Getting Music Gigs
Open Mic UK’s tips on getting music gigs
Getting music gigs is an important thing to master if you want to succeed in the music business. Making sure you’re heard at music gigs is integral for getting your music heard by the right people, giving them something they can’t get from a studio recording – LIVE ENERGY! Music gigs are instrumental in building up a fan base.
How to find music gigs
- Compile a list of all venues in your area that host music gigs. Don’t just stick to the venues most play at! Smaller venues such as pubs, bars etc. are more likely to book an unestablished act, which gives you the opportunity to build your fan base and get your music heard. This will increase the likelihood of getting booked to play larger venues.
- Include as many contact details of the people taking bookings as possible. Name, address, phone number(s), email addresses! You want these people to book you for future music gigs so include everything.
- Create your press kit. At its simplest, this should contain your contact information, links to all social media pages, a brief biography, the music you play and your experience. Keep it precise and to the point, include all material you have. These people want to see your previous music gigs experience, this will help them.
- Always label your demo! Venues receive many and you don’t want yours getting lost in the masses.
- When emailing, keep it short but factual (two short paragraphs)! No time for waffling as you will lose the venue’s interest.
Tools to get music gigs
Press kits for music gigs
- Some music gigs hosts may ask for a press kit. Now you’ve got your comprehensive list of venues and contacts, the next step is to start sending your press kit and demo to as many gig venues as you can!
- Phone each venue and ask to speak to the manager or booking manager. This way you can ask who is best to send your email or press kit to.
- Not all venues you contact will lead to anything! In fact, the vast majority won’t, so don’t get disheartened. Even if only a few get back to you, it’s time well spent!
- Getting those first few shows is most important. You can quote playing these venues when applying for future music gigs!
- As you improve most music gigs should present itself with more opportunities, getting regular gigs to start with is the hardest part.
Networking at music gigs
- Attend as many music gigs and live music nights as you can. Try and perform at Open Mic nights. This will give you experience playing to a crowd and meet like-minded people.
- Befriend other musicians, especially local ones. They can suggest venues, introduce you to their contacts and maybe even offer you to play with them!
- Ask more established artists if you can open their show for them! This will get your music to a larger audience. Of course, you may have to repay the favour!
When finding music gigs, it’s important to think outside the box. If you’re interested in exploring other avenues for getting music gigs, check out BandWagon, as they offer a great service as the middle-man between promoters and bands. Top promoters list any music gigs they are putting on that require extra acts, and members of BandWagon can apply for them! They also host a premium service for getting paid music gigs so check them out and start making some money for what you do!