Hold your own garden gig!

Want to soak up some festival atmosphere this summer but didn't manage to get tickets for your favourite act? Well, you can catch last-minute dropouts on Ticketbis, or you could consider holding your own garden gig.

Fast becoming popular in the States, a small but growing number of Brits are catching on to the idea that you don’t need a sprawling country pile or ramshackle farm to hold a music event.

As long as you’ve got garden furniture and room to swing a cat you can hold a gig at your suburban semi. T. Scallon of Ticketbis explains…

Find someone to play

You might not be able to pull enough strings for Jessie J to rock up but make some enquiries and you’d be surprised who might consider a garden gig between larger gigs. Or head down to your local folk club and see who takes your fancy. Ask. They can only say no.

Name the date

Before you choose the date of your gig, be sure to check that it doesn’t conflict with any other major events. Make sure, as best you can, that there are no loud nearby building works scheduled for that day too.

Send out a “save the date” email well in advance to ensure that people bear it in mind when booking their summer holidays.

Cough up the cash

Most musicians do expect to be paid. You can absorb this cost yourself and treat the event as a party or you can ask your guests to chip in. Be wary of making it a formalised public paying event in case this violates your house insurance policy. Hand round a hat at the end but make it clear to the guests where their donation is going.

Feed the masses

It helps if you know well in advance how many people you have coming. Invest in or rent large catering-style pans and, if necessary, outdoor cooking equipment. Consider food that can be prepared in advance but whipped up at short notice.

Be neighbourly

It’s not just for courtesy reasons you should inform your neighbours. If you like each other, invite them to attend. If you don’t like each other, get them on side anyway so they don’t spoil the event.

Enjoy the music

But check with your act whether they want the whole thing recorded and uploaded for posterity…


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