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Theatre show tribute bands

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Talking to the guitarist at a gig last night who was telling me about a mate of his who plays in a Motown tribute band doing theatre shows, he said he's making 50k a year. Gumph! I'm a plumber by day and, contrary to popular belief I don't make 50k a year or anywhere near that but was also talking to a plasterer on a job about 6 months ago who saw my 4x10 in my van and went on to tell me about another plumber he knows who played guitar and joined an AC/DC tribute band, again playing theatres and festivals. He said he quickly got to the point where he was making so much money with the band that he packed in the plumbing! If anyone knows of such a band who is looking for a bass player can you please point them my way!?

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Tribute bands can make big money, but only if they get on a theatre circuit. A mate of mine plays in a Bon Jovi tribute, and they've recently signed up with an agent who has booked a tour. Talon and Rumours of Fleetwood Mac tend to gig like this, instead of the random gigs that we do.

Certain people frown on tribute bands, but it's generally a way to keep gigging, earn decent money, and (sometimes) play music you really like.

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The live music at the main theatre near me, is almost entirely dominated by tribute acts. I'm not against tribute acts, all a good mix, my criticism would be of the theatre for not varying the acts they book.

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[quote name='Marvin' post='918996' date='Aug 8 2010, 08:01 PM']The live music at the main theatre near me, is almost entirely dominated by tribute acts. I'm not against tribute acts, all a good mix, my criticism would be of the theatre for not varying the acts they book.[/quote]


They probably want a full house of people with enough money to pay theatre prices and buy theatre price drinks in the interval.
Don't get that with random pub covers bands and orginals.

or do you mean they should book a more varied selection of tribute bands?

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[quote name='MacDaddy' post='918960' date='Aug 8 2010, 07:14 PM']calling Cetera![/quote]

I'm here! :)

Tis true that 'theatres' is where the money is....
We've never taken that step as the Agents tend to want to book small tours' of a fortnight or so.... and with families/responsibilities and decent full-time jobs this just wouldn't work for us...

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[quote name='cetera' post='919513' date='Aug 9 2010, 12:41 PM']I'm here! :)

Tis true that 'theatres' is where the money is....
We've never taken that step as the Agents tend to want to book small tours' of a fortnight or so.... and with families/responsibilities and decent full-time jobs this just wouldn't work for us...[/quote]

Same with us. We get our own gigs.

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[quote name='Bilbo' post='919526' date='Aug 9 2010, 12:51 PM']Shushun frmmnt ssereo , pithic funch :snob:[/quote]

"Pithic Funch" - is that 'name the cover band' thread still going? I think we might have a winner here.

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[quote name='OldGit' post='919154' date='Aug 8 2010, 11:29 PM']They probably want a full house of people with enough money to pay theatre prices and buy theatre price drinks in the interval.
Don't get that with random pub covers bands and orginals.

or do you mean they should book a more varied selection of tribute bands?[/quote]
Yes, your right. The theatre are probably looking to fill the venue on acts they know will do so rather than taking a punt on originals. The tribute acts themselves are fairly varied. It's also compounded by the fact that it seems anything west of Bristol seems to be a no mans land for most bands. :)

[quote name='Bilbo' post='919526' date='Aug 9 2010, 12:51 PM']Shushun frmmnt ssereo , pithic funch :snob:[/quote]
Are you learning a new foreign language?

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[quote name='Marvin' post='919540' date='Aug 9 2010, 12:57 PM']Are you learning a new foreign language?[/quote]

No. Biting my tongue.

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The thing with tribute shows in theatres is the fact that the vast majority of the time the,the show has to hire out the
theatre at a fair cost,so unless they have great ticket sales they will struggle. At the same time,there is very little expense
to the actual theatre,so they can put on shows cheaply. That's one of the reasons that they have these kinds of shows.
Also,these type of tributes have to be full on 'shows' rather than the kind of tribute band you see in a local club. There
is a large cost in producing one of these shows that does not always guarantee a good return.
As far as earning £50k for a Motown tribute show,it's entirely possible,but there may be a little exaggerating going on.

