successful band than getting up on stage and playing your songs.

You might moan that this is obviously "style over substance", but over 60 years of rock and pop have shown us that you need both style and substance to have any chance. With that much historical evidence why do bands still think that they can be the exception to this rule?

--------------------
RockinRollin' VampireMan


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Beat Poet



Joined: 21/01/12
Posts: 174
Loc: Hertfordshire, UK
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: BigRedX]
      #1022042 - 03/12/12 02:53 PM
Quote BigRedX:

You might moan that this is obviously "style over substance", but over 60 years of rock and pop have shown us that you need both style and substance to have any chance. With that much historical evidence why do bands still think that they can be the exception to this rule?




I think I saw on another forum a post about a band who thought they were destined for bigger and better things, and they ended up getting in touch manager. The manager asked "who would you market your music to?" and they couldn't answer, so that was the end of that.

Alot of bands also like to play the "we all listen to different music, so our style is a coming-together of that" card. Approaching things with the melting pot approach is a total lottery, you end up with about a one in a thousand shot of the music in the pot forming a cohesive style.

--------------------
Do you need real drum tracks? http://www.drumtracksdirect.co.uk/


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GlynB



Joined: 26/09/03
Posts: 4014
Loc: Lancashire, UK.
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: Beat Poet]
      #1022286 - 04/12/12 12:54 PM
Quote Beat Poet:

Quote BigRedX:

You might moan that this is obviously "style over substance", but over 60 years of rock and pop have shown us that you need both style and substance to have any chance. With that much historical evidence why do bands still think that they can be the exception to this rule?




I think I saw on another forum a post about a band who thought they were destined for bigger and better things, and they ended up getting in touch manager. The manager asked "who would you market your music to?" and they couldn't answer, so that was the end of that.





Is that it though?
Isn't it better for the artist to create their art in the best way they can, and for the businessman to recognise the opportunity to exploit that art for (mutual?) profit. They are, or should be, different jobs/considerations (although connected obviously). A band/musician that starts to shape itself in order to supply a particular market is no longer making art, but supplying product.

The music comes first, the marketing of that music to an audience comes afterwards...otherwise you risk ending up with crap music IMHO.

Quote Beat Poet:


Alot of bands also like to play the "we all listen to different music, so our style is a coming-together of that" card. Approaching things with the melting pot approach is a total lottery, you end up with about a one in a thousand shot of the music in the pot forming a cohesive style.



And approaching music purely with the 'marketing to a sector' approach stick to a formula kills the art, though it might be perfectly good business sense and lucrative (so-called manufactured boy bands, etc etc).

Just depends why they enter the game in the first place eh? There has to be some compromise, but the music shouldn't be shaped purely by commercial considerations.


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Frisonic



Joined: 27/01/10
Posts: 3787
Loc: London, United Kingdom
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: GlynB]
      #1022290 - 04/12/12 01:28 PM
Quote GlynB:

[ A band/musician that starts to shape itself in order to supply a particular market is no longer making art, but supplying product.




Someone wiser than myself once said art you make for yourself. Craft is what you do for other people.

--------------------
Strictly project and just for fun


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Beat Poet



Joined: 21/01/12
Posts: 174
Loc: Hertfordshire, UK
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: GlynB]
      #1022291 - 04/12/12 01:32 PM
Quote GlynB:

Is that it though?
Isn't it better for the artist to create their art in the best way they can, and for the businessman to recognise the opportunity to exploit that art for (mutual?) profit. They are, or should be, different jobs/considerations (although connected obviously). A band/musician that starts to shape itself in order to supply a particular market is no longer making art, but supplying product.

The music comes first, the marketing of that music to an audience comes afterwards...otherwise you risk ending up with crap music IMHO.

And approaching music purely with the 'marketing to a sector' approach stick to a formula kills the art, though it might be perfectly good business sense and lucrative (so-called manufactured boy bands, etc etc).

Just depends why they enter the game in the first place eh? There has to be some compromise, but the music shouldn't be shaped purely by commercial considerations.




I'm not coming at this from an uber-commercial angle (even a producer can help a band find a more cohesive sound), let me explain what I meant about the melting pot approach...a few years back I was in a "pop/punk" band, which did loads of gigs, released EPs and had some very minor local success, but basically did nothing. At the time I thought we had great songs. Now I listen back and can hear all the flaws, like for example:

- the songs weren't catchy enough to be pop/punk.
- there was a bit of screaming, but not enough to be screamo.
- there was some guitar chugging and beatdowns, but not enough to be metalcore.

That's what I'm getting at, if someone had asked us who we would market our music to (as in, who would want to listen to it), there just isn't a clear answer.

--------------------
Do you need real drum tracks? http://www.drumtracksdirect.co.uk/


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BigRedX



Joined: 03/09/04
Posts: 295
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: GlynB]
      #1022332 - 04/12/12 04:48 PM
Quote GlynB:

Is that it though?
Isn't it better for the artist to create their art in the best way they can, and for the businessman to recognise the opportunity to exploit that art for (mutual?) profit. They are, or should be, different jobs/considerations (although connected obviously). A band/musician that starts to shape itself in order to supply a particular market is no longer making art, but supplying product.

The music comes first, the marketing of that music to an audience comes afterwards...otherwise you risk ending up with crap music IMHO.




IME artists who don't also recognise the importance of style, generally don't have enough substance to make them interesting enough to be able to "graft" style on in any believable way.

