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Title: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Luke Landis on April 27, 2011, 03:50:14 pm
I've seen this a few times in the local CL..LOL


LIVE BAND P.A. for rent - $90 (Decatur, IN)
Date: 2011-04-27, 11:13AM EDT
Reply to: see below [Errors when replying to ads?]
Do you have a good band, but a not so good P.A. system? I can help. My price Varies, but most guys with this much gear charge $150 to $200 for a 4 hour gig, and half of them should be roadies! I should know, I'm not really a sound guy. I'm a 28 year old musician who, finally has a full P.A. after 16 years of playing, and my band only uses it once or twice a month. I also play multiple instruments and sing, so I know what a good mix should sound like.



MY GEAR: 2 - 18" subs 4 - 15" mains 4 - 12" monitors 3 power amps = 7500 watts 18 ch mixer vocal effects drum/vocal mics drum sheild 18 ch 50 ft snake



my price range: within 20 mi = $90 40 mi = $110 50+ mi $120 and up for a 3 to 4 hour gig YOU CAN'T BEAT THESE PRICES!!!
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Geoff Doane on April 27, 2011, 09:43:20 pm
Quote from: Luke Landis
YOU CAN'T BEAT THESE PRICES!!!


And I don't wanna beat those prices!

GTD
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Rafi Singer on April 28, 2011, 01:09:49 am
A classic demonstration of "you get what you pay for."
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Patrick Campbell BMI on April 28, 2011, 07:52:08 am
A classic demonstration of "you get what you pay for."

Another wanna-be driving down prices !! Thanks for living far from me ! and please don't move .......... ha :-)
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Luke Landis on April 28, 2011, 09:54:32 am
I should know, I'm not really a sound guy.

The best line ever!
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on April 28, 2011, 09:59:25 am
I should know, I'm not really a sound guy.

The best line ever!

My favorite thing to do when I see these ads is to call them up and ask for their insurance information to give to my lawyer for the claim I'm filing for tripping over one of their cords at their last event.........
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Simon Ryder on April 28, 2011, 01:33:40 pm
I should know, I'm not really a sound guy.

The best line ever!

My favorite thing to do when I see these ads is to call them up and ask for their insurance information to give to my lawyer for the claim I'm filing for tripping over one of their cords at their last event.........

Evil, but fair enough! 8)
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Gordon Brinton on April 28, 2011, 03:25:19 pm
So, pay this guy to bring the gear and sit down. Then pay a real soundguy to run it. The total price should end up in the traditional range. (And if you are lucky, maybe the mix will too.)

It seems like every industry has a bunch of low budget wanna be's. My state has an over abundance of rednecks with a pickup truck and a ladder. They call themselves construction contractors.
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Randall Hyde on April 28, 2011, 03:58:30 pm
I've seen this a few times in the local CL..LOL


LIVE BAND P.A. for rent - $90 (Decatur, IN)
Date: 2011-04-27, 11:13AM EDT
Reply to: see below [Errors when replying to ads?]
Do you have a good band, but a not so good P.A. system? I can help. My price Varies, but most guys with this much gear charge $150 to $200 for a 4 hour gig, and half of them should be roadies! I should know, I'm not really a sound guy. I'm a 28 year old musician who, finally has a full P.A. after 16 years of playing, and my band only uses it once or twice a month. I also play multiple instruments and sing, so I know what a good mix should sound like.



MY GEAR: 2 - 18" subs 4 - 15" mains 4 - 12" monitors 3 power amps = 7500 watts 18 ch mixer vocal effects drum/vocal mics drum sheild 18 ch 50 ft snake



my price range: within 20 mi = $90 40 mi = $110 50+ mi $120 and up for a 3 to 4 hour gig YOU CAN'T BEAT THESE PRICES!!!


Give him time. My first show was $75 (not that I advertised it). It wasn't long before I realized it had to be ten times that just to cover costs.
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Craig Leerman on April 28, 2011, 07:54:55 pm
I should know, I'm not really a sound guy.

The best line ever!

+1!

I also like

Quote

I also play multiple instruments and sing, so I know what a good mix should sound like.


He never says he can give you a good mix, just that he knows what one should sound like!


Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on April 28, 2011, 08:15:30 pm
I should know, I'm not really a sound guy.

The best line ever!

My favorite thing to do when I see these ads is to call them up and ask for their insurance information to give to my lawyer for the claim I'm filing for tripping over one of their cords at their last event.........

