Harmony Central Forums
Announcement Announcement Module
Collapse
No announcement yet.

Gorillas in a cage-playing for the 1%

Page Title Module
Move Remove Collapse









X
Conversation Detail Module
Collapse
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Gorillas in a cage-playing for the 1%

    Last sat night private party for maybe 50 guests in a super rich hood. Agent gig. Three chairs for us right in front of the pool with a waterfall on the far end. Gourmet food catered. Great acoustics.

    The lady of the house comes over and says we can hang out in a room during breaks(translation: don't mingle with my guests) We look behind us and there is a beautiful pool house. But then she says uh, it's not really a room, and takes us behind the pool house where there is a plastic table and a few chairs set up on tanbark -no lights like the rest of the yard-so we hang out and eat in the dark.

    The conga player asks where the restroom is and she takes him into the pool house and mentions " The guests will be using this bathroom so be careful" Careful? That made us want to piss on the walls.

    I had received an e-mail from the agent saying they had a sound permit that allowed for 85 db until 10pm. The conga player can hit 85db with his pinky. So we play the gig, and it turns out the well maintained, well dressed, and well surgically enhanced women enjoy the music, and after a few drinks get up to dance. No rhythm whatsoever. Then a husband gets up and he's worse. Kinda funny but they are having fun so it's all good.

    We finish a solid set and the conga player comments on how much he has to hold back, how we all have to really hold back on this gig. I feel like a gorilla in a cage he says. And we realize that is our function. We are the rare creatures known as musicians to these folks, available for their pleasure to view and listen to, but don't get too close, don't let them be too loud, and god forbid, don't let them out of the cage!!!

    At one point two women go over to the congas during a song and start pounding on them, "helping" the conga player. All in good fun. Then one of them turns around and puts her ass on a conga as if to "play" it with her ass. We all laugh, but she realizes what she has done, and where, and starts to apologize. We just laugh it off, but she's embarrassed. She got too comfortable with the gorillas.

    We ended up passing out a ton of cards(the agents) and accepting a lot of compliments from everyone from the hostess to the caterers. Solid gig and great pay. I'm not a person who envys the rich, or anyone else for that matter. I just thought this gig really emphasized the different viewpoints, as well as the similarities, of different social and economic classes.

    Beer salesman? Nah, I'm a gorilla.

  • #2
    Cool story Martin...I can easily picture the entire event. Question...do you always hand out the agents cards at gigs he/she got you?
    Just Darrell Web Site

    Comment


    • #3
      I know what you're talking about in terms of the different social and economic classes. I, too, am not a person who envies anyone -- if anything I find much of how the very rich carry themselves to be as ridiculous as are the very poor -- but it's always interesting to note the differences and similarities.

      Fortunately, we never really end up in such "gorilla in the cage" moments. I THINK it might be because we self-book most of our gigs and usually spend a good deal of time communicating with the clients beforehand so, if anything, they are treating us like old friends by the time we finally show up to do the gig. Either that, or we've just been lucky and I'll be eating my words along with a cold bologna sandwich in the dark behind the garage next Saturday....
      _________________________________________________
      band websites:
      http://www.JumpStartYourParty.com
      https://www.gigmasters.com/Rock/Jump-Start
      https://www.facebook.com/JumpStartYourParty
      http://www.weddingwire.com/biz/jumps...587fe5f12.html

      Comment


      • #4
        Oh yeah. I don't even have my own cards. I have the cards of the two agents I work for in my guitar case. It would be foolish for me to back stab my agents. They get me more money for a gig than I could, and they handle all communications and payment. I got the check two days before the gig. One of the people who asked for the cards mentioned that the agent would take a cut when they called us for their party, but I just said I have to follow the protocol. In the past I've even sent people who wanted to hire us to the agent to do the business. Throw them a bone. That makes me different in their eyes than the other bands they rep. I like and respect these guys-they are really working for themselves, but they also do in fact represent me, and try to get me everything we need in terms of power, shade, food and drink, etc. I also set the price, then they put their markup on it. That gig paid more than a months rent for my kid in college. I'll get in the cage every day for that kind of scratch.


        Cool story Martin...I can easily picture the entire event. Question...do you always hand out the agents cards at gigs he/she got you?