Marketing is all about focusing what is already there. Accentuating what is already there. If all an artist has is the music it makes it very difficult to effectively market it - no matter how good it is.

--------------------
RockinRollin' VampireMan


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BigRedX



Joined: 03/09/04
Posts: 295
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: Beat Poet]
      #1022335 - 04/12/12 04:57 PM
Quote Beat Poet:

I'm not coming at this from an uber-commercial angle (even a producer can help a band find a more cohesive sound), let me explain what I meant about the melting pot approach...a few years back I was in a "pop/punk" band, which did loads of gigs, released EPs and had some very minor local success, but basically did nothing. At the time I thought we had great songs. Now I listen back and can hear all the flaws, like for example:

- the songs weren't catchy enough to be pop/punk.
- there was a bit of screaming, but not enough to be screamo.
- there was some guitar chugging and beatdowns, but not enough to be metalcore.

That's what I'm getting at, if someone had asked us who we would market our music to (as in, who would want to listen to it), there just isn't a clear answer.




OTOH my band isn't really hardcore Psychobilly, Garage Punk or Goth, but we have enough in common with each of those genres to appeal to their audiences and consequently get gigs and sell CDs and other merchandise to people who like that kind of music. We market ourselves as all three genres, accentuating whichever one is most likely to appeal. We were support for Demented Are Go at the weekend which was a fantastic gig and we went down really well. A recurring comment afterwards was that people liked us because the music and image wasn't strictly Psychobilly but had enough elements in there for the audience to latch onto while being something at bit different.

We're not afraid to be pigeon-holed, and we make it work for us despite the fact that in reality we don't really fit.

--------------------
RockinRollin' VampireMan


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GlynB



Joined: 26/09/03
Posts: 4014
Loc: Lancashire, UK.
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: Frisonic]
      #1022732 - 06/12/12 01:06 PM
Quote Frisonic:

Quote GlynB:

[ A band/musician that starts to shape itself in order to supply a particular market is no longer making art, but supplying product.




Someone wiser than myself once said art you make for yourself. Craft is what you do for other people.




Totally. And the role of business is to exploit/market both for a profit.

--------------------



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GlynB



Joined: 26/09/03
Posts: 4014
Loc: Lancashire, UK.
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: BigRedX]
      #1022734 - 06/12/12 01:16 PM
Quote BigRedX:

If all an artist has is the music it makes it very difficult to effectively market it - no matter how good it is.




Not sure about that. Artists like, for example, Nick Drake - all they have is their music, no particularly strong image,...and yet they are/were still marketed on the strength of their music alone. 'No image' is also an image. There are loads of examples. Depends what genre you're working in. In some (Metal/Punk?) having strong image is essential, in another genre an ugly bloke with a beer belly, beard, jeans and T Shirt can be marketed as 'real' 'earthy' etc. providing his music is amazing enough.

--------------------



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BigRedX



Joined: 03/09/04
Posts: 295
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: GlynB]
      #1022752 - 06/12/12 01:45 PM
Quote GlynB:

Quote BigRedX:

If all an artist has is the music it makes it very difficult to effectively market it - no matter how good it is.




Not sure about that. Artists like, for example, Nick Drake - all they have is their music, no particularly strong image,...and yet they are/were still marketed on the strength of their music alone. 'No image' is also an image. There are loads of examples. Depends what genre you're working in. In some (Metal/Punk?) having strong image is essential, in another genre an ugly bloke with a beer belly, beard, jeans and T Shirt can be marketed as 'real' 'earthy' etc. providing his music is amazing enough.




I would suggest that most of Nick Drake's real "success" came after his death - that's nearly always a strong marketing tool - and the fact that subsequently his songs have been covered by others who do have more of an "image".

As for the "real" and "earthy" fat ugly bloke with a beard - that's just as much an image is any glammed-up pretty boy rocker.

--------------------
RockinRollin' VampireMan


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Frisonic



Joined: 27/01/10
Posts: 3787
Loc: London, United Kingdom
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: GlynB]
      #1022754 - 06/12/12 01:52 PM
Quote GlynB:

...for example, Nick Drake... still marketed on the strength of.. music alone... 'No image'




Died by (effectively) his own hand (intended or not) in 1974. Almost 40 years ago. Yet he has an active MySpace page with thousands of 'friends' - such is the power of his legendary work. I think we have to acknowledge that he was exceptional. He dropped off the master tapes for his final work at his record company before he died, unrecognized by the receptionist. Truly the invisible man. They weren't even discovered until some months after his death. Some of those songs were released posthumously. He never promoted them personally. But then he never did. He suffered from serious depression, didn't feel comfortable with audiences or interviewers. His records were 'art' and its almost as if he chose to share them with everybody else as an afterthought. That he remains so highly revered today defies conventional wisdom but obviously it has nothing to do with promoting himself in pubs. Although much of his work has since been covered by others performing in pubs and still is today.

--------------------
Strictly project and just for fun


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redwood



Joined: 20/12/12
Posts: 11
Re: Pubs changing to cover band only policy new [Re: artzmusic]
      #1025332 - 20/12/12 05:16 PM
Quote artzmusic:

The biggest hurdle may be for the performer to realize that ultimately it's not about him, it's about the audience. How can you reach them, pull them in, keep them? That's when good things happen for a band.





Spot on.


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