Wanted: Drummer for International Rock Band. Salary: $92,000…

This week, a truly unusual ad appeared in the Guardian’s media section.

drummerwanted

Why is this strange?

It’s an ad for a drummer/vocalist for an internationally renowned rock band. Since when does such a band need to advertise? (Courtney Love’s ad on Craigslist excluded.)

Since when do bands place ads in a national newspaper’s media section – and in the print version? The ad has appeared twice, at the cost of £1,650 ($2,500)?

The candidate “must have at least 3 years experience of working as lead drummer of an internationally recognised rock band, having played and sung on at least one BPI recognised charted album”.  Not only does the drummer have to be a proficient live backup vocalist – he/she must have sung on records that have been in the charts.  We hear both Phil Collins and Don Henley are previously engaged.

The salary “will be in line with experience, but in the regions of £50k – £60k per year [$77k – $92k]” – that’s almost three times the average UK wage.  The average income of a UK working musician is around £16k ($24,500) a year, according to union figures. Which bands can guarantee such salaries today?

The band clearly does not want the drummer/vocalist to get a share of royalties or touring and merchandise, instead preferring to pay him/her a salary, which indicates that the band members’ income would exceed that amount, probably quite a bit – yet it doesn’t appear to be a session gig.

The only way to apply for the job is via snail mail, to a leafy suburb of London, no name of the addressee supplied (which leads to a website that is under construction). It’s as if they’ve turned back time, at least by a decade.

Who is this mystery band?

30 Responses

  1. Visitor

    This article mentions that the candidiate probably would not recieve royalties or a cut of the merchandise. Is the writer so new to the music business that he has not heard of salary positions in a band? Or is it the usual DMN baiting to carve a sculpture out of dust?

    Reply
    • Helienne

      I’ve worked in the industry since I was 16 and started touring as a hired backup singer. I’ve never ever had a singing job from an ad in a newspaper – let alone a national newspaper’s media section (and I started out back before the internet). And neither have any of the “salaried” touring rock musicians I know (those touring with smaller/medium acts as well as those touring with some of the biggest acts in the world). It’s always word of mouth.

      And these days being put on a longterm retainer by a rock act is very rare, unless it’s a very big act. Besides, they are clearly looking for more than a touring musician…

      Reply
  2. Ictus75

    Why don’t they just get a “tribute band” drummer from YouTube? That seems to be the new place to find bandmembers, just ask YES, Journey, etc.…

    Reply
  3. Quazmic

    …assuming the ad is for Genesis, they should simply loosen up the purse strings & hire Rush to back them up…they’d surely be raking in the Pounds, Dollars & Euros then…

    Reply
  4. Jimmy

    This is done for legal reasons.

    If you are tempted to ask “what does it mean”, go talk to your lawyer. Oh, you don’t have one? Facebook/Reddit/Google/Twitter solve all your problems these days?

    Reply
  5. Me

    I bet it’s Doug’s Garage Band. I heard they were looking for another drummer…

    Reply
  6. Jhanno

    Thats so awesome….if i live there its so amazing…i have a talent about,i have skill,from the biggening until now ,my skills about playing drum is only me,from the first to now…i am a heavy death metal fans as i know..i love to playing…

    Reply
  7. Jeff

    Who give’s a shit- I’m a successful professional living in this fuc—- world and all I want to really do is play the fuc—- drums with people who want to produce music. First I’m told I’m to old@ 50? What is this madness- 50 is to old. I’m waiting to find people who just want to play and who realize that the money will be there regardless. Life style will be there Herr ray!!. Done Deal. I’m already there for goodness sake. Let’s just get to the root of the issue–ROCK &ROLL> we have to keep it in the lime light or else it will be simply HISTORY. Teach the young the Old days.

    Reply

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