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Detroit, Michigan, United States
I'm a punk rock guru from Detroit. Part skinhead, part crusty, part metalhead, part hardcore kid, part party kid, 100% punk rocker.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Get Over Yourself- by Lil Michelle, Heart Like a Lion Booking

Get Over Yourself
by Lil Michelle – Heart Like a Lion Booking
Nobody wakes up one morning and is suddenly a millionaire rockstar with a band that’s huge.  To have a great reputation as a band takes talent, hard work, and many connections forged.  In my eyes, my overall opinion of a band isn’t based on only their sound and musical skill, but also the way they act.  A band’s character and conduct have a strong influence on their reputation and popular opinion of them.  Therefore, being good people is almost or maybe even equally important as being good musicians and having a good sound.

With that being said, I’ve noticed a growing trend in the scene: bands refusing to book with DIY promoters but being eager to open for national acts.  Of course it’s every musician’s dream to open for their favorite band, and there’s nothing wrong with that.  There is, however, with acting like playing shows with local bands or out-of-town/out-of-state bands that aren’t as big, are beneath them.  The saying “act like you’re hot shit and people will think you’re hot shit” is true.  However, if a band is brand-new and nobody knows them, there’s no basis on which they can expect people to think that about them.  Bands that have been around for many years, have put hard work into putting themselves out there, have released albums and are possibly on a label, and have a kickass sound and large fanbase do have a right to be more choosy about what shows they play.  As do newer bands that contain veterans of said bands.  For the purpose of this article, exclude bands that fit these cases, as I am not talking about them.

There are bands that have members who are younger, do not attend shows and are not part of “the scene,” and never play shows all year until whatever national act is coming to town.  They try to act like they’re a big deal while they essentially do nothing.  These bands generally suck anyway, and any show offers from a smaller promoter are 99% of the time blown off, or on the rare occasion, they will respond but make up an excuse to turn them down each time.
What they don’t realize is that if they haven’t built a reputation in the local scene, they’re just another opening band that will provide a nice break to go outside and smoke before the national act people came to see goes on.  If a band that has done said hard work opens the show, lots of people will watch them, and that band being on the lineup will give people additional reason to attend.  On a side note, a band can most of the time expect little to no pay for opening for a national act.  The shows that make bands money are the local shows that draw.  That is because the bands have fans and got the word out about the show, which the sort of bands I’m talking about don’t do.

Bands that are down-to-earth are my favorites to work with and my favorite bands in general.  A little bit of humility goes a long way.  And if a band is the shit, they don’t have to act arrogant and try to make people think they’re the shit.  They simply just are who they are.  It’s not possible to become “big” by having a generic sound and not doing anything, yet thinking one is entitled to this or that.  “Big” doesn’t just happen spontaneously, it’s built up by a lot of “small” over a period of time.  The “likes” on Facebook that you begged/bought don’t count as having a fanbase either.

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