Don’t Blame It on the Sunshine…

Well, just about every musician I speak to seems to be in the doldrums at the moment.

We’ve all had them. Those gigs when you wind up playing to the barman and a confused duck that’s waddled in by mistake. Then comes the time-honoured excuses game – political bargaining with the venue management. Oh, and by the way, they’ll always tell you last night was busier…

Unfortunately we have to play this game, but it’s mostly a pointless exercise. Fantastic bands often play to terrible audiences and vice versa.

That’s just the way of the world, and the post mortem analysis is just a waste of time. Unless there really is something fundamentally wrong with the gig such as, I dunno, say doing a Metallica tribute at a toddler’s birthday party (although actually…) And you do have to appreciate that the venue is a business, not a charity to support musicians.

So here’s a cut out and keep guide for the next time you have to play the corporate executive game. You know the one? “Quarterly profits were disappointing because of the wrong kind of leaves falling on our target demographic’s socks”…

It was only quiet because:

  1. It was sunny/rainy/warm/cold [delete as applicable]
  2. It was the start/middle/end of the month [choose one]
  3. It was a public holiday/school holiday [or both]
  4. It wasn’t promoted properly
  5. The bus drivers were on strike so nobody could get here
  6. U2 were at the O2
  7. Everybody was watching England get booted out of a football tournament by a nation with the population of Wigan

It was only busy because:

  1. It was sunny/rainy/warm/cold [delete as applicable]
  2. It was the start/middle/end of the month [choose one]
  3. It was a public holiday/school holiday [or both]
  4. You just got all your friends to come
  5. The bus drivers were on strike so people stayed local
  6. U2 were at the O2
  7. Everybody knew England was going to get booted out of a football tournament by a nation with the population of Wigan

Just do your thing as best you can, people. You’ll get ups and downs.

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Posted in e) Rants & Ramblings
2 comments on “Don’t Blame It on the Sunshine…
  1. Adam Cole says:

    Not using current politics as an excuse?

    • Jason says:

      Wouldn’t dream of it, my friend. I’m bigger than that.
      Happy Fourth, by the way. I don’t dare mention Independence Day on tonight’s gig for fear of causing a riot…
      FWIW, I really don’t think human civilisation is going to come to an end. As Bismarck said, politics is the art of the possible – compromises will be reached.
      And even if this is the end, the insects have been patiently waiting their turn for ages. Who knows? Perhaps in several million years time, the major political battle will be between Donald Roach and Hillary Chitin.

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We play every month at Toulouse Lautrec in Kennington, South London.

Sat 29 July 9pm, £15 (£9 adv)
JLT with Ed Jones tenor

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