NWB - Community Blog


It's official...you're boring...and killing the pub music scene...

Filed Under : Rants , Other

Posted By : LAST GANG IN TOWN | Comments : 133

Interesting comments from a TOP NW venue manager...

OK so this is gonna upset a few of you....well tough, the truth hurts...

One of the reasons I formed a 'Classic' Punk band was to offer something different to the market... but now even that is being copied to death by bandwagon jumping wannabes...
And looking at the NWB Set List Chart why just copy other bands set lists...why not do something different ????
This is not the first blog I've posted about bands boring me.....
People are sick to death of hearing the same songs week in week out...it's BORING...
And the reply is always...''our punters like it and we've never had any complaints''
BOLLOCKS, you're deluding yourselves and taking opinion from drunken sheeple and 'mates' as fact in the same way 'best friends' tell Fat,Ugly brides 'you look beautiful !!!',,,
One of the top music venues in the NW issued this statement (below) on their mailing list......says it all for me.

Their words, not mine.....

This is not aimed at any individual bands in particular, and no bands are

It is a personal "state of the market" summary/review.

Too many bands have become/are becoming, for want of a better word, STALE.

Ladies & Gentlemen,

(Venue...) is a business.

Businesses succeed or fail on their revenue showing a profit.

We are in a recession.

Times are hard for many people, and they having to consider where there
money is going to be spent.

For the second year in a row, despite price increases - forced on us by
increased costs from




fuel increases

government regulations requiring expenditure etc. -

our gross sales figure is down, our profit is down.

(Venue) does not charge an entry fee, it pays the entertainment bill
(bands, acoustic night, jam session drinks for artistes, sound/DJ) from bar

My entertainment budget is a % of revenue - so my entertainment budget is

I've got spreadsheets galore on this computer. Revenue, gig diary etc, and
obviously one of those shows me the revenue per band.

One thing that is patently clear from these figures is that the Classic Rock
Covers bands especially are attracting a dwindling audience.

I've been going round the (now not so) regulars, and there is one consistent
answer from them

"it's the same tunes week in week out"

and looking at the set lists - some bands haven't changed theirs in years -
it is very, very true.

To name but a few:-

Ain't Talking 'Bout Love

Born To Be Wild

Breaking the Law

Crazy Train


Highway to Hell




Sweet Home Alabama

Whole Lotta Rosie

Wishing Well

If I turned round and said that the above tracks are banned, some of you
wouldn't have 2 x 45 mins!

They occur in hackneyed set list after hackneyed set list, and the punters
now want to hear something different, something fresh, something else from
the thousands of Classic Rock albums by Classic Rock artists and the
hundreds of thousands of Classic Rock tracks on those albums.

It is the money that those punters put over the bar - or not, as the current
situation is - that pays your wages.

I have no option but to drop bands where the revenue when they gig here has
demonstrably dropped.

If you could see my gig diary for 2012 you would see that there are already
several notable omissions where my Pub Director has seen the "revenue v
bands" figures for 2009/10/11 and some bands have had to go.

And you would see several new names. Fresh blood with fresh sounding set

So look at your set lists, and replace the tracks that every band plays.

Make yourself more marketable.

Upgrade yourselves so that the punters who once wanted to see you, but can no
longer be bothered to come in when you're on, want to see you again, because
they will learn to expect to see something fresh, something new whenever
they see you in the future.

And then send me your new set lists.


# Posted by Fanny Oakley - 22/01/2012, 11:31 (GMT)

whoosh - like a kick in the stones (not that i have any pmsl!)

we panicked last week playing at a highly reputable 'rock' venue - changed our set around to suit a little bit (we are not classic rock by any stretch of the imagination), but left a few risks in the set...

laugh if you like but the landlady telling us she couldnt believe we played 'viva la vida' by coldplay was the highlight of her night cos its one of her fave tunes,

and someone approaching us at the end with a beaming smile commenting on the fact that when we played 'chasing rainbows' by shed 7 it had taken him down memory lane,

and finally the quote of the night from a regular in said venue making a point of telling us

"by god i luv mi rock dont get me wrong but ive thoroughly enjoyed tnyt - i didnt think i would but i av.. n im smiling - what a refreshing change"

we couldnt figure it out either but - everybody happy - nuff said :-)

# Posted by WAGONTOWN - 22/01/2012, 11:33 (GMT)

Well our setlist is different,but we're having a job convincing the folk around leyland,to come out and give us a try.They think we're all Crash Bang Wallop noise merchants playing the same stuff ,their words not mine.......T

# Posted by TEX & THE HARDCORE TROUBAD... - 22/01/2012, 11:33 (GMT)

lol, how very very true !!!!
but also true is the fact that so many venues dismiss bands that don't play that same old tired set list !!!
it's good to see that some astute venues are becoming more open minded as to the genre of bands they are booking creating more of a week in week out variety, I think thats the way to go myself !!!

# Posted by The Kasuals Solid Sixties Musi... - 22/01/2012, 11:37 (GMT)

Well said LGIT..................... :)


# Posted by GLAM69 - 22/01/2012, 11:46 (GMT)

that gets my thumbs up Gaz & whats also shite about thease bands is theyve never even seen the bands they cover Live, so they havent a clue about performance. Yeh, damm boring fuckers i agree .if u cant put on a show ,then stay @ your day job and give the Landlord and punters a fuckin break;;;;;Bozz,

# Posted by Tex's bassbitch - 22/01/2012, 11:58 (GMT)

I agree with the anonymous venue, to be honest in the couple of years I've been on here there does seem to be more and more bands that aren't classic rock, so maybe a few people saw this coming and responded, but. as has been said above, sometimes it's a difficult "sell" if you are different.

# Posted by Hallowed - 22/01/2012, 12:01 (GMT)

Interesting... the flip side of the coin is that at times we have been brave and outed all of these 'stale' songs in favour of more obscure numbers (e.g. Mr Crowley instead of Crazytrain). We've rehearsed them, been really pleased and them taken them to gigs being really excited to play something fresh and different only to find that they've gone down like lead balloons with the punters. This is definitely a bone of contention. As a result, we now have a set made of of some of the more commercially known rock songs (as mentioned above) interspersed with some lesser known numbers, which seems to work reasonably well as punters are getting some familiar stuff and some different stuff too. It's definitely tricky deciding on the right tunes!!

# Posted by Howard - Sound and Light Produ... - 22/01/2012, 12:10 (GMT)

not to nit pick but in the last 3 or 4 years i have not engineered for a band or been to see a band where any of the above listed songs or anything like them are present...am i going to the wrong venues?!

# Posted by HARD TO HANDLE - 22/01/2012, 12:12 (GMT)

+1 with Hallowed................

# Posted by HARD TO HANDLE - 22/01/2012, 12:15 (GMT)

and to be fair we do do 3 of those songs............

Rosalie - always goes down very well with the crowd
Sweet Home - but we mingle it with All Summer Long(Kid Rock) and go out and have a sing with the audience - which also goes down very well.........
Freebird - we do market as a Southern/Classic Rock band............. and we are regularly told by punters its the best version they've heard by a pub band......... so we'd be daft to drop it!!

in fact we had Harry the Basturd up dancing to Freeebird 2 weekends ago!!!

# Posted by Jump the Shark (Andy) - 22/01/2012, 12:16 (GMT)

@Hallowed - Agreed, we've been dead chuffed with some stuff in practice that has bombed live. You never know what will work where either. A big group of 60+ half of bitter shandy drinkers leapt up to dance to cochise at one gig! Wouldn't have predicted that one.

# Posted by BONESHAKER - 22/01/2012, 12:24 (GMT)

We've been struggling for years trying to find the happy medium between playing songs everyone gets, but still trying to keep it different. A quick mooch through our set list will show all the usual suspects there, but we try to keep them down to one or two per gig and if we didn't think we could play it better or differently to the band that had played the previous week, then we wouldn't play them at all.

# Posted by Graham - Mustard - 22/01/2012, 12:30 (GMT)

Funny you should say that Gaz I too had a recent deja vu moment ....

# Posted by Wrecked - 22/01/2012, 12:38 (GMT)

damned if you do, damned if you don't. We will be working on new covers later in the year, but at the moment we are writing and recording an album of original material which will be added to the set in the fullness of time.

# Posted by Wrong Turn - 22/01/2012, 12:42 (GMT)

For us, we have been trying to find songs to make people go "Oohh, no way are they playing this I love this song!", but it's hard to come to a decision on what will go down well and what we want to play (Mentioning Adam and the Ants' "Price Charming" didn't get a good reaction from our guitarists).

