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Fill in (Gun For Hire) Gigs given- Then taken away...

INeedDrumLessons

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I'm with Edward here.

I have a regular band and they keep me busy enough.
I have another band that plays 20+ weekends a year and most are fly-in dates that I sub for every 6/8 weeks since gigs have been coming back.

I've had their regular drummer do this multiple times where he states he's not available and then becomes available later on. Our shared Google Calendar has "maybe" availability once or twice a month for him.

When I get an offer where their regular drummer has "maybe" availability, I give them a drop dead date.
By X date I need the band to have committed to who is playing the gig.
I got burned once with this where I took the gig, denied another gig and then the OG drummer decided to be available. I lost money, I didn't take it personally but that enacted my drop dead date from there on out.

Most people I think see that as reasonable. Gigs out here are book 90 days in advance, so my drop dead date is typically that. I'm respectful but also don't want to lose opportunity in my regular band to assist another band. At the end of the day the sub is the one doing the favor in my eyes.
So you think he should force them to play with him because of what, principalities? I bet that would be a fun gig for the rest of the band.
 

Tony_H

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So you think he should force them to play with him because of what, principalities? I bet that would be a fun gig for the rest of the band.
Literally what my band asked me. So you think you can play? We will tell (name) that we don't need him.

I chose to keep that relationship on good terms because he is a great fill-in for me, but the rest of the band wasn't thinking that way.
 

cribbon

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Once you were promised the gig it should be yours even if the regular drummer changes his mind. They were wrong.
Vinnie Colaiuta reportedly auditioned and got a gig with Jeff Beck way back when (late 80s or early 90s) because Jeff's regular drummer at the time (Simon Phillips) had already booked that particular date with Pete Townsend. When Pete's gig was cancelled, Simon called Jeff and got that date back. It happens.
 

DrummBumm89

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So you think he should force them to play with him because of what, principalities? I bet that would be a fun gig for the rest of the band.
I don't think I fully understand your context here.

Flip the scenario around. Band needs a sub. Sub takes the gig. Days before the gig Sub cancels because their other band now has a gig.
I think that is unprofessional & looks bad. I certainly wouldn't do that in my band(s)

OP has played with this band before. If he's good enough to get a call-back I assume it would be a fun gig for the band since he's proven his worth. if it is a chore to use the sub, perhaps they should be auditioning other subs.
In my case I'm their #2 drummer but it's not because of a talent-gap between me and their main drummer. I don't/can't be on the road 20 weekends a year.

Some of these gigs also require preparation. If you have two months notice for a gig and are doing the prep work to get the rug pulled out from under you days before it would absolutely take an emotional toll after a time or two.

For these reasons, this is why I have a Go/No-Go date with any sub gigs.
 
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notINtheband

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I’ve never liked doing sub gigs. I’ve done a few, but only when the pay was really good or the band contained friends. Never had a bad experience like the OP but still I prefer gigs with one of my 2 regular bands just because I don’t enjoy playing less familiar material.
Sure we can all learn it and get through it and play solid. But I have so much more fun with material I know inside and out along with the other players.
That synergy is just more common in familiar situations compared to subs.

The only time I was ever cut out of a sub gig, the band that cut me offered to pay me. I declined and said no hard feelings. The very next weekend they called me back and asked me to join their group as they had fired their original (the one that became available again and cost me the gig).
I’ve been their drummer for over a year now and we also back up another artist as our second band. Best gig I’ve ever had and it came in part as a result of my flexibility when they cancelled on me.

We all laugh about it now and they even comment they wish they had called me even earlier. Lol
 

pgm554

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Was given 3 good gigs for a Tribute band that I have filled in for 2-3 times a year for the past 4 years. I play with my regular band but always like playing with these guys as the band is very good. I got a call today that all three gigs that they gave to me 2 weeks ago for end of August are being taken back because their drummer no longer has to leave town for business. This happened once about three years ago and it was for one gig and I shrugged it off- now it's happening again and it's 3 gigs....I'm mad and dissapointed. Has anyone had this happen to them?
Happens to everybody.
Colaiuta got the Jeff Beck gig a few years back when Simon Phillips was committed to Pete Townsend.
That tour fell through and it was good bye Vinnie ,hello Simon.
 
