Dear Mr Bitter Liberty - Pls dont devalue local musicians!!


New member
Dear Mr Bitter Liberty
So what do the bands get? do we even get paid? Honestly, i think that your intention to organize gigs is great for us musicians and the music scene in general but i think your business model is nothin new and its the same kind of business model that is killing the music scene.

Sounds to me like the BANDS are doing most of the work here: we are expected to bring in the crowd, and we sell tix to them, and then we entertain the crowd that we bring in. YOU arrange a venue (which isnt really that hard to do...especially if you promise them a crowd, and by making us sell tix you are basically guaranteeing that), do a little coordination with the bands and keep the profits.

I think its only fair that the bands get a share too, since without us, your event is shit. and dude, this shitty business model of yours is gonna do more harm to the music scene here than good, cuz you really bring down the value of bands here by making us play for free...there's lots of people already doing that. Especailly since you are holding auditions and screening the bands to make sure they are fit to play at a club venue, isnt it only fair that the selected bands get paid for their efforts? If you were providing the crowd for the bands, then it wont seem so bad that you expect us to play for free, but you're not even doing that.

so all you bands out there...think hard about what you are doing to your artform? You spend all that time practicing and getting your shit together for what? so ppl can take advantage of you? so other ppl can make money from your hard work? Sounds stupid doesnt it?

So Mr Bitter Liberty, please show some consideration to the bands who will be playing at your gigs, and making money for you!!! I believe that if your intentions about boosting the music scene here are true, then you will know in your heart that what i'm saying is true. Pay the Bands!!!!!!!!

PS: Dude, I'm not trying to be an asshole to you nor do i have any personal grudge against you, but i honestly think that what you are doing is not fair to the bands.
Same brain frequency here.
To tell yer about my experienced dealing with sorry to say PARASITES "NOT INTENDED' for anyone in particular "ITs OFF TOPICS" and i'm just sharing.

Was approach by a band doing original stuff, tastefully in musical sense, but theres an agent creeping in the middle saying we'll get you expose playing in a club and get medias coverage blah blah blah. Wooookeyys, lets get the ball rolling then.
Making my story short we ended in one of the PUB at Clark Quay(Wont mention the name) for our gig, which was suppose to be a FREE JAM NITE btw not known to us, and whats more, the band have to go dutch for the bottle our So Called FairyGod Father ordering. What we get at the end was a Handshake and THANKS FOR JAMMING,NO Media and watcha might call it for the day"schucks", what a sucker i was.

JUST BEWARE Fellow musos brethren thats harnessing skills everyday and end up sucking on fresh air, becoz creepy parasites are ALive and Kikking big time to make us their Tools and be their Fools.
Lets POOL together and Kik their butt for the sakes of ARTS,Talent and MANY MANY Frustrating Hours Spending behind those instruments just to perfect it.
It due to us for God sakes to get payment, dont you think it FAIR!!!!!!!!!!!...???????????????????
Good point there

but the organiser and the bands should maintain a close communication with each other. The organiser should give every detail about the event or gigs to the bands. Most importantly keep the bands updated. The bands too need to be cooperative towards the organiser. If the bands does not agree with the terms and condition that the organiser give, they should pull back right away instead of pulling out last minute. Perhaps the organiser should give some credits or even money as an appreciation to the band.

If the organiser's intention is true of contributing to the local scene, they should try their best to maintain good relationship and TRUST from the bands, even if that means PAYING them.

Musician are human too and bands are not tools to be make use of for easy money. If the bands and the organisers can trust each other and cooporate with each other, I am sure the local scene would benefits. Eventually, bands and organiser can really make real money out of gigging when the local scene grow

unfortunately, I've seen and heard instances of people making use of bands who wish to get exposure for easy money

If anything lacking with this series of gigs would be communication and trust building on BitterLiberty part. If not there would not be people uninformed and unsure about the details or start complaining already.
Bands who are pulling crowds in also have a responsiblity to not devalue themselves. Playing for free is retarded, but whats prevalent is bands expecting less than market-rate for payment just so they get the gig. Thats the common case problem of devaluing bands, organizers and pubs just pay lesser and lesser than whats standard. Stop being whores. Ask any old musician how much they got paid per head for one-off gigs, and also how much they earned per month playing at a regular venue. I think your jaw will drop.
i agree with you 3notesabar and bigtokes2003 , this kind of business model would certainly lower the market rate. Imagine, you dont have to pay the bands, you got a guaranteed number of crowd and all you gotta do is provide a venue... aww man ,,, certainly more cost-effective than pub bands or hiring a pro band. even though more bands got exposure, we get paid lesser and lesser for performance ... sigh :( so sad

Well said Mr bigtokes2003. Lets hope Mr bitterliberty wld change his perception towards such kinda music "business."
I had my reservations early on (see my very early post on the other thread), and I guess I was right. There is some level of exploitation going on here, and it's whether you are willing to timidly accept or no.