By the way, don't forget about "Rocking the Free World"!

# Posted by Off The Rails - 22/01/2012, 12:47 (GMT)

We play two of them in the list above, we try to make our set list as varied as possible, we thought we would leave these particular couple of classic rock tracks in because they always go down well with the punters, but I dont disagree with what you are saying Gary which is one of the reasons why we have a varied set list, its not that we dont like classic rock or dislike playing it.

# Posted by 4most Wanted - 22/01/2012, 12:59 (GMT)

I hate to say I told you so, but.................. I told you so.

I've been saying this for years, and even posted a blog about it, which had me being vilified by certain NWBers because I dared to say the North West music scene had become stale, dull and incredibly boring.

And now the venues are starting to say it.

But no doubt there are still a certain few on here who will continue to bury their head in their anal passage, whilst believing they are brilliant, excellent, awesome, and all the other sycophantic bullshit that goes with it.

Time to wake up guys and gals and start smelling the coffee.

# Posted by Tony- Vocalist - 22/01/2012, 13:07 (GMT)

The songs the guy from the venue has mentioned ring true of a lot of bands Ive seen ,Ive seen loads of bands since I've been here and the list the manager gave seems quite consistent, I appreciate the acts the guy is talking about seem to be classic rock bands, but several of the songs hes mentioned the bands responsible have massive back catalogues in which a set could have been chosen .
Also Johnny be goode ? why? Chuck Berry has a massive back catalogue both familiar popular numbers and some quite unknown ones, There are loads of his tracks that would raise the roof.
Some Blues bands Ive seen also tend to stick to the "old favorites"too .
This is a point Ive mentioned to many musicians here. I looked at the set lists of bands when I came here and to be honest it was the bands who were doing something different which tend to dictate the acts I will usually go to see.
Pink Floyd ! how many acts are doing Uncomfortably Dumb? again there is a massive Floyd set of numbers which bands could dip into. Summer of 69????? dont get me started!
A few of us went to see Wagon Town last Sunday, Tel has made me very welcome on this site and I have seen him at gigs and he always has a chat , What a breath of fresh air his band were in Leyland last week, Tracy and our friend Ruth who prefer rock music as a rule totally enjoyed them, I thought they were excellent. We will definitely see those lads again.
The North East club scene died a death years ago, there is a Agent up there who controls the all the best gigs there and at one time all the best South Yorkshire venues too. If you didnt do couple of Journey songs , the same Bryan Adams numbers too you would get any work, it was getting to the point where dozens of bands were doing practically the same set! A 70'sglam rock band I knew were told if they did some journey they would get more work,LOL!

# Posted by Tex's bassbitch - 22/01/2012, 13:13 (GMT)

@tony. Dixon ???

# Posted by 4 Strings - 22/01/2012, 13:17 (GMT)

I love Sunday blog, there the best

All the above is spot on, have to say thou I don’t mind the samey samey set-list bands stuck in a cycle of songs they cart get out off, its healthy and positive for the rest of us. Makes us stand out when we put in something original or different.

If the venue does not like that type of band, they wont book them (again), the venues that do will and samey samey set-list bands will live on.

The more seasoned bands do tend to play more diverse sets and if they do a samey samey set-list bands song, the do it well.

Lets not forget, the Pistols were grateful for the Brotherhood of Man , if the music scene at the time wasn’t so shite, could they have really stood out so well?

Fact, samey samey set-list bands is a generation feeder for guitar bands, the genre was is and always will be very focused to inspire guitarist to get up there and that has to be healthy. As for Marketing, in the world of doing covers, we do invariably play to suit an audience, the seasoned players play the field and play it well, the venues get to know who’s good and …

So yes your man is right to post what suit for him, the majority of us hate the static set list and samey samey set-list bands will live on.

From what I see on here, samey samey set-list bands is busy (yes could be more busy) in the NW, lots of bands (sometimes made of guys in multiple bands projects), its working they are getting gigs, nowadays I couldn’t take 2 hours of that type of set list in a night, but there are pubs and punters out that do.

Cash is tight, times are hard, punters and venues will determine what music they want to hear, if you aint playin the right tunes, you wont get the work.

Yes it has been blogged before, if the venue aint booking the right band it aint goner work and there is plenty of diverse bands in the NW to accommodate all the different types of Live music a venue could want for.

I’m very happy for the NW pub scene to have variety, in styles competence and experience its not boring, its not dead and its not killing itself.

Sunday blogs, yeah


# Posted by Mick (ex Bad Horsie) - 22/01/2012, 13:28 (GMT)

Looking at that song list there's only Rosalie I've ever played. And that was because I was in a Lizzy covers band. Horsie and DOA go nowhere near the classics BECAUSE they are grossly overplayed.

Good blog Gary.

# Posted by [mark] Into The Void - 22/01/2012, 13:32 (GMT)

preaching to the converted gary....if i had my way we would be even more obscure to be honest....

# Posted by MICK NASH - 22/01/2012, 13:45 (GMT)

I couldn't agree more with the above venue, but, having said that, I'm also sick of having to fend off punters who ask for the same clapped out shit they heard last week, and the week before. People don't seem to believe that I've never heard of:

Teenage Kicks
Mustang Sally
Sex On f'king Fire
Summer of 6 f'cking 9

or any other songs in the long and dreary list of easy kills.

# Posted by Mark C Marauder + Whitefake - 22/01/2012, 13:59 (GMT)

we only do 2 of the above, 1 of which is on it's way out. We tried to drop Whole Lot of Rosie so many times but nearly got lynched lol. Sandman is only played if the crowd really really really want us to do it, same with Highway to Hell, we have well over 3 hours of material so we are never stuck for a set. Why not mae the venue then we can make sure none of the 'HIT LIST' is played if we ever go there?

# Posted by Dillinger - 22/01/2012, 14:03 (GMT)

and to add to all that. two years ago i tryed to get a gig at a local
near me. and was presented with a list of bands on for the year
at this venue and lo and behold several of the bands had multipull
bookings up to four in total at the one venue over a twelve month span.
you greedy overplayed lot who ever they were, spread your bookings out and
you wont get overplayed and cause a dimminishing audience. i could not even get a foot
in the door for one gig, not fair. is it.


# Posted by CJay - 22/01/2012, 14:09 (GMT)

I can appreciate the songs mentioned are decent songs and instantly recognisable to an audience but I never have and never will perform them with the band or solo. I think sometimes it's an easy choice to go for songs you know and are comfortable playing, but you have to challenge yourself as well.

Like SKP said about the reactions to Shed Seven/ Coldplay, rockers listen to and can appreciate other genres of music. Audiences deserve a bit more respect than having bands assume they want a certain style.

# Posted by Dillinger - 22/01/2012, 14:20 (GMT)

sorry bout my ranting outburst on my last comment that has fell on deaf ears
but i thought that the overplaying of certain songs multipul times in one place
fell nicely into the argument too. better use it for a separate blog.
i will get mi coat.


# Posted by Roberto, fretboard polisher - 22/01/2012, 14:34 (GMT)

excellent blog, my take on it is, yeah great band, but lets do another song by them instead

all i can say is DO NOT underestimate the music that people know of, theres plenty of punters with huge record collections that arent even musicians

# Posted by Roberto, fretboard polisher - 22/01/2012, 14:37 (GMT)

and another thing its wonderful to hear something different, not necessarily obscure JUST DIFFERENT!

# Posted by NIGHT TRAIN - 22/01/2012, 14:38 (GMT)

@ Sabre
I thought it was a good point!


# Posted by G-IT-22 - 22/01/2012, 15:02 (GMT)

I recieved this e-mail too Gary......i know the points are valid & true but in my new band we have took the different covers route and we still get the Rosie,Paranoid etc shouts ......Alot of the pub rock punters know rock music thru going out n watching bands or wots on their Air guitar comp CD .... Listening to Planet Rock they have a listeners request 30 mins the songs requested were .Sweet Home,Sandman,Smoke on the water.Freeworld etc...................!!!
I think its only us 'muso's' that pull our faces at the more covered to death songs whilst the punters leg it to the dance floor with big smiles on their faces .....!!!

