Ever wondered what it would cost to book your favourite band? Pretty Polly Productions - a company that helps books big artists for gigs in US colleges - can let you know.
PPP's website has a useful list of what many acts charge to play US colleges, and a "hot availability" list for the rest of 2008. It makes for interesting reading, even if the list is not completely up to date.
The Kings Of Leon, for example, are big enough to headline the Glastonbury Festival in the UK. But their lesser-fame in their native America means colleges can book them ($35K) relatively cheaply. That's as cheap as MC Hammer.
Other current UK stars – Duffy and The Fratellis ($15K+) – are also bargains. But with no real profile in the US yet, that's no surprise. The business of 'breaking America' has been very hard work for British acts for many years now.
Modest Mouse, immodest fee?
Indeed, there are more fascinating figures that highlight the difference in the UK vs US appeal of artists. Hasidic Jewish reggae rapper Matisyahu is 'hot' this college season for up to $40K, but in the UK he'd probably be playing tiny clubs. Meanwhile, Modest Mouse command up to $75K. Modest Mouse had a Number 1 US album last year, but in the UK they've yet to make a substantial squeak.
Some bands with universal college appeal remain unsurprisngly expensive.
The Killers apparently cost "huge" $$.
50 Cent costs "big" $$.
Foo Fighters' agents at least quote a figure: "$300-$400K".
Still, as MusicRadar understands Pete Doherty (solo, not even with Babyshambles) tries to haggle for £100K ($200K) that seems like a decent bet. At least the faithful probably believe Foo Fighters would turn up.
College gig booking fee highlights
Bloc Party - $25-30K
Cash Brothers - $3.5-5K
Common and N*E*R*D - $75-80K
Death Cab For Cutie - $75-80K
Duffy - $15K
Gnarls Barkley - $50-60K
Kings of Leon - $35K
Panic At the Disco - $125-150K
Vampire Weekend - $25-50K
Wyclef Jean - $60K
Which tells MusicRadar only one thing: the Cash Brothers need a more appropriate name.
The full list, possibly not-100%-reliable, is at PrettyPolly.com.