To: My beloved Entertainers and those who would like to be.

From: BOB STANE @The Coffee Gallery Backstage


Bob Stane Says:

I am on my tiresome horse again. Just remember that I am on your side and I want you to win.

Once again, I whined to one of my "together" acts that I was getting e mails from potential acts at The Coffee Gallery Backstage and their e mail address referred to their hobby or pet. It did not have their name in it.

The email address would be: or something like that.

And, of course, the subject line would read something like: "July"

No real identification. No clues. Let's torture the people who give you money.

You say, "oh, Bob, why do you care?" Good question. I care because I get 85 e mails a day. Often I cannot respond to them right away. I am swamped. Some I "reply" an answer to. Maybe a week later I want to contact that act.

I look in my "in" and "out" file and I do not find the name of the act either embedded in their e mail address or in the subject line. I go to "find." Maybe that feature turns up the act or it doesn't. If it doesn't I have to plow through all of my old "ins" and "outs" until the message surfaces. Time consuming.

I don't want to spend that time. Here is an advantage to having your name on the "subject" line: every time I plow up the names I see your name. You stay in my mind. I hire those acts who do well, have a potential to do well or I can remember.

Oh, now the light goes on. I am sure I have been on the trail of hiring an act and then I lost all communication (and the act). I can envision that act skulking about in his basement saying "that mean old Bob Stane forgot me or ignored me and I will get even with him for this someday...just wait until I am famous and then I won't answer his letters". I answer all phone calls and e mails. I always answer and respond and if you, or any one else, feels ignored it is because the message got lost (or my memory went into overload). "Things" happen.

You must back up your every communication with clarity, imagination and tenacity.

The "together"act (I am protecting the innocent) said, "yes,I have the same problem...everyone seems to want to hide." But, of course, you don't want to hide. You want to be seen and hired. Don't write in sentence fragments. Give full information like dates. Every time. Just because we discussed it in detail last week does not mean I am going to respond to "yes, it's a go".Then I have to go to "sort" and go through all of your letters to me. Printing is for communication. It is not an art form. It certainly is not for putting together a clever puzzle. Don't be afraid to duplicate and clarify. I have a big insight for you: Just because you are intimately aware of you and your schedule and what you want...I am not. I am hanging on by my fingertips most of the time. I sit at this computer 6 hours a day just messing with booking. I need clarity.

Note that my e mail address has my name in it. So should yours.

The next time you change e mail addresses, please consider putting your "act" name in the address. Also, note that every time I write to you the name Coffee Gallery Backstage (at the least) is right there where you can see it giving you an instant clue as to what this note is about. If you are clever with the computer you can put your name in those <brackets> to identify without messing up the address.

Anyone you do business with wants clarity. Trust me on this one. No sentence fragments. Repeat: No sentence fragments.

You may have gotten "The Form" from me. It is that piece I send out asking for your name, address, phone number, Web Site, e mail and a "Fat Paragraph". This has saved me thousands of hours of problems. Why not modify it, take my name off of it and send it to every venue owner you would like to work for?

If you send it in your publicity pack, take a 3 hole punch and punch holes in it for a three ring binder. The venue owner will weep with gratitude and, maybe, adapt it to his own club or venue. Share the knowledge.

Note Carefully: I am swamped with requests from wonderful acts. I have a poor memory. You must remind me of this exchange. I suggest when you get ready to "go west" that you include all of the exchange in your follow up and final pitch to me.
Tell me, clearly, what you want to do and when you want to do it.
Duplicate statements if you wish. Don't make me guess. Treat me like a child.
There is too much on my plate for me to remember every detail. Or any details.

I will do all I can to get you on my stage.

Thank you.

Bob, The Coffee Gallery Backstage