Many artists look down on a free show because it means for them that their art isn't being rewarded. So why do a free show? In many cases there are benefits to doing free shows, for example, exposure to a wider audience. The huge halftime Superbowl performances are for free, so are award show performances like the MTV Music Awards and the Grammy's. the hopes though is that you have access to a bigger audience that will then convert into fans. But what many don't know also is that you can actually be paid even when the venue says it's a free gig. The word of the day is Performance Royalties.