So, you’re looking for the BEST Musician Hire Yarra Valley? You’ve come to the right place, read on!
Ms Lexi & Celestial Band is Melbourne’s fastest growing and most highly sought-after wedding and function band! With a team of just ten of Melbourne’s most talented multi-instrumentalists, we are a very tight knit group. All of our gigs are carefully planned and coordinated.
As scary as this picture is, its not as scary as working with a recalcitrant musician on a gig!
Musician Hire Yarra Valley
We not only rehearse and practice together, but we also have weekly team Zoom meetings. Just to make sure that the whole team is on track and informed! We have daily communication with some of our musicians, making sure that every part of our live performances are completely on point. We have a strong code of conduct, and only tolerate band members in the group that are absolute team players.
Unfortunately, as in all professional organisations, sometimes things go wrong, and people occasionally get their nose out of joint. We always try to work with the same musicians and singers, over and over again. This is to ensure that we don’t have too many newcomers that enter the group. Newcomers may need extra training, and can potentially ‘rock the boat’, upsetting the dynamics we’ve already set up.
That One Awkward Incident We Had Recently- Yarra Valley Wedding Band..
Recently we did have an incident where a fill in musician coming into the group with a bad attitude. Safe to say there’s been lots of learnings that have eventuated from this negative experience!
This person had the audacity to:
- Arrive late to the gig.
- Come with a bad and threatening attitude
- Refused to follow basic direction
- Refused to be in the band’s photos
- Was extremely negative the whole day
- Refused to play the songs in the keys we had agreed
- Sent an invoice for more money then was agreed after the gig
- Sent the below offensive email to our organisation after he was paid.
This is what he emailed in after the showcase gig …
I wanted to write a note to you because I’m upset about how the ***** thing went down and I’m upset that our relationship, if only as acquaintances, is badly damaged.
The first thing I want to say is this:
I’ve been watching your Facebook and Instagram posts over the last few years and I’ve been very happy to see you doing your own thing and getting into performing. Even though I’ve not known you well I’ve always been a supporter and someone that wants to see you succeed.
Following is a brief synopsis of my career in the industry in order to provide weight to the comments I’m going to give. The reason for this is simply to illustrate that they are not coming from someone making things up with no experience to back up those comments.
I’ve been in the music industry for 35 years now, since I was 15yo in 1985. I have made a very decent living from it professionally for 30 years. I have so far completed 3 UK/European tours (The Bamboos), 2 UK tours (Vika Bull), 10 Australian tours (The Bamboos, Alice Russel, Tim Rogers, Syl Johnson, Django Django) and toured to and performed in New York, London, Japan, Hong Kong, Macau, Shanghai and Mauritius.
I have been the guest saxophonist several times with Boy and Bear, performed with Icehouse and played with The Cat Empire many times including their (massive) first album launch at St Kilda Festival. I’ve played on the main stage at most of Australia’s major festivals (with The Bamboos) and have led my own band at several of the major jazz festivals inducing the Melbourne Intonational Jazz Festival. I have also successfully led my own band at clubs in New York, London and Hong Kong.
I’ve played with Vika Bull for several years and have performed at concert halls throughout Australia and the UK with her, including the Opera House on two week long occasions in the theatre there. My most recent concert with her was at Hamer Hall. I have recently played with Maceo Parker at Hamer Hall for the Melbourne International Jazz Festival. Maceo is famous for playing with James Brown and was a featured artist in Prince’s band.
I’ve played on TV many, many times for the networks and the ABC. Played in the band for the International Comedy Festival several years in a row at the Palais Theatre (and filmed for TV) and done shows like Rock Quiz etc etc.
I’ve played on over 30 albums and receive royalties quarterly for worldwide airplay on radio, digital platforms and film and TV syncs of some those recordings. I have 3 of my own albums out and will be soon releasing a new album recorded in New York.
