This one's about fixing (musician booking). A question has arisen over our sometimes eccentric 'choices' of musicians. Usually this is because someone's on a retainer for a specific part and gets booked in for a slightly different part that doesn't perhaps play to their strengths.
Percussion 1: Kit, timbales -> Musician A
Percussion 2: Congas -> Musician B
Percussion 3: Bongo, bell -> Musician C
= Musician A gets 1st refusal, then B, then C.
Currently, there’s only a 1-step fixing procedure, which is essentially a retainer system to keep it as systematic and fair as possible. While it's alleviated anxieties on a management/professional level, it's raised queries on a production/musical level - similar to the D/E dilemma, of which we have a good musical understanding.
On C's recommendation, C & B swapped parts because C/A tend to take the lead and have a more structural approach, whereas B tends to follow and improvise freely - which is what part 3 (and Fiesta Latina) lend themselves more to. As Will has implied, it’s striking that delicate balance between loyalty vs. availability, and we've been too kind.
In this case, Will has expressed frustration because B shouldn’t have been booked in place of A. It’s equivalent to booking Rory as a lead vocalist when our regular lead male isn’t available, which has happened and is not recommendable because Rory's a backing vocalist (some, like Alexandra, do both etc.).
Will is saying that there should be a separate calling list per specific part, rather than 1 calling list for the percussion section as a whole. He also campaigns for an artistic involvement in the fixing, which is reasonable. The former we can take care of easily, but the latter needs to be implemented.
Therefore, we needed to build a 2nd element into the fixing procedure whereby we either ask a specific performer/producer for a recommendation or open it to the team, if the 1st choice for that particular part isn’t available.
Please note: a confirmation does not constitute a contract. We still require a contract to honour our original quotation, even if the date(s) are confirmed. An additional holding period may be allocated to allow for the contract signing, subject to our discretion. Otherwise, our original quotation only applies until the end of our original quotation's reservation period, regardless of whether the date(s) are confirmed or not. We cannot be held to honour our original quotation if a contract is issued after this point.
Our quotes increase incrementally according to the notice at which we sign a contract, and it is our policy to close all enquiries 5pm Friday the week before at the very latest, to avoid costly trains/hotel fare hikes. We appreciate your understanding.
We reserve our best deals for enquiries made in advance. For more information, please visit www.redandblackmusic.co.uk to find out how more money could be saved by booking in advance.
Unfortunately, we cannot accept on-the-night cash payments – we can only accept BACS transfers. This is due to various security and legal requirements. We've seen it occur in the past that cash payments go missing in part or entirely, and it is more difficult to ensure that they are adequately accounted for in our books for tax/accounting purposes.
Please note however that the payment can be made within 14 days of the event at your earliest convenience. We issue invoices with bank details. I hope you enjoy the band and I look forward to hearing how it goes, and receiving the payment following the event.
This post highlights a straightforward communication issue on the part of the client. This client could have simply indicated from the outset (11/10/2013) that they were not willing to offer any feedback, which wouldn't have been an issue.
However, their inability to communicate has rebounded on them leading to frustration. Ultimately, it amounts to a pending/unresolved database query - which was eventually resolved and ticked off.
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The "Watch Blog"
Red & Black Music was set up in 2012 to stop musicians cancelling.
Please note: full names, addresses and contact details of private individuals are omitted for data protection purposes (unless already made public elsewhere online).
A category naming and shaming unreliable musicians to watch out for.
A category reporting unscrupulous venues and traders.
A category exploring the issues faced working via agents and promoters.