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INeedDrumLessons

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I don't think I fully understand your context here.

Flip the scenario around. Band needs a sub. Sub takes the gig. Days before the gig Sub cancels th because his other band now has a gig.
I think that is unprofessional & looks bad. I certainly wouldn't do that in my band(s)

OP has played with this band before. If he's good enough to get a call-back I assume it would be a fun gig for the band since he's proven his worth. if it is a chore to use the sub, perhaps they should be auditioning other subs.
In my case I'm their #2 drummer but it's not because of a talent-gap between me and their main drummer. I don't/can't be on the road 20 weekends a year.

Some of these gigs also require preparation. If you have two months notice for a gig and are doing the prep work to get the rug pulled out from under you days before it would absolutely take an emotional toll after a time or two.

For these reasons, this is why I have a Go/No-Go date with any sub gigs.
The context is, if they wanted to play with him don’t you think they would have? Sounds to me like they wanted to play with #1.

Your post stated you agreed with Edward, and Edward basically stated they should be forced to play with #2 because that’s what they agreed to. Doesn’t seem like it’s #2’s choice in the matter.
 

el_37

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How is giving someone 10 days notice for the first gig and more than 10 days for the other 2 unprofessional? The OP was hired to sub and they now don't need a sub and there is a reasonable amount of time that was given. Also the OP does not mention if he in fact turned down any other gigs after marking these dates on his schedule. Even then I am not sure it is unprofessional given the time frame.

Stuff happens and think about it if roles were reversed- guys would be posting on here "its your band so tell that sub to go pound sand".

When I was a freelancer- gigs got canceled on me all the time. Sometimes the day of. It is just the way things work out. Would I work with someone again who consistently cancels the day before? Most likely no- but 10 days in advance is by no means a last minute cancelation- people resign from full time jobs with less notice every day.
 

drums1225

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Yep. Earlier this year, I was pulled from a 5 show run less than a month out. The dates had been on my calendar for months in advance, and I had blocked my own band's calendar, and had already booked my plane tickets, at the manager/agent's request. They obviously reimbursed me for the flights, and the manager offered me full pay, but I declined. He said, "Let me at least pay you half", which I accepted.

As a bandleader and a sideman, I've been on both sides of the issue. I can totally understand wanting your "A" guys, all the time, whenever possible; I certainly do. Even when your subs are as good as the core members, the "muscle memory" and effortlessness of the show isn't quite the same. Basically, when your subs block out the date(s) on their calendars (especially when they're full time musicians) it's not cool to pull the dates from them late in the game, when they're unlikely to book something else. Whether you end up doing it or not is a different issue, but it's definitely not cool.
 

LarryJ

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I got a call today that all three gigs that they gave to me 2 weeks ago for end of August are being taken back because their drummer no longer has to leave town for business.

Happened to me but they didn't even bother calling me. I found out when I called them a week before to get final details. To make matters worse, I had turned down a better paying gig because of my commitment to them.

This stuff happens so I wasn't really mad, but I have declined other offers from them and am more than happy to relate my experience to other musicians if asked about them.
 

CSR

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I’d love to see a “kill fee”: 50% of the promised money if the gig has to be canceled for any reason. That would include weather, different drummer, venue cancellation, etc. If you have turned down another gig because you were already booked, and then have the booked gig dissolve, I think you still should be paid something for reserving that date. I know I’m dreaming…
 

avedisschwinn

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The gigs were for August 28th and 29th and Sept. 2nd.......what if my main band got a last minute pick up gig on any one of those days or someone else offered me a gig and I turned it down?....The band leader notified me today.
I have a guitar player friend who works all the time. His rule of thumb is that he will let this sort of thing go if he didn't turn down gigs or make other life decisions around it.... but otherwise he asks "What is the buyout?" He assumes he will get 50% and he gets it.
 


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