I’m a bit un(in)sur(anc)e about that

(easily the weakest blog pun title yet – I’m genuinely sorry)

I’m quite majestically slap bang in my mid-twenties now and there are still a few things in my life I’m yet to embrace which plenty of people the same age as me have already ticked off their ‘to-do’ list of existence;

  • Get engaged/married/divorced
  • Have a kid/two kids/three kids/maybe more if you’re from Rotherham
  • Get a mortgage
  • Sort out a pension
  • Get contents insurance
  • Own a dog/two dogs/three dogs/maybe more if you’re from Rotherham

A snapshot of my life there for you all, it’s quite something isn’t it?

All these things seem very ‘adult’ to me still, despite them not being totally out of reach if I truly wished for them. Granted; I could get a mortgage if I really wanted to do absolutely nothing but sit in said house which has near on bankrupted me and for which I now resent it deep into my core, but hey, it’s bricks and mortar isn’t it?

I could have kids if I really wanted, but I’m currently too selfish and despite having spells of broodiness now and again, spending the weekend with my dear sister and my newest niece who has a penchant for crying like the apocalypse is imminent is usually enough to knock that out of my system for a while.

Let’s be honest, I could get engaged/married/divorced if I truly wished, but [insert member of Girls Aloud I currently prefer for whatever reason here] won’t reply to my texts.

But I have recently dipped my toes into the murky waters of one of the things listed above – I went and got myself some mobile phone insurance.

As I read this back I can tell I’m probably ‘losing’ you by this point but I’m going to carry on because the fact of the matter is; if I am losing you it’s because you’re probably inherently like myself and the opening list of things are still very much ventures untraveled for your good self?

So why did I suddenly feel the need to get mobile phone insurance? The answer is quite simple: iPhones are expensive and I’ve been known to drop phones in nightclubs/in football stadiums/in toilets/at gigs plus others.

Strangely though, I’ve owned two other single items in my life that cost more than a new iPhone yet I’ve not ever felt the need to insure them (until now); a rather expensive laptop and my Les Paul Guitar.

It’s taken a semi expensive item which I’m confident I will do damage to over the course of its 18 month contract to make me realise that insurance is probably worth looking into for the more expensive items I own. If my guitar was nicked, stolen, set on fire (or even worse; all three) then I know for a fact I wouldn’t have the money to replace it and I equally also know that I’d be rather gutted. And I’m not even a ‘proper musician’.

So I thought about the average artist, how much they earn and how much money their equipment cost and it reminded me of a gig I put on back in my uni days…

I used to run a gig night called ‘Quids In’ which I’ve written about before in the past so I won’t bore you again here; to summarise it was held in a bit of a shithole but the venue hire was free, the booze was cheap and the gigs were always packed so the bands were usually happy to share the one working monitor whilst the other three the venue inexplicably held onto sat there apparently for aesthetic purposes only.

One evening a rather lovely band from the Midlands showed up for a gig who I invited up after they sent me a demo after finding me in The Unsigned Guide. I was quite simply stunned to witness the amount of gear they had on their persons, which must have totalled at least a down payment on a mortgage.

Shall we play with some numbers?

I’m going to use our friends at Dolphin Music to figure out how much moolah it would cost for me to finally set up that band I know you’ve all been waiting for all these years (in that kind of, “he dishes out all this bloody ‘advice’ so why doesn’t he do it himself?” way – truth be told, I can’t make music whatsoever. My karoke rendition of Peter Sarsedt’s ‘Where Do You Go To My Lovely ‘ is passable at best).

Singer/Guitarist

Fender Stratocaster Electric Guitar: £879
VOX VT30 Amp: £143
Korg MicroKORG XL Synth: £339

Lead Guitarist

Gretsch G5191 Electric Guitar: £999
Takamine G511SS Acoustic Guitar: £299
Orange Rockerverb 50 MkII Combo Amp: £1,258
Various Pedals: £200

Bass Player

Fender Standard Jazz Bass: £479
Ashdown MAG EVO 11 Combo Amp: £389

Drummer

Pearl Vision VX: £581

Total: £5,566

Tis a lot of money that isn’t it? If you’re an artist and you listed all your equipment you might total up something more, or indeed something less, but it’s still a nice little windfall for the dodgy geezer round the back of the Red Lion who nicks your van whilst you pop for a Maccy D’s after your soundcheck either way.

Let’s round it down to an even £5,500. Here are some things you’d need to do through Sentric Music in order to earn that money back…

  • Get you 3 minute track played on BBC Radio1 101 times
  • Get you 3 minute track played on BBC 6Music 611 times
  • Get synced on Hollyoaks 43 times
  • Collect performing royalties for 1,375 small gigs
  • Collect performing royalties for playing the BBC Introducing Stage at Reading/Leeds festival 12 and a half times
  • Get one decent sized sync deal on an European advert
  • Sell 10,576 singles on iTunes
  • Receive 5,392,156 Streams on Spotify

Also, let us not forget that £5,500 is also:

  • 1,833 pints of Peroni
  • 916 packs of Malboro Lights
  • 663 copies of Sgt Peppers Lonely Heart Club Band on CD
  • 9,166 Raisin & Biscuit Yorkie bars
  • 5,500 scratchcards
  • 110 cheap leather jackets
  • And loads of other stuff you lot in bands buy

I think I’ve got my point across. Consider getting insurance.

You might be wondering why I’ve come over all sensible, well I was inspired to write this blog as our sister company Sentric Digital was approached by an musician specialist insurance company who were looking to target ‘bands’ a lot more and asked for my humble opinion. We had quite an interesting conversation and I gave them several scenarios starting with a band who were just starting out with cheap/borrowed equipment, right up to an international touring act who earn a wedge with a few more stages in-between. They went off and tailored insurance packages for each scenario which is worth a look here. Quite an interesting idea really.

What I’m listening to at the moment; Girl Talks’ rather brilliant ‘Feed The Animals’ mashup which you can listen to in it’s entirety here & Journey by Ian Britt.

What I’m reading at the moment; The Fantastic Hope & our sister company Sentric Digital’s blog (they’re trying to take my blogging crown off me, I’m not going down without a fight)

Stay tuned

sP

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Sentric Music is an independent music publisher home to thousands of artists who collect PRS performance royalties.

~ by Sentric on October 1, 2010.

One Response to “I’m a bit un(in)sur(anc)e about that”

  1. Interestingly, this is something I have come across lately insuring equipment for my artist!

    I booked them on to a GLC support slot in the Newport Centre (you’ve made it if you play there if youare from Wales, seriously!) and was prompted for copies of insurance from the venue/promoter and suddenly realised I needed to get my shit together. So, I looked into into and we are just about to take out an annual insurance policy because after tallying up the equipments worth, it’s rather a lot. Also the equipment is out a lot and there are countless situations where it is prone to be stolen when our backs are turned or even just damaged in transit.

    Ironically, a rather expensive digital camera was left back stage at the show throughout the duration of load in and sound check in, it was in amongst guitars, expensive hard disk records, cymbals and other musical equipment bits and bobs and it got nicked! I went to get it for the performance and there it was, gone! I am currently filing a police report so our sound engineer (who’s camera it was) can claim it off his house insurance. Good job it wasn’t the USA Tele right next to it or there would be no such cover!

    Thanks for the link I will look into that company before giving the bands hard earned cash to any old insurance firm.

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