As an independent musician, live performances play a crucial role in my career. Not only do they allow me to connect with my audience and share my music in a more intimate and interactive setting, but they also provide a valuable source of income and exposure.
For many independent musicians, live performances are an essential part of promoting our music and building our careers. In today's music industry, it can be challenging to get your music heard and to stand out among the thousands of other artists vying for attention. Live performances provide a unique opportunity to showcase your talent and connect with fans in a way that recordings simply can't match.
I have played quite a few live shows to promote my music. Some have been in very small, intimate venues, playing to only a handful of people. Others have been as part of a festival, where you simply rock up, plug in and play.
My most successful show was a record release gig at The Duncairn Centre in Belfast. I needed to pull about 80 people to the show to break even and just about did it. I sold a few CDs on the night, but more importantly, I have a great live EP up on all the usual streaming sites. My favourite track for the night isn't an original composition, but a cover of I can't make you love me. It was a very last-minute choice and if the keyboard player didn't know it, we wouldn't even have tried to include it. There is a link at the bottom for a listen.
But putting on a successful live show isn't always easy. There are many factors to consider, from choosing the right venue and booking the right support acts, to rehearsing and promoting your show. Here are a few tips to help you put on a successful live performance as an independent musician:
Choose the right venue: The venue you choose can have a big impact on the success of your show. Make sure to choose a venue that is suitable for your genre of music and that has a good reputation for hosting live performances.
Rehearse, rehearse, rehearse: Make sure you and your band are well-rehearsed before hitting the stage. A tight and polished performance will impress your audience and make you stand out.
Promote your show: Make sure to promote your show as much as possible in the lead-up to the event. Use social media, email newsletters, and the local press to get the word out and attract as many fans as possible.
Engage with your audience: Live performances are all about connecting with your audience. Make sure to engage with them during your show, whether through banter between songs or by encouraging them to sing along.
Have a backup plan: Things don't always go as planned, so make sure you have a backup plan in case of any technical issues or other unforeseen problems.
Overall, live performances are a crucial part of any independent musician's career. By following these tips and putting on a great show, you can build your audience, connect with fans, and take your career to the next level.