How it all started – 1996

This was posted on the front page of my first website in 1996. I had started organising gigs in 1992 with a group of others under the name of Badger Promotions. My friend Tom Wiggins did sound, and the venue was The Hare and Hounds in Kings Heath, Birmingham. I tried to share all the money from the door takings with the bands who played. When there wasn’t enough from the door, I used my own money to pay the bands. It was around this time that I met Richard Temple of Discordian Promotions. We had many late night discussions on the subject of music and everything else ever.

How it all started – July 1996

I used to play in a band some years back but I found it difficult to get shows booked without National press or a demo tape. I started booking venues myself, in order to get shows for my own band. At the time, my only friends were those who were struggling with their own band projects.

None of us had any money to record demo tapes, we had all suffered at the hands of rip-off promoters, nobody seemed interested in promoting Punk / Hardcore in Birmingham unless you had a record contract, some of us were even considering giving up altogether because no one was willing to offer support. This was not to be. The group of Bands decided that if no one was willing to help out, it was time to do it for ourselves.

Between us, we started booking and playing our own shows on a regular basis, sharing the tasks of organisation, promotion and performance. Our philosophy? To book the venue ourselves, organise promotion ourselves, operate the door, ticketing and mailing lists ourselves, and any money that we made was shared between us to cover costs of band practice and promotional literature for the next show.

From this small beginning Badger Promotions evolved, and today Badger has mutated to form a record label called Iron Man Records.

By far the largest sector of activity revolves around the live promotion of independent bands who since the start, have multiplied their numbers so fast, I haven’t got an accurate count as new bands are joining every week. The bands continue to work together, supporting each others shows, and at last it is looking as if the whole is becoming greater than the sum of the parts. And that is just in the West Midlands area.

Badger Promotions maintains its own database of contacts, information, promotional techniques and useful advice for new bands wishing to make a start for themselves in the West Midlands area.