Live Performance Contracts: the Booking Agreement

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If you have a band, you probably do live shows.  You may not do them all the time, or you may be out almost every night playing at a club or concert, but either way, you should consider a written contract for each performance.  The contract can be very basic, essentially stating that the club is going to pay you “x” amount and you are going to “y” songs.  This would bind both you and the club owner to paying and playing what was originally discussed.  That said, most performances are more elaborate than that, and have many more facets and it would be wise for you to add a few other parts to that contract.

Obviously the contract should have the signatures of both parties on it.  This binds them both to the conditions set up.  Now that doesn't mean that the whole band needs to sign the contract.  Normally, depending on the business license you have, only one person in the band, or a manager need to sign the contract in order for it to be binding for the entire band.

In order for the contract to be worth anything, it needs to be specific.  A non-specific contract will leave room for debates and fighting later.  This means that you need to specify how long the band must play.  This can be a number of songs or a time frame.  If you don't do this, the club owner may not feel as though you played enough when you've finished and could try and refuse to pay the agreed upon fee . . . read more

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