I’ve had a lot of success financially doing weddings and corporate events my whole career and have worked for most of the major agencies in Melbourne and have a very good relationship with them. I was recently doing a lot of weddings in New York and still get asked to do so.
I have an undergrad degree in music from the Victorian College of the Arts (Melbourne Uni) and a master’s degree in jazz studies from Queens College New York.
Lexi, you have been one of the most difficult people I’ve worked with. I was very surprised by this and I wasn’t expecting it.
My advice to you is:
- First thing – book a kick ass band. Like the best band you can get. I usually work with the best bands, singers and musicians. It’s really hard to play when the bass player doesn’t know the chords and the feel is terrible. It’s super off-putting and makes everyone feel like they’re on shifting sands. It means when I’m playing, I lose confidence because it’s highly probable that the wrong chords are going to go on under me, making whatever I play sound terrible (this happened by the way). Very challenging! When you work with the best musicians, they make everything sound amazing and everything flows naturally, making great music happen.
- Pay people properly for their work if you can. I’ve run my own projects for 25 years now and I’m very aware that doing your own thing means significant outlay. So far my New York recording has cost nearly $12,000 and much of that was the musicians’ fees. Accept that doing your own thing costs money, and that’s ok because in the end, if it succeeds, you’ll be reaping the rewards from it and in your case significant financial renumeration.
- Be clear about invoicing, hours and exactly what’s happening with the money. I was unclear about what to invoice and the name to invoice which is why I asked you for clarification on the invoicing. Many individuals work under a different business name and require specific details on the invoice. Sometimes they need postal addresses for example.
- I knew you had said the figure $220, but I thought you had said that this was dependent on our success on the day and it could be more. I must have been wrong about that and I’m very sorry for that misunderstanding.
- I took a guess at $240 based on the fact we were so successful on the day and I was there for an extra 2.5 hours than we had originally discussed. The original times you mentioned were 9am – 3pm and it ended up being 8am – 4:30pm.
- The general practice in the industry is to email everyone either before or after the gig with the invoicing amount and details. Because you didn’t get back to me I took a guess. The invoicing amount and details are always in writing though and generally by email.
- The reason I did the **** for such a low rate was that there was going to be work with your band which I was really looking forward to doing!
- I had gathered by the tone of your messaging after the event that you weren’t going to book me, so basically you had gone back on that part of the deal. This made the original low rate not relevant as it was based on the promise of future work.
- Lastly and most importantly, I would strongly suggest you drop the ‘diva’ thing. I work with real divas (Vika Bull, Kylie Auldist) who are lovely people. It puts everyone you work with offside.
- I’ve performed, recorded and toured with many Australian and international vocal stars and most of them are really cool people. Be a nice person, treat your band with respect, not like employees. The best band leaders treat people like equals.
The main reason I wanted to write this message to you is this. I’m very sorry that I have upset you and to let you know that I’m not happy that that’s how you feel. I’ve been concerned about it as I take a lot of pride in my work. The way we survive and thrive in this industry long term is to support and back each other. Every performer whether they are new like yourself or they’ve been in the business a long time, like me, needs support at one time or another. I am on your side and musicians are your friends. We’re here to help you sound great. We’re not here to rip you off or try to make you sound bad or anything like that. We want to help you sound amazing and succeed!
Musician Hire Yarra Valley
Our Response To This – Melbourne’s Best Live Band..
Interesting comments, very very interesting. Pretty offensive, and completely unsolicited feedback. The moral of the story? You can’t please everyone. Ms Lexi & Celestial band plays musicians ABOVE industry rates! We pay around 25% higher than the largest industry competitor! We pay a rate to musicians that is generous, whilst at the same time we don’t have to charge clients top dollar. It’s a balancing act, between presenting in the industry as an affordable band, whilst simultaneously paying musicians WELL above industry standard. The musicians get a high rate for weddings and functions, and they get around half that amount for a showcase. A showcase is put on at the business’s expense. Our showcase rate is currently the highest that any Melbourne band pays. Some Melbourne bands pay $70, $80 or at most $150 for a full day showcase. Ours is currently way higher than that, but anyhoo…
It is quite offensive this person came in an implied that we needed to book a more “kick ass” band. Our band is one of the best in Melbourne and the Yarra Valley. This person has rattled off all their supposed credentials, but they forgot to mention one thing. They’re actually a Melbourne City Counsel Busker. There is nothing wrong with being a busker, heck, some of us in the band have tried it! However, the person above is mentioning these career highlights as if it makes them ‘better then’. Like they should be treated like a mini god, and we should all bow down to him!?
