Working With Entertainment Talent

Whenever you go out to see a band, a great part of the experience is the intimacy and rapport between the fans and the players. Imagine how memorable and exciting it would be to have that same experience at your next party or business function. Many people have never dealt with a band before, and might wonder how to take that first step. Let me share some tips with you that can make the whole thing easy.

You will need the entertainment to suit the general taste of your guests. A death metal band that is perfect for a sweet sixteen party might cause a riot at an anniversary party. A variety dance band or blues band is a good fit for most functions because the repertoire is sure to include many familiar hit songs, and the guests can enjoy listening and dancing to the music.

At your first contact with the talent, ask about their experience, the repertoire, and the availability of the date you have in mind. The act might also have a website that functions as an EPK (Electronic Press Kit). You usually can see a photo and listen to a few mp3's to get some idea of the group's sound. If you are referred by a friend, tell the contact person and ask if they have any special deals.

When I speak with a client about a booking, I need to get a good idea about the logistics of producing the show. Be ready to describe the easiest way to load in and the area dedicated to the band setup. If you want your guests to dance, you might have to move some furniture around to create a dance floor. It's also a good idea to provide a power outlet that has nothing else connected.

When you and the talent have agreed upon the date, venue, and price, it's time to get down to business. The standard arrangement is for the band to send you two copies of the written contract, one of which you will sign and return with a 50% non-refundable deposit. In my band, I will allow the deposit to be transferable one time, should the party be moved to a different date, same venue. Be prepared to pay the leader the balance upon the band's arrival.

Now the day of the event has arrived! The band will set up, check the sound and levels, and be ready to go when the guests get there. Be ready to have big fun and a group of happy guests dancing to the music and having a great time. When the party is over, my greatest wish is to leave the client satisfied so that they will talk about the party for days to come, and inspire a friend or co-worker to consider hiring my group for their next party.

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