Evil, but fair enough! 8)

Not really evil, just a way to get their attention and help them realize the risk they're taking in providing service for pay without insurance.  When they realize it'll cost them something to safely be in business, they MIGHT start realizing the true cost of providing and raise their rates.  Certainly the failures he'll endure will help him learn the hard way.  I just try to keep them from getting in REAL trouble.
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Royce Covington on April 29, 2011, 02:20:48 am

He never says he can give you a good mix, just that he knows what one should sound like!


he never says he can give a good mix, because the title of his ad states, "live band pa for rent" and although he has various prices for mileage, he doesn't indicate he'll deliver, let alone, set anything up.   

of course, anyone who will blindly hire a pa from craigslist, likely won't care about those details anyhow...it's cheap!

R~
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: kristianjohnsen on April 29, 2011, 03:55:03 am
I should know, I'm not really a sound guy.

The best line ever!

My favorite thing to do when I see these ads is to call them up and ask for their insurance information to give to my lawyer for the claim I'm filing for tripping over one of their cords at their last event.........

This is actually a serious question:  In the US; can you just call up a business and demand their insurance info?  How common is it?  Anyone ever ask for yours?
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: kristianjohnsen on April 29, 2011, 03:56:47 am
So, pay this guy to bring the gear and sit down. Then pay a real soundguy to run it. The total price should end up in the traditional range. (And if you are lucky, maybe the mix will too.)

It seems like every industry has a bunch of low budget wanna be's. My state has an over abundance of rednecks with a pickup truck and a ladder. They call themselves construction contractors.

I actually know of a sound company here that booked the lowballers to show up at the gig, asked them to leave their stuff in their respective vans and told them to push boxes for the real gig.  Their entire fee was less then the normal wages for stage hands!
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Gordon Brinton on April 29, 2011, 05:15:43 am
So, pay this guy to bring the gear and sit down. Then pay a real soundguy to run it. The total price should end up in the traditional range. (And if you are lucky, maybe the mix will too.)

It seems like every industry has a bunch of low budget wanna be's. My state has an over abundance of rednecks with a pickup truck and a ladder. They call themselves construction contractors.

I actually know of a sound company here that booked the lowballers to show up at the gig, asked them to leave their stuff in their respective vans and told them to push boxes for the real gig.  Their entire fee was less then the normal wages for stage hands!
Ah, now that is different. I never thought of that one. But I take it that is for a larger production than a local bar gig. That would work well for a one-off gig where you don't have time to train them on the basics. At least they should know what you mean when you call out certain items by name. A rookie laborer might just give you blank stares.
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Gordon Brinton on April 29, 2011, 05:37:02 am
This is actually a serious question:  In the US; can you just call up a business and demand their insurance info?  How common is it?  Anyone ever ask for yours?

Technically, yes, businesses are required by law to carry certain types of insurance to protect their employees (concerning medical expenses and lost wages) in case of accidents. They should at least be able and willing to show proof of insurance. Event patrons should also be protected from the hazards that loom around stages. Although in most cases, the venue will have insurance that covers patrons.

Some small-time soundguys either don't know about the law or they choose to ignore it, gambling that they won't ever get caught. If they don't have any employees they can simply rely on their own personal health insurance. But that doesn't cover loss of equipment or law suite restitution. It is still a gamble no matter how you slice it.

(I am not a lawyer, this is just what I have heard over the years.)
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Gordon Brinton on April 29, 2011, 05:53:43 am
...of course, anyone who will blindly hire a pa from craigslist, likely won't care about those details anyhow...it's cheap!

R~

Right you are! Many local bands believe that the PA system is just a necessary evil. They couldn't care less if it is good or bad, as long as it is cheap. In fact some of them are convinced that if it is expensive then it is just a big rip-off.
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Brad Weber on April 29, 2011, 08:30:03 am
This is actually a serious question:  In the US; can you just call up a business and demand their insurance info?  How common is it?  Anyone ever ask for yours?
As Gordon said, their are some coverages such as Workers Comp that may be required by law in each state or locality.  Other than that, while you can't necessarily just call up anyone and demand they give you their insurance information, as a Client you can require whatever coverage you want and that any agreement or contract be contingent upon their providing evidence of that coverage.  Having specific insurance requirements and requiring being named on the policy and provided a Certificate of Insurance is probably more common with government and larger corporate Clients and primarily addressing liability.
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on April 29, 2011, 09:39:29 am
I should know, I'm not really a sound guy.

The best line ever!

My favorite thing to do when I see these ads is to call them up and ask for their insurance information to give to my lawyer for the claim I'm filing for tripping over one of their cords at their last event.........

This is actually a serious question:  In the US; can you just call up a business and demand their insurance info?  How common is it?  Anyone ever ask for yours?

