How to Transition from Open Mics to Headlining Gigs: A Guide for Musicians Who Want to Start Making Money With Cover Gigs
This one is a long one. I got started and just couldn't stop! I guess I have a lot to say on the topic. As an experienced cover-musician, wedding singer, cafe-crooner, busker, wandering troubadour, corner-strummer, who has played numerous cover gigs at local bars, breweries, restaurants, weddings and private parties, I've had the opportunity to learn what works best in these settings. Recently, a fellow musician approached me for advice on transitioning from open mics to headlining all-night gigs. In response, I've compiled a list of tips (in not particular order) and suggestions that can help any aspiring cover act to make the leap. Like an iceberg, what you see during the performance is just a glimpse of what it takes to set up your act for recurring bookings and ongoing success as a cover act. There’s a few different pillars to prepare here: Booking/Marketing, Administration/Preparation and Engagement/Execution. By the way, there are some links in here. Some of the links are referral links, but I'd never endorse anything I didn't use or genuinely advocate. Here are 38 of my top tips. Let me know if I missed anything.