- CONTACT INFO:
- Home Phone: 906-643-7815
Alt Phone: 906-643-1312
- Gene Perry
195 Spruce Street
St. Ignace, MI 49781
GENE ANSWERS FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT BOOKING
- So what's the idea, here?
- "My mission is to provide a very special entertainment 'happening' through music and banter with a spirit of respect for the audience and for the place I'm playing. This involves those little things like being prompt, reliable and fair with business practices, being adequately prepared with varying material, equipment and backup, keeping in check with volume and sound, dressing appropriately, having an awareness of crowds and what's working on a particular night, accommodating requests, providing high musicianship (but not over-serious) and being social and personable. AND to make all of this look easy!"
- Are you a good fit for my place?
- "Communication about your establishment helps greatly in guaranteeing a successful performance. Is it a bar, restaurant, or both? What image do you wish to portray? Is it a place people come to cut loose or relax? What's the dominant demographic; Young or older, urban or rural, singles or families, etc.? Over the years, I've developed pretty good instincts for what works well at a particular place and time, but I am definitely open to your vision. I can play originals or covers, familiar or more eclectic songs, rowdy or pretty, etc. I play a wide variety of material, and can adjust my setlist and banter appropriately given the situation."
Click here for a sample of song lists.
- What makes you different from others like you that I could hire instead?
- "My experience, versatility, uniqueness and sense of fun are strong selling points. Doing this over 11 years now, Iíve developed good instincts for what a particular crowd would like to hear at a particular time. But, itís one thing to know what to do, and another to be prepared with doing it. I constantly keep my setlist fresh with pop songs of many genres and time eras, numbering about 500, now. Iím very open-minded with music of all kinds, but I find a surprising number of other musicians that arenít this way. I focus on pop music, which seems comfortable and familiar to most, so itís a best fit for recreating situations, I think. My experience has taught me that upbeat songs are more preferred in the venues I often play, so I know a disproportionate amount of those. Pertaining to the dimension of time era, I intentionally center in the 1980's and 90's (rather than the 70's and before), which ďshoots the middleĒ for broadest demographic appeal, being 30- and 40-somethings (rather than 50- and 60-somethings). Added all up, I am no ďone trick ponyĒ, and Iím really ready for anything. Perhaps this answer got sounding analytical, but itís centrally all about providing a fun atmosphere, and keeping people there, whatever kind of people they are!"
"Further on that, you may have noticed that I donít mention being a famous star or anything in my mission statement above. Thatís no mistake; I really donít much care about that. I do have original material and recordings, but that is just a side-project, and I choose not to emphasize that in my marketing. I donít see playing at public venues as an opportunity to use to get my original material heard. This is not about ME, itís about THEM (the audience), and the venue Iím playing. This outlook is another thing that makes me pretty different from a good portion of musicians that do this, as well."
- What do you sound like?
- "No mysteries here; Video and MP3 samples are all on the Music page of this website."
For video performances, "raw" unproduced cover song snippets (best for assessment of live performance), and full length, fully produced original material, click here.
- The website is nice, but I really need a physical Promo Pack. Can I request one, and what would it contain?
- "Sure. Just contact me through e-mail, phone or mailing (info at the top of this page), and give me an address (or even arrange a personal meeting), and we can do it 'the old-fashioned way'. My Promo Pack contains a CD of seven cover tune snippets and three full-length original songs, a resume of experiences and places played, some song setlists, and a business card. It will also contain either a nice 11x17 poster with a blank bottom third for filling in specific gig date/time info, or else a 4x5 glossy photo."
- What is adequate notice for a booking?
- "One week is courteous, but two is better. The sooner the better for both or us, since it gives me a chance to help with promotion, and it helps very much for my planning and you are much more likely to get what you want. Certain times of the week and year book up quickly, namely summertime and Sundays (which seem a popular day choice for this type of entertainment). Regular gigs (like every Wednesday for two months, for instance) especially need early notice. I have not had a problem with management-cancelled gigs so I haven't had a need for a deposit policy, but be aware it does harm your reputation if repeatedly done."
- What other things can be done to make the performance a success?
- "Advertising! From a business standpoint, this is very important to me, and it helps you, too. I definitely favor playing for a place that advertises me specifically, rather than just putting up some generic 'Live Music Friday' message. (This is especially true playing near home, so I can build and possibly bring in local following for you.) On every page of this website, there are promotional .jpg image files at a higher resolution than necessary (300dpi) just for the purpose of downloading and placing in other advertising. I think getting the word out about performances is up to both of us, and I'm one of those rare performers that goes far with contribution with this, including posting flyers, mention in monthly e-newsletters, listing in free events columns in newspapers, and even calling friends up on the phone! My website is also a very good promotional tool, and is something I hope you recognize as appealing to my overall product. Because of this, I would appreciate mention of the website address in advertising you do. (I am offering a free promotional tool on my dime, here; Take it!) If you find use of photos too pricey and your audience just isn't the internet kind, a tagline could be used. Just so the audience knows what they're in for, I'd suggest the tagline to be 'Singing and playing unplugged favorites'."
