Getting more people to your session

Getting more people to your session

Since I have listed our session on the site we have had 2 people come along and join in. However, they didn’t come back next week!. We have a great time and the music is good so I don’t feel this is a reflection on our session.

I have often thought of doing something which will promote the session to the people in our area. The pub is a rural pub and the nearest towns are 10 miles away but I am sure that there would be musicians out there who would like to join in if they knew about it.

Anyone any ideas? The only provisio is that the landlord wouldn’t want to advertise it in the papers as he hasn’t an entertainment licence!

Re: Getting more people to your session

Word of mouth is always your best bet. Go to a bunch of other sessions and events when you can find them and drop a comment or two about your session into casual conversation.

Then, when newcomers turn up, buy them a pint and make them feel welcome. That’s about all you can do.

Re: Getting more people to your session

Have you posted it here? I couldn’t see it.

Re: Getting more people to your session

The Three Salmons I guess. Danny, check Llanman’s history!

Re: Getting more people to your session

oh yeah. Looks nice.

Re: Getting more people to your session

Something I think might encourage people from this board to go along to your session is do what Danny and friends do - provide a weekly or fortnightly comment on how the session went. It really gives you more of a feel for the type of music and craic that’s to be had.

Re: Getting more people to your session

Yeah - I like to think it gets them curious. Also, if you can, make up a webpage - I’ve got mine on AOL. All this constitutes advertising though I guess. So maybe persuade the governor to get a license. And also post your session on other boards. I’ve made up posters recently to hand in to local libraries, community centres, bookshops, health food shops, Irish shops and so on…but I haven’t got round to distributing them yet! Maybe this weekend…

Re: Getting more people to your session

The hardest message to get across is "Everybody welcome", especially if that’s not what you really mean. More is not necessarily better. 🙂

Re: Getting more people to your session

Also - Monday night? No chance of changing it to say, thurs, fri, sat or sunday? they are generally better nights, pubwise.

Re: Getting more people to your session

Good to hear that low turnout is actually a problem some places. We set a record for our local sesh last night—24 musicians ready to play and looking for spare seats. It worked out okay because it was also discount growler night (the micro brewery sells their beer in refillable 2 litre jugs—"growler"—and offers a discount several times a month. All the loyal fans of their beer show up for that) so it was a rowdy good time. Some of us adjourned later for tunes in a quieter pub.

Llanman, something that works for us is to send out a weekly email "Session News" that lets the locals (and some people in the next town over) know that the session is on. We have a bout 50 people on our email list. I suppose you could do the same thing by phone, but it would take way more time. I built the email list by simply asking anyone who sits in with us for their email address, and I add them to the listserve.

Posted .

Re: Getting more people to your session

Hi Llanman, I did drop in at the Three Salmons a while back. I was a bit early and you hadn’t turned up. Just to make sure that I’d got the right day, I asked the Landlord if there was going to be music and he mumbled "yeah, if you can call it that". Now I’ve played in enough pubs to know that the opinions of the punters/ landlord is no indication as to the quality of the session, but it did put me off the place as a venue. Is that just his way and he likes it really?

Re: Getting more people to your session

Jim Williams, I took a listen to the mp3 on your website - what a tenor banjo player! Amazing stuff! And yes, your Eko sound sweet.

Do you play professionally?

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Re: Getting more people to your session

Tell people that piano accordions, Casio keyboards, bongos, triangles, shaky eggs, spoons, forks, knives and salt cellars are all welcome.

Re: Getting more people to your session

Thank you grego. No I don’t play professionally.

Re: Getting more people to your session

I’m a bit confused as to why the owner would have a problem with billing it as entertainment. Our sessions are of course very open and anyone who wants to sit and listen is welcome to - same with musicians. But we play because we enjoy playing - not because we’re getting payed for it or because it’s billed as any sort of entertainment that night for the pub ya know?

So I’d ask the guy if he really understands what it means to have a true session, and no just a "tourist attraction". He should have no problems promoting the place and it’s atmosphere as a whole then - including the ITM.

