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Band saying they can't pay? Legal help please Modular Synthesizers
Old 12th September 2011
  #1
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craig9045's Avatar
 

Band saying they can't pay? Legal help please

Hey guys.

Basically, I started A project where we planned to record 6 tracks. We spent day one on drums and managed to get 4 drum tracks done before the drummer had to go away for a few weeks.

So we decided to continue with tracking the rest of the music, and minus vocals for two songs we got the music fully tracked.

Before we started recording we agreed the payment would be £65 a song with one song free. So that's £325.

They called me around a month ago to tell me that they couldn't afford to finish the CD. So I have recorded 4 songs apart from some vocals. When I ask about payment for the work I've already done they just say they don't know when they can pay me. 4 songs at £65 a song would be £260. Eg. When I suggest getting the pay at the start of October or November they are just telling me they havnt got the money.

I've got all the emails an texts to show agreement was made, but I'm not registered as a business or anything (I reside in the UK) so I'm not sure if I'm entitled to any legal assistance.

I don't record full time, it's my dream career but I have a day job at the moment until I can build business enough.

Sorry for the massive speech, but is there anything you can recommend? Any questions just ask away as I've probably missed out some information. I'm typing this on my phone which isn't the most productive of ways.

Thanks in advance.
Craig







the way.
Old 12th September 2011
  #2
Lives for gear
Get paid up front. It sucks but I think you learned that lesson for relatively cheap...
Old 12th September 2011
  #3
Nothing you can do, but make sure they don't get ANYTHING until they've paid up front for the whole project.
Old 12th September 2011
  #4
Gear Guru
 

the worse the band, the less 'collateral' you have!

refusing to release the files is only a threat to someone who actually has good music invested on those files.

when a crappy band hears themselves on tape, and hasn't paid yet, walking away from the project often strikes them as their best strategy.

LimpyLoo is correct, it costs many people a lot more than £260, a lot more than a couple days' work, to learn not to let bands run a tab.

I don't know what the laws are like there, but in the US, you might have a case in small-claims court. But are all your ducks in a row to face Officialdom? Zoning? Taxes? Fire codes?

If you must do per-song deals, get the money up front. Better to charge by the hour. Unless it is a long-time client you can trust, don't even book session 2 until session 1 is paid, files or no files. That way you are never out more than 1 day's work.

When the band pays as they go, when they have a financial investment in the recording, they are also much more likely to finish it. You are not their banker. Don't 'lend' them money!
Old 12th September 2011
  #5
If you've got a written agreement you can take them to small claims court. Heck, even without a written agreement you can try, an email trail will help if such a thing exists, but the chances of you winning are slimmer.

It's easy, it's cheap, most of it (other than the actual court appearance) is done online... https://www.moneyclaim.gov.uk/web/mcol/welcome

Even if you get a judgment though, getting the money is trickier, but sometimes people will pay up to avoid the CCJ against them...

My advice though would be don't "settle" though for anything less than the full amount (plus interest up to the day they actually pay - see payontime.co.uk for the rules on that) - when such a relatively low amount is involved - that will teach them they can just wait it out and "get a better deal" and they might try it on again with someone else.

You don't need to be incorporated or anything but you should be registered with Inland Revenue as self-employed/sole trader (even if you have a day job). I would do that immediately if you haven't already and you intend to pursue it further.
Old 12th September 2011
  #6
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heyman's Avatar
Ownership is on the band not you. Lesson learned.. money upfront or payable at the end of each day.

Sounds like someone wasnt straight forward with you. If they want the music, they will have to pay.. I wouldnt even give them the one free song, because it is attached to the package deal.

Tell them you will hold the songs for 1 month, then they are getting deleted.
You will see how fast they come up with the money.
Old 12th September 2011
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joeq View Post
when a crappy band hears themselves on tape, and hasn't paid yet, walking away from the project often strikes them as their best strategy.
Sad but true. Hopefully you didn't give them any files apart from rough mixes?

