So you want to play at Klub Kakofanney...
We get messages every day from musicians and bands asking to play at Klub Kakofanney. We love to put on a wide range of quality acts, but we run a limited number of events each year, and with the best will in the world, we could not possibly provide stage time to everyone who contacts us. Please do not bulk mail us and every other promoter in the south east, asking for gigs. If you seriously want to play at Klub Kakofanney, you will help yourself greatly if you read these notes before contacting us.
Which of our events are you applying for?
Friday Night Events
Our Friday night events are held in the upstairs music venue of the Wheatsheaf with a stage, lights, sound engineer, etc, and people pay to come in. These events cater for bands and musicians over a wide range of genres.
Sunday Afternoon Sessions
Our Sunday afternoon sessions are held in the ground floor bar of the Wheatsheaf and are social events with no admission charges. The Sunday events use only a small PA and are intended for mostly local musicians, lighter music, simple set-ups, and cajons rather than drum kits.
For the upstairs gigs...
Have you checked your diaries?
Our upstairs gigs are only held on Friday nights, on the first Friday of the month, except August when we take a summer break. There is no point contacting us if you are a touring band looking for mid-week gigs, if work committments or holiday plans will make our first-Friday dates impossible, or if you are already booked to play elsewhere on the same dates as our events. When you contact us, please let us know which first Fridays you are going to be available for, and keep in mind that we usually are booking a minimum of three months ahead, e.g. during January we will be looking for bands for April and May onwards.
Provisional dates of upcoming Klub Kakofanney nights:
Where are you based?
Are you from Oxford, the surrounding towns, or further afield? We regularly feature bands from outside Oxford, and have had both headline and support acts from places such as London, Cambridge, and Glastonbury. Many out-of-town bands enjoy the Klub Kakofanney experience and the Oxford atmosphere so much that they ask to come back again, and they find they have acquired an Oxford fan club. We have to be realistic though. We cannot afford to pay large fees to bands or travelling expenses etc, so please think about how far you would be prepared to travel before you apply for gigs.
What sort of music do you play?
Almost every band claims that they produce a unique sound, they say the only way to understand their music is for us to listen to it and make up our own minds, or they say they don't like labels and boxes. None of this is helpful. You do need to give us some idea in just a few words of basically where you fit in the music spectrum, whether it is folk-acoustic, americana, pop, rock, anthemic rock, electronica, deathcore, or whatever. Please don't call yourself alt-rock or alt-anything because we are all alt these days. Please give us a clear and simple description, without all the marketing embellishments.
Are you a covers band or a tribute band?
We feature bands that play original music. We don't mind one or two covers in a set, but we are looking for bands that play original music. We do not book tribute acts.
How much live experience do you have?
Please let us know if this would be the band's first public gig, or whether you are old timers at this, or somewhere in between. Don't try to dress it up and claim experience you don't have. There is nothing wrong with inexperience, we all have to start somewhere, and it won't count against you. For us it is a case of getting the balance right, having a mix of bands in the evening, giving new bands opportunities, considering how much audience appeal you will have, and so on.
Do you check your email regularly?
If you want to be booked for gigs, you need to be a good communicator. So many musicians and bands ask us for gigs, but never reply in time when we offer them a slot, because they do not check their mail daily, or because they said they were waiting to see if one of the band members could make it. If you are offered a gig and cannot give an instant answer, reply straight away to let us know you are checking with other band members and when you will be able to give us answer. If you've accepted a booking and later discover there might be a problem, let us know ASAP. When bands communicate well, if they hit a snag with a date we'll say "No worries, we'll reschedule you for later in the year".
For the Sunday sessions
Its not an open-mic session
All the acts that play at our Sunday sessions are pre-booked and have a definite time slot. It is not an open mic format. Please do not just turn up with an instrument and think we can squeeze you in. We cannot.
Have you checked your diaries?
Our Sunday sessions are only held on Sunday afternoons, approcimately once per month. When you contact us, please let us know which Sundays you are going to be available for, and keep in mind that we usually are booking a minimum of three months ahead, e.g. during January we will be looking for bands for April and May onwards.
Provisional dates of upcoming Sunday sessions:
Are you local?
The Sunday afternoon sessions are informal events where people enjoy playing to friendly faces and get a chance to try out songs to a small but receptive audience. It is really aimed at local musicians who can travel to the venue easily on a Sunday afternoon.
Can you play "unplugged"?
The sessions are designed so that the performers can come into town on the bus or train, and not need to lug a lot of equipment. We do use microphones and a small PA, and sometimes musicians bring their own small amps with them too, but things like large pedalboards and drumkits are just too big for the small space, and setting them up takes up too much time. Remember too that it is a Sunday afternoon, and we are looking for light up-beat music. Its not suitable for heavy metal and deathcore.
How much live performance experience do you have?
Many musicians, especially singer songwriters, have had their first tastes of performing to the public at a Sunday session. Its a great way of getting experience, becoming comfortable with the mics, building confidence, and testing out new songs in a friendly atmosphere. Let us know where you are in the experience spectrum when applying for gigs.
Remember you need to be 18+
We don't make the rules. Our events are held in licensed premises which are only open to people aged 18 or over, and that includes all the musicians. Sorry, we cannot make exceptions for young musicians.
Information you should provide when applying for gigs
When you apply for a gig, we don't need to know a detailed history of the band, and we don't want a list of every gig you've ever played, or every track you have ever recorded. Good information to include is:
- Your own name
- Your band name or stage name
- Your contact email address
- Your band's Facebook address if applicable
- Whereabouts you are based
- What type or genre of music you play
- How much live performance experience you have
- Links to two or three samples of your work
Soundcloud and YouTube links are a good way of letting us hear a sample of your music. Remember we don't have time to carefully listen to everything you have recorded, so narrow it just to or three samples. A YouTube video of you playing live in a small venue is always helpful in evaluating bands. Please do not send sound or video files direct to our email.
If you have read the info on this page and wish to contact us to make a gig enqiry, please use this form to make initial contact with us: