Gig Number Three is the Magic One! – GigGab 127

The number 3 in lightsBoth Paul and Dave had their third gigs with replacement drummers in their respective bands… and they both found that’s the gig when a little bit of magic begins to happen. Hear them tell their tales and dig into the nuts and bolts of it all. Dave also had an experience and revelation with recreational pot at his gig… and it’s not at all like we just made it sound! You’ll have to listen to learn more about that. Then it’s time to answer a listener email about dealing with the ethics and politics of being in the music business… and Dave’s got some recent perspective of his own to share, too. Press play and enjoy, folks. This one’s chock-full of goodness!


  • 00:00:00 GigGab 127 – Monday, August 14, 2017
  • 00:01:25 Paul’s Third Sub-drummer Gig
  • 00:02:30 Charity Gigs are often the best gigs
  • 00:07:20 Dave’s Third Gig with Uptown Celebration
  • 00:08:12 Recreational Pot brings the dancers back!
  • 00:11:20 How to handle a gig after a great rehearsal
  • 00:13:25 Riding the ebb and flow of your band’s successes
  • 00:16:23 Song choices are important
  • 00:22:30 Cross-generational songs
  • 00:23:27 Play the hits!
  • 00:26:26 Don’t Bore Us with Filler!
  • 00:27:17 Email from Mr X: Dealing with Unethical Businesspeople
  • 00:32:07 Creative scenes are both incestuous and competitive
  • 00:40:53 Tweaking Your Own BS Meter
  • 00:43:28 GG Outtro

Always Be … Prepared (and Performing… and Nice!) – GigGab 126

broken guitar with caption "Always Be Prepared (and performing)"Listener Timothy shares a story that rings true with us and our motto: Always Be Performing! Before we get to that, though, there’s a conversation about another ABP motto: Always Be Prepared. And that doesn’t just apply to equipment – though it’s important there, too – it applies to people. Things just don’t always work out as expected, and that’s a lesson both Paul and Dave seem to continue to have to learn. Their advice: learn from them so you don’t have to make the same mistakes yourself. To do that is easy: just press play and enjoy!


  • 00:00:00 GigGab 126 – Monday, August 7, 2017
  • 00:01:09 Injuries hurt
  • 00:01:47 Sub drummer
  • 00:03:14 Finding the saturation point of your band
  • 00:04:52 The variables involved in gigging
  • 00:06:29 Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans
  • 00:07:43 Always Be … Prepared
  • 00:11:04 Timothy-Always Be Performing
  • 00:14:14 Weeknight Gig-hearsals
  • 00:15:43 Pride & Joy played Los Gatos in the Park
  • 00:16:41 Find the right songs for your band AND your crowd
  • 00:18:59 Dealing with an aggressive band
  • 00:24:29 Be mindful of your local reputation
  • 00:28:08 Shoutout to Sage!
  • 00:29:00 GG Outtro

Keeping Your Audience Engaged – GigGab 125

Every local band shares at least one concern: keeping your show fresh for your audience. The real question is, how do you do it? Do you take requests? Do you mix up your setlist? Do you ask the audience to become part of your show?

There’s no right or wrong answer here, but one thing’s for sure: you need to answer this question. Dave and Paul have some ideas, too… and that’s what makes this a GigGab! Download, press play, and enjoy.


  • 00:00:00 GigGab 125 – Monday, July 31, 2017
  • 00:01:16 Phish’s Baker’s Dozen
  • 00:06:31 How can a cover band keep things fresh for the same audience?
  • 00:07:27 35th Anniversary of “Eddie and the Cruisers
  • 00:12:34 Elasticity of money… as it applies to cover bands.
  • 00:15:45 Targeting the same people over and over again
  • 00:17:29 Springsteen’s on-the-fly covers
  • 00:25:12 Something For Joey
  • 00:28:33 As a band, why are you different?
  • 00:32:56 Keeping the show the same can work
  • 00:34:51 Coordinating a multi-band bill
  • 00:37:39 GG Outtro

Cancelations and Renegotiations – GigGab 124

Sometimes you have to cancel a gig. It happens. How do you deal with it? Your two favorite weekend warriors talk through the realities associated with it. Then it’s time to talk about renegotiating an existing gig. How can you do it? What’s the protocol? Is it OK? Paul and Dave muse on this and discover some answers for you! But first… it’s about tasty harmonies (literally) and hydration. Press play and enjoy!