        Comment


        • #5
          There is no question that when you work with the client directly, it changes the dynamic. But given the choice, I'm happy not doing that and accepting my place in the zoo. Turned out the guests wanted to play and talk with the gorillas on that gig.


          I know what you're talking about in terms of the different social and economic classes. I, too, am not a person who envies anyone -- if anything I find much of how the very rich carry themselves to be as ridiculous as are the very poor -- but it's always interesting to note the differences and similarities.

          Fortunately, we never really end up in such "gorilla in the cage" moments. I THINK it might be because we self-book most of our gigs and usually spend a good deal of time communicating with the clients beforehand so, if anything, they are treating us like old friends by the time we finally show up to do the gig. Either that, or we've just been lucky and I'll be eating my words along with a cold bologna sandwich in the dark behind the garage next Saturday....

          Comment


          • #6
            While I don't usually play gigs like that one, Martin, I did play one Sunday night.

            By-the-pool gig with about 50ish people for a Labor Day party. I was the monkey in the cage. The people I was performing for could have bought and sold me 10 times over!

            About halfway through the client comes up and says "hey why don't you take a break and get something to eat?" She showed me the food and then ASKED me to eat *motions towards the parking lot* "over there"
            If you don't sing, don't expect to call the shots....
            ---Tele-vania65000
            Life is too short to waste it on douchebags...
            ---BlueStrat
            Sometimes I have this fear... that years from now, being able to play an instrument live will be looked at the same way we look at juggling now... as in "Well, I can see where that is difficult to do, but who cares?
            ---RichardMac
            As a youngster, I was told that money was all that mattered.
            And I didn't believe it.
            ---Rasputin1963

            Comment


            • #7
              +1


              Oh yeah. I don't even have my own cards. I have the cards of the two agents I work for in my guitar case. It would be foolish for me to back stab my agents. They get me more money for a gig than I could, and they handle all communications and payment. I got the check two days before the gig. One of the people who asked for the cards mentioned that the agent would take a cut when they called us for their party, but I just said I have to follow the protocol. In the past I've even sent people who wanted to hire us to the agent to do the business. Throw them a bone. That makes me different in their eyes than the other bands they rep. I like and respect these guys-they are really working for themselves, but they also do in fact represent me, and try to get me everything we need in terms of power, shade, food and drink, etc. I also set the price, then they put their markup on it. That gig paid more than a months rent for my kid in college. I'll get in the cage every day for that kind of scratch.
              Just Darrell Web Site

              Comment


              • #8
                It can be an adjustment, but for me, that's the only kind of gig I'm doing these days. I hope that changes in the near future. Almost everything about it is sad, but the money. When I'm on my deathbed, I really doubt I'll wish I played just one more wedding...........
                I told the conga player, if you want to cut loose I can book a club for 80. a man. He goes" I'm not complaining!" Sometimes people hosting those gigs treat you really well. Sometimes not.


                While I don't usually play gigs like that one, Martin, I did play one Sunday night.

                By-the-pool gig with about 50ish people for a Labor Day party. I was the monkey in the cage. The people I was performing for could have bought and sold me 10 times over!

                About halfway through the client comes up and says "hey why don't you take a break and get something to eat?" She showed me the food and then ASKED me to eat *motions towards the parking lot* "over there"

                Comment


                • #9
                  A few years back I played a 4th of July gig at the biggest resort in town for their fireworks and dinner on the lawn event. As I unloaded my gear, a kid asked me if I'd like my truck valet parked. I said sure, and he drove it away. A pimple faced bedwetter about 22 years old with a "manager" badge runs up and asks if I had my truck valet parked and said it was for paying guests only and employees were to use the city lot a block away. He then said if I didn't move it, it would be towed. So I said "whoa, hold up. Let's get a few things straight here. One, I'm not your employee, I'm a sideman for a contract entertainer. Secondly, your employee offered to valet my truck I didn't ask him to. And thirdly, if you insist, I'll be happy to move my truck. I'll move it right back here, load up all my gear and go home, because frankly this gig is a pain in my ass, I don't care if I play it or not, and it doesn't pay enough to put up with power trips from corporate minions like you." he looked at me wide-eyed, stammered a few times, and said, "well, I guess it will be okay to leave it there." Good call!

