I’ve just stumbled across an interesting read on a Facebook page entitled, the Devizes Debate, where some locals have started talking about the music scene in Devizes.
Some lovely supporting comments made from friends of mine, but interestingly as an organiser, PA hirer, stage manager and promoter for 300+ gigs in past 9 years, point of view, it was the comments about “lack of knowledge” of the local scene which struck me the most.
Let me tell you a very brief story – Back in 2011 I put on local blues legend, Jon Amor, at The Lamb in Devizes. The poster designed for the show was of Sardines in a can, and represented the fact the venue is so busy on gigs nights, we are crammed in like Sardines.
I stood at the front of the show, room full of people, and over the PA I shout “DID ANYONE SEE THE POSTER?!” expecting people to laugh at my jovial jab at the size of The Lamb, and the awesome nature of our gigs. What I got was mute silence and a little cough and tumble weed.
SO, what do you have to do to promote a show?
Certainly I never replied on simply sticking up a few posters. (I went down from 50 A4’s back in 2010 to 20 A4’s and now deal in better quality posters and images, full colour A3’s but tend to only do a handful – directly relating to the success a poster in a shop!)
I have a fantastic relationship with Alison Philips of the Gazette and Herald, who has previewed and reviewed my shows over the past 3 years. I even bought her flowers and chocolate to show my, genuine appreciation. We have excellent fanzines like The Ocelot and recently Crammer who run features and listings for us.
We live in the digital age, so why stop there? There was Facebook pages, and groups – like mine >Sheer Music< advertising she show, websites such as ents24, Allgigs, and even apps for smart phones like SONG KICK – (a massive suggestion to EVERYONE to use this free app – simply and straight forwardly, the best live music listings app there is. End of. No debate.)
So if you are completely unaware of my gigs in Devizes – HOW have you managed to not stumbled across one? I mean, if you’ve had teenage children during the time frame of 2004 to 2013 – then they certainly will of known or been to one of my gigs, which means by proxy you might of heard of them?
Anyway, I’m not fussed – There is now a much larger scene now than there ever has been. I’m not being shy, or arrogant, or modest, or anything when I state, that in 2004 the scene was dead.
Devizes Festival was great, as it always is. And there were those involved with that, who did other functions. But the scene we have now didn’t exist in any shape or form. I know I have helped in many ways, people like Devizes Festival, and helped shape the music in Devizes.
SO how can anyone not know about Devizes music?
I believe it’s as simple as this. People Don’t Look For It.
Even more simply, it’s there – it has been for ages, we’ve had really good turn outs and supports for shows – so I am genuinely baffled and amazed that anyone can lay claim that they don’t know about music in Devizes!
Even if you don’t drink socially or go out and see music, you will know someone who does. Even if you don’t follow music listings websites, you probably read the gazette. If you do neither, you must be on facebook? Or have kids or friends in bands, or be a musicians yourself!
Anyway, if you’re new to Devizes Music Scene, hop onto any of the links highlighted in red above, join in the fun and experience live music of a high industry standard – and more importantly – TELL PEOPLE ABOUT IT!
SN10 – Facebook page
Sheer-Music – Facebook page
Long street blues club – Facebook page
Wiltshire Music Scene – Facebook page
Southgate Inn Facepage
Please also take time to check out (and google), Bear Hotel Jazz Club, Bell By The Green, Ronnie Swift’s shows, Fantasy Radio, The Ocelot, Gareth Nicholas etc and everything else in between!
That’s it I’m done. I’m off to update Devizes.Org.uk with my gigs listings, and the Devizes Calender, and allgigs and ents…………….