  • 00:00:00 GigGab 124 – Monday, July 24, 2017
  • 00:00:59 Paul’s now-annual All-Star gig
  • 00:03:53 Acoustic trio
  • 00:06:14 Mad Haus!
  • 00:09:20 Players Play!
  • 00:11:00 Managing hydration
  • 00:12:26 Canceling a gig
  • 00:16:48 You’re running a business
  • 00:19:23 Dave unintentionally furthers the stereotypical lazy musician!
  • 00:20:38 Your word is part of your brand
  • 00:21:26 The flipside of making your commitment
  • 00:26:40 GigGab’s first baseball analogy
  • 00:29:34 Honor your commitments … and Renegotiate!
  • 00:31:55 Fair is fair, but work together for mutual benefit.
  • 00:33:47 GG 124 Outtro

Camaraderie Culture & Gig-Specific Strategies – GigGab 123

As a musician, there are always so many things to learn and not all of them are music-related. How much camaraderie do you think you have as a band? How much do you help each other out? Paul and Dave wade into those waters here today and then surf over to discussing gig-specific strategies for setlists and pacing. Finally, it’s a revisit of the Klingon discussion… there were a few things left to say, it seems! Download, press play, and enjoy!


  • 00:00:00 GigGab 123 – Monday, July 17, 2017
  • 00:00:54 Playing in the heat… and bringing the heat!
  • 00:02:57 What to do when the stage clock says “you’re finished!”
  • 00:03:59 Manage your hydration
  • 00:05:34 Quick Tip: Learn how to project
  • 00:07:34 Camaraderie Culture
  • 00:10:22 Gig-specific strategy
  • 00:12:50 Tailored setlists
  • 00:17:35 We’re not saving lives here
  • 00:17:52 Klingons Redux
  • 00:20:08 Fans vs. Scene vs. Friends
  • 00:26:52 The live music fan scene
  • 00:27:42 Sometimes that stranger is a long-awaited friend
  • 00:30:55 …but only if they’re truly a friend
  • 00:33:20 GG Outtro

Those Pesky Klingons – GigGab 122

Klingon band, bomwI’pu’One of the best things that can happen to your band – original or cover – is to gain devoted fans. They’re there at every gig, they are your best form of word-of-mouth promotion, and they make you feel like the rock star you are. But there’s a downside to them, sometimes right at the start. Sometimes that manifests itself before you’ve ever met… and they become KLINGONS!

Listen to Paul and Dave talk through all of this, and how they deal with it. Press play, sit back, and enjoy!


  • 00:00:00 GigGab 122 – Monday, July 10, 2017
  • 00:00:52 Gigging is like Golfing
  • 00:03:00 When you don’t have to deal… it’s Nirvana
  • 00:04:23 The opening act for the fireworks
  • 00:06:23 The Gigging Automoton
  • 00:08:52 When you DO have to deal… where is the limit?
  • 00:10:03 Kevin-How to Handle Those Pesky Klingons!
  • 00:12:15 Comfort vs. Affability
  • 00:15:09 “I can’t pretend a stranger is a long-awaited friend”
  • 00:17:03 Dealing with it realistically, respectfully
  • 00:20:09 The fan… is not a friend
  • 00:21:59 Magic Phrases
    • “I have a system”
    • “I’ve gotta get some stuff done”
  • 00:23:22 Be self-aware, especially when you get it wrong
  • 00:25:52 Find ‘em a job!
    • But not using a tambourine.
  • 00:27:49 …and find your limits
  • 00:29:32 GG Outtro

(apologies to the Klingon band, bomwI’pu’, for the reference!)

Finding Balance: Big Stages, Band, and Family – GigGab 121

This episode is all about finding the right balance. First, how do you deal with it when you’re on a stage that’s too big for your band? Thankfully Paul and Dave have made the mistakes so you don’t have to. Then your two favorite weekend warriors dig into the mailbag to answer the question of balancing being a musician with being a productive member of a family. Neither of these balancing acts is easy, and Paul and Dave talk you through each as best they can. Press play and enjoy!


  • 00:00:00 GigGab 121 – Monday, June 26, 2017
  • 00:01:06 Last week’s Paul Costley Interview
  • 00:02:12 Playing on a stage that’s too big
  • 00:05:35 Feeling comfortable … and then not so comfortable
  • 00:08:01 Dave’s Second Uptown Celebration Gig
  • 00:11:36 Rhythm Section Lock-in
  • 00:14:10 Bryan-Band/Life Balance
  • 00:16:52 My husband’s new hobby
  • 00:22:57 The groupie gone awry (Hi, Lisa!)
  • 00:23:58 Are your family members music fans?
  • 00:28:23 Beware the opposite sex
  • 00:29:51 “You’ll be gigging less when we get married… right?”
  • 00:30:36 I’m a musician, that’s who I am
  • 00:34:39 Own your situation
  • 00:35:58 Short gigs present opportunities
  • 00:36:20 Schedule family time
  • 00:42:02 Bail out gracefully if you’re miserable
  • 00:43:45 GG Outtro

Paul Costley, Booking Agent: Walking the Fine Line Between Rooms and Bands – GigGab 120

Paul CostleyEvery band deals with a booking agent at some point, and today that becomes true here at GigGab, too, as we welcome Paul Costley of Notso Costley Productions onto the show. Paul’s been playing in, managing, booking, and organizing bands since the 1970s, and has carved out a very successful booking business for himself in New England.