# Posted by Roberto, fretboard polisher - 22/01/2012, 15:30 (GMT)

Posted by G-IT-22 - 22/01/2012, 15:02 (GMT)

I think its only us 'muso's' that pull our faces at the more covered to death songs whilst the punters leg it to the dance floor with big smiles on their faces .....!!!

very good point Ian, and i think a lot of us, myself included would benefit from taking ourselves a lot less seriously, we are paid to sell beer and entertain people, not to play some b side from the japanese edition of the yellow vinyl single pmsl

# Posted by THE STORIES ,The very best! of... - 22/01/2012, 15:48 (GMT)

Great blog gary ,if i go & watch a band & its one of those same old then its fag break time ,i can always tell when ive seen one of those bands as i wake up with a bad cough & my asthma plays up .
Gotta admit its always refreshing to hear a set with a few new numbers in ,saves me a fortune in fags & the landlords happy as i"ll spend more money on his ale .

# Posted by Mr Cottonhouse - 22/01/2012, 15:50 (GMT)

In the top 50 tunes on the set list chart, I play or have played....

Valerie....(bossa) with TCS
Superstition with The Soultrain
Johnny B Goode......solo and a million years ago!
Whiskey in The Jar (acoustic) - with Gone Beggin'

I have however played quite a few of them at jam sessions.

There is enough variety out there for venues to put on a diverse range of quality but at the end of the day it's up to the venues.

Which reminds me....Gary, please PM me the name of that Top NW Venue manager.... He'll love us! ;-)

# Posted by Roberto, fretboard polisher - 22/01/2012, 15:52 (GMT)

literally gazillions of well known awesome music tracks out there, just play something else!

what i really enjoyed about watching catdog was not the obvious fact they are ace, it was that they played songs by superb bands that are well known but are never done by anybody else, it made my night to hear alter bridge and journey(and you wouldnt call them small unknown bands would you) same thing for LA80 and marauder, well known tunes still but not the same old and played very well, amen to that

# Posted by Roberto, fretboard polisher - 22/01/2012, 15:54 (GMT)

very hard to do, but a band that would cover aerosmith would make my busmans night

# Posted by Mr Cottonhouse - 22/01/2012, 15:55 (GMT)

in the same way 'best friends' tell Fat,Ugly brides 'you look beautiful !!!',,,


@Rob - that sounds like a challenge :)

# Posted by The West Coast Approach - 22/01/2012, 16:20 (GMT)

Well we have chosen stuff that is off the beaten track but goes down very well, just need to sit down and think about it i guess ;o)

# Posted by Tony- Vocalist - 22/01/2012, 16:32 (GMT)

Yes, tex's bassbitch ,Bill Dixon.

We were the first Glam Rock tribute band in the north east to get on the circuit. I worked for Bill for about 10 years , I could write a book! I should have left after 7 years and went open book after the first 2. There are several Glam bands up there now!
I finally left Bill ( he does have the monopoly up there) and worked for an agency based in South York's called WAS/IS run by the Legendary Neil x singer from the Gutter Band. Best thing I ever did . I worked for him about 18months till the band split and I moved down here. I wish I had worked for him earlier. He is everything Dixon wasn't! A smaller agent perhaps but he can afford more attention to his acts and whilst in that 18monts all my friends on Dixon's books were scratting for work I was out every week end and doing 3 and 4 day runs all over the place!

# Posted by deceased - 22/01/2012, 16:38 (GMT)

good job we dont do classic rock then...............!! bores me to death to be honest !!

# Posted by Mr C. - 22/01/2012, 16:46 (GMT)

+1 to G-IT-22 & Hallowed

We played Wangies last nite - Rosie NOT on the set list however most definitely would have been lynched fer NOT playing it and yep ........ the dance floor was packed as We proudly played Paranoid, Ain't talkin' bout love etc.

Stage invaded several times with requests for:

Stairway to heaven
Rock n' Roll
Dr. Dr.
Smoke on the water
Sweet Child O' mine ............ Classic Rock in Eccles not that stale after-all eh' !

This whole topic is soooo subjective, for ex. did this particular landlord canvass every single one of his punters, if he did were they drunk or sober, youngsters looking for 7 string death metal or blues guys looking to hear 3 chords,

Seemingly Classic Rock Bands have been singled out here, We are fortunate that our 'back catalogue's' are far reaching and seemingly unending - just how many punk songs is there to choose from before punk is branded as 'stale' ? punk was around in the 70's and has never really re-surfaced in terms of giving us new tunes to listen to, teenage kicks (again) anyone ! - I digress, how many times We gotta hear 12 bars before that particular genre becomes 'unsaleable' ? etc. etc.

Stands back ......... waits for the crossfire !!!

# Posted by THE STORIES ,The very best! of... - 22/01/2012, 16:47 (GMT)

aerosmith ! nice call @ rob .,a bit of springsteen would do it for me or the police or some radiohead (apart from bloody "creep") amongst others etc etc etc

# Posted by THE STORIES ,The very best! of... - 22/01/2012, 16:54 (GMT)

I dont think we are doing to bad of a job 500 + gigs later & counting & we are pretty busy this year & counting .

# Posted by Willow (of somebig™Fish) (Reti... - 22/01/2012, 17:10 (GMT)

"For the second year in a row, despite price increases - forced on us by
increased costs from ..... etc .... our gross sales figure is down, our profit is down."



makes me wanna cry!

# Posted by Daz (scopyons) - 22/01/2012, 17:46 (GMT)

Hare of the dog play Alll of the cheesy tunes. And despite our faceless venue owners commets we have a full diary. Including mulitple rebookings 10 bookings at one venue that takes more money when HoTD are on than ANY other band. By the end of last year we were turning away two bookings for every one we booked and on vvvenue offered us an additional £100 for us to cancell 2 existing bookings to play there. The numbers speak for them selves. No disagreeing with Garys point. However there is clearly still demand.

# Posted by CJay - 22/01/2012, 17:53 (GMT)

@Boneyard Dogs You're right. Classic rock does seem to have been singled out but I think it's a case of there's so many rock bands out there because there's so many songs. So it's easy to pick on them.

One thing we do is keep copies of the setlists for each venue so next time we're there we can change it round. Still doesn't stop people asking for Sex On Fire, Valerie and Chelsea Dagger though and if the punters want it, you play it to keep them spending.

# Posted by Mr Cottonhouse - 22/01/2012, 17:55 (GMT)

There are lots of issues here making this topic subjective as BDs states.

@Willow - AND IT'S ALL THE BANDS FAULT - well who books the bands?


If work was to cease for bands wanting to play all the cliched rock songs then those bands would soon stop playing those songs. Until then, those venues will remain and so will those songs.

I can't see a problem with that. I only drink real ales but I have no problem if you want to fill yourself with chemicals. I will find an alternative.....

Musicians, venues, bands and punters all need an alternative to fulfill their needs. There's no point critising others because YOU don't have an alternative.

Mrcottonnowthinkingaboutsupportingchorleyfchouse ;-)

# Posted by Daz (scopyons) - 22/01/2012, 17:56 (GMT)

There's no stale tunes. Only stale bands

# Posted by Mick (ex Bad Horsie) - 22/01/2012, 18:05 (GMT)

I dunno Daz. If I never hear Paranoid or You Really Got Me again it'll be too soon....

# Posted by Daz (scopyons) - 22/01/2012, 18:14 (GMT)

Mick-Go and listen to Randy play paranoid on the Tribute album as aclassic album of making a classic track into a fresh and entertaining tune. I appreciate that none of us are Randy Rhoads but its a good example. Just my opinion

# Posted by Steve Blease - 22/01/2012, 18:23 (GMT)

What a load of fucking tosh.... complete fucking bollocks. Music played well is music played well. Some bands needs to get a a personality that's for sure. But, for landlords to start cribbing over the music they play and blame them for their ever priced swill they're not selling is nonsense.

Times are hard for everyone. I took the Mrs out last week, my first two drinks factoring in what it costs me to get to the pub and back came to £32.00. It's got fuck all to do with the band. Yes it was a classic rock covers band, yes they played loads of stuff other people play. So the point is what? I'm listening to shite? Or the exercise costs £32.00 for two drinks? I know what I'd say was the issue.

I personally have no wish to go out and hear a load of arty fart obscure trash. Yeah sure, I don't particularly want to hear the same rehashed top 100 rock tunes either, but it's up to bands and venues to reach a amicable reasonable compromise.

I think some venues have this idea that bands can pluck song outta their collective arses and bang it's done. It's demoralising to learn a shit load of new tunes that go down like a pair of lead knickers.

Venues have to realise it used to work and now it isn't for some of you. Putting up posters and hoping the public are gonna flock in is not the way to go right now. The regulars of where I go are nowhere to be seen of late. I myself have not been out for several months. This was nothing to do with the music and more to do with a previous blog.

Speaking as a member of the paying public, I'll this. Treat your punters like shit and they'll go elsewhere, DON'T BLAME EVERYONE ELSE.