It would be a minor tragedy for them to walk away with recordings (even half-finished) that they had agreed to pay for, for nothing.

Given the amount of money involved I wouldn't worry about it too much and treat it as a learning experience. We've all been there.
Old 12th September 2011
  #8
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by heyman View Post
Tell them you will hold the songs for 1 month, then they are getting deleted.
You will see how fast they come up with the money.
You are correct, sir!
Old 13th September 2011
  #9
Gear Guru
 
drBill's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by craig9045 View Post
Before we started recording we agreed the payment would be £65 a song with one song free. So that's £325.

I don't record full time, it's my dream career but I have a day job at the moment until I can build business enough.

Thanks in advance.
Craig
A few things Craig - first, sorry for your loss. It happens to everyone. Live and learn.

Second, Never do anything for free. Better to drop your rate for the remaining songs and make it the same amount, but never do anything for FREE. Many will disagree, but time will reveal to you that if you work for Free it means you are not worth anything. No one wants to work with that person. That is why they are not paying you. You're not worth recording their music OR paying for what you DID record.

Learn the business. Cash up front - 100% before any "special deal" type projects like this. If they want to pay you a fair rate - like maybe $50 per hour, then take 50% up front of the time they booked. Let them know there are NO refunds for last minute canceled dates. If they book a day, they need to give 2 days notice. If they book a week, they need to give a weeks notice. A month, they need to give a month's notice to get their money back.

NO EXCEPTIONS. Expecially, especially, ESPECIALLY from bands.

Please raise your rates. It makes you look like you don't know what you're doing, and it hurts the industry you want to earn a living in.

If you plan on doing this as a business you must : Figure out how to deal with loosers, raise your rates immediately and creep them up so that they can sustain you when you go full time, learn proper business practices if you're going into BUSINESS. If these guys are your "friends", erase their names/numbers from your phone. Move on, act professional, never look back. You will not get your money. Any attempt will only cause you loss of momentum, frustration and grief.

The one suggestion about deleting the files in 1 month if not paid was a good one. If they have a shred of decency, or if they actually still want to record, they can find the paltry amount of money they owe you.
Old 13th September 2011
  #10
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by craig9045 View Post
Hey guys.

Basically, I started A project where we planned to record 6 tracks. We spent day one on drums and managed to get 4 drum tracks done before the drummer had to go away for a few weeks.

So we decided to continue with tracking the rest of the music, and minus vocals for two songs we got the music fully tracked.

Before we started recording we agreed the payment would be £65 a song with one song free. So that's £325.

They called me around a month ago to tell me that they couldn't afford to finish the CD. So I have recorded 4 songs apart from some vocals. When I ask about payment for the work I've already done they just say they don't know when they can pay me. 4 songs at £65 a song would be £260. Eg. When I suggest getting the pay at the start of October or November they are just telling me they havnt got the money.

I've got all the emails an texts to show agreement was made, but I'm not registered as a business or anything (I reside in the UK) so I'm not sure if I'm entitled to any legal assistance.

I don't record full time, it's my dream career but I have a day job at the moment until I can build business enough.

Sorry for the massive speech, but is there anything you can recommend? Any questions just ask away as I've probably missed out some information. I'm typing this on my phone which isn't the most productive of ways.

Thanks in advance.
Craig
you should always get paid up front people change their minds all the time and try to stick us with the loss of time/effort/income at this point you need a lawyer to send them a threatening letter explaining how coming up with the money right now would be so much better than what will happen to them if they dont
Old 13th September 2011
  #11
Lives for gear
1. You did nothing 'illegal' or underhand. Anybody and everybody is entitled to take on a limited amount of work as a casual contractor, assuming that they declare all income at the end of the financial year. Your local tax office will be only too happy to explain the ins and outs - indeed, they have someone there, whose main task is to do precisely that!

2. An email trail is probably quite enough to take these people to the Small Claims Court (as Goethe stated, the Devil is in the detail here!) and as has been pointed out, doing this is no big deal.

