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By: @internationalo

At what point in your career do you start getting paid shows?

You have artists who actually have built a following, and does have a draw, and you have some who have great music, online following but no draw. A lot of artists have an issue with selling a ticket to their own show, but they feel that they should either get paid, or put on a show at a great time slot. Which poses the question:

If a venue/promoter doesn’t know your draw, why would they pay you, or give you slot you want?

Some artists at some point have to stop and look in the mirror and be honest with yourself. if you have few followers on social media, no draw, why should something be GIVEN to you? Of course an artists feels like them performing at your show, they should be compensated for their efforts, that is understood, but what they don’t realize is their is a starving artist, who will do that same show for free. After this back and forth issue amongst artists and promoters, I have come up with my own theory.

You want to prove you should be paid? Put on a show with your team, and see how many people you can draw. If you can get a small 50-100 person venue and fill it up. Then I think you should be looking to create paid show opportunities. If you can’t, then You still have work to do. Instead of blaming promoters, venues, etc, you have to hold yourself accountable. At the end of the day it’s a BUSINESS. The promoter is looking at who can draw a crowd, and help them earn revenue. If you lie about your draw, its only going to hurt yourself from having future opportunities. Be honest with yourself and others.

Am I against artists selling tickets? No. How else will a venue and promoter know where to place you? You can have 10k twitter followers and not sell one single ticket, and a artists can have 200 followers and sell 60 tickets. Ive seen it happen with my own eyes. So yes, I think artists should sell tickets, this industry is show & prove, and if you want to be given an opportunity, why not work for it?

Now you have promoters that are charging artists to perform. Am I against it? It depends. My factors are:

1. Who’s headlining?

2. How Much Are you charging?

3. What time slot does that give me?

I paid a Texas promoter $500 for one of the artist I use to manage, to perform in San Antonio opening up for Zro. Did I think it was worth it? Yes. In my opinion, it was paid promotion/marketing. Did he gain a following in San Antonio afterwards? Yes. Now paying in the 1k and up for an act, Im not sure if I would pay it. Am I saying it’s bad? no, just depends on the act, and what slot you’re put on.

That part is for you to decide. But as the scope of the industry changes, this business is all about generating revenue, so the entire scope of the business has changed. more things that were attainable for free, costs you now. The age of the internet, and making it easy to be a rapper comes with pros and cons. Over saturation has created companies and businesses to charge acts for things that they normally would not. Why? So they can sort out who’s serious, and who’s not.

If you are an artists with a big following, I do think that a promoter should reach out, and instead of charging, just have you sell tickets. But again, that’s just my opinion.

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