Retrospect | Industry Secrets

Read many stories about the DC area music industry. No names are used, but local band leaders will know who each story is about. Others will find every story informative or cautionary.

Band leaders often ask us “Why don't you just book through the agencies like everybody else does?” We're also asked “Why don't you like the agencies?” and “Why don't agencies like your band?” The first obvious answer is… Agencies don't like us because they don't ever make any money from our band. It's that simple.

The truth is, we don't have anything against the agencies. It's only the dishonest and unethical ones we don't like! All local band leaders know who I’m talking about. We simply will not work with dishonest business people. Bethesda bridal shop owner Claire Dratch once said to me, “Be careful with whom you associate. You are known by the company you keep.” That’s excellent advice for all of us.

Some years ago, my wife and I bought tickets to a huge bridal fair in the Maryland suburbs, one of the few in which Retrospect was not exhibiting. Read full article: For Band Leaders Only

Part 1. Shop Like a Pro

The information in Part 1 is advice on booking bands for weddings, parties, and other special events. It is neither a discussion of musical tastes, nor a listing of bands, but it is intended to help you understand the entertainment business, as you seek the perfect band for your event. Information that relates to any law or contract issue is not intended as legal counsel. State and local laws vary.

Let’s begin by talking about the very end of the shopping process… the contract. There is a disturbing trend lately, where some wedding and entertainment vendors try to avoid signing a written contract, by claiming that your email exchange with them is all the agreement you’ll need in order to secure their services. Plus a deposit. Oh yeah, and they claim to be from your town, but the only address you can find is in a distant city. Wait… what? That sounds too much like tactics used by the notorious Nigerian email scammers. Read full article: Shop Like a Pro

Part 2. Tricks and Traps Exposed

Even the most wary shopper can fall prey to some of the tricks and traps that abound in our business, resulting in wasted money, or possibly a ruined event. One of those tricks was recently pointed out to me by a prospective client. “I found a band with over a hundred glowing reviews on Wedding Wire, but when I looked at the entire last year on their Facebook page, they showed only four or five pictures of the band members performing together. And many of their online photos seem to be from the same performance. Any idea what gives?”

The first possible explanation that comes to mind is the recent Yelp fake review scandal (see the Fortune Magazine article) where 19 New York companies were heavily fined for selling fake Yelp reviews. This was not an isolated incident - 19 companies in New York alone made a business of writing and selling fake reviews. Let that sink in.

The exact same thing could be happening to Wedding Wire and The Knot reviews. No intention to disparage either of these reputable companies, but fake reviews are problem everywhere... Read full article: Tricks and Traps Exposed

One of three keyboards utilized by Linda at a Retrospect Band performance

Part 3. For Band Leaders Only

Wedding guests show off their best moves dancing to the music of Retrospect Band Guests lift bride and groom on chairs as Retrospect playes a lively hora. Missy & Steve join their guests on the dance floor as Retrospect Band entertains


What you don’t know can indeed hurt you

© 2018 Retrospect Band

Larry Elliott, band leader
3429 Huntsman’s Run
Ellicott City, MD  21042

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Washington DC’s premier independent wedding and party band


Retrospect Band logo Retrospect Band's facebook page highlights recent weddings and parties