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FDP Forum / Performer's Corner / Gig cancellation policy for inclement weather

Contributing Member


Jan 6th, 2017 11:48 PM   Edit   Profile  

We have a club date tomorrow night and we're expecting a snow storm - it's about 4-8 inches, bad driving conditions, it's normally about an hour drive. Probably doable in my AWD but probably a tiny crowd at the bar if any. It got me thinking about our band's bad weather cancellation policy, assuming that the club is open. My current thinking is this:

- If the club is closed, obviously no gig and we don't expect to be paid. It's a risk we take.
- if we're totally snowed in and the drive is impossible for us, regardless of whether or not the club is open, we cancel (obviously with no expectation of pay) and offer to reschedule
- if the club is open and we can make it there safely, we make ourselves available to play. However, we offer the club the option of canceling/rescheduling with no penalty.

There are no contracts for most club dates around here - a handshake and likely an email confirmation of the gig and pay details is about it, plus unless it's a larger ticketed venue, most smaller clubs don't even like to deal with contracts.

What say ye?

Contributing Member


England's Sloppiest Guitarist
Jan 7th, 2017 06:27 AM   Edit   Profile  

We had two consecutive bad winters, 5 and 6 years back. We were playing 6-7 times a month at the time, and only cancelled 1 gig due to the weather.

Worst journey was one where it hadn't even started snowing until we started packing up the gear at the end of the night. All four of us went off road due to snow/ ice on the way home that night. Not good :-(

If the club isn't expecting a big crowd due to the weather, they may be happy to cancel. My advice is give them plenty of notice if you're not going to show.

Contributing Member

St. Louis

"Thumbpicks don't slide into soundholes"
Jan 8th, 2017 03:15 PM   Edit   Profile  

We used to take ridiculous risks getting to gigs here in mid Missouri. I thought well we said we'd be there so we will. Risked life and limb one night to get to a club and the owners said, yeah we'll be expecting you beforehand.
There was one older drunk in the place and we setup and that was the whole "crowd". We finally had to tell the owner that we were leaving. It was getting late and a rough drive to get home with over a foot of snow and drifting over the roads etc.
Doesn't make any sense risking life and limb for this stuff.
Now communications are so much better that a call off isn't as big a deal. No contracts of course but I'd say if they were gonna call it off and did so in a timely manner I'd just call it good and not charge anything but if we show up and they call it off I'd say hey how about a little help with expenses etc.



Earn while you learn
Jan 10th, 2017 10:17 PM   Edit   Profile  

I did a gig in New Hampshire years ago (in the 80's..)...it was a country club December xmass party.

It started snowing about an hour before the gig(as we were loading in)..a note: small snowflakes ...a New Hampshire saying: BIG flakes=small snow, SMALL flakes=big snow.

It was small flakes....

It snowed throughout the gig/night. The bass player (local to the gig) offered to let me crash at his (local)house but I had a (local to me) Church gig at 9:00am on the following day (a Christmas ""televised"" Mass at the local cathedral ( I was the flute soloist) for the choir.

I got out of the gig and the snow was deep. I made the drive home (it was 2 hours TO the gig) it took me 4 hours to get back..... I got back at 4:30...'had to be at the church at 8:30......

The trumpeter for the service was a roommate of mine at college a few years earlier....he looked at me (totally blood-shot eyes, stressed, etc.) and said "things haven't changed a bit from your jazzin' days....."
I played "in tune" and knocked the gig down.... I also d-i-e-d the rest of the day but I covered the gig.

Weather - gigs if you want to "really gig" you have to deal with the weather.

External link My clasical ensemble

Just Play

Northwest USA

Jan 11th, 2017 04:39 PM   Edit   Profile  

I gigged in Fairbanks for about a year and a half in the mid 70s. Summers were great with lots of outdoor gigs. Winters were brutal, but gig cancellation just didn't happen as I recall.

FDP Forum / Performer's Corner / Gig cancellation policy for inclement weather

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