He goes on to insinuate that the money wasn’t clear or that the invoicing wasn’t clear. Dear friend, it was all very clear. If I say something is worth $400, how much do you expect to receive $420 or $400? If we say something is worth $200, does that mean $220 or $200? There’s no lack of clarity over here!
Musician Hire Yarra Valley
After that he goes on to attack our communication styles. Come on now friend! The communication within this band organisation could not be clearer. Leading up to a specific gig or event, we’ll often create a Whatapp group for the specific band members who will be on the gig. Within that Whatapp group, documents get dropped. Updates get posted. It’s all crystal clear. Don’t be blaming the fact that you got communication via phone calls and whatapp, rather than email, as the reason that you acted like a turkey! Some people will honestly blame anything! Its 2021. Even government organisation use Whatsapp as a method to communicate with multiple parties at the one time. Again, at Ms Lexi & Celestial Band, we’re out here vibing with what is best of the band in general. Rather than pandering to any one musician’s preffered method of communication! Please!
Live Music Band Melbourne
Finally, the insinuation that anyone at Ms Lexi & Celestial Band is a ‘diva’ is just ridiculous! There’s a saying that says if you’re pointing the finger at any one person, then there’s 3 fingers pointing back at you! In other words, “if you spot it, you got it!”. Usually if someone if running around accusing people of being a ‘diva’, its actually that person just projecting their own shadow ‘diva’ side. But anyway, if we get into shadow projections, we are going to be getting a bit spiritual for the purposes of this blog! Notice in the above email, he never once owns any of his behaviours. He doesn’t mention anything about the way HE showed up. There’s no acknowledgement of anything, just a whole bunch of finger pointing!
Musician Hire Yarra Valley- What We’ve Learnt
Anyways, after all that excitement and frivolity, we’ve learnt a few valuable lessons. Those being:
- Try to stick with the same tried and tested band members all the time, rather than bringing in new, potentially crazy ‘divas’.
- Some musicians are just disrespectful, and there nothing we can do about it except never hire them again.
- There’s no use in getting upset over a recalcitrant musician.
We hope you’ve enjoyed reading this unusual and somewhat esoteric blog as it relates to Musician Hire Yarra Valley. Despite this one squeamish and uncomfortable situation we had, our band gets along famously 95% of the time. Ms Lexi & Celestial Band is made up of 10 amazing Melbourne multi-instrumentalists. All of our current band members have been playing together since 2017, and we hardly ever have a hiccup. The only times strange things seem to happen is when we have to get a fill in musician. This does happen from time to time, because sometimes people get sick and can’t do gigs.
Musician Hire Yarra Valley
Is your Engagement Party, Wedding, Birthday or other special event coming up!? Well, boy oh boy do we have the perfect live music package for you! If you need a Soloist, Acoustic Duo, Acoustic Trio, 4- or 5-person party band, then we can certainly help you out! We also have some really cool extras that we provide for larger events. These include an MC service, Dry Ice and DJ music. That’s right, you want an Acoustic Duo, plus DJ Service? We can help you. Ms Lexi & Celestial Band is led by Lead Singer/ Keyboard player Lexi Ross, and is one of Melbourne most professionally run organisations. Just check out our reviews on Google and see for yourself! To secure one of our high demand dates, get in touch with Lexi today on 0467375489 or email email@example.com with the details of your special event!