Strange Matter's Mark Osborne talks about memorable shows, advice for bands and what he wishes he knew from day one.
If you want to be the first to catch the next hot indie band that everyone will be talking about three months from now, then you've probably made a habit of checking Strange Matter's online schedule.
The venue's 29-year-old promoter, Mark Osborne, is from Tazewell, a small town in Southwestern Virginia. He started booking shows when he was 18 at recreation centers and friends' garages before moving to Richmond in 2004.
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READ BEFORE SUBMITTING A BOOKING REQUEST
Please read the following before submitting a booking request, as our "booking staff" is actually just one guy and the volume of requests we receive already requires a superhuman effort on his part.
PLEASE HAVE YOUR DETAILS TOGETHER
It's impossible to say whether we're interested in hosting your event if you can't even tell us what your event is. Please have a date (or a range of dates) in mind, some idea of who will be performing or what will transpire. Be aware that the calendar starts filling up around 90-120 days in advance--weekends especially.
Everyone wants to have their event on a Friday or Saturday. There are just over a hundred such days in any calendar year, and we receive roughly 100 requests for every single one of them. If you are a local promoter who is not already familiar to us, we will be far more likely to host your event on a weeknight. If you are a capable promoter, you should have no problem pulling a big crowd any night of the week.
TOURING BANDS LOOKING TO FILL A DATE
As much as we'd like to be able to accomodate every band who submits a request, this isn't always a possibility. We are members of touring bands ourselves, and we've been there. The best way for an unestablished touring band to get on a show here is by meeting a local band we've worked with before and getting them to contact us. If you are unable to find anyone willing to help you, you can send us your request and we will do our best to find someone willing to take the show on. However, it's entirely possible that we won't have much more success than you did.
LOCAL BANDS LOOKING FOR GIGS
We are always looking for local support to round out shows. However, we are unlikely to organize a show for you because you can easily do this yourselves. Every band that anyone has ever cared about in the history of humanity has started out playing their friends' basements and living rooms with their friends' bands. We suggest you do the same. If you've got a good thing going on, people (including us) will notice.
If you have read and understand the above, e-mail us at email@example.com
ALL INQUIRIES are handled through this e-mail address.
- Your subject line should include the date(s) you are interested in and some sort of description of the event (ie. "July 27th or 28th Â This Band and That Band"). Please don't make the subject "show" or "booking" or something equally vague. I don't know why people do this.
- Include links to websites, music, etc. We will ask for them if you don't.
- Let us know if the dates are flexible or if this is part of a tour.
- Feel free to include whatever other relevant information you like. Lengthy bios, photos, EPKs and the like are not necessary and probably won't even be looked at. If you have played Richmond in the past, that's definitely a plus. Make sure to let us know if you have, when, where and with whom.
- AFTER CONTACTING US, please allow some time for a reply. DO NOT call the venue, poke us on Facebook, etc. This will not help you, and may make us actively fuck with you. If an extraordinary amount of time has passed since you heard from us, send a follow up.
- DO NOT assume you have a date on hold unless you hear so from us.
Strange Matter Tech Specs as of Winter 2015
Board: Behringer X32, Tablet at desk for use with q32/mix station installed. DBX graphic EQs for FOH and Monitors at desk. 24 channels are setup if you need 32 just ask in advance.
(If need be we have easy access to a rental 24 channel Analog board and outboard gear)
FOH Speakers: JBL and Cerwin Vega powered by QSC amps
Monitor Speakers: Yamaha powered by Mackie amps
Microphones: Shure, Sehn., AKG, and Rode mics, 6 DI boxes advance if more are needed
Lighting: Center, Right, and Left forward incandescent par cans, sides are 2 x ADJ tripar profile, back is 2 x ADJ tripar profile plus, we have an led and a laser moving/sound activated fixture available as well
Projector: Epson H552A, we have white sheets mounted on boards for screens. Able to setup forward of stage for media presentation for in back of stage for back-wall projection.
Club Backline Equipment: Ampeg 8x10 cab, Yamaha 4x12 cab, PDP X7 drum-kit (please bring all hardware besides Tom mounts) we handle all other equipment needs through East Coast Backline
Stage dimensions 20 feet wide x 14 feet deep, ceiling clearing 8 ft (some space at corners and front occupied by storage/speakers/amp rack
Dance floor dimensions: 25 feet x 25 feet with a ceiling clearing of 11 feet
Any questions, ask Jonathan at firstname.lastname@example.org