3. All this talk of getting paid up-front and raising rates is fine and dandy, except that you are where you are and we are going to have to deal with the situation as it is and not as we would like it to be.

4. You cannot delete the multitrack files, as they are not your property, but the property of the customer. Indeed, you are obliged to take reasonable care of them, though you may charge for any costs incurred in this. If you do nothing, you are in fact obliged to hand over these files, even without payment.

5. You could avoid having to hand over the files without payment, by giving notice of a common law lien (similar to the US mechanics lien). This would be a so-called 'special lien' in that it refers only to the tracks recorded and only to this one project. It is defined in general terms as a passive right to retain a chattel (and, in this specific case intangibles in the form of sound recordings) conferred by law. Modern law has generally left the lien in place as a very useful tool for cases where it has been historically established without any real effort being made to make it applicable to today's conditions and is regarded as a self help remedy, like other 'primitive' remedies such as self-defence or ejection of trespassers to land. You have to give notice of the lien in writing (registered letter!) and to those with whom you have a contract to perform services.
Old 13th September 2011
  #12
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Dominion28's Avatar
 

@The Byre - what's the basis for the requirement to hand over the files or even take care of them? Surely UK copyright law makes the song content of those files the intelectual property of the band, but the physical files (the tape as it were) belong to the OP (being that the files ar eon his hard drive "real estate").

I have in the past refused to hand over submissibles to bands who havn't coughed up, and likewise I don't hand over session files either.
Old 13th September 2011
  #13
Lives for gear
This is an old chestnut and studios in the UK and elsewhere have been dragged through the courts, after not handing over the 2" multitracks to bands, after labels and promoters failed to pay the studio bill.

As you rightly point out, the content of the files is the property of the musician or commissioning customer. This is not the same as the tape or hard disk, which remains the property of the studio. The studio may charge for the transfer to DVD or USB drive, or whatever, but cannot deny the owner access to his or her property.

Property rights are the same for the apples on trees growing over a fence, a nice and fat chicken running into a neighbour's garden, or a car left at a workshop for repair. Ownership of the apples, chicken or car remains with the original owner, just as the sounds on a tape or disk remain with those who made them or commissioned them to be made.

If you give your car up to be repaired and you do not or cannot pay the bill, the workshop may issue a notice of a lien on the car, in which case, they can hold the car until such time as the debt is cleared. This is only possible, if the owner of the car and the customer are one and the same.

For studios, that means that you can only put a lien on a recording if the customer and the owner of the recording are the same. If a label commissions a recording, to be performed by Raving Jim Grunt and his Crazy Pubes and of their latest composition, you cannot deny Mr. Grunt access to the recording if the label does not pay their bill.
Old 13th September 2011
  #14
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narcoman's Avatar
 

Byre's right.

So - a 4 piece band can't afford 65 quid each to pay you? They can't afford what they'll spend on two saturday nights ? Or half a dinner if yer me.....

Twats.
Old 13th September 2011
  #15
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Byre View Post
This is an old chestnut and studios in the UK and elsewhere have been dragged through the courts, after not handing over the 2" multitracks to bands, after labels and promoters failed to pay the studio bill.

As you rightly point out, the content of the files is the property of the musician or commissioning customer. This is not the same as the tape or hard disk, which remains the property of the studio. The studio may charge for the transfer to DVD or USB drive, or whatever, but cannot deny the owner access to his or her property.

Property rights are the same for the apples on trees growing over a fence, a nice and fat chicken running into a neighbour's garden, or a car left at a workshop for repair. Ownership of the apples, chicken or car remains with the original owner, just as the sounds on a tape or disk remain with those who made them or commissioned them to be made.

If you give your car up to be repaired and you do not or cannot pay the bill, the workshop may issue a notice of a lien on the car, in which case, they can hold the car until such time as the debt is cleared. This is only possible, if the owner of the car and the customer are one and the same.

