Today I have a guest post from Celeste AKA GalaxCgirl. Celeste performs as GalaxCgirl in Asheville, NC and the surrounding area where she combines her DJ set with live visuals. Celeste was actually sent to my post about booking your own live shows after she made a similar rant on her facebook page. (Thanks J-Mo!) She came to my site and left and comment. After talking with her a bit, I thought it’d be great if she could share her thoughts here. Below, Celeste shares her thoughts about how to make it easier to get booked by adding value to your music scene. Check it out here.
Enjoy the guest post and leave your feedback and comments below.
So you wanna get booked to play? While I have never wanted to call myself a promoter, ok, I admit…I do make some bangin parties happen sometimes, lol. And I get A LOT of people hitting me up wanting me to book them so I can only imagine how many inquiries people who do call themselves promoters get.
So some things to consider as a random DJ asking to get booked:
Talent aside, there are a million other acts with extreme talent lining up to be booked so it only makes sense for someone who busts their ass with the blood, sweat, and tears of countless hours of real back breaking, hair splitting, finger numbing work to organize and promote a party, to book someone who appreciates the hard work and dedication it takes and will help the party go off beyond just dropping in for their scheduled set. Unless you are way huger than you think and attracting gobs of fanatics who can’t get enough of you by the mere whisper of your name, what can you do to enhance the party? What else do you bring to the table?
Do you have an online presence? Are you even promotable? If you have NOTHING online and don’t even promote yourself how can anyone else promote you? But if you’ve made it past that genius step and do have some kind of even tiny presence to be promoted, why should they promote you and tell all their people about you when they have a ton of friends who also want to be booked but who actually return the favor and do the same for them? Have you shown support? Display excitement for their events? Do you like their facebook pages? Follow them somewhere, anything?
Do you promote yourself and the events you are doing? Do you tell and invite all your friends, post the page, post the flyer, make comments like a professional hype man to get everyone and their mother going out of their minds with anticipation for the best party ever even if they have to drive from Alaska? Will you help hand out flyers at every show to every person despite the mean people who act like you are scum for trying to invite them to a party and put up posters in the freezing cold with your nose about to fall off while your fingers are frozen numb and almost bleeding from not being able to wear gloves as you slap up posters in every possible spot? Then will you go check on these posters and put them back up the next day after they’ve been covered up or the haters have torn them down? If you don’t do that you should at least post it on facebook thirty gazillion times. (QE’s note: Be careful not to burn out your fans & friends on Facebook.)
Do you have anything to add to the party besides your set? Gear, deco, lights, tents, graphics, anything? Will you come help set up speakers and subs that weigh more than an elephant before the party and will you be there at 6 in the morning or the next day to help pack them up even though you are more dead tired than a zombie with it’s head shot off?
Do you also throw parties so you can return the favor of the booking if said promoter is also a performer and would also like bookings? Or will you encourage other promoters you know to book them? Or do you write a blog that you could help out by doing a little write up? Or own a cake shop and could bring a cake? Or a print shop and could print some posters? What else do you have or do that you could apply to enhance the party rather than just using and riding along on others efforts?
Do you come and make the party more hype by sticking around for the other acts, starting up the dance floor early in the night, exuding a vibe of uber awesomeness to inspire everyone to have the time of their lives? Or do you just show up for your set like you’re the only one that matters and possibly play the same tracks the DJ right before you just dropped rather than immersing yourself and becoming one with the party?
Also in initial contact, it helps to be somewhat articulate and include enough info on yourself and what you do – don’t make them go searching for you. Provide links, clickable links -don’t make it hard to check you out when they’ve got a billion other DJs with way more hype and professionalism hoping to get booked.
If you are past the point of “paying your dues” (aka playing for free and doing opening slots over and over til you have a real fan base because you are beyond awesome)(which you might think that you are but you’re actually still not and the harsh reality is that it can take a few eternities sometimes despite how amazing you are), is your price reasonable and flexible? In a lot of cases the DJ should really be paying the promoter for promoting them not the other way around, lol. If you are not bringing a million tons of gear that takes a million hours to rig up and can just mosey in and just plug in like a billion other DJs, you can’t expect an over inflated amount or maybe even anything at all when there is a trillion other expenses to be met until you are someone who is actually attracting the numbers to pull in the amount you want. If you’re not doing something extra or you’re not super famous and someone is paying anything at all, consider yourself very lucky.
Anyways, honestly, just to be straight up, I much prefer to book people who first like my facebook page, have shown me support, love or have promoted me even if it’s only for their own selfish reasons of knowing that supporting me just enables me to support them better, acts who will promote their little hearts out with the understanding that the better the party does, the more fun they will have and better we all do…not people who only think of themselves but people who let the love flow both ways and are willing to put in actual work to party…and I’m sure this goes for most people who bust ass throwing quality events. People who bust ass like other ass busters who return the love as it gets tiring busting ass to carry other’s weight when there’s already so much to do…
Good luck and blessings to everyone and your endeavors. May we all be warriors of ultimate truth shining love and bringing nirvana to the world in everything we do…