# Posted by Mr Cottonhouse - 22/01/2012, 18:37 (GMT)

@Steve - £3.80 for a pint of diet coke in The Bridgewater in Darwen!!! but that's for another blog I suppose. The cheapest real ale in town is £1.80 at the ICI Club and the dearest is £2.60 at The Crown. £2 at Number 39 were I programme alternative music and it is doing well. The Crown is dear and is up and down.... I don't think that it is as simple as beer prices.

ps nothing wrong with a pair of lead knickers!

# Posted by Steve ( solo acoustic plus ) - 22/01/2012, 18:56 (GMT)

I'm with Steve Blease on this and also with Daz from Hare of the dog. I'm no classic rock fan ! However, some people want it; some don't. As for comments, Do something different... well words fail me. I've tried loads, and audiences always ask for a classic rock tune. It pisses me of but WHO AM I TO JUDGE AN AUDIENCE AND A BAND FOR THEIR LOVE OF A SONG/GENRE.

YOU JUST CAN'T CALL IT. IF you could, you'd me making lots of money !!!!!!!!




# Posted by Steve Blease - 22/01/2012, 19:00 (GMT)

I can watch 10 bands play the same 10 tunes, will I be entertained? yes I will. Will they all be the same? No they won't. If u look like a band play like a band and perform like a band people will watch you.

There's some very very pro' bands on here that I watch. The crowds are well down, and the last thing I'd blame would be the band.

# Posted by Steve Blease - 22/01/2012, 19:00 (GMT)

I can watch 10 bands play the same 10 tunes, will I be entertained? yes I will. Will they all be the same? No they won't. If u look like a band play like a band and perform like a band people will watch you.

There's some very very pro' bands on here that I watch. The crowds are well down, and the last thing I'd blame would be the band.

# Posted by Steve ( solo acoustic plus ) - 22/01/2012, 19:01 (GMT)

Should have read:


# Posted by Daz (scopyons) - 22/01/2012, 19:09 (GMT)

As an experiment I'd have two juke boxes. Juke box A full of classic popular tunes and juke box B full of somethin "a bit different". And charge 10p per track. At the end of the week tot up the cash. Is there anyone on NWB that believes that Juke box B would have more cash. If you do then you qualify for membership of the flat earth soicety

# Posted by Keith (RED ZOO) - 22/01/2012, 19:26 (GMT)

"and you will see fresh blood with fresh sounding set lists" be interesting to see if the figures are any better once these bands are booked and played and how the new approach works, will it improve or not? Is it just a set list change this place is after or a genre change?

# Posted by Steve Slinger - 22/01/2012, 19:41 (GMT)

Looks to me as though this is one venues opinion ... so what!
If the venue in question wish to pursue this shortsighted view there are some excellent bands on here who will not get a booking .... they WILL get them elsewhere.
Its a minority view folks ... BOTHERED.


# Posted by Daz (scopyons) - 22/01/2012, 19:42 (GMT)

It sounds like the venue is struggling. If the landlords soloution is to demand that bands alter their setlist it sounds a bizzare business plan to say the least.

# Posted by Daz (scopyons) - 22/01/2012, 19:45 (GMT)

And out of interest I'd like to ask Gary what factors enable this venue or landlord to describe itself as "Top" ?

# Posted by Jules - 22/01/2012, 19:48 (GMT)

How many people own a Compilations Classic Rock CD and play it in there car ?
Feel good music you can sing your heart out to and you know all the words ?
I rest my case !

# Posted by Steve Slinger - 22/01/2012, 19:52 (GMT)

Anyone know which venue is the owner of this statement?

# Posted by deceased - 22/01/2012, 19:55 (GMT)

well said steve blease ............and its horses for courses too ........with our set we cant play at the heavier / classic crock venues .........and the classic rock bands wouldnt go down at the venues that enjoy us .. if the punters like you and buy their ale ,fill the dance floor . and come back next time your on then who gives a shit if this one guy from this one venue feels that way . most bands update their set every few months by adding new songs anyway .. its worked for the last 50 years .. fuck the prick ..you should know by now i say how it is !! rock on .

# Posted by Mr C. - 22/01/2012, 19:56 (GMT)

+ 's to:
Steve Slinger
Steve Blease

How on earth can an experienced business person/Landlord hold 'Classic Rock' responsible for falling profit margins ?


# Posted by Jez - 22/01/2012, 19:57 (GMT)

Classics are classics for one reason only!

As said earlier, as a pub band we are playing to the majority, not the critical musicians stood at the bar rubbing their chin.

It's easy to knock the sheeple and drunks - but they're buying the beer and keeping the place open when the landlord rings the till up on a sunday night aren't they? Saying that - is it essential to play "the whole list of favourites"? - in my opinion no.

Treat pub bands as you would a pro band in my opinion, would you be happy if they just played album tracks? I'm sure at some point Iommi has thought "I am sick to death of playing Paranoid"!!!

# Posted by Mr Cottonhouse - 22/01/2012, 19:57 (GMT)

Hark To Towler and The Bakers Vaults have (had) lists of songs that bands were requested not to play. Those venues were always busy and in the case of H2T 95% of the time they had classic rock bands on.

@Daz - sorry but I have to disagree with you on that one. We know that in the classic rock strongholds of NWBland - juke box A would win hands down.... but in MY local it wouldn't. Admittedly these pubs are in a minority but I think that if you take a 'neutral' pub (if there is such a thing) and monitered what was on the juke box during the course of an evening you would be surprised. I would suggest that classic rock would almost certainly be the choice of a minority.

What does this prove? Well maybe there are a lot of people not being catered for by the local live music scene. I'm not blaming bands for a lack of diversity but I would like to watch bands like The Black Cat Trio, Wagontown and others who offer something different from time to time. Maybe then more people would support live music. I can't make these decisions though...that's up to landlords. Some venues are classic rock venues and I see no reason for them to change a winning formula, I'm just looking at the bigger picture.

I played on New Years Eve to a packed pub who enjoyed an acoustic singalong all night, no rock just basic bash em' out songs. The biggest cheer of the night however came when the piper played at midnight. It went down so well that later on me and him played 25 minutes of jigs and reels to delight them even more! Bloody hard work trying to get in tune with pipes eh? What's the key? erm.....B flatter! haha


# Posted by 4most Wanted - 22/01/2012, 20:04 (GMT)

So there's a handful of punters who wish to listen to the same old, same old bullshit. Week in, week out, played by the same old, same old, monotonous fucking bands.

How many punters do you actually think are staying away because it's same old, same old boring shite?

Yes beer is expensive. Yes pubs are competing with the corner shop that are selling 8 cans of Stella for a fiver. So what do you have to offer that will tempt punters off their comfy sofa's and into the boozer?

Rock'n' boring fucking roll played badly? Whole lotta fucking shite played badly with some twat screaming his head off and bursting every other fuckers eardrums? How about a really bad rendition of Sex on Fire? Or some ham fisted wankers trying to knock out a really lame version of Sweet Child o' mine? Or play safe and do an extremely mind numbingly dull 12 bar? Or pull out all the stops and do the Chad Valley version of Comfortably Numb?

Let's face it. the classic rock thingy is a tired old lame horse being flogged and dragged kicking and screaming into a different century, where people think it should have been dog meat long before.

Time to move on people. Ditch the denim flares and the denim shirts and for fuck's sake get a fucking haircut. It's 2012.

# Posted by egbert - 22/01/2012, 20:05 (GMT)

Reading this blog is a little like going on a marmite forum when someone's just announced that Denmark has banned marmite - I have this vision of some fella stood in the corner, clutching a skull and telling his spectral mate that there's something rotten in the state of denmark.

# Posted by Stataz Quo - 22/01/2012, 20:07 (GMT)

Hmmmm ! whatever and to be honest , FUCK IT !

we have in our rep , (not allways the set ) all of the songs that you mention , and i might add, they are classic rock songs and we are a classic rock band !

That said we aint been paid off yet , !
So sorry there if this hurts , its all about how well they are played as far as im concerned ,so perhaps some bands dont do to well with the songs you mention ? well then thats a problem !

Perhaps their Venue Managers should be looking at hireing new bands who can cut it ,leaveing the said bands to stay in with their fat ugly wives !


# Posted by Jez - 22/01/2012, 20:09 (GMT)

@TCS - the towler did have a "banned" list, though it had regular rock punters, fair enough. If, on the other hand, or "the norm" you turn up at "The Blue Dragon" in "nowhere town" and it's full of chavs, ladettes and a couple of drunks and you;re a rock band - do you play Beating around the bush or Highway to Hell? Symptom of the universe or Paranoid?