For studios, that means that you can only put a lien on a recording if the customer and the owner of the recording are the same. If a label commissions a recording, to be performed by Raving Jim Grunt and his Crazy Pubes and of their latest composition, you cannot deny Mr. Grunt access to the recording if the label does not pay their bill.
Whilst I'm sure all that is legally true, I bet the band don't know it...threatening to delete files will make you see if they value it or not.

Take it to small claims if you want - I've done this twice, the first time the guy didn't bother responding, so I got the CCJ then sent the bailiffs in - cost me an additional upfront payment but they reclaimed all the money plus my costs. The second time, we got a cheque in the mail after the initial charge was offered, so though we were out the money for the court action, we got what was owed. Your difficulty is you're going after multiple people, only loosely tied together as one entity - I don't know how this would affect sending bailiffs in, you might have to do multiple visits etc. Most people wouldn't let it get this far though!

@ The Byre - in your comment of bands taking studios to court to regain masters - how does this work if they're not the commissioning body? (the label is). Since we all know that if a label pays for a recording, they own the mechanicals and the band can't put it out on their own, surely if no-one has paid for the recording, who owns the mechanicals? The label, who hasn't paid but was the commissioning body? or the band, who played but also haven't paid?

Your point about transfer costs...why not say the cost to put the session onto DVD is the same as your recording costs? in fact, put it in the contract fine print....I'm not denying you access to your property, I'm just making sure it costs you to get to it, and your representatives agreed to it when booking the studio...

And are you really saying that a label can book a studio, make a recording, not pay, then sue the studio for the recording masters that they've not paid for? Assuming the studio hasn't destroyed them, would they not just go to court, and as defence say "yep, here they are - your bill is £xx+£xx costs, you're welcome to them" and would the court not just say "fair enough - pay up and everyone's happy"? Or am I being legally naive and common sense justice doesn't work?

Of course, this is all kind of irrelevant to the OP - if you're producing tracks for a bunch of bottomfeeders for £65 each, you've got to expect this, so get the cash up front!
Old 13th September 2011
  #16
Gear Head
 

Sounds like a massive hard drive failure is eminent. Too bad their sessions were on it.
Old 13th September 2011
  #17
Gear Guru
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Byre View Post
If you give your car up to be repaired and you do not or cannot pay the bill, the workshop may issue a notice of a lien on the car, in which case, they can hold the car until such time as the debt is cleared. This is only possible, if the owner of the car and the customer are one and the same.
In the U.S., the case of Diggler, et al vs Acme Studios determined that the studio owns the tapes until paid, but that the "magic that is on those tapes", "the f***ing heart and soul" is retained by the artist in perpetuity.

starting at about 0:15

Old 14th September 2011
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by craig9045 View Post
I've got all the emails an texts to show agreement was made, but I'm not registered as a business or anything (I reside in the UK) so I'm not sure if I'm entitled to any legal assistance.
Just a quick one on this - you need to go legit on the finance front. If you are not registered self assessed, then £325 means you are withholding £65 from the tax man.

You cannot really even begin to take any legal action (ever) if you are operating illegally yourself.
Old 14th September 2011
  #19
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by therealbigd View Post
Just a quick one on this - you need to go legit on the finance front. If you are not registered self assessed, then £325 means you are withholding £65 from the tax man.

You cannot really even begin to take any legal action (ever) if you are operating illegally yourself.
I'm not entirely confident of this but I'm sure that when I registered as self-employed the form says that you don't technically have to do that it's just helpful. You do obviously have to complete a tax return at the end of the year and declare your income but I don't think it's compulsory to let them know beforehand.

[EDIT]

I was almost right...

"It's best if you register as soon as you become self-employed. You must register at the latest by 5 October after the end of the tax year for which you need a tax return. The tax year runs from 6 April one year to 5 April the next. So if, for example, you have tax to pay on your business profits for the 2010-11 tax year, you need to let HMRC know by 5 October 2011."
Old 14th September 2011
  #20
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
Byre - in your comment of bands taking studios to court to regain masters - how does this work if they're not the commissioning body? (the label is). Since we all know that if a label pays for a recording, they own the mechanicals and the band can't put it out on their own, surely if no-one has paid for the recording, who owns the mechanicals? The label, who hasn't paid but was the commissioning body? or the band, who played but also haven't paid?

