I performed my first private in home party this month. It’s a little different animal than the typical bar or restaurant gig. I wasn’t entirely sure of what to expect. The performance was one element of a unique birthday party. The birthday girl was pregnant, so her husband wanted to have a cool party while avoiding smoky bars. They basically had a house crawl where they moved the party from house to house within their neighborhood. After seeing me play a brunch gig, he thought it would add to the cool factor to have live music at one of the stops. It was a little short notice so I had to figure out pretty quickly what it is I needed to do to be successful.
The 6 P’s
If you’ve never heard of the six P’s look it up in the Urban Dictionary. Basically, it means that you must plan to be successful. With some exceptions, most traditional venues are set up to have music. They usually have a stage or at least a designated area for performers, they’ll have a power source, some may even have a PA and/or sound engineer. Not so at somebody’s house. You must think through all the obstacles that would keep you from being able to perform. For instance, this was an outside gig and the power outlet on the back porch was sketchy. Also, there was a chance or light rain. The porch was covered in case there was a sprinkle and luckily, the weather kept clear until after the show. To combat the power problem, I rented a battery powered PA from Blues Angel Music at a very reasonable rate. The unit I rented was a Roland BA-330 and it worked perfectly. All the bases were covered so there were no logistical surprises the night of the party.
I wanted to be sure I played to the crowd, so I did a novel thing, I asked him what they wanted. At this stop on the crawl they were cooking and eating so he didn’t expect much dancing. He liked the variety I played at the brunch gig and thought that work just fine. This was a social event, not a concert, so I feel I was a “value added” part of the evening, not the center attraction. Not that I was just background music, I just didn’t try to dominate the night. I still interacted and connected with everyone, and took requests, it was just really chilled. Even though the crowd wasn’t necessarily focused on me, I still felt that they were engaged, and they responded to my performance. I can see where this type of gig could be overdone, and you could come off as obnoxious and annoying. The other side of the coin would be to just be background noise and not make any impression on the audience at all. Flexibility and adaptability are crucial to the success of any gig. Tip: Don’t play break up songs at weddings LOL. All in all it was a great night.
My first house gig was both enjoyable and successful. I hope to play more of these shows in the future. Please think of me if you ever want live music at your social events. Keep on the lookout for my upcoming EP, “Gulf Coast Dreaming.” It will be a collection of four original songs and one cover. As the title suggest, there will be an underlying beach/coast theme to the collection. Hope to have some groovy tee shirts soon as well. The best way to know when this all happens is to subscribe to this website.
“Until We Meet Again..."
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Until next time - Keep on Livin' the Dream