How to bring more live music into the scene?

Everything about the swinging music we love to DJ

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gatorgal
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#31 Post by gatorgal » Tue Mar 09, 2004 6:48 pm

BryanC - No worries... you don't come off like an asshole. :) Just throwing another mode of thought out there.

Tina 8)
"I'm here to kick a little DJ a$$!"
~ Foreman on That 70s Show

Toon Town Dave
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#32 Post by Toon Town Dave » Wed Mar 10, 2004 12:49 am

Yeah, Bryan you're the biggest a**hole on the board :wink:

I hear what you're saying. I think it's more than that, bars/clubs are trying to sell booze. Bands, food and even designated driver programs are just loss-leaders to get drinking people in the door, that's the business model. Usually this means cover just offsets the cost of bringing in the band, in many cases probably doesn't cover the real cost.

For live music to succeed with a dance crowd, the business case needs to be different. Cover needs to cover the cost of the band and a little profit. Food and booze (if there is any) is then the loss-leader (hence cheap) to get people to come for the band. This is quite a different paradigm for club owners and few club owners are ballsey enough to go out on a limb and try it. There also aren't a lot of dance people ballsey enough to go out of a limb to do it within the dance community. The efforts of the Yehoodi gang, the C-rex '04 organizers (shameless plug) and others is what will make a difference.

As Dave pointed out if dancers starting hiring more bands, booking agents and promoters will start taking more notice of dancers as a potential audience.

julius
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#33 Post by julius » Wed Mar 10, 2004 12:14 pm

As someone pointed out earlier it's not whether club owners can turn a profit on dancers. They might be able to make more money not having a dance at all.

Opportunity cost:
The true cost of something is what you give up to get it. This includes not only the money spent in buying (or doing) the something, but also the economic benefits (UTILITY) that you did without because you bought (or did) that particular something and thus can no longer buy (or do) something else.

http://www.economist.com/research/Econo ... ?TERM=OECD

There's a reason successful dance nights at bar-venues aren't usually Friday or Saturday nights. The owners have dances when their bars would otherwise be completely dead.

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djstarr
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#34 Post by djstarr » Wed Mar 10, 2004 2:06 pm

Shorty Dave wrote:DJStarr, what a great story! Thanks for sharing.
...................
Seriously, I think that's a big key - making it a real team effort and getting all the "movers and shakers" to come on board.
Thanks Dave! Your Y6A lineup looks great! I'm going to have to bug my boss for more vacation; it would be fun to go see you guys, stay for Monday at Luci's (I've been jonezing for HRO since Harlem) and then go back via Chicago's Exchange.

junglekid
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#35 Post by junglekid » Wed Mar 10, 2004 4:34 pm

You guys really should try coming to London (England). It's really quite normal for bands to play at dances here: not just special annual events like the Savoy Ball (with 2 bands on one night!) but even on a weekly basis at classes at the 100 Club and very regularly at many of the other venues.

The downside to the bands being there every week at the 100 Club is that there are only 10 or so really good bands so often you find yourself stuck with a sucky band that just doesn't swing; then you wish you could have a DJ instead... But in general it's very much part of the scene here, and even on nghts that aren't for dancers there will usually be a good crowd turning up to Lindy Bomb and obstruct the view of the jazz sitters. Most of the bands love us being there - the energy stuff people were talking about earlier is oh so true.

My personal favourites are 3 bands led be the same chap, Pete Long. Echoes of Ellington are a stunning Ellingtonia revival project. 9:20 Deluxe play a very diverse range of swinging music (including driving classics alongside a few oddities like a swinging version of the Star Trek theme...) But my personal favourite is Gillespiana, a Dizzy Gillespie Orchestra revival project - which fair enough isn't always exactly danceable - but which always leaves the walls and floor of any venue blistered and charred... those guys are HOT. :twisted:

Other notables include Basie-style bands, small jump combos, smooth vocal artists and more.

Tempted to visit?

Tom

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djstarr
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#36 Post by djstarr » Wed Mar 10, 2004 5:06 pm

junglekid wrote:The downside to the bands being there every week at the 100 Club is that there are only 10 or so really good bands so often you find yourself stuck with a sucky band that just doesn't swing; then you wish you could have a DJ instead... But in general it's very much part of the scene here, and even on nghts that aren't for dancers there will usually be a good crowd turning up to Lindy Bomb and obstruct the view of the jazz sitters. Most of the bands love us being there - the energy stuff people were talking about earlier is oh so true.
Tom
I was there in Sept, but only from Thurs - Sunday so I missed the swing nights. We did have a very good time at the 100 club listening to the Ukelele Orchestra of Great Britain, and trying very hard not to stare at Sam Neill (the actor) too much - he was there seeing a friend in the orchestra.

All the swingers I've met from London have been great - hopefully I'll make it there for a swing dance one of these days.

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SpuzBal
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#37 Post by SpuzBal » Wed Mar 10, 2004 5:34 pm

junglekid wrote:a swinging version of the Star Trek theme
Now I've heard everything. :)
"In my opinion, out of the ten great guitarists in the world, Django is five of them!" - Rex Stewart

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Greg Avakian
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#38 Post by Greg Avakian » Thu Mar 11, 2004 2:14 pm

It's interesting that most of this conversation revolves around bars that run the dances (hire the bands/collect the money). Correct me if I'm wrong, but I suggest that one of the reasons that Jelly Roll is sucessful is that it is run by dancers who choose the bands and work out an arrangement with the bar.


I am so inspired by Jelly Roll, that I would like to try something similar in Philly. The dancers themselves might not cover all the costs, but I'm thinking of involving the local public radio jazz station and other groups that promote jazz.

If, for instance, I offered to allow these groups to sell tickets and keep half the money in exchange for their promotion, I would attract some people who might come out to hear great jazz, but not dance. I'd make some money from them and also fill the room which would make the event more exciting.

Buying cases of soda for $7-8 and selling bottles for $1 would be an $18 a case profit; I'm not sure that adds up to much, but it's another idea.

I don't know if this is realistic; any thoughts?

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