What are the Gigs like where you live?

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glogleemusic
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What are the Gigs like where you live?

Post by glogleemusic » Wed Jun 29, 2016 10:25 pm

I've been making my living as a singing piano player for more than a few years now. It's a decent living. Not too much traveling.

I am a singing piano player and I'm based in Chicago USA. So three for the plus column there. There are a lot of piano gigs both solo, duo and band leader. I sing and I entertain which is helpful for sure. Chicago is a big convention and tourist destination. Also there is a lot of live music to choose from here, so the locals come out and support us.

Chicago is a great city. A bit expensive but rents are doable if you look around. I still need a car. But some downtown gigs I take the CTA trains to get to.

There is a wide variety of genres (blues, jazz, latin, pop, background) and venues (hotels, clubs, restaurants, bars) to play.

I only know of a small percentage of musicians here who are making a full time living. Most have some sort side hustle or day gig going on. I used to teach. But the corporate gigs can be quite helpful at the end of the year. So I don't teach much now.

I'd love to hear what it's like where you are at. Who is working? Who is not?

Are we all staying in the studio these days?
Are the gigs paying anything close to a livable wage where you are at?
Have wages gone up? Gone down?
How about tips? Are you expected bring in a crowd?
Are you expected to play for tips?
Are you denied a tip jar?

Thanks for all your input.
Dan Gillogly
You Will Look Good B'cuz We Sound Good!
https://soundcloud.com/gloglee
http://pianomusicshow.com/

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mojobone
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Re: What are the Gigs like where you live?

Post by mojobone » Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:21 am

Where I live, I'm down to a couple church gigs a week and occasionally filling in for other folks on guitar or drums, or what have you, which leaves time for writing/recording/mixing/mastering a little something for other markets, such as (but not limited to) Taxi. The gigs I take on these days are freakin' amazing, because I don't have to take any of them, if they're not. Not for nuthin' but at my age, I don't have time for less than amazing, even at twenty years younger than Buddy Guy.

I got nuthin' to prove, since this one time, when Pinetop Perkins had to cancel, leaving me and my band as headliners, and nobody left that festival disappointed, so far as I'm aware. I feel like I got some pretty good game, in other words. I'm no James Brown, but I feel like I could hang with the JBs and on more than one instrument, and I've been blessed to play with some folks from George Clinton's band, among others. Maybe this is just my opinion, but that's musicianship enough for one lifetime. Quick example, the first time I ever played drums in public, I was unexpectedly filling in for Merle Perkins, from Big Twist & The Mellow Fellows. ( he didn't even know if I could play, he just had to pee real bad, and I was standing close to the drum kit) Thank God I didn't know that at the time, or I woulda froze. As far as I knew, we was just a bunch of guys backing up Johnny B. Gayden and some other players from James Cotton's band. I'm maybe a little self-conscious about my drumming skills, such as they are, but honestly, there's nobody on the planet I'd be afraid to trade fours with on guitar, not even Clapton, Page or Beck, but a Charlie Hunter or Buckethead could mop the floor with me. I'm okay with that; I've seldom been accused of playing jazz.

BTW, I do make a full time living from music, but I probably couldn't do that in Chicago proper, unless I taught music on the side, which doesn't leave enough time to play any, imo. Honestly though, I'm the luckiest guy, cuz I got to play with Donald Kinsey, Kenny Neal, Eddie Clearwater, Phil Guy, Johnny Rawls, and many more great players that most folks wouldn't recognize.Truly I'm blessed just by the opportunity to hear these people, let alone the privilege of playing the real blues with some of the originators.
Last edited by mojobone on Mon Apr 03, 2017 5:00 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: What are the Gigs like where you live?

Post by mojobone » Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:44 am

Maybe I got a little off-topic, there. The highest-paid musician in my town works four nights a week in a singalong piano bar that's set in the town's most popular disco, but he makes more than all the DJs combined. By my estimate, close to a thousand in tips on a good night, maybe 3X that a week in salary, that's a WAG or Wild-Ass Guess, and summers, thanksgiving and Spring Break off, cuz this is a college town. Not bad work if you can get it, but he works his crowd like it's his job, cuz it is. I'll never forget him baggin' on then-Purdue quarterback Drew Brees about an ESPN article about his mom beating him at tennis; Bruce will do anything to keep the show going; if you go, be prepared to sing and drink... a lot.

http://www.neoncactus.biz/pianoman.php

Some musicians from my hometown whom you might know include Izzy Stradlin, Shannon Hoon and Axl Rose.
The Straight Stuff; Roots, Rock & Soul

http://twangfu.wordpress.com
http://twitter.com/mojo_bone

glogleemusic
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Re: What are the Gigs like where you live?

Post by glogleemusic » Tue Sep 26, 2017 12:54 am

Thanks mojo I wonder if ran into each Thru the years. Since this last update, I've been doing a bunch of cruise ship gigs. So I'm traveling all over the place.

Just logging onto the forum after a bit of a hiatus. Things seem to be scattered around the world for live gigs. Each city is different. Barcelona seems to be bustling enough for locals who can hustle some gigs.

Berlin appears to be the most vibrant of all. But I was only there for less than a week. Theater gigs seemed to be in vibrant and plentiful of you knew where to look.

I am able to play these ships for a few weeks at a time. Our kids are grown now so traveling is easier.

I still welcome the word from others on this forum. I can occasionally post from online. Right now I am in the Mediterranean.

It would be my pleasure to report what I find even though we rarely in port over night.

Addio from Napoli IT
Dan Gillogly
You Will Look Good B'cuz We Sound Good!
https://soundcloud.com/gloglee
http://pianomusicshow.com/

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