Sunday, 2 December 2012

What is 'Worst Promoter EVER.'?

I was on my work lunch break in November 2012 after coming back from an average-at-best tour with my own band. For some reason I found myself reflecting that despite turn outs, merch sales and general self-esteem being fairly low, we'd managed to cover our guarantees for every night and worked with some decent and honest promoters over the week.

I then started to think further back to all the terrible promoters I've also encountered over the last 6-7 years of being in bands and playing music. I have a few shambolic stories of promoters not plugging events properly, not paying agreed fees, doing runners or in some cases not showing up to the show at all. I also know and have spoken to dozens of bands over the years, all of which have their own interesting tales of such incidents across the UK and beyond.

It was then that the idea for this blog hit me. About a year ago a close friend of mine called Andy started the blog Band Member's Day Jobs (if you've never checked it out please do, it never took off how it should have but it's a good read), so I figured I'd take a page out if his book and set up a blog to share with the world.

I'd like to make it clear that this blog is NOT a platform to name and shame promoters, bands or venues.

I'm a firm believer that there are two sides to every story, no matter how right or wrong a band are in their convictions. The only information that will be published in stories on WPE is the city the incident happened in. All people, venues and other bands will not be named if comments directed at them are slanderous. If you do wish to name and shame a specific promoter or venue please take your grievances elsewhere; this is a blog, not the Musician's Union Blacklist.

So I suppose you're now wondering; if this is not raising awareness about promoters to avoid, then what IS it doing? My aim for this blog is similar to what BMDJ did and is to make people aware of the hard times that can come with being an underground artist.

I've always felt musicians tell the best stories. The memories (good and bad) made by a few musicians over the course of time will always appeal more to me than some over-privileged student's backpacking trip across the third world to laugh at poor people. Although the topic of this blog is one of the worse sides to playing music, I'd hope that the stories compiled here will help us all look back and laugh at the hell we put ourselves through, despite the gut instinct and hard lessons learnt, to play bad shows in the hope that a few will be surprisingly okay.

I also hope that this blog can serve as a platform to promote any and all artists kind enough to share their ramblings with me.

If you're a musician and wish to write for us / guest post about the worst gig you ever played, from the heartbreaking to the downright funny and everything in between, please use the 'Submit a Story' page above.

Any questions, please send them over to worstpromoterever AT gmail DOT com.



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