Does your browser read Adobe .pdf files and do you have a good color printer? Then you can print some nice flyers right from here! These are full color portrait flyers with the bottom third left blank to write in specific date and time info with a marker, so most all the work is done for you!
Click here for a nice 11"x17" flyer.
Click here for a classy-style 8.5"x11" flyer.
Click here for a fun-style 8.5"x11" flyer.
- I'm a businessman, and you're preaching to the choir on promotion; I'm all "on it". If I needed to describe you in some advertising I'm making up, what should I say about you?
- "I realize you're busy and I respect your time, and 'wordsmithing' this kind of thing can take quite a while to work out, so I've gone far here to help you out with that. Below are some pre-canned descriptions, which you can highlight and copy/paste to your advertising source. Since needed lengths can vary, I've listed a few of these, ranging from a 200-word bio all the way down to a single-line tagline:"
BIO/DESCRIPTION SNIPPET SAMPLES
200 Word Bio:
- Gene Perry has played in over 40 Straits area venues over the past 11 years as a solo performer, and has played in other bands prior much longer. Gene knows over 500 songs, mostly centered in classic rock, with modern rock, country, blues, bluegrass, oldies, jazz, comedy/novelty and even showtunes cropping up around the outer edges. With so much ammunition, Gene is ready for anything and "chameleons" to just about any venue situation, from providing background ballads for relaxed dinner crowds to being an upbeat, rowdy centerpiece show for partying crowds into the wee hours. Musically, Gene's an advanced player and often "sounds like two people" with his interesting leads-within-rhythms, riff-centric style of playing, along with the use of much modern technology in the live show, such as vocal harmonizers and loop effects. Sounds all serious, but Gene's delivery is very light, with wry humor banter and a real "on vacation" spirit. Although a crowd-pleaser ready with cover material (and being gracious with taking audience requests), he's also a good original songwriter in his own right, and has even recorded an album of all-original material, having a modern-yet-earthy Americana style somewhere between MTV Unplugged and Austin City Limits. www.gene-perry.net
- 100 Word Bio:
- Gene Perry has played in over 40 Straits area venues over the past 11 years, and has become a "comfortable old shoe", crowd-pleasing entertainer of the area. Knowing over 500 songs of varying genres (but centered in classic rock), Gene "chameleons" well to just about any venue situation and age group. Being a great player where the musicianship is high, his delivery is far from pretentious, with wry humor banter and an "on vacation" spirit. He's also a good songwriter that has recorded an album of all-original material in a modern-yet-earthy Americana style, somewhere between MTV Unplugged and Austin City Limits. www.gene-perry.net
- 50 Word Bio:
- Gene Perry has become a ďcomfortable old shoeĒ, crowd-pleasing entertainer over the 11 years he has been performing in the many various venues of the Straits area as a solo act. Gene knows over 500 songs, mostly in the classic rock genre, as well as having great original material. www.gene-perry.net
- Genre/Influences Line:
- "Unplugged" pop music of the past 50 years. Influences: Eagles, John Hiatt, Beatles, John Mellencamp, Jimmy Buffet, John Fogerty, Smashing Pumpkins, Pearl Jam, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, and more!
- Tag Line:
- Singing and playing unplugged favorites.
- How far are you willing to travel?
- "Because of the low cost involved, it typically is not worth driving much more than two hours (from St. Ignace) for a performance. Marquette area is an exception, since I can obtain free lodging there."
- Will you play on Mackinac Island?
- "Sure, I've been doing it for years, now! Playing on Mackinac Island has its special set of issues, but given my location I am in a good position to do it. It requires a few more questions up front, but I've gotten to be an old hand at it by now."
- Are you represented through an agency?
- "Some people find there is value added by using the services of an entertainment agency for booking. I can be represented by such a person now if you are more comfortable with that, but I self manage in most cases. If you already have such a 'middleman' agency you prefer to use, I would appreciate information about that so that I could possibly be represented by them."
- Any other 'fine print' I should know?
- "I ask for a two-hour minimum for situations where I show up for an arranged date and I'm told plans have changed and live music is cancelled. That means if a cancelled gig were to have been four hours, I would insist on half of our agreed-upon wage. Cancellation with some days notice, though, can be costlessly done within reason, but because it commits and blacks-out my dates, I ask you avoid this if at all possible."
- Okay, cut to the chase: How much?
- "Compensation is loaded with many factors, many of which I've listed above. However, I can offer a rough guide that it can be compared to other hourly skilled labor hired out, like a plumber or mechanic, for instance. (Some places even treat this as contracted labor for tax reasons and issue paper statements to that effect, which is fine.) Length of the performace plays into it too, which is typically three to four hours. Because of decreased demand for this service in my area in the tourist off-season, I will sometimes lower my rates in reaction, in the interest of playing out more times, especially if the place involved will hire me repeatedly, is very nearby (low transportation overhead), treats me well, and I just simply like playing there. Oh, and FOOD is a bargaining chip with me!"
"If you have read this far, I must assume you are fairly interested in a booking. I very much look forward to working with you sometime!"