You’ve just come together as a band and you’re ready to gig. But when you approach clubs to play they want to know where you’ve played in their market before and what kind of draw you usually bring. (Draw means how many paying fans usually come to one of your shows.)
If you’re a new band then your answer would be “we haven’t played before so we don’t really know how many paying fans will come.” And you know what will happen with that answer. They’ll tell you to come back when you have a fan base.
You’re thinking, “Yeah, but we’re such a great band your customers will love us.” The reality is clubsdon’t have customers, bands have customers. People go to a certain club to see a certain band. They don’t go to the Club X instead of Club Y because of the club; they go there because of the band that will be playing.