Booking Tribute Bands Can Pay Off Big

Booking Tribute Bands Can Pay Off Big

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Whether you call them tribute artists, tribute groups, or tribute acts, booking tribute bands can boost attendance at most types of events. If an increase in attendance is not something you are looking for, think about making your audience glad they came.

According to Wikipedia, a tribute act, tribute band or tribute group is a music group, singer or musician who specifically plays the music of a well-known music act.

Why Do Musicians Choose to Become a Tribute Band or Act?

There may be a myriad of reasons why a particular group of musicians and/or vocalists decide to pursue their career as a tribute act.  After all, a successful tribute career still requires the group to be really good at the music craft. So, the fact that most tribute groups are good musicians is a given. Often, it boils down to two reasons.

  1. Getting Bookings: Good tribute acts are in high demand compared to cover bands. Cover bands usually play a mix of songs popularized by other artists. They are used for weddings, private parties, corporate events and club venues. People attending these events want to hear songs they know and songs that get them out on the dance floor. Every city be it Houston, Dallas, Austin, San Antonio or other places have many cover bands competing for the same events.

Becoming a tribute band sets the group apart from cover bands. Of course, the band members need to love the music of the artist to which they are becoming a tribute act. They also need to play and sing the music in a style like the artist they are representing. If they can make the transition from cover band to solid tribute band their bookings will increase.

  1. Better Money: Tribute acts typically book for more money than a cover band would receive for the same event. As a tribute, your persona is made up of not only your group’s work, but the status of the entertainer you represent. You can take advantage of the vast number of fans that artist has to draw people to your event. You complement your own fan base with the fans of the renown artist. Venues and talent buyers know that so they are willing to pay a tribute band more than they would a cover band for the same event.

As a tribute band you do give up your creative freedom. The audience expects you to play only the songs from that artist during their live shows. Some tribute bands do mix in several songs from the same era or even an occasional original song. If they stray too far from their tribute artist, they will not be well received.

Great Tribute Acts Sound Look and Act Like the Real Deal

tribute acts, tribute bands, tribute artists, booking tribute bandsThere’s a difference between a tribute “cover” band that plays the songs of a particularly renowned artist and tribute bands that “impersonate” the artist. True, they would take offense at the word impersonate, but it’s the best way to describe artists who take the time to learn the mannerisms, playing style, vocals and take steps to look and dress like the artist in question.

In fact, some Tribute Bands have members who play the specific role of each of the band members of the artist’s band. In some cases, the need is obvious. You can’t have a Beatles tribute act without someone cast as Paul, Ringo, George and John. Really good ones will take it right down to the left-handed guitar-playing Paul.

Whether it’s the Eagles or other larger acts, great tribute bands’ members role play the specific well-known members of the original group.

Should You Be Booking a Tribute Band or a Cover Band for Your Event?

Of course, there is no yes or no answer to this question. It really depends on the event, theme, budget, audience and a whole host of other questions.

  • The same couple who wouldn’t mind being married by Elvis Presley in Las Vegas, might enjoy Elvis performing at their wedding reception.
  • For a birthday party for someone who grew up in the 70’s and 80’s, why not bring back the Eagles and watch your birthday person enjoy their party like never before.
  • Imagine having Selena play at your daughter’s Quinceañera? Your invitees will go wild over your selection.
  • Have a fund-raising Gala coming up? Why not book Pavarotti, Johnny Mathis or Prince?
  • How about a Disco theme for a private event and bring in a Disco tribute band like TSE’s Disco 54 Band?
  • Instead of a country cover band, have Kenny Chesney, Toby Keith or Shania Twain perform at your next county-themed occasion.
  • Have a tropical theme in mind for a corporate rewards event? Book Jimmy Buffet to entertain your guests.
  • Do you want something more sedate for your corporate event? You can always book a Frank Sinatra tribute and let “Frank” wow your audience.
  • Want a hard rock vibe to your next private party or corporate event. You have a lot of choices; KISS, Nirvana, Grateful Dead, Tom Petty and so many others.

As you can see from the list above, the difference in booking a cover band or a tribute band for your next occasion can be huge. Cover bands will provide a great evening of entertainment. A great Tribute act can turn back the clock and make the event an experience that your guests will not long soon forget.

I have nothing against DJs, but there is nothing like live entertainment for your special occasion. Live music turns the event up a notch. Whether that live music is provided by a cover band or a tribute act is a decision based on what the talent buyer wants guests to experience from the occasion in question. It may also come down to the issues of availability and budget.

No matter what kind of entertainment you book for your event, TSE Entertainment has you covered. We’ve been booking tribute bands and cover bands since 1975. We also book the whole spectrum of performers, from up-and-coming musicians to world-renown artists. So whether you want Beyoncé herself or a Beyoncé tribute artist, you can count on us to book the entertainers you want for your event.

About the author

Picture of Robert Brecht

Robert Brecht

Doctor Bob brings a diverse background in production, marketing, and business management to his position as Managing Partner of TSE Entertainment. His responsibilities include overseeing TSE’s services other than talent booking. He also manages the marketing and business operations side of TSE.
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