I felt compelled to write a response to Nick McCord's article “Contract Killaz” [March 2006, p. 20]. He makes some very good points about protecting yourself as a freelance artist and has valid arguments about some companies wanting to take advantage of their contractors, but his generalities are not true.
At the mere age of 24, he has had some bad luck and made some poor choices on whom he has worked for. The majority of producers in the entertainment field are looking for a fair and equitable agreement with their contractors. It is also in the best interest of the producer to have a contract with all artists, and they should bring this to the negotiating table. As a producer, we research and interview staff; the contractor must do his research and interview the company.
One should use his or her personal contact network to get information on producers and their companies prior to interviewing. The Internet now makes it easier than ever to research production companies from their tax records to who has worked for them. This information can help guide your decision to work for any particular company.
They say that the entertainment world is very small, and you always bump into someone you know from gig to gig. In a business based on networking, it is extremely important to maintain good relationships, as they will be part of your personal safety net and future opportunities.
Laying out defined terms in a contract should be part of the normal practice of doing good business and should leave no surprises for anyone. As a producer, my goal is to practice good business, hire the best people, and put on nothing less than a perfect show both onstage and off.
— Jack Feivou, producer
Walt Disney Entertainment
I just received my first copy of Live Design. It is excellent! Thank you. Please continue the LD articles in the future, with the plots and the equipment used for design. That is perfect — much more in depth than other publications, especially with the industry LD rock stars…would love to see an article with Bob Dickinson of Grammy/Academy Award fame. Thanks again for delivering such a great magazine.
— Christopher Jones
Shadows Cast Inc.
St. Petersburg, FL
Editor's Note: You want him, we've got him: check out our Q&A with industry rock star Bob Dickinson in the April issue, p. 47.