So... over the past two weeks, I've had...
1) A $900 room outside of our area call two weeks out to cancel us. A few months back, an event in his area kept people out of the clubs. That event has passed.. but he's yet to regain his clientele. He used to have anywhere from 200-500 people in his club on any given weekend.. now it's like 50. He told me he paid one popular band in 5s and 1s.. and another popular band with some of his personal money.. so he asked if we could cancel the May date (this Saturday). I said of course... but it sucks for us. Especially since he'd asked us for "exclusitivity" in his area by not booking his competitor, who we have played for and who would love to book us through the year.
2) A bounced check that a club owner has yet to make good.. ruining about one date every month or two for the rest of the year, including one the first week of June.
3) A club cancelled an event on Facebook for us, with no warning or provocation, after we had the band members and some friends already going (haven't started promoting something that far out). I hit up the person who cancelled it.. she informs me that the guy who booked us is no longer there.. but that they could still honor the show for $200 (originally $700). I wished her all the best, but passed on that. That leaves my second week of June with an open date.
4) A national chain country bar that we've worked up a whole night of country for managed to route book a national act.. directly over top one of our dates at the end of May. I can't be mad about that, of course.. but damn, really?!
It sucks sometimes.. booking a band that plays as much as we do is no easy task.. and it sucks when you think you have things in order, and then they all end up being screwy. And the worst part of it? The people who caused these problems for me and my group won't have to deal with the fallout at all. In the case of the country bar.. I understand.. but the other club that wanted to cut pay (because they've been booking local metal bands who will play for beans)? The club that bounced a check on me? The club that wanted us to book with them and only them? Those folks all courted me. They all knew what they were getting into when we lined up the dates. And now, these people do things that are ignorant, dishonorable, childish, shady, or whatever else.. and it all falls back on my shoulders. Such bull****************.
I'm pretty sure I'll fill most of the dates (this Saturday not withstanding).. we have a list of clubs that we book with, and quite a few more that want to book when we have openings... but man... I already DID this work once! I wish there was a way to make these folks understand the consequences the actions they take have on other people.