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[quote name='Bilbo' post='919574' date='Aug 9 2010, 01:18 PM']No. Biting my tongue.[/quote]

Good job I don't do that.... I'd be out of a 'tribute' job! :) :lol: :lol: :lol: :rolleyes:

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I also think that it was[i][b] much[/b][/i] more achieveable a few years ago than it is now with the sharp decline in theatre ticket sales across the board.

I know a guitarist who played with an act generally viewed as the top UK tribute to AC/DC for several years (no names, no pack drill!! :rolleyes: ) who, at the time. were doing 2 or 3 theatre shows a week and he never earnt [i][b]anything like[/b][/i] £50k in a year, despite the fairly gruelling nature of the enterprise. :)

It's also remarkable how quickly the novelty of theatre gigs wears off and you begin to hanker for a "proper" sweaty/noisy pub gig - but then you have to accept the cut in income, so I suppose you pays your money and you takes your choice.

The other man's grass etc. :lol:

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[quote name='bassicinstinct' post='919699' date='Aug 9 2010, 03:24 PM']It's also remarkable how quickly the novelty of theatre gigs wears off and you begin to hanker for a "proper" sweaty/noisy pub gig - but then you have to accept the cut in income, so I suppose you pays your money and you takes your choice.[/quote]

I wouldn't say that. I'd much rather play in a theatre on a nice big stage through a decent PA,than play in a pub with people falling
over your pedals.

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[quote name='Doddy' post='919710' date='Aug 9 2010, 03:37 PM']I wouldn't say that. I'd much rather play in a theatre on a nice big stage through a decent PA,than play in a pub with people falling
over your pedals.[/quote]

I'd like there to be enough people in the pub to actually have them fall over my pedals ...

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[quote name='Doddy' post='919710' date='Aug 9 2010, 03:37 PM']I wouldn't say that. I'd much rather play in a theatre on a nice big stage through a decent PA,than play in a pub with people falling
over your pedals.[/quote]

+1

I've done a couple of tribute bands that played mainly in theatres, and loved it for the same reason. Usually easy load in/out,
helpful stage staff and often great hospitality thrown in. Also enjoy starting at 7.30 and being finished by 10 too!
However, I am fortunate enough to have other gigs where it's a bit more 'real', and to be honest really enjoy the
variety/contrast of work. Maybe only doing 'polite' theatre style gigs would do you in after a while, but after playing in
bands for nearly 40 years it does make a refreshing change to be able to have the luxury of room on stage and great PA etc.

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[quote name='Bilbo' post='919725' date='Aug 9 2010, 03:48 PM']I am a jazz musician. What are people?[/quote]


Classic, quote of the day!

Jez

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[quote name='casapete' post='919731' date='Aug 9 2010, 03:51 PM']+1

I've done a couple of tribute bands that played mainly in theatres, and loved it for the same reason. Usually easy load in/out,
helpful stage staff and often great hospitality thrown in. Also enjoy starting at 7.30 and being finished by 10 too!
However, I am fortunate enough to have other gigs where it's a bit more 'real', and to be honest really enjoy the
variety/contrast of work. Maybe only doing 'polite' theatre style gigs would do you in after a while, but after playing in
bands for nearly 40 years it does make a refreshing change to be able to have the luxury of room on stage and great PA etc.[/quote]

That's the ideal for me too.

I think that the "atmosphere" of a theatre gig always seems a little "polite", as you rightly say. Alcohol, I'm sure, plays a major part too.

Don't get me wrong, I'm no fan of pub gigs where people are falling all over you, but, on the other hand I much prefer it if I can actually see more than the first couple of rows. I have to admit that the easy get ins and 7.30 kick offs do have their attractions, although being on the road and on my way home before 11.00 did take some getting used to. :)

Maybe it's just me. You don't think I'm slipping inexorably towards cynicism do you? :rolleyes:
[u][b]
PS:[/b][/u]

[b]Definition of jazz guitarist's gig: Playing 300 chords to an audience of 3.

Definition of a rock guitarist's gig: Playing 3 chords to an audience of 300.[/b]

Edited by bassicinstinct

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