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rungles

How much do pub gigs pay around the country?

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Here in the northwest where men are men and sheep are worried (or is that Wales, I forget) we typically get £200 to £300 depending on venue and haggling etc.

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Most pubs around here in the south will accept they need to pay £250 for starters.

If you need to 'prove' yourself to the Landlord then he'll tell you what he is willing to offer
you for a chance to play but with not a lot of hassle, you'll get £250.

This is because that is what he has budgeted for week in, week out as the minimum pay-out.

Better bands can ask for £300 and a few will get £350 plus...but you will need to justify that.
Sometimes, the hassle you have to go to to get that money ...and the small stress of being worth it.
means you'll sometimes take the easy option and just take the money and turn-up.

If you go in heavy at £350... the LL is very nervous and wary about hitting that mark and for a pub gig, no one really needs it
if the difference is £20 per head on a 5 piece.

Since so many people now do this for a 'living' they'll be want £70/80 per man ( or skull/head :lol:) but I don't think that really works
to do pubs for a living, tbh.

The final arbitor is how much alcohol you sell... not how good the band is.. altho some LL are more music fans and will indulge
themselves to get the very best bands week-in, week-out, but it needs to be economically viable over the course of a business year.

The other side of the coin is that guys that do it for a living may well take a cheap gig at £50's IF the gig is fun and they are free.
Other times, you wont get them for love nor money.

The better music pubs will also do 'special's whereby a touring band is passing and wants help with running costs as they are passing through
so they will figure on Tuesday nights, for example and still take the bar money. The LL will generally say, I'll pay you what the bar can stand and the benefits are
you can get a really tasty band that generally you could NEVER afford, the pub gets turnover as ALL the beer is real, plus they get kudos for the standard of music
they put on...
The band gets funding for an off/travelling non earning day. They still have van and accom costs etc.

Once or twice a year, certain muso pubs will put of a ticket affair and will then be able to pay £600-1000 for a ex name act.

Pub covers = upto £500..and the biggest draw is actually a DJ...
If the pub is packed and taking money, good LL's will pass that on. IME. Edited by JTUK

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[quote name='blue' timestamp='1464654947' post='3061212']
As you guys know for gigging cover bands in the US it's a 4 hour proposition.

$500.00 is the top of the scale. We won't do business unless every member walks out with at least $100.00 in their wallet.

We able to off set that scale with the higher paying festival and fair gigs in the Sumner,


Some of you in the UK will say how can you play for 4 hours. My response, " it's easy, it's fun."


Blue
[/quote]
In response to OP - Leeds - £300. Blue - just got back from Nashville and Memphis. Watched bands do 4 sets. All had the bucket at the front for tips. I suspect many were earning next to nothing except the kudos of playing such iconic places. Some bars had 2 and 3 bands at the same time on different floors. Have to say the levels go musicianship, especially in Memphis was AMAZING! You guise earn your money!

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I would add the price of a pint in Music pubs is about £3.60-3.80 on Music night for regular bitter.
Doombar, Master Brew etc.

And an awful lot of the pubs are Shepheard Neame who support the local music scene massively, or Free Houses.

Free houses can buy in barrels from £45 upwards whereas as tied/managed/tenanted might be paying £120 per barrel, but then also get
a brewery allowance, typically.

Most of the pubs we do, we know the LL's well so they will say when they can't do a price on a certain session.
And you need to listen to them when they say this as nobody benefits when a good music pub stops the music.

Speaking to other bands..who you are mates with, you get to know who can stand what.

As an aside...a friends band said to stock up on wine as they were bring a drinking crowd.
The pub ran out of wine as they sold 70 bottles...!!!!!! The band were not impressed as they did warn them. (I think they were on a bonus for alcohol consumed :lol:) Edited by JTUK

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Depends on the band....

On average around these parts (Essex) the average pub band can take between £250-£350..... those that have a good pull for the bar can look at £5-600.

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We do a few pubs in between the functions and get £250-£300, which is great for trying new stuff out (Surrey / SE)

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We are doing a pub gig this Saturday and we are getting £230. The starting point is usually £200 and the top end is about £250. I`m happy with that.

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We're a 4 piece rock/pop covers band playing mainly in Northamptonshire. £180 to £200 when we were getting our foot in the door 3 or 4 years ago. Once we did that it shifted up to £250. Sweet. :hi:

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[quote name='Bassmonkey' timestamp='1464702180' post='3061561']

In response to OP - Leeds - £300. Blue - just got back from Nashville and Memphis. Watched bands do 4 sets. All had the bucket at the front for tips. I suspect many were earning next to nothing except the kudos of playing such iconic places. Some bars had 2 and 3 bands at the same time on different floors. Have to say the levels go musicianship, especially in Memphis was AMAZING! You guise earn your money!
[/quote]

I've heard Nashville is a lot harder for Bands than Milwaukee "City of Festivals".

We always have a tip jar discreetly placed on our merch table. So in addition to our standard fee we have our tips. Usually tips are an extra $20.00 person.However on more than 1 occasion there's been as much as an additional $100.00 per member in that tip jar.

This bar band business is a hustle,you have to work your butt off for this money.

We've had to play 3-7 then pack up and go directly to a 9-1. I actually enjoy those double gig days.

