Gas Prices and The Gigging Musician

Gas Price Chat

   Let’s face it, gas prices are taking a heavy toll on every industry in the U.S.. Musicians are no better off than any other travelling worker. I’ve been reading about a lot of music groups having to turn down gigs just because the amount of travel involved made it impossible to make any profit on a gig.

   The problem we face in terms of gas prices is all the equipment we have to haul. That makes it pretty much impossible for a band to carpool together. In my band it takes 4 vehicles to get everything to a show. Most of our gigs are within 45 miles of our house but one of our members always has to travel 100 miles or more to get to a gig. Needless to say, gas costs really add up when you’re having to travel that far.

   A couple weeks ago we played a gig that was about 170 miles away. They paid us $1000 for two nights. We did the math and figured that with 4 vehicles averaging 20 MPG that fuel costs would be around $260. That’s a little over 1\4 of our entire weekend take spent on gas. We also had to buy meals and pay our agent %10. So we ended up making about $125 for two nights of working 6 hour a night.

  We love to play so we take as many gigs as we can even though we’re not making as much money as we used to. Soon we may be turning down those out of town gigs like a lot of other bands are having to do right now.

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Author: Live Musician Central

My name is Matt Rushton. I have been playing in bands for 27 years. I've been playing professionally for 21 years. I have opened for Sheryl Crow, Barenaked Ladies, Joan Jett, Little River Band, and Quiet Riot.

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