It’s been a disappointing day today.
On Wednesday, I received a text from a Birmingham-based promoter, replying to a speculative e-mail I’d sent, offering £100 basic fee for two 45 minute sets this Sunday night. I replied in good faith, asking where and when. I’m not going to turn down a gig if I can get it, and the text suggested there may be more work in future.
A follow up call to the mobile number had me talking to the promoter directly, trying to sell myself over the phone. There appeared to be only two sticking points – I had no photo for the posters, and he insisted I should bring my own P.A.
It took me until Friday morning to get a promotional photo taken and sent over, again calling to make certain he understood it was on the way.
For your amusement, this is the shot. It is the only one of fifteen which didn’t make me look like a danger to myself or society in general.
I went and purchased some equipment and arranged a loan of some amplification. Everything was in place.
So, I texted the promoter yesterday (Saturday) asking for details of the gig – time and place. I’d mentioned on Friday this was what I needed and they promised an e-mail with the booking confirmed.
I sent a text this lunchtime to chase them, and tried to phone. Nothing. Nil. Nada.
So now I’m sat at home, waiting for the call that will never come. I don’t mind the fact I missed out on the gig. I sort of mind paying out for the photo, although I have the necessary permissions to use it in other contexts to promote my music. I’m not that upset about buying the gear I’m going to need anyway.
It does, however, irritate me deeply that there has been no word to say I didn’t have work tonight. There are outlays which are less rewarding and fungible. What if I had needed to pay a childminder or babysitter and been unable to cancel at short notice? How about booking a taxi for those who don’t drive but need to travel with equipment. How exactly do I do that without a definite destination? It means paying the price on the night rather than booking in advance and haggling a decent fee.
I realise that there are times I’ll spend money with no return, but frankly it’s been a bit of a disappointment. A single line of text would have told me I wasn’t needed and settled the matter. At the end of the day, I have nothing but a general agreement by phone. I understand that this doesn’t constitute a contract but telling me it’s not going ahead would surely be basic manners?
== UPDATE Wednesday Sept 26th ==
I have been in touch with the promoter. It appears they had wires crossed at their end and the member of their team covering the weekend wasn’t passed my details.
This little aberration won’t stop me working with them in future, but what I ranted about stands in my opinion. Naturally, when I make this kind of mistake in future, that will also be the other guy’s fault. I have asked someone to fetch me a ladder so I can get down from my high horse.