The Dep Culture

What does ‘depping’ mean?

This is when one or more musician (sometimes the whole band – AKA making a scratch band) is replaced with deputy musicians.  It’s common that one, perhaps two musicians maybe unavailable at the time you book the band – we all have holidays and other commitments which means this can happen.  We have to sometimes dep people in the band for this reason – all bands sometimes need to, otherwise they wouldn’t be able to fulfil their commitments, but at For Funk Sake, this is arrange and committed at the time of booking.  So a dep is only used when the regular musician already has a prior commitment.  However….

some bands will send their regular band out on a booking, and send a band full of deps out to your booking (also known as a scratch band).  So when you contact the band to check availability, they’ll always say they are available, and take the booking even though they already have another booking (sometimes two!) on that day.

So you could have the band full of deps – or you could be the lucky one and have the ‘original’ lineup.

As a client, you will never really know this is happening unless you have committed all the photo’s from the website to memory!  But as a result, there can be many last minute changes to the dep lineups, sometimes resulting in some of the deps playing being the 2nd, 3rd or sometimes 4th person to have been booked as the guitarist, or bass player etc.  This often happens as there starts a bidding war – where people are booked for a fee, knowing this is a one-off gig, but then get offered another gig for the same day, but paying more money by someone else.

So the dep has no commitment, and is drawn away from your booking by being offered more money.

This happens week in, week out, and although it’s unlikely there will be any vacant spaces in the band at your event, and all of this goes on behind the scenes.  In the current times of social media, this happens every day on social media group pages (for example of Facebook) where we often see requests from people to have one or more musicians for a Wedding gig that week!  Not in a few months time, but that week – and we can show this to any potential client, so they can see this first hand.

So, how do you avoid all of this happening in the background?

Book a band who books once per day, and has a lineup of regular musicians.  Someone like us.

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