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Re: Amateurs — How often do you perform?

I'm purely an amateur, but given that I play in varying formations and conduct/lead a street band of youngsters, I average(!) about two gigs a month, not counting the wind orchestra concerts (at least two seasons/programs a year plus competitions and community performances) because they feel like an entirely different matter to me. I usually don't get paid - and if, it's only symbolically (covering expenses at best - though hardly ever fully). Anyhow, I find playing and performing very rewarding, so I'm quite contented.

M.
 

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Re: Amateurs — How often do you perform?

By my reckoning, that makes you a semiprofessional. At least I'd certainly consider myself a semipro rather than an amateur if I got paid for a gig almost every week.
Depends on your terms of reference I guess. I just got asked to join a band looking to do lots of corporate gigs so that number might go up, but I still only see myself as a fly by the seat of my pants amateur.

I go to every jam session I can to learn from the semi/pros, I'm not at that sort of level, but I do a lot of listening. I think semipro means a certain level of musicianship also
 

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Re: Amateurs — How often do you perform?

That's an interesting arrangement. How big is the band? How big is the employer? I'm not aware of any company-sponsored musical ensembles in my locale, although the total number of musical groups around here is huge (various professional groups, university ensembles, community bands and orchestras, etc.).

I once tried to organize an in-house musical group at a previous employer. It's tough to do much with sax, trumpet, and harmonica.
We have around 20 folks in the band, depending on who shows up. Our company employs about 4 or 5 thousand here in KC, not sure of the number.

Our current lineup is (roughly) 2 saxes, 3 clarinets, a flute, an oboe, 2 french horns, a bass clarinet, a bass horn (not sure what it's called), 4 trumpets, 4 trombones, drums and percussion. No harmonica players that I know of.
 

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Re: Amateurs — How often do you perform?

Strictly an amateur, but the community band roughly plays around 8 to 10 gigs a year while the jazz band is 7 to 10. The jazz band is relatively new, and we see it growing as our audience increases
 

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Re: Amateurs — How often do you perform?

I guess I'm in the amateur camp since I typically only gig around 30-40 times a year. Play in a R&B horn section for my primary band and also sub for other local bands. We mainly do casinos but also pick up a few weddings and outdoor concerts thrown in here and there. We are paid for every gig which is good but this is not my day job plus I also don't teach music on the side so it's more of amateur status for me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
Re: Amateurs — How often do you perform?

I guess I'm in the amateur camp since I typically only gig around 30-40 times a year. Play in a R&B horn section for my primary band and also sub for other local bands. We mainly do casinos but also pick up a few weddings and outdoor concerts thrown in here and there. We are paid for every gig which is good but this is not my day job plus I also don't teach music on the side so it's more of amateur status for me.
In my scheme of things (see OP in thread), you are clearly a semipro.
 

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Re: Amateurs — How often do you perform?

Sorry, I thought the OP ment Amateurs.
I'm still confused. How do 26 gigs rate as amateur instead of sem-pro?

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Re: Amateurs — How often do you perform?

Sorry, I thought the OP ment Amateurs.
Well, I'm the OP, and this thread is indeed primarily about amateurs. I'm just amazed at the 26 gigs/month figure, especially if it goes on from month to month. That would be a busy schedule for a full-time professional musician. For an amateur, who generally would not be getting paid for the gigs, it becomes a matter of fitting all that playing into the rest of one's life. How do you play a gig almost every day of the month and also do whatever the rest of your life consists of? That's my question.
 

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Re: Amateurs — How often do you perform?

Big Band : About 14 gigs a year. Practice once a week. We ask for donation to band for operating costs. Nursing homes $ 40 to band. Non charity gigs as much as $750 to the band. Director and equipment manager get paid.
7 piece Band : About 24 gigs a year. Mostly $20 per musician. Can be as much as $80 per musician. Practice about 8 times a year.
5 piece Straight Ahead Jazz Band : About 8 gigs a year for tips. Practice about 4 times a year.
 

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Amateurs — How often do you perform?

My gigs are 1 hour each 10 min setup 10- 15 min drive. So it takes 2 hours out of my day for $100. The rest of my day is spent fixing horns and hanging out on SOTW. Sometimes I do 2 gigs in one day.
These are assisted living and independent living facilities.
 

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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
Re: Amateurs — How often do you perform?

My gigs are 1 hour each 10 min setup 10- 15 min drive. So it takes 2 hours out of my day for $100. The rest of my day is spent fixing horns and hanging out on SOTW. Sometimes I do 2 gigs in one day.
These are assisted living and independent living facilities.
OK, that makes perfect sense. It just means you're not an amateur. You're a sax tech and a semiprofessional saxophonist. In fact, if you have that gig schedule year-round, I'd say $31,200 annual gross income from playing your horn is plenty to qualify you as a full-fledged pro. I'm sure there are players who consider themselves professional saxophonists who earn less than that from gigging.
 

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Amateurs — How often do you perform?

My gigs are 1 hour each 10 min setup 10- 15 min drive. So it takes 2 hours out of my day for $100. The rest of my day is spent fixing horns and hanging out on SOTW. Sometimes I do 2 gigs in one day.
These are assisted living and independent living facilities.
Is this a solo act or trio or what?
 

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I'm an amateur in two community bands. One is a large community band, which normally performs 5 to 6 times a year, with practices weekly. It is formally supported by my city's arts program (pays stipend for conductor and provides practice room). This band also gets donations and direct payment for an annual July 4th concert, which goes to the bands nonprofit foundation/bank account. The other community band I'm involved with is the Moravian Church band. My church has it's own contingent, but is also (loosely) part of a larger group (entire province) that performs for funerals and special events on a weekly basis (no fees, all volunteer).
 

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I’m not an amateur but I’ll respond anyway because I think others should follow my lead 1 once a week at church. 2. Twice a week at two separate retirement communities. 3 once a month at another place with a jazz quartet. 4 once gigs come back 3 or 4 times a month. All I’m saying with this is that you can make a world of difference with a Bluetooth speaker and pandora and your horn at a retirement community. You will get better. The people will really appreciate you being there and you don’t need to find other musicians or even rehearse.
 

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Pre COVID. 60 shows per year including a weekly house band gig. We hit a couple of festivals each summer.
Post COVID. Not much. It’s going to start up again this summer though.
 

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Pre-covid, maybe a dozen-15 instrumental performances a year (about 2/3 jazz, 1/3 rock), plus 4-6 choral performances. Rehearsals generally a couple of times a week depending on how many groups I’m with. Almost all unpaid, and when I did get paid, i donated the money to a charity. Post-covid...ugh. Nothing. Some of my former bandmates were able to get a regular jazz gig going at a restaurant quite a ways from here; they invited me to sit in sometime, so maybe that will be my first post-covid gig. It’s painful to see all of the clubs that are shuttered and musicians without paying gigs outside of teaching—I hope we all can turn this around as things ease up.
 
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