Most people on here play in covers bands, so let's just stop it with the musical integrity bullshit ffs! Play your own songs if that's your stance. People like repitition, people like songs they've heard!

# Posted by Mr Cottonhouse - 22/01/2012, 20:12 (GMT)

@Guy - Hehe

@4most - not the most helpful comments really. I am however interested in the 8 cans of Stella for a fiver....please pm me the details ;-)

anyway off out now to watch a classic rock band and then a blues band.

# Posted by Jules - 22/01/2012, 20:12 (GMT)

People in glass houses .... hmmmmmmm !!!!

# Posted by Jez - 22/01/2012, 20:13 (GMT)

@4 most - just out of interest, you seem strong in your views, give us a setlist

# Posted by Mr Cottonhouse - 22/01/2012, 20:16 (GMT)

@Jez - If you turn up and it's full of chavs I'd take a leaf out of Bob Dylan's book... turn round and say to the band "play it firkin loud" ......and then leg it! lol

I take it that the musical integrity comment was not aimed at me?

# Posted by Mr C. - 22/01/2012, 20:21 (GMT)

@4most .............. You play Sweet home Alabama fer fecks sake !!!!! does it sound better played with short hair ?

@Trig - well said that man.

# Posted by Jez - 22/01/2012, 20:31 (GMT)

@TCS - I hope my comments are never taken personally (aimed at folk)> It's a forum and all about just getting points of view out.

I think I've said on here many times, the written word can be misinterpreted so easily. Interpret everyhing as a discussion amongst friends round a pub table! (until it gets offensive - then let rip or storm out!!! lol ;0) )

# Posted by Daz (scopyons) - 22/01/2012, 20:40 (GMT)

Tcs if you read my post on juke box A I Suggested classic and popular tunes not classic rock. Yes the great highland bagpipe plays in the key of b flat thereabouts subject to tempreture and humidity.

# Posted by Daz (scopyons) - 22/01/2012, 20:40 (GMT)

Tcs if you read my post on juke box A I Suggested classic and popular tunes not classic rock. Yes the great highland bagpipe plays in the key of b flat thereabouts subject to tempreture and humidity.

# Posted by deceased - 22/01/2012, 20:41 (GMT)

@4most..........i didnt know you covered all those pmsl...........!! (lol)

# Posted by Stataz Quo - 22/01/2012, 20:46 (GMT)

Jez , well said dude , the written word can be misinterpreted so easily !

Thats why i dont come on here anymore , to much smacked arse , brown noseing and self appreciative back slappin for me , and never ever comment on summat coz it allways blows up in yer face ,

If a bands good that i watch , then i will tel em on the night , and versi vice ! But i would rather not write a review, coz coming from another muso or band , it means diddly squat to me , reviews are better from a punter or the venue thats hired you and paid yer wages

Just my thoughts on this ,But hey wadda i Know !

# Posted by [mark] Into The Void - 22/01/2012, 20:59 (GMT)

I have mentioned 100s of times on here the very same arguement as eschewed by this unnamed venue....


I have filled in with HOTD a number of times (think they enjoyed the sport of it tbh!) doing a setlist containing quite a few of the named tracks - was it my own personal hell? well no not really ... it was fun, when they do it it aint all stock versions of the tracks and they throw shit in all the time that aint on the record (or was that to fuck up the stand-in?). I enjoyed it as the several one offs that it was (and may well be in the future) and do not begrudge them what they do or their full order book. They went down extremely well even with this fuck knuckle playing bass (badly) alongside them.

This is a very personal view point - I personally do not want to play, full time, all those songs (HOTD and Bonyard Dogs amongst others do them very well to start with, why compete?)..... I have a music collection of some 44,000 AOR,hair rock and classic rock tunes and purposefully have attempted to steer Piggery Bandana (RIP), LA80 and DOA away from the tried and tested, mainly because, within the aforesaid 44000 tracks there are some belters....absolute fucking beauties which deserve to be covered and as that genre is our bag, why not by us?

In DOA i am fortunate that all 4 of us feel very similar with regard to song choices and we are creating a setlist that we anticipate will get the vast majority of our chosen demographic harking back to the days of banshee, jillys, space city and the wigan one(red wine prevents me from remembering the name at the moment!).

In LA80 we played Vandenberg, Talisman and WET with our first guitarist and currently play survivor, dokken, mr big and dio.... And the first acid test for any potential song is "how many others do it?"... if it doesnt pass that one it never gets done.... There are however one or two exceptions....our guitarist does eruption ...so it would be criminal not to go into You really got me afterwards....we do here i go again but we do the John Sykes USA only remix (far heavier remix!).....

Regarding this venue (and i do know which one it is), if this is your setlist, you take it one of two ways, be upset and let it ruin your life or bite down on it and accept its one less venue for you to approach........

The vast majority of us on here are basking in reflected glory in any case and peddling other peoples tunes so i wouldnt take it too personally

whew that ended up longer than i anticipated (red wine!)

# Posted by Jez - 22/01/2012, 21:01 (GMT)

Trig - With regards to the site now, I never came on here till a year or 2 back so I cant comment - though what you say does seem a common theme amongst the earlier members/contributors! ;0)

I think a lot of the angst this week, it is just january blues! lol

(and to anybody forming a band, don't look in the "Set List Chart"... January Blues isn't an old classic!!! lol)


# Posted by Stataz Quo - 22/01/2012, 21:05 (GMT)

Great Band name tho Jez lol

# Posted by Jez - 22/01/2012, 21:11 (GMT)

@Dakota - "Great Band name tho Jez" - it will be when I get a band!!! lol

It is on its way - jammed again this morning, setlist growing. There will be some off tangent songs and some "reworked" classics!! Can't wait! lol


# Posted by The Kerbcrawlers - 22/01/2012, 21:13 (GMT)

Why do these best of classic rock albums with all the NWB top 100 sell thousands of copies?

My new lot are avoiding the NWB top 100 as far as is possible, mainly because after doing this since the late 70's, I see no reason to trot out 'Allright now' ever again, unless I'm helping out at a jam night. Songs that have really been done to death have no interest for me anymore. Also, I want a little unique selling point of some sort (songs other people don't play but the punters will like) to get into venues.

Having said that - there are still there are one or two I want to do - certain of the songs mentioned above as being done by most bands are done simply because they are excellent songs and bands SHOULD continue to play them. Landlords hear a band doing a blistering and perfect version of 'The boys are back in town' which sends the crowd gaga and then slate the band for being boring / stale etc, because it's an old song. It goes off punters reactions, not just the till roll. Good music is good music.

I will never ever write a review of a band on here because reviews are just the opinion of the writer and worth nothing really. I have constructively and helpfully reviewed venues in the past. The opinions of landlords about their own taste in music don't always reflect that of their customers.

# Posted by Stataz Quo - 22/01/2012, 21:31 (GMT)

Well said Ian , and Ahem , as i said , ! lol

# Posted by Steve Blease - 22/01/2012, 21:49 (GMT)

Anyone worth his salt knows that if you went out tomorrow with a new band playing let's say.......

Queens Of The Stoneage, Disturbed, Air Bourne, American Dog, Stone Sour, Seven Dust, Chrome Division, Claw Finger, Coheed And Cambria, Drowning Pool, Deftones, Filter Godsmack, Kings X, Korn, LimpBizkit, Machine Head, Megadeth, Monster Magnet, Mudvayne, Nonpoint, P.O.D.

What do you think would happen? They're all bands that I listen to everyday at work on my MP3 player. The public would be like WTF is that shit?

You should all carry on doing what you are doing. I have seen a lot of you and for the most part you are all really good. IT AIN'T YOUR FAULT that we don't go out as much as we used to.

# Posted by deceased - 22/01/2012, 22:06 (GMT)

steve blease lol..........im 54 and aint ever heard of any of what you just put !!! bought my first fender strat after hearing hank marvin ........!!! now love weller , coldplay, keane , etc my brain just wont accept heavier music end of . but what we play always seems to go down well . the last gig we played we got asked can you play lily the pink by a lad in his thirtys !! and another guy asked for shang a lang by the bay city rollers !! thought they were taking the piss at first but they were serious !!! i gave him the first 3 chords to shang a lang and he was made up !!! time i packed it in coz you will never win lol.

