First, take a deep breath and relax. Realize every single person or band that is amazing at doing anything started out from the same place. For even the most incredible musicians, there was once a time they couldn’t play their instrument at all.
Just like you, they had to begin somewhere. You really have no choice other than to begin from exactly where you are. There are a number of things that have to happen before you actually take to the stage (I’ll list them a bit later in this article). You should first take an inventory to see where you are.
Here are a few questions to ask yourselves:
- What are your band’s strong points and weak points?
- What do you hope to gain from playing a live show?
- Do you have all the equipment you will need?
- Do you have transportation for yourselves and your equipment?
- How far are you willing to travel?
- What do you estimate your expenses will be?
These are logistical questions that will help give you some bearings on the type of gig most appropriate for you to pursue. I would recommend you write some things down and create some useful lists or diagrams.
There are other important considerations. For example, what style of music do you play? How many songs or sets can you perform? Is your music primarily for listening, dancing, or background? Have you created a digital footprint for your music that will allow you to publicize your gig properly, ensuring an audience will come? Or will you seek a gig at a venue with a built-in audience, like a festival? Should you get paid? Can you cover your up-front expenses?