One of the most thrilling aspects of being a musician is performing in front of an audience. But when you're just starting out, finding gigs might feel like a bit of a dark art. Nothing beats the rush of performing live, especially when you can see the audience loving you.
It isn't always simple to have your music recognized, but if you follow these straightforward suggestions, you'll be well on your way to performing at one of the best venues in the nation or maybe the globe someday.
Rehearse, Rehearse, Then Rehearse Some More
Just because you have great aspirations doesn't mean your show will be amazing. Don't rush to secure a gig before you are ready. There will be many unknown factors at your debut performance: butterflies, attendance-related jitters, stage-specific anxiety, etc.
Although it may seem apparent, too many artists approach bookers before they are prepared for a show. It's essential to perfect your skill before ever considering taking the stage, whether you're a solo artist or part of a band, playing covers or your own songs. You only have one chance to make a good first impression; the only way to achieve that is to practice.
Make a Demo
The key to landing a gig is proving that you can work around their schedule and in their venue, so the better your demo, the more likely it is that you will perform there. Generally, as a musician, you should always have something similar ready because you never know who you could run into.
It's important to note that the music business has advanced beyond CDs and demo cassettes. If you're trying to persuade someone to listen to your music for the first time, they're more likely to click a link to your music online than they are to dig their CD or cassette player out of the attic. Some musicians still enjoy promoting their new music this way, but make sure you realize the limitations before you go this route.
Make New Connections and Use The Ones You Have Established
We are certain that you are surrounded by many others who work in the same music industry as you, including artists, bands, booking agents, and venue employees you know.
Because networking is so important in this field, you should contact influential people to see if they can help you land your first job. They may advise you on how to be ready for your first performance, or at the very least; they can offer you some comments on your demos before you send them to a booking agency or venue. You never know who that one person may know, so use these relationships as a strategy to break into the field and make a good first impression.
Find out if any music networking events are taking place in your city. As an alternative, you can naturally expand your creative network. Ask for feedback on your demos from artists you respect. You may also talk to others when you're out and about at live music events or in the recording studio.
When networking, it's better to focus on musicians and other influencers that share your interests in music since they may provide you with more pertinent advice to your situation.
Make a Quality Music Video
Making a music video is a terrific method to get your band some internet notice. It's also a terrific method for promoters to get a taste of your performing style, which is crucial for finally landing a gig. After all, attending a concert involves more than just listening to music.
When you contact venues, a decent live video handles the labor-intensive tasks. Buyers of talent can usually determine right away if they want to hire you or not.
Of course, since you haven't performed that first concert, you probably don't have a " live " video in front of a crowd yet. But in your practice area, you may still record live videos. Even an iPhone video can be successful if done correctly.
A talent buyer can typically detect if your songs are intriguing and your voice is in tune even with a low-budget live performance. If you're unsure if you satisfy those requirements, keep practicing and give another live video a go a few weeks or months from now to see how much you have improved.
Get Into Support Gigs
Believe us when we say that being the opening act for a bigger artist is worth every minute you spend on stage. You will get the opportunity to perform live in front of an audience, and those who come to see the main act will also get to know you.
Every so often, spend some time looking through the event calendars of the locations you wish to work with to find performances that will enhance your sound. Hit them up if you notice anything intriguing! To find out whether local bands need opening acts or a backup in case their opener cancels, you can message some local artists or inquire directly with the venues.
Be On Social Media
These days, having a social media presence is crucial, and people are always seeking new bands to listen to online. Just take a look at TikTok. Many emerging artists are making their mark there because they understand they can quickly connect with a large audience.
Create a current, relevant account that others can follow, and thoroughly consider the influence you want to have online. Your fan base will expand after you have followers and a location for your first performance. At that point, you can invite them via social media.
Additionally, you can post your music on social media, giving you a better sense of what your fans enjoy or dislike. After that, you'll know more about the music you should play for your first performance.
Getting your first gig can be hard, but the important part is ensuring you are prepared, have great music, and do some research before being absolutely relentless in your search for your first gig. Take the time you have now to solidify your sales pitch and build your relationships so when the opportunity finally comes, you are ready for it!