The Holy Trinity here is Fun, Career, and Money. The principle is:
For a Gig (or Band or Project) to be worthwhile, it must satisfy TWO out of THREE of these categories. Almost any offer we get will automatically have one of these elements.
- Fun: This could range from liking the band members, liking the material, enjoying the venues or locations, anything that makes you excited to do the gig.
- Career: This category will include anything you think will help you along with your personal path in music. It's up to you to define success and what you think will help you get there, but this could be networking opportunities, presitigious venues, or anything you see as a career opportunity.
- Money: This one is obvious, but I will offer a helpful tip for evaluating whether or not a gig is good money. Your start and end times for your show should be from when you leave your house to when you arrive back home. If your gig is an hour, but it's a three hour drive both ways, that is a 7 hour gig, and it's helpful to divide your pay into the amount of time spent, including travel, setup, etc. If a venue has you arrive 5+ hours early, consider this in your evaluation.
Let's take a look at an offer. One example might be a benefit concert... Let's say the "Save a Llama" Charity wants your band to donate their time for their annual fundraiser. This would be free, so the Money category is out. Lets say that they are allowing you to play whatever music you want, and it's in a nice outdoor venue with a big stage. Your bandmates are planning on playing their new 10 minute concept song about their favorite anime, and doing Rush covers for the rest of the set, and are excited about the weather. Fun, check! The deciding factor now is career, and if you think that the Llama conventioners might have wonderful connections or be part of a social circle you're trying to break into. These networking opportunities would satisfy the second category, and be worth doing!
When you're considering taking on your next project, or considering bowing out of one that you're part of, use these criteria for making a solid decision!
Pays well, helps career... DO IT!
Fun and career opportunities... DO IT!
Career opportunities and Money... DO IT!
And the opposite...
Pays well, doesn't help your career, and no fun... DON'T DO IT!
Helps your career, but doesn't pay, and isn't fun... DON'T DO IT!
Fun, but doesn't pay and doesn't help your career... DON'T DO IT!
I hope these tips help you to make the most of your time and energy!!