SESSION: Are UK jazz promoters selling the music short?
Convener(s): Rick Finlay
Participants: Mike Gordon, Sarah Ellen Hughes, John Blandford, Jack Davies, Jo Laverty, Chrys Chijintoni [sp?]
Summary of discussion, conclusions and/or recommendations:
Why is success of promotion so variable? Some gigs cancelled due to no audience, others are huge.
Do they promote the right music? Are they neglecting certain areas?
Promoters reluctant to book unknown artists.
Are admission fees too low?
Are promoters ambitious enough?
Is there enough money to allow the music to happen?
Presentation of bands too bland (on venue website for example)
Bands not doing their bit well enough? Providing biogs, photos etc
Are venues upping their game enough? Eg do they have a checklist to make sure they don’t miss anything: tech spec, promotions, photos, social net etc
If gig is run by volunteers, the musos will deal differently. Do venues make it sufficiently known that they are only voluntary run?
Are promoters avoiding risk of unknown artists? This highlights importance of funding/subsidy.
Why are some gigs working well and others not?
You need a team/committee sharing tasks (finance, booking marketing etc`)
Some promoters ask artist to do standards only. This is not a good idea.
Pricing: what does £2 admission say about the gig/ music?
Should you offer concessions rates to encourage accessibility / different audience sectors?
Support acts are a good way of introducing unknown artists to audience cues.
Why do some promoters not talk to the audiences?
Thanking them/ make them welcome
How can we pull the above together to make change?
MU guide to gigging musos/promoters coming next year.
Stuff on Jazz Services site is too wordy and therefore forbidding. Need short sound bite/ lists, and maybe use social web ideas to help the process. Eg: Planzai website has step by step guide to press kits etc (http://planzai.com/)
Networking with other promoters in the area is valuable. Networking could be better. Can Jazz Services set up mechanisms to help networking?
Encourage promoters to understand that running club is about more than the music: need to feel sense of belonging, friendliness.