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Band Gig Booking Agent Questions

Questions To Ask Venue Band Bookers


Gig Booking Agent Questions | Band Booking Questions



Many bands struggle with what to say when contacting a venue for a gig.  You may have already contacted the venue and sent them your music, press kit, or demo CD and the club may like your style of music and now wants to book your band.  Congratulations, you have gotten the gig and now have hopefully a paying gig. If you are not getting paid for the show, do you best to gain much needed exposure for your band and some new fans.

There are a number of questions you should ask either by email, in person, or on the phone once you secure that gig. Many beginner bands forget to ask important questions before a gig. By the time the gig rolls around, you are going to realize that you should have asked some of these important questions ahead of time.   The questions and comments below should help your band get through the confusion around what to ask a venue before playing a gig.

Ask These Questions Before A Band Gig Occurs

  • What is your venues full name, website, phone, and full address?  You will need this information for promotional flyers.  This info is also needed for promoting gigs on social media and your band website.  You may also need the specific address info for directions to the gig.  Put the address in your Navigation Device or check for directions. 
  • What's your budget for a typical show?
  • What day or approx. date you would like us to play? 
  • Show Start Time?
  • Show End Time?
  • How long would you like the band to break between sets?
  • Does the band get a fixed fee at your venue or what is collected at the door?
  • Does your venue have a PA System?  (If not, does your band have one).
  • Do you have someone who runs sound, if the venue does have a PA system?
  • Does your venue pay the sound guy if you have a PA system?  If not, does the band need to pay for their services. 
  • Does your venue have or require lighting? 
  • Do you have someone who runs the lights? if so, Does the band need to pay for their services?
  • Does our band need to supply lighting and someone to run the spot lights?
  • Does your venue promote shows?  ex: on a venue website etc.?
  • If you have a venue website, Can you link to our band website on your events calendar page for your venue.
  • Club / Pub / Restaurant - Ask if food or drinks can be comp'd to your band for free.  It can't hurt to ask, different clubs have different policies on these items.    Would you be ok with this?
  • Downtown Venues only - Do you validate parking charges incurred by the band?

See our tips on Gig Negotiation to help you in this process as well.  A Gig Checklist is also helpful for what to bring to future gigs.  The answers to these questions above make the negotiation process alot easier and there is less back and forth.


Give The Venue Background On A Typical Gig By Your Band

Example of a typical gig:  We typically play 3 sets of songs (if we don't have an opening band).  So for a show without an opening band we play for 3 sets (10 - 15 songs per set).   A typical show may start at 9:30pm and end at 1:30am at a night club.  Of course day time venues would be different times.  We take 2 breaks of about 15 to 20 minutes between sets.  Of course total songs played may vary but we normally have about 40 songs ready to go for a show.  Visit our song list page (link to your website song page) for songs typically played at a show.  If we do have an opener band, usually 2 sets are played with one break in between sets. If your venue requires a formal contract let us know and we will get that to you. 


Startup bands will most likely not need a contract to play a smaller venue.   At the beginning of your career you are not going to have as large of a fan base and you just want to get your foot in the door to gig.   Please keep in mind, if you do not have a contract and you play a show where very little people show up, the venue may cut your verbally agreed to salary.  Is it fair for them to do this?  Probably not, but in their minds your band did not make the venue money by having people there to buy drinks and food. That's the other side of the music business. This gives you the venues perspective on live music.  As you progress in your music career you will want to start having the venue sign a contract with your band.  Media Web Source does not give legal advice for bands, but there are some great Music Law Books that can help newer bands with contracts and music legal issues.