Your contact info isn’t good to anyone if you don’t answer your phone, look in your mailbox, or check your email. This might seem like a pretty basic concept, but with four or more people in a band, there’s always room for “I thought that was your job”-type problems. One of our co-workers here at CD Baby recently found himself in a situation that reminded us of the importance in making sure people who need to get in touch with you can easily do so. Here’s what happened.

Patrick, one of our customer service reps, is in a punk band here in Portland called Youthbitch. They’ve got a solid local following and play gigs on the regular. They’re hard-working, practice all the time, and have done a great job of spreading the word about their music by being hyper-visible. So, maybe that adds a bit of irony to this story.

A few weeks ago, I was on Twitter and one of the people I follow, a local friend who also writes about music, asked if anyone knew how to contact the band Youthbitch. I told him I worked with one of the guys, and he passed along a message for me to give to Patrick. Patrick contacted the person (I think it was a booking agent) who was looking for Youthbitch and found out that The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion wanted them to fill the opening slot for their upcoming show in Portland, and possibly even take them on a short tour up through Washington and into Canada. Needless to say, this was awesome news, and Patrick was excited.

After getting in touch with Spencer’s people, the band found out that they indeed had the opening spot in Portland if they still wanted it, but the northbound tour ship had sailed. They had waited too long to respond to an email, and missed their chance. Patrick’s excitement, while still present, significantly faded. How did they let this happen?

One of Patrick’s bandmates had recently started a new email address for the band, but wasn’t in the habit of checking it, and hadn’t given the login info to anyone else in the group. He ran into a friend at a party, who told him that Jon Spencer was coming to town, and he wanted some “young punk bands” to play with him. The guy was in touch with the booker for the show, and if Patrick’s bandmate wanted to hook him up with an email address, he’d pass it along. The bandmate gave his friend the email address for the account he had recently created, and didn’t think much of it.

Turns out that that email address did get passed along, and Spencer himself emailed the band, asking if they wanted to play that show and possibly go on tour. Problem was, nobody was checking the inbox. Ten days passed, and the email didn’t get read until I alerted Patrick to the situation. In the meantime, Spencer had to go to Plan B, and he hit up another group to do the shows up North.

Again, this might seem like a no-brainer, but make sure that all the contact info you have out there is going to a place where you’re going to see it. Check your Facebook inbox. Check your Gmail(s). Even if you’re neglecting your Twitter feed, check your DMs and “@” messages on there. People might be trying to reach you. You don’t want to miss out on a sweet road trip to British Columbia.

Also, if you’d like to book Youthbitch, they now check religiously.

-Brad B. at CD Baby

(photos of Youthbitch taken by Jamie McMullen)