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What does PDP Productions define as a local band?

Obviously, the definition of what is a local band can be less than clear cut. Here is our definition of what we mean by a local band for the purposes of this document and the shows we do:

Local Band - A Western Massachusetts-based band that is performing, but not headlining, at an upcoming PDP event or a band that wishes to do so.

Show Opportunities

Given this definition of a local band what are the opportunities for local bands to work with PDP Productions? We split them up into three types:

Playing on an all-locals bill

These are a staple of what we do at PDP Productions. We try to promote a sense of community amongst the bands at these shows. Bands working together to draw a crowd is what this is all about. There usually is not a true headliner. Generally the less established local bands open and close for more established bands and smaller regional touring acts. Any payment given to bands is generally split based on draw, length of drive, and professionalism. Ticket sales are not required.

Headliner Support: Opening for a national or regional touring act

First of all, it makes sense to understand how these shows happen. A booking agent who we work with proposes a date or a set of dates. We negotiate a payment setup, which generally budgets for all financial costs of a show (including money for each local support act), confirm, and then work with the agent to book approved support acts. Sometimes these types of shows are self-contained and locals aren't allowed on the bill. When locals are allowed we choose ones that make sense based on draw and musical genre and send them to the agent. Often it is totally the agent's call on who can play.

When you play as headliner support it is important to understand that while your set is obviously important the show is not about you. You have been added to the show in the hopes that your crowd will come out to see you and stick around to see the touring bands who hopefully also drew a crowd. With these shows local band payment is much, much less than the headliners payment and no payments are made if the show loses money. Ticket selling is often required (more about ticket selling below).

Headlining your own show

If your band has progressed to the point where you have a very solid live show and an energized fan base it might be time to talk about booking a headlining show for yourself. This is the one place that as a local band you can make some good money. If you're a band that has a reason to headline a show we split the profits with you heavily weighted in your favor after all expenses have been paid. If you're a trusted local you may even get to pick (and pay) your own support lineup. This allows you to truly reach your targeted audience and have full control. If you have an idea for a show, always feel free to pitch it to us, understanding of course that we have the final say on whether we'll do the show or not.

What are some guidelines you need know about when working with PDP Productions?

Nobody likes rules or somebody telling them what to do. However, the rules below are designed to make sure that each event we do together is a success for all parties. We believe that asking local bands to follow these simple guidelines will allow us to have a great relationship together going forward.

The PDP Productions radius clause

One of the biggest mistakes that bands make these days is playing too often in a certain area. No matter how you fight it venues and promoters have to monetize music to make it feasible to invest money to put on events. If you play a Western Mass gig every weekend your fan base will grow tired of you. So here's the clause:

ALL BANDS WISHING TO PLAY PDP Productions EVENTS MUST KEEP THEIR SCHEDULE CLEAR IN A 30 MILE RADIUS FOR ONE MONTH BEFORE AND AFTER PLAYING A PDP EVENT UNLESS OTHERWISE APPROVED BY PDP Productions. See this map for a picture of the 30 mile area around most of our events.

Here's what that means: If you're playing a show June 14th with us, and you're offered similar gig at another Western Mass venue on May 31st, don't take it. Your crowd will split between the two making each show worse for you and for everyone else involved. However, say a promoter calls and offers you an opening slot for Enter Shikari on June 27 and it's always been your dream to open for Enter Shikari. Before you accept the slot (which frankly you would be dumb not to) please email us and we'll come up with a strategy. Maybe we'll offer a free pair of Enter Shikari tickets as a raffle prize for anyone that comes to our show a few weeks before. We'll buy those tickets, build them into our advertising budget and suddenly our show is packed full of people excited to see your band and maybe get a chance to see Enter Shikari for free.

PDP Productions promotional expectations

If PDP Productions does book our band, what are we expected to do? Isn't it PDP Productions job as the promoter to bring people to the show? We are always amazed, but never surprised when bands tell us that it is exclusively the job of the club or promoter to pack the venue for their appearance. Yes, it is absolutely the job of the promoter to promote. But it's a team effort. Here's what we provide, and what we think that you should be willing to do:

PDP Productions promotional plan for each show:

Listing on online, including Facebook, and a Facebook event (please just one). Flyer design. Facebook event invitations sent to our entire targeted list of friends. Flyers handed out at all local events (ours and otherwise). Color and black-and-white posters hung up at retail establishments throughout Western Massachusetts. Ticket giveaways. Word-of-mouth. Twitter. Facebook statuses of all PDP staff. High school advertisements.

Band expectations for each show:

1. Listing on all internet sites with proper information. Don't be lazy. List addresses, pdpproductions.com as the place to get more info, times, prices. HTML the flyer into your profile, make it your profile photo.
2. Be willing to hand out flyers at area events and make sure you follow through!! If you're in school, pass out flyers at school. Put em in bathrooms, on lunch tables, anywhere that they'd be noticed.
3. Word of mouth. Call all of your fans. Mention our show at your other shows.
4. Invite all of your friends to our Facebook event.
5. Sell tickets if you need to.

THE KEY IS TO BE CREATIVE, START EARLY, AND PEAK AT THE RIGHT TIME! DON'T THINK YOU CAN DO IT ALL IN ONE WEEK! THIS IS JUST THE MINIMUM OF WHAT YOU SHOULD BE DOING!