By: AfroMonk (www.afromonk.com)
If there is one thing that I can’t emphasize enough—even more than being yourself—it’s supporting your local producers and DJs. I’m starting to see a trend with big tours and major shows not recognizing local support. I’ve brought it to the attention of others to see what they think. The reality is that, most of the time, the promoter and agent are trying to seal something in right away and get flyers mocked up in the process. Local opening acts aren’t sealed in, generally, once the flyer is out and they have already gone to print. This is the truth of the matter… I hope.
My major concern is that DJs or producers who do get this chance to open or close are not recognized and sometimes not even listed in event pages. I get an insane amount of event invites and sometimes I browse them. I like to check out who is opening locally in each city when a big tour or act is playing some random town. It’s a great way to scoop out what others are doing and see SoundCloud links or webpages for these locals.
I’ve slowly been taking on more roles in my community, and starting to host a monthly event. I realize that the above scenario can definitely happen, but if a flyer has gone to press already, this doesn’t mean you can’t add them to the flyer design. All you have to tell the designer is leave some room to add local talent where it’s not noticeable. Any basic knowledge of Photoshop will let the designer fill in the gap or gaps easily. We all want to help out our communities and allow them to grow. The local music lovers are the ones supporting your events and the ones playing. They should be recognized for that opening slot on the flyer. I personally think that those slots are an honor to play when big acts are in town. The payment for me is to be featured with the talent so others can see that I’m playing with such caliber.
I know that this won’t change everything, and this will continue to happen as it always has. But please spread the word to your local promoters to make sure hometown bands and DJs get enough attention. The people who play warm up slots to half-empty rooms should be recognized for their work, and should at least have flyers to show for opening up for big names and hot talent.
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