Introducing ‘Behind The Scene’
Editor’s note: Here is the introductory column written by our latest contributor, Al Ostroy. His bio appears below so scan down to take a look. This will be a Q and A format that will focus, as the title suggests, on behind-the-scene issues. So please email your questions to him- firstname.lastname@example.org. His responses will start to run next week.
When I started out I knew absolutely nothing about the music business – I mean NOTHING! All I knew was that there was this band rehearsing next door that I was sure others would like to hear. I read books about the business but most were two hundred pages on record deals and publishing. At the time I wished record deal information actually helped me but when you are first starting out that information is fairly useless. What I wanted was info on how to book a show, how bands are paid, and what the hell "advancing a show" meant.
Since I didn't know anyone in the business there wasn't anyone to ask and even if I had someone to ask I didn't know what to ask. It's hard to be pro when you don't even know what that means. Now 12 years later I look back and shake my head and smile at some of the ways I improvised, wasted time, and got totally burned. I have met many great musicians that don't have an idea on what to do first and next. There are also those of you who, like me, know great musicians and want to help them succeed but don't know where to begin or what to do next. Through your questions and my answers other questions will arise that will help someone else formulate their own questions. I want to thank jambands.com for launching "Behind The Scene" which was created to help you. No question about the music business is too crazy for this forum. So, if you have any question about the music business please email me and I will do my best to answer it and share what has worked for me. If you disagree with my answers please email me with your thoughts. Hopefully we will be able to help someone who is trying to get their music "out there."
Allen is the owner of Great Bay Entertainment Group, Inc. (GBEG), a company that has been offering management, booking, talent buying, and consulting services to musicians and venue owners since 1992. He currently manages the band Strangefolk and his roster has included other bands such as Percy Hill, Reid Genauer and AOD, and Moon Boot Lover, to name a few. In 2002 he created Music Biz 101 Workshop which he teaches at universities across the country. He has provided opportunities for dozens of students to intern with GBEG and helped them launch careers in the music industry.