The Importance of a Contract


When you and a club have decided that you and your band are the perfect match, dates are settled on, price is negotiated, the next step is to put all this in writing. This is for the protection of both parties. Some clubs have their own contracts, and some don’t. I have a very basic contract I use when the club does not have one. Points to include in your contract are:

1.) Club address, phone, contact person.

2.) Dates and times band is to perform.

Include set and break lengths. For instance:

“Payday Daddy agrees to play” Friday and Saturday night, Feb 2nd – 3rd, 2002, from 9:00 – 1:30 am… 2 -70 minute sets,, with a 20 minute break in between, followed by a 1 hour and 45 minute set.(A lot of bands do not follow our set lengths, more common are 4 – 45 minute sets with 15 minute breaks in between.) Also note who will provide music will the band is on break.

3.) “Acts of God” clause.

This protects you, and the club if there is a bad storm, flood, fire, or an illness, or something beyond anyone’s control. Neither party will be held in forfeit of the contract if anything bad should happen.

4.) Price.

Make sure to write out the agreed amount as follows. The agreed rate of pay is to be $800.00, Eight Hundred Dollars. This way there is no misunderstanding.

5.) Cancellation clause.

This should read as follows: In the event that “Cancellation of this Contact” is determined, there should be at least a 6-8 week to grace period. This way, the club can’t cancel you a week before your gig because the club owners niece’s cousin’s son that has a band wants to play there next weekend. This also gives you (Hopefully) enough time to re-book that date. And it protects the club from bands that cancel a day before the gig because they got a better offer somewhere else. (By the way, this is a BAD NO-NO, and if you are a band that does this, STOP. Word will get out and no one will hire you.)

6.) Any “Bennies” for the band.

This can include, food, drinks, rooms etc.

7.) Signatures of both yourself or the band’s manager, and the club contact person both printed and signed.

Use carbon paper, or the kind where it will make a duplicate without carbon. You get a copy, and so does the club.

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