# Posted by KING MONDAY - 22/01/2012, 22:27 (GMT)

i agree most bands seem to be playin the same set list but it is the landlords fallt if he keeps booking bands doin the same shit ther ar tuns of bands doin different stuff my other band A.I.M we do a lot of different songs ppl stil no them but we wil also throw 1 or 2 of your old standerds in if asked for no harm don an everyone is happy

# Posted by Steve Blease - 22/01/2012, 22:54 (GMT)

@King Monday... that's true, even though a lot of bands do play the same stuff, there are enough bands to play different stuff if you pull your finger out and do some home work.

@RollerCoaster... Well I was 50 at Christmas, and I pretty much listen to everything. All the bands I listed were quite heavy. I have been known in the long ago past to play pure rock 'n' roll 50s style, classic 60s, punk and even a glam 70s type band. I've done cabarette including everything from the Drifters to the Shadows. At the time I'd play whatever kept people happy. I don't play anymore from pure can't be arsed lazyness, but I do like to watch these days. Kinda like sex. LMBFFHAO.

# Posted by 4most Wanted - 22/01/2012, 23:04 (GMT)

@Cottonhouse - Any off licence in Heywood mate, and a good few in Rochdale too. Mind you, somebody did once describe Rochdale as a holding pen for the Jeremy Kyle show. Spot on description really. So if you do venture over here, please make sure you wear tracksuit bottoms with Timberland boots and a hoodie. It may ensure you don't get mugged.

@Jez - We've been here before mate. I left my last band because of same old, same old shite.
I wanted to form/join a new band, but trying to find a guitarist that DOESN'T want to play all that fret wanking bollocks, is impossible. I swear if I ever go to another audition and get asked if I know Wishing Well or AC/DC or any of the other aforementioned dirges, I will bury my bass in the enquirers empty head.

I've seen some fabulous musicians from this site playing absolute bollocks music. It's heartbreaking knowing all that talent is being stifled by "play safe to get the gig" mentality.

It's no coincidence that that particular genre is also called "dinosaur rock". I first heard that term in the 80's because it was old back then. And fuck all has changed since!!

# Posted by Roberto, fretboard polisher - 22/01/2012, 23:28 (GMT)

the enjoyment i get from this site these days consists mainly reading of the predictable backlash to such discussions,itd be boring if we had the same views and tastes but my word some people get so wound up haha,but same old same old stuff,and lets be honest we all enjoy reading this stuff

# Posted by THE STORIES ,The very best! of... - 23/01/2012, 00:51 (GMT)

Does anyone here like the human league ?

# Posted by 4most Wanted - 23/01/2012, 01:01 (GMT)

@the stories - yeah me!!

# Posted by Mr Cottonhouse - 23/01/2012, 01:31 (GMT)

@The Stories - I like The Human League about as much as I like Venkys....no problem with anyone else liking them though.

@Rob - absolutely!

@4most - our trumpeteers in The Soultrain live in Rochdale so I'll get them to pick me some up. :-)

@Jez - not much angst really, just one or two passionate comments.

# Posted by Havoc 51 - 23/01/2012, 09:49 (GMT)

There's pro's and con's to the argument but my main observation is simply this.

I can't believe there are bands that are naive, lazy or arrogant enough to play at a venue without working with the venue to :

1 - talk to them about their venue, punters age group, tastes, favourites.
2 - Are there any no go tracks
3 - classic rock covers everything from the heaviest sounds to accoustic ballads, where does the venue slot in.
4 - Yes there are chart toppers and obscure bonus tracks on the Taiwanese import - what do the venue and the audiance want

A simple call, or a chat on the night would have left everyone happier. Is that so frigging hard to work out.

# Posted by WAGONTOWN - 23/01/2012, 10:20 (GMT)

I must say, i like the Grooverman analogy with the jukebox thing.At some gigs, we could play 2 or 3 obscurish American Bluegrass songs in our setlist which took us months to learn,which illicit deadpan looks from the punters followed by the cheesy Jed Clampett theme,'which we learnt in 10 minutes' and Hey Presto,its like weve touched em with a cattle prod.

After saying that,if 50 odd other bands were playing JC,we'd drop it like a hot spud.....T

# Posted by Neil Aspinall - 23/01/2012, 12:25 (GMT)

So that's got that sorted then.
Whittles are you doing your homework and asking bands for a set list, dvd, youtube link, how popular are they at other venues GO WATCH em and then deciding whether to book them based on whether you think they are for your venue and your punters?
Don't say you haven't got time to check bands out as that's in your job description if your putting yourself out as a band venue, equally if you can't be arsed sit at a computer, scratch your arse and watch a few vids of the band and take the time to check NWB and look at their set list BEFORE booking.
Bands can play whatever shite they want and if you as a venue MANAGER think they are not up to scratch and tick all YOUR boxes then simply don't book them, let someone else book who can't be arsed doing their basic business management.
A free house wouldn't buy a barrel of ale without sampling it to see if taste shit, BUT if you know your business and know that the majority of your punters like to drink shit then you'd buy it, if not you'd tell the salesman or the band to fuck off.
Agree also that a classic rock song can be done differently but can also be done so in a very entertaining way through stage craft etc and not looking like a novice by stairing at the floor like your shoes are stuck to a well beer stained carpet.
The upshot is the venues have to take 100% responsibility for the bands they book for THEIR BUSINESS and be alot more selective, do your homework, canvas your punters, advertise the venue not the band, invest the time and stop moaning on how hard it is to run the place.
I've offered the 80's band I play in to so many venues and suggested they do a theme night etc, how many have got back.... 2, offer a life line and they complain about the colour of the rope.

# Posted by WOLFPACK - 23/01/2012, 13:17 (GMT)

100% with HALLOWED on this one!

We really do bust a gut to do the different numbers and as a result we now can only get gigs outside of Bolton at about 4 venues cause when they see our setlist the average landlord simply wouldn't know 3/4 of the set.

One bummer about trying to be different too is we all had our favourite live song, which in our case was Judas Priests VICTIM OF CHANGES, and we totally nailed it live with the guitarists doing the twin lead thing and me giving it the screams n everything and it always went down like a lead balloon to the point where I once actually turned on the audience, i think it was in Altrincham, and said "for fucks sake you lot wouldn't know a good thing if it sucked you off right here and now!" Not a wise move really as it put us on the back foot the rest of the night but by then the band had already said we aren't coming back here again anyway!

I think its the classic 'Horses For Courses' situation here really. I can see the point at the venue in question but for all these new venues that seem to be popping up then they are definetley not going to be be into the Wolfpack ethic of playing more obscure songs by the bands you know! This is why we only play one weekend a month as there's not enough venues on the circuit willing to take on what this venue is actually asking for!

# Posted by UkePunk - 23/01/2012, 13:21 (GMT)

Interesting read.
I can promise you this..we are different from any other band on this site or in the whole of the country.
Come on venues..

# Posted by WOLFPACK - 23/01/2012, 13:24 (GMT)

All that said I do have to say the last time we played said venue we were playing Thunders LOVE WALKED IN and one girl shouted throughout the entirety of the song "Whole Lotta Rosie , Sweet Child O Mine" so the whole point of the original comment goes right out of the window!

# Posted by Guilty Pleasures - 23/01/2012, 13:37 (GMT)

Sorry to hear that about 'Victim...' - I feckin love that song. But I am more of a muso than a punter.

# Posted by G-IT-22 - 23/01/2012, 13:39 (GMT)

The management of Whittles is the same as Old Isaacs n remember wot shit Mary went thru b4 escaping to the Nailor !!!! So i think Keef is just kicking the Cat on this issue .... tho the 'red card' has been a feature for a long time @venue when certain songs are played !!
....btw Ruins are hosting the jam on Sun 12 feb so lets all get down n do some stuff ;-)

# Posted by WOLFPACK - 23/01/2012, 13:55 (GMT)

Aye i think its a case of stick to your guns on this one folks. I think Keef referred to us earning WAGES from this? FFS who's earning a wage doing this? If, like 99% of us on here, you are doing it for shits an giggles and just the love of getting out and playing then carry on as you are.............I certainly intend doing!

# Posted by Mutha Humbucker - 23/01/2012, 16:33 (GMT)

This is the most interesteing thing Ive read all day.. Music played well aint the problem music played lame could be but Venues are struggling and some need to find a blame point.

I am still young and have lots to learn but I do know this playing the odd Dinosaur Rock tune in the midst of our fairly diverse set list brings light and shade to our show ... but its has never been to blame for the downturn.... we have prided ourselves on our percentage of rebookings playing CLASSIC ROCK MODERN ROCK POP SOUL with a humbucker twist its simple if it works in 90 percent of the venues you play then carry on as you were.