Re: Getting more people to your session

Most pubs won’t cross the big composers’ organizations (ASCAP, BMI, forgotten offhand what the European versions are). We had a small session at a local round here who didn’t have an ASCAP/BMI license and it was shut down when some wretch called ASCAP and BMI and told them our pub was having live music. Never mind that we didn’t play any of the music covered under their auspices, they threatened to sue the pub no matter what, and the pub owner, who didn’t have the money to cover the license and the time, money, or energy to deal with the essentially frivolous lawsuit. So now BMI/ASCAP has a pub owner who still doesn’t pay anything to them, the pub doesn’t have us playing there anymore, and we don’t have our sweet little session any longer. Way to go, whoever you were, you lying stoolie.

Re: Getting more people to your session

I heard this was going on around here…Are you in S.F., Zina?

Justine

Re: Getting more people to your session

Nope, Denver, Colorado, Justine. BMI and ASCAP employ spotters who do nothing but this sort of thing. I have a musician friend who did it for a bit, having bought the company line, but once he realized what he was actually doing, decided he couldn’t do it anymore…

Re: Getting more people to your session

They have to proove that there was an actual copyright infringement of non public domain songs or tunes for anything to hold up in court. It only gets grey when you have cover bands and the like…or a juke box type thing.

If there was really no infringement, there is no case, and ASCAP and the rest know it. The owner can turn right around and sue them for libel or any number of other types of suits I would imagine.

At any rate, doo all you can to encourage people to listen, as well as play. The tradition dies if interest in it dies. Do your part to keep it going - sounds like you’ve got a great start!

Re: Getting more people to your session

u_craic, you might want to slip over to IRTR*D-L and read the recent thread on this subject, entitled "Music Police". I believe Roger Landes makes a convincing case that ASCAP/BMI have you just where they want you, proof or no proof.

https://listserv.heanet.ie/irtrad-l.html

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Getting more people to your session - thanks for the advice

Thanks everyone for the advice

Sounds a good idea to post info about what is happening at the session. Will do

Sorry the landord put you off Jim - he is a bit like that - we cant be that bad as he sat up until 12 last Monday listening to us!

I think I will go ahead with the idea of telling everyone I know about the session as I am sure some seed will fall on fertile ground.

BTW we have sessions at the Three Salmons at Cross Ash, near Abergavenny, Wales on Monday nights (sorry it isnt a better night but we keep the pub going on a quiet night). We need more musicians - next Monday Barrie can’t make it so it will be me a Dick unless we get some support!

Re: Getting more people to your session

FREE BEER

Re: Getting more people to your session

After all, he was innocent

Re: Getting more people to your session

My friends, please stop calling me "Celi-Chippy" ya bassas.

Re: Getting more people to your session

"u_craic, you might want to slip over to IRTR*D-L and read the recent thread on this subject, entitled "Music Police". I believe Roger Landes makes a convincing case that ASCAP/BMI have you just where they want you, proof or no proof."
# Posted on Friday, November 26th 2004 by Gzeg

I don’t buy much of what is posted there for a number of reasons and so don’t watch that board anymore to be honest. But anyone can convince away - if the tune is public domain, it’s public domain. They can no more try to sue you for humming a gregorian chant than they can for playing traditional session tunes. Now if you play a tune from Riverdance, or start in on sets from the latest Lúnasa album played verbatim, then you are getting into thicker mud.

Re: Getting more people to your session

sorry - forgot to add: If people aren’t paying to get in to hear the music, and no one is getting paid to play it - you’re still fine. It’s when other artists or venues (including juke boxes and napsters) get money for sharing or performing someone else’s song or tune that the recording guys get steamed the most.

Re: Getting more people to your session

Try a friendly chat with any newcomers and making them fell welcome unlike some sessions where you feel like a gatecrasher at somebodies private party i.e. they ignore you completly. Take telephone numbers and if they fail to show up after few weeks ring them and let them know th’ve been missed.