The point is not that you can or can't do it.  The point is that it gets their attention and attempts to enlighten them on the ramifications and responsibilities of providing service(s) for folks.
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Royce Covington on April 29, 2011, 02:25:48 pm
At least they should know what you mean when you call out certain items by name. A rookie laborer might just give you blank stares.

sadly, union, or even a seasoned laborers often give blank stares...

Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: frank kayser on April 29, 2011, 04:41:03 pm
Interesting discussion -

Being entirely serious, does that also mean that any band, or individual performer, would need to carry similar liability insurance? 

Also, it was mentioned the phrase "for pay"...  How would that change the legal argument for a sound company? A bar band? An individual performer?
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Brian Ehlers on April 29, 2011, 04:58:29 pm
I don't think very many municipalities require individuals, bands, or sound companies to carry liability insurance.  But, as with any business, the smart ones incorporate themselves and do buy insurance.  You've got to ask yourself if you're willing to lose in a lawsuit your personal assets (money, house, car, gear) -- both those assets you have today and future earnings.  Remember, anyone can sue anyone for anything.  All it takes is a sympathetic jury to rule against you.  The lead singer chucked a beer bottle into the crowd and skulled someone?  They could name you, the sound man, in the lawsuit and perhaps convince the jury that you were in part responsible.  After all, he was standing on your wedge when he chucked it.

Or you could take the other approach and assume that the poorer you are and the less insurance you carry the less likely anyone will make the effort to sue you.  Your call.
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on April 29, 2011, 05:35:00 pm
I don't think very many municipalities require ...............  sound companies to carry liability insurance.

In my city (St Paul, MN) you can't even get a parking meter hooded for your truck or van without proof of $2 million in liability insurance.  Neither can you work for anyone in a city park or on any city owned land without said policy.  All the non-profits I work for (90% of my business) require proof of insurance.  When a new client asks why my bid is not the lowest, I ask them if the low bidder has insurance.  9 out of 10  times they don't, and they don't get the job.

DR 
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Randall Hyde on April 29, 2011, 06:53:05 pm
I don't think very many municipalities require individuals, bands, or sound companies to carry liability insurance. 
Wow. I do a lot of business with municipalities. Not only have they all required that I carry liability insurance (and name them on my policy), they've also demanded $2million (about twice what other people have required).

Quote
But, as with any business, the smart ones incorporate themselves and do buy insurance.  You've got to ask yourself if you're willing to lose in a lawsuit your personal assets (money, house, car, gear) -- both those assets you have today and future earnings.  Remember, anyone can sue anyone for anything.  All it takes is a sympathetic jury to rule against you.  The lead singer chucked a beer bottle into the crowd and skulled someone?  They could name you, the sound man, in the lawsuit and perhaps convince the jury that you were in part responsible.  After all, he was standing on your wedge when he chucked it.
Or a fire occurred and you equipment was plugged into the electrical system that caught fire.
Or some rowdy patrons decided to start pulling on DMX cables and knocked a light tree over into the crowd (I've had that one happen -- they were playing tug of war with my cables and I couldn't get there fast enough to stop them; I watched in horror as a light tree took out a $1,600 synthesizer).

Quote
Or you could take the other approach and assume that the poorer you are and the less insurance you carry the less likely anyone will make the effort to sue you.  Your call.
Regardless of how poor you claim to be, you've lost all your gear at that point. Is it worth it? Then again, if you're doing $90 gigs, the gear can't be worth that much, right?

I still haven't moved out of the garage and already I've run up to the limits of what I can charge for gigs in my local area. I do this for fun, so it's not that big of a deal for me, but I don't want to *lose* money, no matter how much fun it is. I can't wait  :-[ until I've grown to the point I *have* to get warehouse space; that's easily going to double my costs.  Going to have to graduate to much bigger shows at that point. Bottom line is that I figured every show I show up to costs me about $200 before I unload a single piece of gear; that covers indirect costs such as equipment amortization (loss, theft, wear and tear), consumables (e.g., gaf tape), insurance, marketing, and such, but no labor, rental, or transportation cost; nor does it include gear storage and maintenance (free in my garage, and my time is free on those). Once in a while I'll do a small (speakers on sticks) show under $500 for a regular client who needs something simple (like a library grand opening), but it's getting real hard to justify even that. I remember the day when $250 seemed like a decent rate for a two-hour show; couldn't touch it now. That's just part of growing up.
Cheers,
Randy Hyde
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Randall Hyde on April 29, 2011, 06:53:49 pm
Interesting discussion -

Being entirely serious, does that also mean that any band, or individual performer, would need to carry similar liability insurance? 

