Recently in a conversation with Tammy, owner of the Villa Roma in Redwood City, she stated that Dave’s band was the first “Professional” band she had hired since owning the Villa Roma.
“Seriously “ she went on, ” You have no idea how hard it is. I book all these bands and all they want to know is how many free drinks that they get. All they, the other bands, want to do is party and they don’t realize that I have to make a buck. Dave’s band started on time, ended on time and we didn’t have to tell them to turn down once the whole night long!”
Professionalism is the key to what makes Dave and his band different.
Dave’s band is probably the hardest working band that you’ll ever hire in your Bar/NightClub/Restaurant. Some key issues they address are:
1) No Drinking on the job
The band drinks coffee, Ice tea and water. If a customer offers to buy a drink, Dave will take an occasional beer or glass of wine but generally staying sober allows for better playing and more control over volume. It’s also a lot healthier too.
2) Volume Control
Lower volumes from the band allow bartenders and waitresses to hear drink orders. It’s a simple concept that a lot of bands don’t follow. When the client MAKES money, the band will get re-hired quicker and more often.
3) Short Breaks
The band is hired to play music that folks want to hear and dance to. The more they dance, the more they drink. Again, another simple concept that most bands do not adhere to. Breaks are generally 15 to 20 minutes long to keep the momentum on the dance floor going.
4) Starting shows on time
Nothing will clear out you establishment quicker than people sitting around waiting for the band to start playing.
“Dave’s band started on time, ended on time and we didn’t have to tell them to turn down once the whole night long!”
5) Changing the song lists
Dave keeps track of all the set lists and songs that have been played for each client especially the clubs/bars that hire the band once a month or more. The song lists are constantly being changed to keep the show fresh. Dave was once told by a waitress “You know a band is boring when you know that they are going to go on a break by what song they are playing”
Dave has had clients like Moore’s Riverboat in Isleton California that have, in the past, booked the band three nights in a row for four hours each night and the band did not repeat one song !
6) The band you SEE is the band you GET!
Dave has worked hard at keeping his band happy and maintained it, just like his clients. All to often a club owner has complained about hiring what he/she thought was three different bands, only to find out that the “Core” members of each band were actually the same musicians. While Dave has to deal with sick calls, the normal band is 99% constant. The band you see in the YouTube videos is the band you are going to get. Drummer, Greg Windust is a 11 year veteran and Bassist, John Alexander, is working on his sixth year with this project.
Dave brings the very same talent and professionalism to every show weather it’s opening for Greg Allman or playing a night club that seats 50 people. Consistency pays off.
8) The band uses it’s own P.A. System
Unless there are multiple bands on the bill, Dave prefers his own P.A. System to make the music more consistent. If something goes wrong like feedback, Dave knows where to find it in his own system quickly. If there are multiple bands on the same bill then, for the sake of the show’s momentum, Dave and the guys will use the “House” sound system and the “House” sound man.
9) Dave ADVERTISES HIS SHOWS !
Tougher Drunk Driving laws, No smoking laws and a the worst recession since 1929 have caused everyone to cut back. The challenge of drawing paying customers into a night club has never been greater. To address this, Dave does several things:
A) All gigs are advertised within 24 hours of the booking on the “Live Shows” page at his web site.
B) If the client requests, Dave will make up flyers to be posted in the client’s establishment, many times putting them up during the day light hours himself.
C) “Hand Out” flyers are given out at all gigs to advertise the next four to five “Upcoming” shows in the area. So YOUR show gets FREE advertisement at another client’s show
D) The “Outgoing” message at Dave business telephone line is updated weekly to “Plug” that week’s shows. Some of Dave’s fans are not “On Line” and prefer to call in to find out about shows.
E) Dave puts out a weekly newsletter via e-mail. The list of fans currently on the newsletter list is just under 1,000.
F) Social Networking. Dave also has pages that advertise his gigs on the following social networks: Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, Twitter, Peninsula Shops, and Plaxo.
All this still does not guarantee a “Big Draw” in this day and age. You are buying however, one of the HARDEST WORKING BANDS in the San Francisco Bay Area !