As self-respecting musos, we should not bend to the whims of concert organisers who take us for granted - caveats included (as outlined by Bigtokes). Nor turn a blind eye to that.

However, let's all strive to make this scene more happening by drawing up a few ground rules:

1. Pay bands - even a token sum is am important gesture
2. Let's not bankrupt gig organisers - they also have mouths to feed
3. Let's not be freeloaders and clamour only for FREE gigs - be prepared to show your comittment to the local scene by paying a small sum for gigs (=$5 for start) and buy local music

These rules may not apply to bands/artistes that ply the pub circuit for a living.

However, they are intended as a talking point for those of us who are still in school and/or have day jobs, and use gigs as our vehicle to showcase our music.

Could this be the way forward?
We should post all these replies in his thread for the october gig. I had a really bad experience with his organisation and handling of the freedom gig recently.

I can't speak for his motives but the only reason we carried on with the gig last time was simply because we found out too late about the clauses. We could have pulled out then but we were already excited etc so it was a downer to pull out at the last minute.

I wont slam the fella coz if i wanted to i would tell him personally and not in a forum but my views are the same as i guess the majority. Why make bands pay and play? All in the name of a gig? Whats a gig? An audience of 3 at a void deck is a bloody gig. If someone wanted to organise a profit making gig, this model is absolute rubbish. If it was for fun and not the $$ then even worse, its a scam.

HEre are some lyrics ive penned,

"Come audition for a gig, its gonna be good
By the way sign this contract, in case i get sued
Desperation will bring out the fool in people
So im gonna masquearde it real simple
Pay for me , Play for me,
Havent you realised im playing YOU for ME?!"
Here is to bitterliberty (if he is reading this thread).

Local bands wldnt mind bringing down frens & fans to support them, but should there be an expectation for the amount of people coming down? Meaning if there is only 20 people, does it mean the band cant perform? 1st of all you gotta set things strai8 & see why are you organising this gig at all.

Also, I believe fellow musicians wldnt covet for that prize money just to play in a gig, its all about enjoying themselves & showcasing their thang. Frens & fans wldnt mind if they had a pay a reasonable sum of money to watch the bands perform rite?

If you wanna make a profit outta this gig, I guess it wld be a friendly gesture to share part of it with the bands who performed since they haf sweat it out for you to earn those bucks. Maybe a jug of beer or some treats wld suffice, not necessary always monetary form you see.

I believe you love music, so do we. Let's strive to promote the local music scene as being passionate, not money-minded.
This is an example of a major slap in the face for bands who do professional gigs. Not so long ago, bands got PAID to entertain, nowdays it seems we PAY to do the same damn thing.
Here's my 2 cents worth.

I won't comment about bands not getting paid, I think the other guys covered that quite well. I've had my fair share of horror stories, but I guess I've been blessed in being able to avoid most of the deadbeat organisers, or being able to spot a flaky organiser from a mile away.

Apart from being a muso, I'm a show organiser myself and in the past 5 years I've been involved in organizing, planning and coordinating shows, and I have experience in various operational areas of shows - stage management, artiste liason, door security, merch. Why I'm saying this is not to boast about myself but to establish my credibility before making this statement:


Organizers, if you're relying on the band to pull in a crowd for you, you're just being slack. The organizer is responsible for pulling in the crowd, getting publicity out. Any organizer that pushes this responsibility to the bands is failing to be responsible, and if attendance is poor, has no one to blame except himself. Getting the band to give out flyers and publicise through their networks is acceptable as part of a publicity strategy - but it is not a given. YOU - the organizer - are solely responsible for pushing YOUR show.

Respect the musos, and they'll respect you. When they respect you, they'll give you a good show - which is what you're out to do right? You are there to serve the musos, not the other way around. You make them feel good, sound good, meet their needs, all within reasonable limits, they'll give you the best show they've got. Disrespect them and soon you'll find yourself running out of quality musos and bands - you'll find them avoiding you like the plague cos of the bad rep you're gathering for yourself. Think about it.
Azaro said:
paying a small sum for gigs (=$5 for start) and buy local music

+1000. the best ways to support local bands is not by paying them to play at gigs, but buying their stuff!

and imo, most bands i know in singapore play more for passion and dont really demand any money from the organisers.

i mean, if you wanna get paid for playing, play at a pub instead. most happening gigs in singapore are usually the low profiled ones, at least for what ive seen.

and pls, you dont have crowd of 1000s attending gigs, organisers are already doing a great thing by organising a gig for bands to showcase their stuff. there are times where organisers even make a loss. but at the end of the day it's still about passion.