Yep, it’s a two-Pauls-and-one-Dave show as your two favorite weekend warriors listen to advice about working with a booking agent, managing relationships with various clubs, and what representation with a booking agent does – and doesn’t – bring you. Take a listen, then send in your questions to us at Enjoy!


  • 00:00:00 GigGab 120 – Monday, June 19, 2017
  • 00:01:52 Paul Costley from Notso Costley Productions
  • 00:02:38 Started with a restaurant
  • 00:04:01 …and then went to just booking
  • 00:05:24 Who do you book?
  • 00:06:51 Our job is to entertain the people in your room
  • 00:10:20 Your band is your business
  • 00:11:36 Walking the fine line between rooms and bands
  • 00:13:40 Develop relationships with owners on top of managers
  • 00:15:40 “We’d love to have you represent us!”
  • 00:16:49 Start playing with younger people
  • 00:17:55 Send me a couple of YouTube clips
  • 00:18:40 Use an open night
  • 00:19:42 Your success is your song list
  • 00:20:24 What about the look?
  • 00:22:02 It’s all about understanding the venue
  • 00:23:57 Venue micromanagement
  • 00:25:57 How to attract (or turn away) a booking agents
    • Make a name for yourself and let the booking agents come to you
  • 00:29:20 How pesty is too pesty
  • 00:31:12 Feedback from clubs
  • 00:33:42 ASCAP/BMI/CESAC is Causing Attrition
  • 00:36:17 GG Outtro

Isolate the Distractions – GigGab 119

How close is your band? Can you tell each other everything? How about at vocal rehearsals? These are the questions that your two favorite weekend warriors start with today. Then it’s into contracts. Pay attention to the minutia, folks, because it might not be minutia to other people. Then it’s on to the cost of playing in multiple projects. Really, it’s all about isolating the distractions, and that’s what Paul and Dave focus on today!


  • 00:00:00 GigGab 119 – Monday, June 12, 2017
  • 00:01:12 Gig mayhem
  • 00:03:39 Travel tips!
  • 00:06:08 The benefits of vocal rehearsals
  • 00:09:29 What about listening to tape… together?
  • 00:15:00 Pointing out mistakes
  • 00:16:20 Learning to gel as a band
  • 00:18:29 Contracts
  • 00:22:23 Pet Peeves
  • 00:27:41 Charting
  • 00:30:34 Musicians in multiple bands
  • 00:32:57 Isolate the distractions

The Comfort of Being on Stage – GigGab 118

couch on a stageYour two weekend warriors are on the same coast, within miles of each other, so what do they do? Record a podcast remotely like they always do! After all, that’s what they’re comfortable doing, and the best performances come from a place of comfort.

Speaking of that, Paul and Dave spend some time talking about how oddly-comforting it feels being up on stage. That separation from the audience can be one of the safest feelings to a musician.

Before that, though, Dave had his first gig with Uptown Celebration, so that gets discussed. Paul discusses a gig at that club where the audience is a little too close to the “stage”, and your two self-absorbed podcasters discuss the pitfalls of interacting with self-absorbed fans.

All this and more… just press play and enjoy!


  • 00:00:00 GigGab 118 – Monday, June 5, 2017
  • 00:02:07 Lineup Changes
  • 00:09:06 Dave’s first gig with Uptown Celebration
  • 00:13:46 Having a dedicated sound engineer
  • 00:17:32 Picking songs for the lead singer
  • 00:19:56 Stage Ninja
  • 00:23:57 Managing
  • 00:25:00 Audience members pitching themselves to your band
  • 00:27:48 I can’t pretend a stranger is a long-awaited friend
  • 00:32:58 Self-absorbed fans
  • 00:33:50 Learning requests… for a fee
  • 00:36:38 Learning requests… on the fly!
  • 00:38:07 The magic of shared musical DNA
  • 00:39:38 The safety of the stage
  • 00:42:24 GG Outtro