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National Gig Rates

Updated: 29 June 2022 | 13:50 PM

Recommended minimum rates of pay for casual engagements in pubs, clubs and at functions, April 2022.

Single performance fees

  • For groups performing in pubs and clubs of up to 3 hours: £139.50
  • For groups performing at functions of up to 4 hours: £186.00

Setting up time

The engagement is payable at the full hourly rate from whatever time the musician is required to have his/her instruments and equipment set up.


Hourly rate of £46.50 payable at time and a half, therefore £69.75 per hour (or part thereof).

Distance fees and travel expenses


  • Group A - £31.45 – Electric Guitar (inc’ Amp); Bass Guitar (inc’ Amp); Double Bass.
  • Group B - £27.16 – Bass Sax, Tuba.
  • Group C - £21.64 – Contra Bassoon; Baritone Sax; French Horn + 1 other brass instrument; Trombone + 1 other brass instrument or bag of mutes: Two Saxes; Cello; Bass Clarinet: Pedalboards.
  • Group D – subject to individual negotiation – Drum Kit; Percussion; Harps: Keyboards: P.A.


15% of fee for each additional instrument


Minimum of 15 mins per 2 hours playing

Late fees

Payable when time of return is between midnight and 2:00 am: £28.40

Overnight stay

Payable when return would be after 2:00 am: £110.00


Payable per day to cover meals and expenses: £50.00


Guidance notes

The MU’s live rates are based on an hourly rate which a self-employed musician needs to charge in order to earn an income, relative to their training, experience and expertise. Individual negotiations can be made based on these minimum rates.

  • If you’re self-employed, you do not have a contract of employment with an employer. You’re more likely to be contracted to provide services over a certain period of time for a fee and be in business in your own right.
  • You’ll also pay your own tax and National Insurance contributions.
  • You don't have employment rights as such if you're self-employed as you are your own boss and can therefore decide how much to charge for your work and how much holiday to give yourself.
  • You do have some legal protection.
  • You must not be discriminated against and you're entitled to a safe and healthy working environment on your client's premises.
  • Self-employed women who have recently left their jobs may be entitled to Maternity Allowance.


Live rates

Member benefits for live musicians