#7 Being A Musician: Know Your Audience

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You’ve got your act together, done the promotion, you have your sets ready for the performance and you are now ready to go, not yet. Who is the person in the band that will speak to the audience, usually this is the lead singer but not necessarily, but you will need someone to take the lead in this, why? Because he/she will  judge the mood of the audience, are they responding to, or ignoring the band is there some songs that they just don’t like or do you need more energy in the music. With experience this job gets easier but never under estimate it’s value because it can turn a nightmare gig into a great one.

Most of us will start of by performing covers of popular songs, before the internet happened the source of hit songs was TV chart shows, Radio and MTV and everybody watched or listened to these popular programmes, with the internet the choice is almost inexhaustible. You could play a song that has millions of views but only some of the audience know the song.

If you have a careful look at your audience you could divide them into three simple categories young, middle age, old age. This is not being ageist, it will generally give you a head start on taste. Group 1..young are totally in sync with the internet and you tube Group 2…middle age are aware of the internet and are mostly users but not necessarily lovers of it. Group 3…Don’t like the internet and need some training to use it. Now this is a very broad summary and we are only using this for the subject of taste in regard to music. The ideal situation is to target your audience as is possible with face book but when you arrive at a gig it is possible to have all three groups in the audience so you need to work out the demographics yourself.

What you need to do is have something ready that you can bring out and present to each group unless you know exactly which group you are going to be performing to, you will be amazed how people respond, when suddenly they are now being considered, not by telling them in so many words, but by playing some music that they can now connect with.   

If you write original songs, then this is a very different challenge from what we have just discussed, original material is presented very differently from cover versions and I will discuss this in the next blog.

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