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Day from Hell...
Old 10th June 2003
  #1
Lives for gear
 
littledog's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Day from Hell...

Not that anyone cares, but it's healthy to vent...

I knew it was going to be a tough day Sunday - two gigs with the 8-piece R&B band I perform with only one hour (and 10 miles) between. And I not only play, but usually do the sound (for smaller venues).

Only way it was possible was to hire sound for the second gig, of course. So first gig I show up and it's in a tent at a residence. It's a wedding, and the party planner doesn't want me ruining the vibe of the guests arriving for the ceremony so I have to drag everything through the woods over soaking wet ground to the back of the tent. Then discover band-stand is size of postage stamp. With about a seven foot "ceiling". Wouldn't even want to guess at the average SPL for the next four hours on the "band stand".

Managed to make it through that gig, and with help from rest of band and a mammouth effort was packed up and arrived at next gig abut 15 minutes before scheduled start. (Yeah, it does hurt to watch a trombone player wrap my cables around his elbow...)

Only to find out the rental sound never showed up. No sound man. No equipment!

So I had to haul everything back out of my van, and set up the whole band again. Yeah, we were late starting.

I'm tired...

I'm also WAY too old for this...
Old 10th June 2003
  #2
Gear Maniac
 
dbluefield's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Well, at least they sound like paying gigs.

Old 10th June 2003
  #3
Gear Addict
 
🎧 15 years
I feel for you man, I hope you at least had the pleasure of a little ass kicking at the rental place the next day. I often have nightmares the night before I'm scheduled to provide a rig to a gig. In my dreams I'm blowing motors in the truck and having all sorts of problems, to keep me from the gig. But reality is, thankfully, always OK and dispite huge snow storms and freezing rain and blown tires I always get there and the show always goes on. I remember a wedding gig where I was playing and providing the sound and the truck did break down 3 miles from the hall. I had to run to the church sneak in and find a guest with a truck and talk him out of his keys and drive back and load his truck and get to the hall and set up in order to be playing when the guests arrived. Never did get the guys name who owned the truck but I did buy him a **** load of drinks. Nothing like starting the gig sweat soaked, man what a life.
And I know what you're saying about watching folks do all sorts of bizarre stuff to gear while packing it up, I always pack up myself and decline help ( except for putting the bins back in the truck, I might be old, but I'm not stupid). take care Logan
Old 11th June 2003
  #4
Lives for gear
 
littledog's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by Logan
I feel for you man, I hope you at least had the pleasure of a little ass kicking at the rental place the next day...
Unfortunately, didn't even get that "pleasure". The band leader was the one who hired the sound, all he told me was it was "some guy in Connecticut" that he had used before. I still haven't heard what really happened...
Old 11th June 2003
  #5
Moderator emeritus
 
🎧 15 years
Red face

I sympathize; Live gigs can be wretched at worst, and wonderful at best. But then, so can sessions.

I was going to put some bass parts on a salsa project on Monday; drums and percussion were coing to be recorded at 2:00, I was going to pick up a tape and take it to my studio (we thought around 6:00) to do the overdubs. At midnight, I got the call, and got home and started recording about 1:00AM. At 7:15 AM, I finished, got cleaned up and delivered the tape back to the studio at 8:30AM. Then I went to another studio to do a 10:00 and a 2:00 sesion. I got to bed last night about 8:00PM, after having been awake and working for 37 hours.

I'm geting to old for that...
Old 11th June 2003
  #6
Lives for gear
 
Ruphus's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
and the party planner doesn't want me ruining the vibe of the guests arriving for the ceremony so I have to drag everything through the woods over soaking wet ground to the back of the tent.
I hope it at least gave him a V.I.P. feeling with staff staying out of his hollywood movie spot.


Seems like making money is much easier than learning what real style is. Wonder why I´m so slow with the first
Old 12th June 2003
  #7
Lives for gear
 
littledog's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by Ruphus
I hope it at least gave him a V.I.P. feeling with staff staying out of his hollywood movie spot.


Seems like making money is much easier than learning what real style is. Wonder why I´m so slow with the first
...in this case "he' was a she. but no matter...

I've found, interestingly enough, that there is a conflict between between business and artistry. Ever notice how the best business-person in a band is usually the worst musician? There is a an aesthetic view of the world and relationsips that artists have that often seems mutually exclusive to the kind of outlook that makes for good business practices.

