What Is A Band Rider?

Example of what is a band rider.
Example of what is a band rider. | Source

What Is A Band Rider

What is a rider? It is something that new promoters and music lovers ask me allot. Infact, its one of those things that most people don't know about until they are looking at one on a contract.

Of course if you are lucky enough to be in a band that is asking for one then thats great, but for a promoter it can be a scary process the first time!

A rider is something that a band asks the promoter (the person booking them) for that isn't money. It is something that is usually in addition to money, but not always. It is a form of payment. It usually includes food, drink and a place to stay for the night.

A technical rider is different. A technical rider deals with the things that the band need in order to perform. What you will normally find on a technical rider is things like 'A sound system', a 'competent, sober crew member to help us get in and out of the venue' as well as a request for a certain mixing desk.

What is a Hospitality Band Rider

Going back to the band rider, which is quite often also called a hospitality rider, it is quite important that a promoter reads a rider through an works out exactly how much everything cost. Quite often a band or booking agent will say "the price for the band is $xx + rider, is this ok?". Obviously you see the rider before signing a contract but don't be shy in asking them to see the rider before you say yes to anything. Remember that if the band only cost $100 but the rider is $75 worth of food and drink, you have almost doubled the price of the band!

Its important to check the price of everything on the list and to quickly get an idea for what is reasonable for bands to ask for. You will find that bands and agents are sometime happy to negotiate on something. Be aware though, there are somethings certain bands cannot live without, and will not play without!

WiFi has become a standard thing for bands to request on their rider these days. If you have a choice, make sure your venue has WiFi access because there is a good chance you will need to provide it. I once drove past a band on the road and on the back of their van someone had written 'No WiFi, no show!' So be aware!


What is a Technical Rider

As explained above, a technical rider is all the things the band needs for the actual show, not the bit before and after. If you don't have the everything the technical rider is asking for then its usually a good idea to call the person that relates to the things that you don't have. For example, if you don't have the mixing desk they request, call the sound engineer (there numbers are usually on the tech rider) and tell them what you have and see if they are happy with that. If you don't have all the lighting that has been requested then call the lighting engineer and talk it through with them. Remember that these documents are sent to every venue they play, big or small. If you are running a small event in a small venue, they probably don't expect the latest gear. If you run a larger show, they will probably expect some fancy toys to play with.

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