I can’t believe how hard it is to get a gig, even if you’re offering your services for nothing.
As we found out recently thanks to the londonist, there a lot of pubs that have playable pianos, with nobody playing them.
We (Burton Bradstock) thought that we’d pop into some and ask if we could play a couple songs. No catch, we don’t want a gig (not necessarily, all freelance musos are programmed to sniff out potential gigs), just to play a few songs…..
This is not as easy as you might think. Firstly, you’re given the ‘Spanish’ and secondly you’re bombarded with “weekends are too busy, ‘Karaoke’ on Wed, and an open mic night on Thu” etc. Nothing wrong with the latter, well actually…. No, we just want to come in occasionally and play a few songs, perhaps in the day time?. “Well we have business people who come in to read the paper, not to listen to music!”.
I imagine that you’re thinking NO is NO, and you’d be correct, I shouldn’t push the subject, but it still astonishes me that two professional, reasonably successful musicians who are offering their services for free are greeted with disdain.
To be devils advocate, I can see from his point of view it’s probably like someone coming in and asking him if they can dance freestyle at the back of the pub for no reason at all.
I suppose my point is that the music culture in this country dictates that we should fit in to a prescribed system and that status is measured on youtube hits or singing an insipid cover of the Power of love.
The fight begins….