Egad! I'm starting to sound like Ruphus! I've been hanging out here too long!

Ruphus, you know another interesting phenomenon I've noticed after years of experience dealing with hotel management in the United States? The management teams that treat musicians the worst are the ones brought in from Europe! Especially French, Swiss, and German (which staff the high-class Boston hotels in great numbers). They tend to have an attitude that musicians are the exact equivalent of the laundry workers, housecleaners, and waiters - and as such should have no personality and no interaction with the hotel guests whatsoever. Use the "servants entrance", etc. I truly believe that attitude has its roots in the different emphasis on class distinctions (remnants of the aristocracy) still found in some segments of European society.

An amazing example of this was when i was employed as a pianist at a five-star hotel (under European management team) in the cocktail lounge, and was reprimanded and told I was not allowed to sit or talk with my mother (who was visitng from Florida) during my breaks, because fraternization with the clientele was strictly prohibited. They didn't seem to understand the reality that, at least in the United States, many customers come to piano lounges precisely to fraternize with the piano players...

Needless to say, I quit that gig at the earliest opportunity.
Old 12th June 2003
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Ruphus's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Hi Littledog,

It´s not too long ago when musicians were regarded quite low over here. Maybe it was the heritage of middle age where musicians ( except of the few entitled to play at court ) must widely been poor travelling fellows. Always suspected to be stealing.
( How many ashtrays did you pull in the hotels? Hihihi )

While on the other hand music was regarded part of the sophisticated education, especially for the femals part. A weird mixture of image, I guess.

Of the treatment you experienced I would estimate that the European hotel stuff might be regarding the musicians as servants. "Low hierarchy". I think hierarchy still counts more here. At least when I think to very interesting parties I witnessed in NY where people from bums to millionaires would interact very naturally together - unfortunately though and besides, without the one asking the other if he could help, as far if I remember -. I think people here still devide more into pecuniary classes.

With the German, French and Swiss mentalities I think you named the most unfriendly ones in central Europe anyway. The German speaking swiss ones at top. This is at least what we agreed on when talking with different people about it.

What I noticed about audiences of artistic performance in general is that Americans are very tolerant and encouraging, even enthusiastically applauding to little mens performance on streets and parks, while German audience often just keeps silently cool. Sometimes you only hear 1 or two persons clap their hands, which probably one of them is me then. ;o)

On the other hand there is that follower mentality and as soon as an intellectual or public person gave his blessing to the artist the audience will accept it and wildly appreciate.

This way the Jazz had been brought back to life, by intellectuals who motivated the Germans to appreciate. Joe Cocker as well came back this way shortly before almost drinking himself to death in broken situation and similarly Tina Turner. They started their new carreers from here.
So this can be the good side of followers.

Their bad side though is that they bring the noise as well into the music world. Just like over the last 3 days where someone presumably wanted to proof intellectual state by cranking up some strings kakophonie. Boy was that a nonesense piece of noise until I made him clear that I wasn´t that impressed at all. It felt like someone would be sawing your brain into pieces with a bow.

I don´t know ... I think if it might seem so important to one to appear intellectual that he starts admiring clearly messed up products from painters who can´t paint or musicians that can´t compose believing their would be any well dressing metaphysics behind it ( in the way like when people want to become artists by wearing certain clothes like e.g. black coloured stuff or that typical "artist sign" of a long scarf, sometimes even in the warm season ), why not instead grab some reading and lift the thinking standard indeed instead? Pretention takes its efforts too, so, why not to go for the real thing?

I had always been wishing the pseudo scenery to be proven and fooled in a certain way and a couple of years ago it really happened. You can´t believe how much I enjoyed it.

At a big vernissage they brought internatioanlly highly reputated art critics one by one to messed pics and those guys immediately started raving and interpreting about the thoughtful contents of the artist behind it. Afterwards it was revealed to them that the pictures had been drawn by Schimpanzees. heh heh

You wouldn´t even believe how it came that mess became internationally acknowledged as art. It was organized and state wise hugly payed action just to conter the so called realizm style of the Sovjets up from early cold war. Millions have been given to people who had nothing to do with it to present as artists. Anybody. For the most part it were just personal contacts of instructed officials who then became the lucky folks.

Meanwhile this kind of quality makes the main part of the art scenery.

Sorry for punning.

Greets,

Ruphus
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