We talk a lot on our member conference calls about the things that you've got to do to build an audience big enough to make financial sense for talent buyers to book your band. Remember, there's no longer (in 99% of places) any such thing as "loyalty to the scene." Talent buyers and club owners pledge allegiance to one thing: their bottom line. They're running businesses, after all, not charities or museums.
We've talked about the threats you face from karaoke, iPod nights, and now another thread I'm even seeing here in Athens: Attack of the "Real World" Cast.
Your challenge: grow an audience that brings more people into that bar for $500 than anything else. Then grow an audience that brings more people into that bar for $1000 than anything else. Then keep growing, and growing.
Success as a working musician depends exclusively on how many people you can bring to a show.
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