As most of you know, we just wrapped up our 2010 Best of the Beat Awards on Friday night. When the awards started, the one thing we really wanted to do was to put on an event that 1) thanked and honored local musicians; and 2) was a really good time.
I think we’ve accomplished that in the 17 years of putting on the event, but this year seemed special for some reason. First, we moved the event to Generations Hall, and I and the staff received a lot of positive reinforcement for that decision. Second, many musicians showed up to get their awards, including Trombone Shorty, Dr. John, Dave Bartholomew, Anders Osborne, Kermit Ruffins, Irma Thomas and many, many more. The food was incredible (lots of good comments on that), and there was just a great vibe. So we thought we did a pretty good job. But, we can always do better. We solicited suggestions from the people who bought tickets, and for those who received a ticket without registering, we’ve included the same survey in this week’s edition of the Weekly Beat. We really want to do a good job with this event, and your input is truly valuable to us.
We’ve received a few comments via email that were mostly positive, and only one negative from Mr. Dusk Lipton, who had some very valid points (post the schedule and bands playing prominently throughout the venue; eliminate discounts for late ticket buyers). We’re listening and we agree.
I have to let you know that the way that we finance this event—that everyone seems to enjoy so much, and that is geared towards glorifying the musicians—is through sponsorships with some ticket sales supplementing the revenue. We certainly have never made money with this event, and we never intended to: we do need to pay the bills, though, and sales of tickets help us do that.
We don’t have or hire an event production staff; the staff at OffBeat virtually transmogrifies into event production mode to get the job done and make the event good, but not without a lot of hard, extra work on their part. So they are due a huge round of applause for the great job they did. You guys are really the best!
By the way, we’re sending a check to the New Orleans Musicians Assistance Foundation for almost $4,000. BoB ticket sales and participation in the evening’s silent auction made that possible.
We’re already planning the 18th annual 2011 Best of the Beat Awards for January 2012. Hope to see you there, and keep your suggestions and constructive criticisms coming in. If you or anyone you know is interested in being a sponsor for the event, send them my way.
Love ya, and keep on keeping the music and musicians alive!