Where to Find Music Gigs and Venues
There is such a rush you get from being on stage but it can be hard to find shows to get in or venues that are looking for musicians like you if you are not sure where exactly to look. Luckily there are a few places for you to start your search and be performing as much as Madonna, Beyonce and Michael Jackson put together.
1. Go local
Don't underestimate the power of going local. Your favorite coffee shop might be looking to have someone perform every Saturday night. If you already have a relationship with the staff, you'd be in a great position to get that spot.
Even better than going local is talking to the people you already know. See what they know and if there are looking for someone to open for their show. Help other musicians find opportunities that fit them and what they are looking for and chances are high that they will do the same for you.
Get out their, meet people and share! You'll begin to learn more about your market and your fans when you connect with other musicians. All of this will make your life one thousand times easier because instead of raking your brain trying to figure out where to go next, it will come out in the conversations you have with the musicians and supporters you are connecting with.
3. Pick Up The Phone
This just may require you to get out of your comfort zone but doing so will only allow you to grow some more and open up more opportunities for you, your band and your music. Some venues and promoters are only in communication with musicians and their managers via phone so don't miss out on the chance just because someone is not on facebook or will not email you back. A word of caution, don't annoy anyone either. You have to find a common ground with this.
4. Search Online Directories
This is one that is great for the social wallflowers. Although shyness is an obstacle that at some point you will need to address if it is stopping you from progressing, using the internet to find gigs is increasingly becoming easier and easier. This way it is convenient and my social wallflowers will not have to go through face to face conversation jitters (although I challenge you to start a conversation with a stranger everyday to break that fear).
There are more online directories and other resources popping up everyday and for different needs. There are some that venues look for musicians, others where musicians submit requests or you can "swap" a gig with another artist.
Two highly important things to keep in mind before you go scouting out venues and booking gigs is to be honest. You will only paint yourself in a corner and make yourself look bad if you are going over details with a venue or promoter and you promise something that you cannot deliver. Chances are even if you are good, they will not look to call you back. The second thing to keep in mind is to be prepared. Go over your material, rehearse how your show will run and bring whatever it is that you need to bring for your set or show. You'll have so much more piece of mind when you do book your gig if keep things in mind.