# Posted by Mr Cottonhouse - 23/01/2012, 19:11 (GMT)

@Daz - yes you are right I read your comment wrong and I apologise. As for 'classic' and 'popular' - these terms are applicable to ALL genres and therefore would win hands down. For example All Blues, Footprints and Love Supreme are all absolute classics but the majority on here would see them as obscure. I think we are going in circles with that one.

My main point (and final point) on this issue is that there is no reason why a venue shouldn't book bands who play the same songs - and lets face it, it's not just classic rock.....SOF, Dakota, Chelsea Dagger ect ect. What I want is a choice and the right to decide, this is why I programme an 'alternative' venue in Darwen on Thursday evenings.

# Posted by Daz (scopyons) - 23/01/2012, 19:45 (GMT)

Ive dealt with Keef ( during the Old Issacs Fiasco the less said the better ) Ive never run a pub and I have no idea how to run one and i wouldnt presume to tell anyone how to run their business. however if takings are down on specific nights when certain bands are on the it suggests to me its possible that the "classic Rock" genre of music isnt popular any more AT THAT VENUE so maybe its time for something else.

# Posted by Mr C. - 23/01/2012, 21:22 (GMT)

So ........... Due to the fact that several of them there 'banned' songs are currently on our set list and We are booked to play Whittles first week in April - this is how the new Whittles regime affects BYD, ( No rules in Rock n' Roll eh' )

1, Our Bass player lives in Wrexham ( BYD is Oldham based ) He can only rehearse once a month, sometimes not at all,

2, We are currently experiencing Drummer issues

3, To rehearse - lets say 10 new songs just to satisfy shortsightedness ! Costs us £30 a pop in our usual rehearsal room, ( Our gear is stored there ) lets say 3 rehearsals = £90

As for 'I wanna tell ya' a story' .......... BYD have done the different song route, try Yankee Rose by Dave Lee Roth, think Steve Vai / Billy Sheehan, We nailed that sucker and proudly took it on the road knowing that punters were gonna be awestruck - WRONG ! they hated it,
same story with tunes by Kiss / Dare / even an Ozzy tune !!!! all fell at the first fence,
What we do now is our own arrangements of Crazy Train / Free World etc. keeps it fresh for us and punters alike, ask Claire at Wangies - She loved our set on Sat'day !

Keef, there's a recession on - Beer sales are down because folks just cannot readily afford as much ale as they used to, blaming it on 'Classic Rock' or any genre is just ridiculous, are the pubs currently shut and others on the verge of closing - out of business because of 'stale' Rock Bands ? ...........

I'll wager that the majority of us are buying less petrol these days - Oil profits are like beer sales, falling fast, yet you don't hear of B.P / Shell etc. blaming it on the boogie ! ( see what I did there ! )

Looks like I will be asking Keef fer a 1:1 meeting cos' to meet his demands by the 1st week in April & based on the above - just not realistic,

( Who else does the Van Halen ALBUM track - A'int talkin' bout love' ? I fecking love playing that tune ! )

Raaaawwwwkkkkkkk !!!

# Posted by Iron Shark - 23/01/2012, 23:01 (GMT)

My word, where to begin,
Nidge- I enjoyed Victim of at Whittles a very welcome surprise, always try to get up there when you guys are playing. We do appreciate a varied set and always a good show, was it a cross of Journey and Metallica you played one time, superb!
I know Russ from SAS and I'm pretty sure he knows I'm a fan of his band, when we were first getting a set together eg seek and destroy, 2 mins to midnight + practically all of our other choices, they already played them. This is still our benchmark not to duplicate local bands sets. Maiden changed to Evil that men do, Metallica came (+ went] to Stone cold crazy. We enjoy playing Dr Dr so that has stayed but Lights outs was our first choice, you guessed it everyone else was playing it at that time.
We were booked for Whittles this Fri but had to cancel.
The landlord hasn't called it a top venue, that's a comment. Maybe he could justify that anyway by the fact that he has enjoyed success over the previous years.How many bands on here alone have played/ tried to at this pub?
We've had gigs booked on the strength of our set being different but also been refused for the same reason.
I know for a fact that even though we brought a good crowd to a pub on our 1st time there the landlord didn't rebook us as we don't do any DC covers, horses for courses.
I fully agree that revenues are down at pubs because of the cashflow situation but also that ultimately the Landlord makes the decisions on who he books. It could've been better worded, granted but at the same time if you are one of the bands that will be affected you decide what, if anything you need to do about it.
We've played songs that sank and if anyone asks for Whole Lotta Rosie they get a polite no we don't do that one. Then we all piss ourselves laughing afterwards. It's cost us gigs but not our integrity lol.
Quite clearly the landlord is looking at profit so I imagine he will still book bands with tired sets if they're bringing money in fair play to them.
Keef has stated on his website before that he doesn't watch Dvd's etc anymore because sometimes when the folk turn up they don't sound like the band on the promo. He takes the route of attend the jam sesh + intro yourself that way.
@ Nidge totally agree with everything you've said, times are hard everywhere not just Oldham. Plenty of people who play at Whittles are practically drawing a wage from there from the amount of bands they are in, good luck to them, do it if you can.
Of course we only play totally different tunes, are booked up everywhere and only get paid in gold!!!
I'm off to join the mile high club + take my drug dealer off speed dial.

Rock On!

# Posted by 4most Wanted - 24/01/2012, 01:52 (GMT)

And yet again, another "deluded" weekend warrior has posted a different blog saying ignore these comments. As I've said previously, it really would take a crowbar to remove some peoples heads from their own arses.

Dwindling clientele, venues closing every other week, "classic rock" bands being cancelled for a DJ or Karaoke, and still they bury their heads in the sand. Completely oblivious to anything outside their own back slapping, smoke blowing clique.

Two words here folks that most people are completely ignoring. Disposable Income.

It's what puts bums on seats. It's the cashflow that people buy alcohol with. It's the cost of a taxi to a venue and back again. And everything else inbetween.

So what kind of punter has X amount of disposable income? In my experience, most people over 30 have fuck all disposable income. Mortgages, children, bank and credit card loans, car loans, etc, etc. The list goes on.

So it's pretty safe to assume that those with the most disposable income, i.e., those who can frequent drinking establishments are usually aged under 25. Usually because they have no financial responsibilities or commitments.

So now you have an ageing rock band, playing 40 year old songs to a 25 year old audience. Songs that probably most of the audience have never heard. Songs that remind them of taking the piss out of their dad's for playing air guitar or air drums to. Think about it. Do YOUR sons and daughters actually want to come and see you play antiquated rock songs? And in some cases, really, really fucking averagely.

Think about it. Really fucking think about it. Think hard and fucking long about it.

Then remove your head from your arse, wake up, and for fuck's sake start smelling the coffee.

# Posted by A Band of Gypsies / A.B.O.G - 24/01/2012, 04:41 (GMT)

Lol nice one russ :-D if he tries docking us ill set fire to fuckin simon with his red card then the stage ha, try lowering your prices keef and stop telling people at 12 o'clock to Fuck off! when you have a 2am licence possibly even 4am licence so whats the excuse for telling your loved and respected customers (yeah right) to fuck off!! yep some songs have become dated and if you book the same sort of band's week in week out then what do you fuckin expect, good job there are only two we need to scrap which have been replaced anyway seeing as we're playing for whittles but if the crowd shout more then they're getting our full blown own version of paranoid loud as fuck :@

# Posted by La Bam - 24/01/2012, 05:21 (GMT)

Personally, I dont understand why bands dont diversify more.

If you hire a DJ for a party etc, he doesnt pick one genre of music and stick to it.

Its the diversity and 'something for everyone' ethos that keeps your crowd happy, regardless of who they are.

Its the dynamics of that first riff they havent heard for years or that no other pub band does, that stimulates them, and sets you apart in their memory.

I love my rock music, and to me rock music has some of the best musicians around, so if you can play rock, you can play anything.

Nothing wrong with classic rock and cheesy classics, but stick something in there that will keep those that dont like classic rock in there too (unless, obviously youre an out and out classic rock band). To be honest rock music fans are probably the most open minded of all music fans. Youll be amazed what goes down well.