Also, it was mentioned the phrase "for pay"...  How would that change the legal argument for a sound company? A bar band? An individual performer?
I would have insurance, no matter what.
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: duane massey on April 29, 2011, 08:02:48 pm
Most smaller one- or 2- man companies around here do not carry insurance. It is not required by law, but some clients do require it (most of these are not in the bottom-feeder market).
A one-man company is not required to carry anything, including workman's comp, etc, if they don't choose to.

I am a one-man company and carry absolutely nothing, can't afford it. I do a lot of sub-contract work for larger companies who do carry it, and I work under their policy.

I don't know of a single band that carries any type of insurance in the local market. Laws differ from state to state, and city to city, so one size does not fit all.
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Ivan Beaver on April 29, 2011, 08:50:00 pm
I am a one-man company and carry absolutely nothing, can't afford it. I do a lot of sub-contract work for larger companies who do carry it, and I work under their policy.

Are you sure their policy would cover if anything should happen?
In most situations the sub contractors are required to carry their own insurance.
I would be sure-rather than going on a "well Jim said so"-but Jim really didn't know the policy.

You may be fine.  Or not.  All it takes is one little incident to really screw things up.
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: James Feenstra on April 30, 2011, 02:13:49 am
Being entirely serious, does that also mean that any band, or individual performer, would need to carry similar liability insurance?
its not a bad idea...

there have been several musicians sued for 'pushing people off stage' when in reality the person was stage diving after running up and grabbing the performer, although due to the punter being injured they win the lawsuit

personally I carry a 2 million dollar liability policy even though I mainly subcontract to other companies. This policy covers everything except pyrotechnics, which I can get temporary permits for whenever someone hires me as a pyro tech, and assures that if for some reason the company i'm contracting to wants to turn around and try to sue me in the event something happens on a show I'm STILL protected.

A pyro liability contract would cost roughly 4x what i pay now yearly, if not more, and i don't do nearly enough of it to justify the cost at the current time.

As for craigslist, well, I've gotten some decent (high paying) gigs off there...and there's a local labor company that deals with some fairly large venues (ie. the local stadium) that very frequently puts adds for stagehands up there...
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: duane massey on April 30, 2011, 03:08:05 am
Ivan, the sub work I do is covered by the companies I work for. These are typically larger installations that the companies need more qualified labor than they carry full-time. Seems to be the norm in this are, as almost all the mid-level companies (including my former employer) have gone under. There are a number of small 1-- or 2-man companies that use subs for all their install.
Upside is that I can charge more per hour or contract; downside is no steady income or benefits.

As a musician I can tell you that I have never worked with a band that carried any form of insurance, and the pay is always contract. Houston is a pretty wide-open town, as is most of Texas. Some of the restrictions that are common elsewhere just don't exist here. A surprising number of my own clients are in unincorporated areas that have no inspections, fire marshals, or even building codes.

Certainly the bigger jobs are more in line with what you deal with, but (other than some sub work) nearly all of my clients are low-budget bottom-feeders.
Title: Re: Craigslist Soundman
Post by: Brad Weber on April 30, 2011, 10:15:07 am
Are you sure their policy would cover if anything should happen?
In most situations the sub contractors are required to carry their own insurance.
In fact it's pretty common for Contractors to require their subs to not only have insurance but to also name the Contractor on that insurance.  I believe that main reason is so that any claim resulting from the sub's work can go direct to the sub's policy and coverage and not have to involve the Contractor's coverage or affect their claims record.  I've also encountered Contracts that required the Prime Contractor to agree to any Subcontractors used meeting the same requirements defined for the Prime Contractor.
 
Ivan, the sub work I do is covered by the companies I work for. These are typically larger installations that the companies need more qualified labor than they carry full-time. Seems to be the norm in this are, as almost all the mid-level companies (including my former employer) have gone under. There are a number of small 1-- or 2-man companies that use subs for all their install.
Upside is that I can charge more per hour or contract; downside is no steady income or benefits.
While general commercial liability policies may cover 1099 independent contractors, professional liability policies generally do not cover subcontractors.  If a sub 'rides' on the Contractors insurance then the Contractor is assuming the risks and incurring the costs as though you were an employee, so it is realistic to pay someone in that situation less than someone who provides their own coverage.  Along the same lines, relying on being covered under their insurance could also be seen as one more step toward being considered an employee rather than an independent contractor.
 
Certainly the bigger jobs are more in line with what you deal with, but (other than some sub work) nearly all of my clients are low-budget bottom-feeders.
Bottom feeders often have good Attorneys and/or may be looking for ways to make money or avoid paying for your services, so in some ways they can be a greater risk.  It is also unusual for the Contracts I've encountered that contain any general commercial or comprehensive liability insurance requirements to differentiate based on the size of the provider or the scale and scope of the work or services, they simply state that to do any work with that party you have to meet the defined requirements.