Your point about transfer costs...why not say the cost to put the session onto DVD is the same as your recording costs? in fact, put it in the contract fine print....I'm not denying you access to your property, I'm just making sure it costs you to get to it, and your representatives agreed to it when booking the studio...

And are you really saying that a label can book a studio, make a recording, not pay, then sue the studio for the recording masters that they've not paid for? Assuming the studio hasn't destroyed them, would they not just go to court, and as defence say "yep, here they are - your bill is £xx+£xx costs, you're welcome to them" and would the court not just say "fair enough - pay up and everyone's happy"? Or am I being legally naive and common sense justice doesn't work?

Of course, this is all kind of irrelevant to the OP - if you're producing tracks for a bunch of bottomfeeders for £65 each, you've got to expect this, so get the cash up front!
1. The relationship between the label and the artist has nothing to do with the studio. That is why many garages are so careful to get you to sign a repair contract that includes a waiver of your rights of ownership, in the case of none payment. The label could not sue if a lien has been exercised, but, if the label is not the owner of the recordings, then that owner could definitely sue for access.

2. The costs of transfer to USB stick or DVD have to be either reasonable, or agreed to in advance. As I am sure that asking a major London studio for a quote for transfer from ProTools to DVD would involve tying up one of the mastering rooms and FX Rentals in London ain't no charity either, the costs of doing this by a third party would certainly exceed the original costs for the whole project in this case. A recent transfer that we did of a larger multitrack project from some extremely old version of PT to a modern session folder with WAVs cost £650 + VAT (if my memory serves me rightly!) The alternative would have been FX Rentals and they would have charged a good deal more. That may have been a special case, but it gives you an idea.

3. Common Law is indeed based (as the name would seem to imply) on common sense and common rights. Things get a bit messy however, when statute law seeks to interfere with common law, as in the laws on trespass, convoluted by some 'rights to roam' and modern property and housing laws.

4. The right of lien has been developed over the centuries as a common sense answer to the old problem of somebody asking work to be done on a moveable object and then asking for that object to be returned after the work has been completed, but without payment. Just about every larger garage in the UK and other common law jurisdictions has had to use this right of lien at some time. In the old days, the local landowner would take his horse to the smithy to be shod and then take it back and be tawdry over payment. The right of lien gave the smithy the ability to hold the horse until such time as our poor little rich boy has paid for the work and the cost of holding the horse.

5. In the past, notification of lien needed only to be spoken out before witnesses. Today it has to be written and this has to be done properly. Rather like those other common law documents, a deed poll and a last will and testament, you can easily do this yourself, but if there is any doubt, go to a lawyer. Remember, withholding somebody's property unlawfully can be a criminal offence, so a lien has to be used with care!

6. There is a difference between casual labour and being self-employed. The Inland Revenue is there to explain these things, but a modest £325 sounds like casual labour to me - but then I do not deal with taxes at our place!
Old 14th September 2011
  #21
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narcoman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Byre View Post
but then I do not deal with taxes at our place!
who books them? Or do you just give them a lift yourself?
Old 14th September 2011
  #22
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Your acting as a contractor. I'm not sure in europe but in america you can put a lean on there house.
Old 14th September 2011
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beefy View Post
Your acting as a contractor. I'm not sure in europe but in america you can put a lean on there house.
The law in the US varies from state to state and is fairly complex. Please note, it is called a lien (NOT lean!) and in the US means something slightly different, depending on the type of lien. I believe that in most states, only a court may impose a lien. i.e. you have to go to a lawyer first, to file for a lien!