                  Later we asked for one of the shade tents that the serving crew were setting up for the porta-bar, food stations, and so on. The set us up on a concrete walkway by the seawall with no shade whatsoever. It's 3'0 clock on the 4th of July and about 94 degrees out. They said they would get us a tent. A couple of kids started to bring one over and another manager called them back. Apparently, that one was for the bussers. The dirty dishes got a tent; we didn't. So we ended up roasting in the sun all afternoon. We played from 4 to 9 PM. No free food, no drinks, nothing. Fortunately I always bring my own cooler full of water, pop, fruit and sandwiches. I had enough for the whole band so we got by. I will never work that event again, nor do I ever want to play for that particular resort. I have played events there in the past and the treatment was not that much different.

                  There are douchbags in every economic strata. Some of the best gigs I ever played were for some filthy rich folks who treated us like royalty. One party gave everyone in the band a bottle of Chivas to take home and an extra 200 dollar bump. Another sat us at the host table and thought it was a thrill to get to eat with and hang out with the band. We asked the host to come sing and he did, and everyone was shocked and delighted to see it.

                  On the other hand, I've played for rich folks who treated us like servants. No thanks. It has to pay a butt ton of dough for me to put up with that.
                  http://www.patcoast.com"The guy would be strumming along, singing the verse to “Margarittavile” and then he would hit his harmonizer pedal for the chorus. It went from sounding like a guy singing and playing guitar to sounding like the Stephen Hawkings trio."-Christhee68" the singer of my cover band used to find it funny to let out gaseous forms of vile hate and sadness that would make a plaster baby Jesus weep."- FitchFY

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I'm in a cover band, but really I'm an over paid juke box. What I play doesn't matter to me, who I play for is irrelevant. It's a job, but I do have fun doing it.


                    That being said, I'll stand on a street corner and bang a garbage can lid with a stick for $400/night.






                    The private functions we play are usually for companies, and they always treat us well. But I'm in a small town and there aren't many millionaires around. Sounds like an interesting night though!!
                    NO SIGNATURE FOR YOU!!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Wow. If I was "managing" that event and you behaved that way, I'd have fired you on the spot.

                      You took a simple misunderstanding from a obvious low-level employee... chewed him out; spewed your negativity about participating in the event; and threatened to walk out on a contract (I'm assuming?). That's the height of unprofessionalism.

                      If the the "free drinks, free food, tent from the sun" were all in the contract. Then you have every right to complain (and I've clearly misread your post). If they are things you just "expected" without specfiying in the contract.... then yeah, the dishes get priority. Bring your own tent next time.

                      Just my observation from the other side of the coin.


                      A few years back I played a 4th of July gig at the biggest resort in town for their fireworks and dinner on the lawn event. As I unloaded my gear, a kid asked me if I'd like my truck valet parked. I said sure, and he drove it away. A pimple faced bedwetter about 22 years old with a "manager" badge runs up and asks if I had my truck valet parked and said it was for paying guests only and employees were to use the city lot a block away. He then said if I didn't move it, it would be towed. So I said "whoa, hold up. Let's get a few things straight here. One, I'm not your employee, I'm a sideman for a contract entertainer. Secondly, your employee offered to valet my truck I didn't ask him to. And thirdly, if you insist, I'll be happy to move my truck. I'll move it right back here, load up all my gear and go home, because frankly this gig is a pain in my ass, I don't care if I play it or not, and it doesn't pay enough to put up with power trips from corporate minions like you." he looked at me wide-eyed, stammered a few times, and said, "well, I guess it will be okay to leave it there." Good call!

                      Later we asked for one of the shade tents that the serving crew were setting up for the porta-bar, food stations, and so on. The set us up on a concrete walkway by the seawall with no shade whatsoever. It's 3'0 clock on the 4th of July and about 94 degrees out. They said they would get us a tent. A couple of kids started to bring one over and another manager called them back. Apparently, that one was for the bussers. The dirty dishes got a tent; we didn't. So we ended up roasting in the sun all afternoon. We played from 4 to 9 PM. No free food, no drinks, nothing. Fortunately I always bring my own cooler full of water, pop, fruit and sandwiches. I had enough for the whole band so we got by. I will never work that event again, nor do I ever want to play for that particular resort. I have played events there in the past and the treatment was not that much different.