# Posted by LAST GANG IN TOWN - 24/01/2012, 10:14 (GMT)

Just for the record...I am NOT having a go at 'Classic' Rock bands...I listen to Planet Rock on Night Shifts and have played in a few such bands in my past and a few of you have had me headbanging at your 'Classic' Rock gigs...in person supporting the scene...one of them even invited me on stage to play bass on a song with them...and I am a self confessed Saxon/Wildhearts/Lizzy/Whitesnake fan...
Nor am I laughing at anyone's comments...This was NOT a wind-up...I just thought I'd share the opinion of a venue manager trying to survive in the current financial climate.
I support the local band scene and I've been well entertained by many good NWB bands, I do however, get bored by a lot of bands who just play what they believe are 'popular' songs.
Many people, including myself, are fed up with hearing Sweet Child of Mine but when I saw Phoenix recently they played it really well and did it justice. when ANY song is played well it shouldn't be a problem...but for every good band there are are a few not so good ones murdering these songs thinking they are wonderful cos their mates clap...
I think it was yesterday there was a blog about a 'new' band...I looked at their set list...Summer of 69, Sanctuary, Sweet Child Of Mine, Sweet Home Alabama.....NEW!!!!!!!!!!!
So far this year I've seen 'Out Of Town' a 'classic' Punk band who played lots of 'different' tunes and they were good and entertaining...I also saw The Extras who were very good and played a very 'different' set that kept me interested and entertained all night...
Some of my favourite gigs of last year were Glam 69, Catch Afters, CatDog...all of which we're very entertaining AND different...
I will be attending a few more NWB gigs this year and I'll be selecting 'different' style gigs, some Indie, some 'Classic' Rock, some Punk etc...I mix it up to try and avoid boredom...
But I called into my local a few months back and saw a duo (no offence to duos) who started with 'You Really Got Me', 'Another Brick in The Wall, Brown Sugar, Wishing Well...every song played with a smug twat singer who thought he was 'Gods gift' who really believed they were playing what the audience wanted...I lasted ONE pint and fucked off...
I know I am only one voice...and everybody knows I'm NOT yer average sheeple...I admit I am 'different' and I admit to being a self-opinionated gobshite...but I have a very free mind and I can see the bigger picture here...the scene WILL suffer if we don't evolve and offer more variety, something 'different'...

Some great comments above by the way...and some very deluded people blindly avoiding the issue because it pushed them out of their comfort zone...''oh no, I may have to learn a new song that's not in my 'Best Album Ever' Songs to play in the pub Tab songbook....''

I am in a band, but I am also a fan...

# Posted by Synthy Mike - 24/01/2012, 10:30 (GMT)

I'm sorry but the blame lies entirely with the venue. Check the setlist of the band, check out their demos and videos (if they have any). If you don't want the classic rock favourites, don't book a band who plays them. If you do want a band who plays the classic rock favourites but not massacre them, again check out their demos and videos - they sound bad, just chose another band. You wouldn't book a DJ for a rock venue without checking what sort of stuff they play, otherwise you might end up with either the Jive Bunny megamix or three hours of garage and grime.

It's tragic what's happening to the live scene but you can't blame bands that play Alright Now and Paranoid. If they're the downfall of live music simply don't book them - there's literally hundreds of great bands both originals and covers in the North West in every genre of music imaginable.

# Posted by Itchy Chipmunk - 24/01/2012, 11:15 (GMT)

very well said mike ...
I have been doin clubs for twenty odd years ..and have always worked through management.
This year things have changed dramatically 70 percent of my work is now direct...30 percent agents.
Reason being is that the clubs assigned "watchers" (secretaries) and now going to OTHER clubs to watch different acts and booking them direct IF they think they will go down well at their club.(this had been going on for years , but is now much more prominent)
Its brilliant ...full diary of comission free work, no middle management who PRESUME you will go down well at certain clubs.
The venues need to get out there and assign someone to find bands that are suitable for the venue , and it needs to be a constant stream of new bands (maybe same band twice a year)
Otherwise they will fall in the trap of booking the same band for 8 giggs in one year which i find is incredible ! which is what happens when the venues do not go to stalk new talent.
As for music...we all have different ears for sound and bands .
one punters great band may be the next mans nightmare one pinter band.
There is bands i hate , while my mate says they ace ! horses for courses.
For the record i love rosalee and paranoid and classic rock , but that doesnt mean i wanna hear it every week ! if my local had bands on week in week out playin those same songs , it wouldnt be my local for much longer.

# Posted by The Alchemists - 24/01/2012, 14:15 (GMT)

Just to add my view, I kind of agree with most of what LGIT is saying, try something different, we do a few of the well known songs but also do some other songs not necessarily well known, this however does not detract from the quality of the song and you may be able to turn people onto bands/artists they may not have considered before.

I must admit a few times have been asked about certain songs, 'ive never heard that song before' 'but i really liked it' ect.

We're currently updating/adding to our setlist with some interesting tunes. Black Keys, Neil Young, BRMC.

Also everyone is different, this is the amazing thing about music, we should all just enjoy it.

Ta Ian

# Posted by Iron Shark - 24/01/2012, 21:56 (GMT)

I agree with ya 4 most but without the swearing as the kids may read this.
Whittles used to predominantly be an older crowd and he has done well over the last couple of years. maybe he needs to find a way of getting a younger crowd in as there seems to be plenty going on in Mcr these days.

# Posted by Kieron Sherrington - 25/01/2012, 09:47 (GMT)

People play that because people know it and like it! if i went watching a band and they didn't play one of those songs, i'd never see them again.

# Posted by ejectthetape - 27/01/2012, 10:08 (GMT)

I can see why he said what he said, i get sick of hearing certain songs, however why the hell has he booked those bands in question. Its no good moaning about it when your the person who put them up on that stage. I tend to think Whittles is one of those venues who expect everyone to be grateful they are being entertained and do little else. Look at the effort some of the other venues put in. The Hindley Arms and The Cricketers are constantly reviewing the bands that they have hosted over the weekend. These two venues are shining examples of the relationship between artist and venue. I always read the blogs because they are interesting and entertaining. But most importantly they are meeting places for other NWB members to get together and support each other. I'm not sure if I have ever read a venue written revue from Whittles. Its left to the band in question to do it. Maybe the venue needs to promote themselves a little better or there might be less spreadsheet work to be done in the future

# Posted by Lost Citizens - 26/11/2012, 22:41 (GMT)

Bring back auditions..... try before u buys on bands!!! saves hearing the same set list three nights a week... Pubs playing bands with originsl songs? current music? god forbid songs that arent on the latest top gear fathers day album lol i might actually hang around in my local instead of cringing as another wanbabe slash plays out his best sweet child of mine riff... surely this way all music can be catered for and the poor bands would have to pass auditions before getting gigs which makes the audience experience better and improves profits? Also punters might actually realise there is music after 1985

# Posted by Dresden North End - 14/12/2012, 19:29 (GMT)

not noticed this blog before but after reading, I m surprised there hasn t been a response from the venues. Their views would be interesting.


# Posted by GEORGIA BROWNS - 08/05/2015, 17:13 (GMT)


# Posted by GEORGIA BROWNS - 08/05/2015, 17:13 (GMT)


# Posted by GEORGIA BROWNS - 08/05/2015, 17:13 (GMT)


# Posted by GEORGIA BROWNS - 08/05/2015, 17:13 (GMT)


# Posted by 45s - 08/05/2015, 17:48 (GMT)


# Posted by 45s - 08/05/2015, 17:49 (GMT)


# Posted by 45s - 08/05/2015, 17:49 (GMT)


# Posted by 45s - 08/05/2015, 17:49 (GMT)


# Posted by GEORGIA BROWNS - 08/05/2015, 18:03 (GMT)

The things we do when we are bored. Hahaha.

# Posted by WAGONTOWN - 10/07/2015, 12:57 (GMT)

Nowts changed then? I can still walk in any compass direction this weekend and hear Sex On Fire, You Really Got Me..within a mile.


back to top

Blog Search

Follow NWB on Facebook and Twitter

Cottam Guitars

10% Discount for NWB members, email max@cottamguitars.co.uk

LaLuna Amp Repairs

Valve & solid state amp repairs, mods and servicing. FX, PA & studio gear repairs. Hadfield, Glossop north Derbyshire.

Bakehouse Studio

Accrington's cosy project studio. Book online 24/7. Use code NWB20bc110301 for NWB members special 20% discount.

Who's On?

Hot Posts

Community Blog Guidelines

  1. Be nice: Even if you disagree with someone, you need to keep your tone civil and reasonable.
  2. Keep on topic: Please keep discussions relevant to each topic and avoid multiple topic posts.
  3. Don't Spam: Show restraint with your posting frequency. We're all doing cool stuff on NWB, but if we post about it too much, it can be distracting.
  4. Respect the Moderators: The entire Community Staff were users once, just like you. We try very hard to answer everyone's questions, so please be cool.