If you don't know what you are doing, you can easily come unstuck with this tool. For example - in the UK it is an offence to try to regain possession of an item with a view to issuing a lien. In the UK and US, it is an offence to try to add costs to a lien that are outside the scope of the original contract.
Old 14th September 2011
  #24
Lives for gear
Some while back, I recorded a group of 16 year old kids in a metal band. Super nice kids, but they knew NOTHING about recording or really music in general. They had just wrote their first 3 songs ever, and wanted to record them. I go to church with them, and thought "hey...I'll work with them on this." I didn't take money up front, and to my surprise, not once did they ask how much all this was costing while recording/mixing their music. One of the members fathers was supposed to be paying for everything, so I discussed all the payment plans with him. We agreed on an amount, but since I knew him and the kids, told him to just get it to me when he could. I tracked and mixed all three songs, spending about 25-30 hours per song (most of it editing the performances unfortunately).

During mixing of the final song, one of the members calls and says their guitarist moved away, and they were going to have to take a break from the band thing for awhile. Up to this point, I had released to them 2 mp3 mixes of the first two songs to listen to on their ipods. They lost all motivation to finish, and stopped calling. I haven't heard anything from them since. The father pulled me aside at church one day and explained he still planned on paying when he could.

So, lesson learned? Definitely. This was my last straw and no longer do I "work" with bands or play the "super cool nice recording dude." The way I see it, I easily had 90-100 hours of work into this project, and for nothing besides experience for me, so if a band approaches me about recording and can't pay what I want up front, or can't afford me, then I'd probably be better off not working with them anyways.

I did not start a fight, as I felt it was more my fault than theirs. I failed to educate them on how the process SHOULD work, and did not do things like I should. I took the hit, learned a valuable lesson, and kept my name clear of any trouble. But it won't happen again.
Old 15th September 2011
  #25
Gear Maniac
 

Where's the OP after all these posts?

I used to give unpaid masters to bands all the time until one band decided to screw me for a few thousand dollars. What really bugs me is that the record turned out really well and the band was very happy with it, but the band folded and nobody fessed up to the costs.

At this point i'm booked 6 months in advance so it's half up front a few weeks before session starts and half when we're done. And nobody gets ANYTHING until the bill is payed.

You can still be super cool studio guy but the money conversation comes up earlier rather than later.
Old 16th September 2011
  #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by narcoman View Post
who books them? Or do you just give them a lift yourself?


heh
Old 16th September 2011
  #27
Moderator
 
narcoman's Avatar
 

..... it's nice to be appreciated heh
Old 16th September 2011
  #28
Lives for gear
Just for the record, I deal with neither taxes, not taxis - other than to have a ban on the local guy who insists on discussing music with my customers.

Well, when I say 'discuss' I really mean that he is half deaf and shouts at them that he likes Jimmy Shand playing Scottish reels. He then asks them if they would like to hear some Jimmy Shand and they almost, to a man, say No!

Being deaf, he can't hear them, so he assumes that they too are enthusiastic Jimmy Shand fans and hits the play button on his cassette player and the sounds of Mairi's Wedding is blasted in the confines of his rickety Toyota Corrola. The whole experience is made all the more interesting, by the cassette player sticking slightly, the speakers distorting massively and our driver joining in with this cacophony with enormous enthusiasm.

"Step we gaily, off we go!" he screams joyously (but out of tune) "Heel-ferr-heel and toe-ferr-toe!"

Boosted by the joys of Jimmy Shand, the Toyota picks up speed, until we are doing at least 90mph. The car rattles so violently, that we can hear it, even above the caterwauling noise of Mairi and her blasted wedding and I have visions of dying a fiery death to some of the most doggerel nonsense ever recorded.

Though, it's a good job I am not a taxi driver - as I like Lady Gaga and Rammstein.
Old 16th September 2011
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Byre View Post
Just for the record, I deal with neither taxes, not taxis - other than to have a ban on the local guy who insists on discussing music with my customers.

Well, when I say 'discuss' I really mean that he is half deaf and shouts at them that he likes Jimmy Shand playing Scottish reels. He then asks them if they would like to hear some Jimmy Shand and they almost, to a man, say No!