                      There are douchbags in every economic strata. Some of the best gigs I ever played were for some filthy rich folks who treated us like royalty. One party gave everyone in the band a bottle of Chivas to take home and an extra 200 dollar bump. Another sat us at the host table and thought it was a thrill to get to eat with and hang out with the band. We asked the host to come sing and he did, and everyone was shocked and delighted to see it.

                      On the other hand, I've played for rich folks who treated us like servants. No thanks. It has to pay a butt ton of dough for me to put up with that.
                      R.I.P. Marko46 -- You are missed.

                      My 1988 Pearl MX Monster







                      Originally Posted by RumStik


                      You can't pick someone else's pedal anymore than you can dictate his scrotum wrinkle.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        When I was with the party band I was playing with the last 4 years we did a lot of these types of events and they were not that fun, even when the money was good. Wearing tuxes and trying to be comfortable onstage playing was a hassle. I can count about ten times some brides mate, wedding planner or bride
                        "Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          As I've talked about before, one thing I'm learning--and am continuing to learn--is that preparation is everything with private events. The more details you can address ahead of time, whether that be in the contract or simply verbally, the smoother these are going to go. When there is an agent, or any other sort of middle-man involved, it can become more tricky, but that just means you need to communicate your needs ahead of time.

                          For those of us that have spent a great deal of time playing clubs, we have become accustomed to dealing with people that work with bands on a regular basis. We forget that people putting on a private event don't have a clue what a band or performer requires most times. So doing the prep work ahead of time and making sure things like food, drink, tents, power etc are addressed is a huge time and headache saver. Because even IF you do all this there will still be stuff that will come up that you didn't prepare for. Something to remember to deal with next time!

                          Here's one small issue, but it was kind of a big one for us. As anybody here who has played many private events go, the food you're served might range anywhere from getting some of the steak and lobster being served the regular guests to a cold sandwich and a bag of chips in a cardboard box. Well, we REALLY don't like working all day only to be fed cold food out of a box and after one particularly annoying event where we got fed cold food while OTHER vendors at the wedding were eating steak, somebody in the band finally came up with the bright idea of "why don't we stipulate we need a HOT MEAL in the contract??"

                          And really, it was as simple as that. Of course, verbally reminding them that this is in the contract is important. But while we haven't always gotten the guest dinners (sometimes they'll serve up a separate pasta dish for the vendors on the side) we haven't had a cold dinner since we started doing this..

                          But yeah....eating out back behind the barn and having to park in another location, etc. These things are often part of the deal. Frankly, I usually prefer to be off on our own during breaks. Things can get rather rowdy in the gorilla cage.
                          _________________________________________________
                          band websites:
                          http://www.JumpStartYourParty.com
                          https://www.gigmasters.com/Rock/Jump-Start
                          https://www.facebook.com/JumpStartYourParty
                          http://www.weddingwire.com/biz/jumps...587fe5f12.html

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            When I was with the party band I was playing with the last 4 years we did a lot of these types of events and they were not that fun, even when the money was good. Wearing tuxes and trying to be comfortable onstage playing was a hassle. I can count about ten times some brides mate, wedding planner or bride
                            _________________________________________________
                            band websites:
                            http://www.JumpStartYourParty.com
                            https://www.gigmasters.com/Rock/Jump-Start
                            https://www.facebook.com/JumpStartYourParty
                            http://www.weddingwire.com/biz/jumps...587fe5f12.html

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Truth is for me I play nylon stringed guitar-I can play as hard as I want usually. The other guys not as much. And the clothes-ha- I got an email from the agent with a question from the hostess. she asked " What will the trio wear?"

                              OMG, I tried thinking up various smart ass responses to that one. Matching gold suits, Bathrobes, assless chaps, thongs and flip flops, etc. In the end I didn't respond. Just showed up in slacks and a button down shirt.

                              In the past, I did a ton of tux gigs, but I grew out of my tux years ago :-) Not buying another one.

                              When I was with the party band I was playing with the last 4 years we did a lot of these types of events and they were not that fun, even when the money was good. Wearing tuxes and trying to be comfortable onstage playing was a hassle. I can count about ten times some brides mate, wedding planner or bride

                              Comment



                                Working...
                                X