Blue

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That is a real hussle for 200-250 bucks... that is 8 hrs work plus plus rigging x 4

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[quote name='JTUK' timestamp='1464725317' post='3061942']
That is a real hussle for 200-250 bucks... that is 8 hrs work plus plus rigging x 4
[/quote]

I'm not sure I understand your point.

Blue

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I'm agreeing that you work your butt off for 8-10 hrs for your money.

I wouldn't do that myself but good luck to you.

My friend down in Florida says the hours are brutal and he doesn't know how much longer he can keep it up...and
he used to live for gigs.

For me, 2 hrs playing is tops...but I'd tend to price a gig as how many hrs I'm away from the house.

I agree, or would always say, pubs are too much work for the money.

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I tend to take the view that the money is for the effort of rehearsing, traveling, unloading, setting up, packing down loading and associated expenses. The actual playing part I do for the love of it. I've often said that if you don't love it then the financial remuneration alone wouldn't make it worthwhile.
For 4 hours playing though I think the love of playing itself would start to wear a bit thin and the love of money would have to start to rear its ugly head!

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[quote name='Norris' timestamp='1464685002' post='3061330']
In Leicestershire £250-300. There are cheaper paying gigs to be had, but we won't do them :)
[/quote]

Same county as me. :)

Yeah, £250 to £300 for the pubs, a few of them pay a little bit more once they get to know you, but that's a pretty standard rate for this area.

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Evidently we need to kick our guitarist's arse as he lives in Leicestershire and hasn't got us any gigs yet. Tamworth and Birmingham pubs pay £200-£250.

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[quote name='tauzero' timestamp='1464733675' post='3062103']
Evidently we need to kick our guitarist's arse as he lives in Leicestershire and hasn't got us any gigs yet.
[/quote]

Not too hard though, there's often quite a walk between pubs... :lol:



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[quote name='rungles' timestamp='1464645830' post='3061165']
So I've been playing on the Isle of Wight since I was 15 (that's 30 years, man and boy - OK mostly boy). It's a standing joke down here that pubs have ALWAYS paid £120 per night on average but sadly it is actually the case.[/quote]

Are you sure that's the case ? There tends to be a lot of bullshit talked by bands and I'm never sure anyone is telling the truth about fees. Most of us can only say with any certainty what our own fees are.

I know what we ask for and get and I know there are cheaper bands on the scene because I see them responding to ad's with a specific fee mentioned but that's all I really know.

Les

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[quote name='JTUK' timestamp='1464727041' post='3061975']
I'm agreeing that you work your butt off for 8-10 hrs for your money.

I wouldn't do that myself but good luck to you.

My friend down in Florida says the hours are brutal and he doesn't know how much longer he can keep it up...and
he used to live for gigs.

For me, 2 hrs playing is tops...but I'd tend to price a gig as how many hrs I'm away from the house.

I agree, or would always say, pubs are too much work for the money.
[/quote]

I'm 63, I'm thinking I'll be able to do this for another 10 years tops.

Blue

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Normal pub gigs range £200-£250 but can be outside that, either way. Function gigs are usually more. 2 sets, 9pm - 11.30pm with a 20 minute break.

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[quote name='JTUK' timestamp='1464727041' post='3061975']
I'm agreeing that you work your butt off for 8-10 hrs for your money.

I wouldn't do that myself but good luck to you.[/quote]

We're all different with different tolerance levels.

A 4 hour bar gig is a "piece of cake" for me.

Blue

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[quote name='Painy' timestamp='1464729249' post='3062011']

For 4 hours playing though I think the love of playing itself would start to wear a bit thin and the love of money would have to start to rear its ugly head!
[/quote]

Not at all. A 4 hour gig is a "piece of cake for me"

Blue

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It seems the average rate then for a pub is £250.
I think this is about right and although some might disagree I think they should not need to pay anymore if they are a mid sized pub. With an average of 100 punters watching a band and spending between £10 and £20 each the takings will be around £1500 which does not leave a lot when all costs are taken out.
It's in all of our interests for pubs with live music to remain profitable and stay in business. I agree busier pubs should pay more but at the end of the day they have to run a business.

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I use the formula I mentioned before so if you know price range of the cost of a barrell, and you know many pints served from a barrel at X per pint, the only thing left is to know how many pints they sold.
That gets you ball park and you wont really know much more about someone else's business.
I think you can get a rough idea of how many people there needs to be in a bar and the LL will be either pleased with the night or downbeat.

What bands don't tend to factor in, is what the other bands do in terms of business. The LL/Venue will have to keep a lid on this throughout the year so that is another reason not to play the pubs with variable bands as they impact on other bands more than you'd want.

A decent music pub can have a steady clientele, but sometimes you can't explain good or bad nights and it is not always down to the band itself.
That is why settling for a lower figure and leaving yourself in credit with the venue gets you booked again..
It is the profit against your fee that the LL will see at the end of the day.
For pubs, I don't see much point charging more than £350... as you will be under a lot of scrutiny for that money and the LL will not book you back
if the gig is all round too much like hard and fraught work.

Those LL's are 'friends' for the most part and I'll ask guys what they will work for... on the basis that they haven't got anything better, or at all, that night, and
just try and be all round reasonable.

That way, ..plus always sorting them out for their free dates, the LL values you a bit more as a point of contact and a band.

FWIW...the biggest pulling bands around here are mostly ska bands... as you get all the white guys who can't dance go to those :lol:
If they are half reasonable..they'll be around the £500 mark... simply because they are worth it in bar take.

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