Being deaf, he can't hear them, so he assumes that they too are enthusiastic Jimmy Shand fans and hits the play button on his cassette player and the sounds of Mairi's Wedding is blasted in the confines of his rickety Toyota Corrola. The whole experience is made all the more interesting, by the cassette player sticking slightly, the speakers distorting massively and our driver joining in with this cacophony with enormous enthusiasm.

"Step we gaily, off we go!" he screams joyously (but out of tune) "Heel-ferr-heel and toe-ferr-toe!"

Boosted by the joys of Jimmy Shand, the Toyota picks up speed, until we are doing at least 90mph. The car rattles so violently, that we can hear it, even above the caterwauling noise of Mairi and her blasted wedding and I have visions of dying a fiery death to some of the most doggerel nonsense ever recorded.

Though, it's a good job I am not a taxi driver - as I like Lady Gaga and Rammstein.
Better than our local taxi driver.

Buried in deep countryside, the 'Political Correctness' thing hasn't quite reached him yet. I bring bands down from London, where you can't so much as yawn without offending somebody, and we get a taxi to the local pub in the evening so everyone can have a pint or 3, with a bloke who still finds racist jokes appropriate.

So you'll be flying down the road and he'll say "you boys are all from London! What do you call a (insert derogatory word for some ethnic minority) in a box? (punchline)!!!". He will assume from the silence in the cab that you just didn't think it was funny enough, and will proceed to "What do you call 2 (insert derogatory word for some ethnic minority)'s in a box? (punchline)!!!". There is then some laughing in the cab, not because you find the joke funny, but because you find it funny how the bloke has been so far excluded from social development.

So this goes on until everyone in the cab is just in hysterics at how far this bloke has been living from normal society, which he only takes as yet more encouragement, until everything from World War II to Labour's immigration policy has been covered in it's entirety. The only thing able to stop this from occurring is getting to the pub before he finishes, so often mid-journey we'll decide to go to a closer pub. Of course, in London the taxi driver would be met with a hail of "OH JUST SHUT UP!" but in London, if you're thrown out of a cab, you just hail the next one. In this baron land, if you get thrown out of a taxi you might not even see another car for 3 hours; so it's generally best just to go with it.
Old 20th September 2011
  #30
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jimmyboy7's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by drBill View Post
A few things Craig - first, sorry for your loss. It happens to everyone. Live and learn.

Second, Never do anything for free. Better to drop your rate for the remaining songs and make it the same amount, but never do anything for FREE. Many will disagree, but time will reveal to you that if you work for Free it means you are not worth anything. No one wants to work with that person. That is why they are not paying you. You're not worth recording their music OR paying for what you DID record.

Learn the business. Cash up front - 100% before any "special deal" type projects like this. If they want to pay you a fair rate - like maybe $50 per hour, then take 50% up front of the time they booked. Let them know there are NO refunds for last minute canceled dates. If they book a day, they need to give 2 days notice. If they book a week, they need to give a weeks notice. A month, they need to give a month's notice to get their money back.

NO EXCEPTIONS. Expecially, especially, ESPECIALLY from bands.

Please raise your rates. It makes you look like you don't know what you're doing, and it hurts the industry you want to earn a living in.

If you plan on doing this as a business you must : Figure out how to deal with loosers, raise your rates immediately and creep them up so that they can sustain you when you go full time, learn proper business practices if you're going into BUSINESS. If these guys are your "friends", erase their names/numbers from your phone. Move on, act professional, never look back. You will not get your money. Any attempt will only cause you loss of momentum, frustration and grief.

The one suggestion about deleting the files in 1 month if not paid was a good one. If they have a shred of decency, or if they actually still want to record, they can find the paltry amount of money they owe you.

That is some excellent advice!!!! He definitely got off cheap, wait til this happens in the thousands or "the label hosed me" deals, that's when "The Sky is Cryin'" for sure!!!
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