When I first wrote Grow Your Band’s Audience as a series of magazine articles in 1998, one of the things I discovered was that this animosity between bookers and bands was mostly show. Posturing. Folks acting like that was the way they were supposed to act. Once you make the distinction between what a booker has to do to keep a business afloat and what you might expect them to do to “support local music” (whatever that means), you’d see them in a better light.
Since then, a new subculture of bookers and owners is emerging. A group that walks the talk and puts their livelihood on the line to actively support musicians. When you find folks like this, you’ve got to show them as much love as you can. That’s why I want you to meet Big Daddy from The Nail, just outside Philly. One of my clients plays there quite often, and if every venue were as great to deal with as he is, nobody would need managers or booking agents.