Top 5 Reasons Not to Be a Concert Promoter

Categories: Music Bidness

Nas Damien Marley Marco Torres.jpg
Photo by Marco Torres
Promoting a Nas show like this one could cost you more than just money.
Have you ever dreamed of promoting your own shows? I'll bet you've even sat around at times plotting out your own bills, dreaming of how awesome it would be to see an all-star line-up of, let's say, Poison, Ratt, Tesla, WASP, White Lion, and Cinderella. And while that sounds absolutely horrific, I'm sure other people have done the same thing and had better ideas

But being a concert promoter is hard work. It can even be threatening to your life. It's not a job for the weak at heart and it's not nearly as easy as it looks. See, you have to deal with not only satisfying your whims, but satisfying the whims of both artists and their fans.

That's a whole lot of people to make happy all at once. Not everyone can manage that and in these specific cases I bring up to crush your dreams, even experienced promoters can run into some serious snags.

DJ Shadow Jim Bricker.JPG
Photo by Jim Bricker
5. DJ Shadow Being "Too Future"
This recent incident occurred when DJ Shadow was playing a show in Miami. Shadow got just a short time into his set when someone came up and told him that he had to leave -- because the music he was playing was "too future" for the crowd.

As you can imagine, the audience was pretty upset, not at DJ Shadow but at the organizers of the show for kicking him off stage. Since this got picked up in the media, I don't expect many Miami residents will call on the Mansion club in the future. Bad publicity is just one more thing you have to worry about when promoting a show like this.

Danzig Brubaker.jpg
Photo by Marc Brubaker
4. Danzig and His French Onion Soup
Perhaps you remember this one from 2011. One of that year's major Fun Fun Fun Fest draws was Danzig, performing a three-part set consisting of one-third Danzig, one-third Misfits and one-third Samhain. Well, it didn't happen, save for a short Danzig set.

Behind the scenes, Danzig had been throwing fits all day, off-and-on claiming he wasn't going to play at all, complaining about having a cold and the bad weather, complaining about his set time and the stage, and ultimately demanding that the promoters bring him some french onion soup and a chicken sandwich from Wendy's.

When he did play, he was late and the promoters had to shut down the show before he got to finish. Then he tried to incite a riot. Imagine you were the person who had to deal with Danzig's shit all day, then had to tell fans they weren't going to hear him play any Misfits material, then had to deal with a potential riot. You'd be about ready to call it a day on running concerts.

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Or you can do like Houston's JETSPEED - advertise Nazareth, while Nazareth are actually out touring Russia at the same time while you actually got some guy that was in Nazareth from say '78 until '92 and is not an original member but tours as Nazareth while in litigation with original band.

Then pull a stunt at the box office like you're running out of tickets, hide the fact up until last minute that he's not making the show, then stick the crowd with a third rate cover band instead.


So what's the lesson here kids? Live rap SUX and rappers are rotten people.


I went to the Danzig show at Fun Fun Fun Fest. I can assure you that nobody in the crowd was pissed at the promoters. That pudgy little bastard wasted everybody's time playing his Danzig shit when everybody really wanted the Misfits. My buddy and I actually walked away before his little set was even over, and almost saved our night by catching the end of the Public Enemy show. I'm still pissed that we decided to skip that one for Danzig.

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