Archive for July 21st, 2008

Contracts: The Devil Is In Those Pesky Details

Monday, July 21st, 2008

At its core, a contract is simply a promise made between two or more parties. In my case, I promise to provide a certain number of musicians at a particular time and place. In turn, you promise to pay me. As Emeril would say: “BAM! We have a contract!”

Where we get into trouble is in the details of such agreements. And I want to stress that I’m not talking about “fine print” here – just a few additional (but critical) extra lines of verbage.

For instance, my very simple (less than one page of 12-point type) contract calls for a certain amount of space where I’m to set my equipment, a certain amount of electricity needed to power the band, and a certain amount of time required for the setting up to take place.

When my clients don’t live up to their end of the bargain with regard to space, electricity, and set-up time, it’s awfully hard for me to hold up my end of our agreement.

As a client, you expect your vendors to uphold the commitments made when they signed their names. These may include a W-9 form, invoice, special load-in provisions, proper dress, and even repertoire or volume issues.

When everyone pays attention to their personal share of the details, life is good. But, just in case, it’s always prudent for both parties to review what they’ve promised – one last time – as the event date nears.

You have every right to expect that your vendor will uphold their promises in full. And they have every right to that same expectation from you.

So, where is that contract? Let’s BOTH look at it again, right now!