Here's a stab at answering some questions we've heard more than once. Send yours to us at the contact page.
Is Big Heavy World a nonprofit organization?
Big Heavy World is organized as a nonprofit corporation in the state of Vermont and a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization.
Are you hiring?
You should ask, “Could you use volunteers?” and the answer would be, “Hell, yes.” We’d probably hire you if we could, but none of us get paid here. Guess it sux for us, but if it weren’t a blast we wouldn’t bother. The Big Heavy World Web site and all our projects are made possible by sponsors who help us pay for them and by volunteers or interns who pitch in to make it all happen. If you’re curious about hanging with the Big Heavy crew, even if it’s just to check out what it’s all about, check the info on the crew page.
Will you sign my band?
No. But you’re probably the best band we ever heard – it’s just that we put out compilations meant to promote music by various Vermont artists, not single-artist releases. Use us and abuse us – the Web site is here to promote our regional artists – and we want you to rule the world.
How much do you pay bands?
We believe art has value and we believe artists should work with dignity, and that creating art can be just as much of a job as any 9-5. When we program and promote shows we keep this in mind when creating an honorarium that respects this ideal, especially with regards to young bands first coming into the music community and developing as professionals. We asked our advisory board of musicians to help us create a fair and rational pay scale. We also asked members of our community to guide us in this matter and their voices came from all genres and walks of life. We consulted with professional musicians from punk, traditional, country and rock backgrounds on how best to create a pay rate to budget for. We were also directed to www.local1000.org which helped inform the policy. With all this input from Vermont artists, we landed on a general outline of what a local band might consider to be an equitable fee for a local performance, generalizing that a show would be two 45-minute sets: For a solo artists, we learned that $150.00 (in very general terms) is an appropriate target, and for a band, $100 per performing band member would be generally acceptable. We know that as artists establish themselves they're able to negotiate much more than this, and also that some venues can be expected to pay more than this, but for us to propose budgets for event sponsorship before knowing who the artists are that might perform, it's a helpful gauge of value.
What's with the tattoos?
We give away Big Heavy World tattoos now and then and let anybody who’s got one into Big Heavy World shows for free for life. The first time we gave them away we had two tattoo artists in a booth at Club Toast slinging ink during a Figgs/Dysfunkshun show. Maybe a dozen folks have gotten them so far, including Big Heavy World crew and Jim, the guy who started it. The tattoos are the Big Heavy World logo, with an earth that’s got two nails through it. The last time we gave them away was March 2001 at Yankee Tattoo on Pearl Street in Burlington, where we broadcast it live on the ‘Net.