Just finished talking with a tavern owner and supporter of live and live open mics… as a matter of fact if it wasn’t for this venue owner, musicians of this particular local town would need to drive another hour to reach another open mic scene.
Bottom line and a wake up call for us musicians and an insight that marketers have known for many decades… “You do not know what patrons want until you ask them what they want, and then support them with what ‘they’ want!”
Meaning… Don’t think that the venue patrons are attending just to hear your amps cranked, pointing at their ears loud enough to make their conversations turn into a shouting match.
This owner opened up to me ‘big time’! She goes…
“Look, I’m happy to open my establishment up to open mic musicians (and of course pay the house band for its backline) for sure, but, when I see over 50% of my potential buyers of food and drink turn immediately around and leave because they can’t hear themselves think, let alone try to talk over the jammers that are trying to prove how bitch-en they are on stage then, unless they come up with a way to turn it down’ or maybe turn their amps toward themselves and ‘not forward’ and stop thinking they are the center of attention, well maybe it’s time to just shut er’ down!”
side bar: Musicians don’t buy enough drinks or food on their own to pay for the doors to be open.
So the question gets turned on its ear… ?- Maybe some new reasoning needs to be created, busting down the old paradigm. Maybe the new is… ‘listen to the patrons’ and stop trying to be the main attraction and become background to their ‘wants’ (and play as your own gig)!… Unless of course, you ‘are’ the center of attention as a big touring act and they’re paying you the big bucks to see you play… and (sorry) that ain’t a cover band btw!
The old saying… “we ain’t done it that way before” needs to be ‘busted’!
It’s a tough one for us prima-donna musicians, thinking we’re the center of attention.
Let’s find some new ways to jam but make the jam to and within ourselves and let the natural bleed of the freqs hit the audience so that they can both, enjoy their conversations during the music and appreciate our delivery.