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#2967728 - 01/08/19 11:08 AM OT: Just before the gig I . . .
Adan Offline
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Registered: 01/14/10
Posts: 2698
Loc: San Francisco
So I don't usually engage in this sort of tom foolery, but today, inspired by I'mMissRichardTee's thread, I couldn't resist.

It could be kind of interesting to talk about what we do NON-MUSICALLY to prepare ourselves for a gig.

Note there are forum guidelines about inappropriate content, so keep that in mind before you reveal your darkest secrets.

Myself, I like to work out. I like to go into a gig feeling like my skin tone is glowing and my muscles are bristling. I started this practice after reading The Dirt Confessions by members of Motley Crue. Turns out, the boys had a healthy streak running through all the unhinged debauchery. According to the book, they would pump iron just before going on stage to, among other things "work the toxins out." Presumably to make room for more toxins.

I don't pump iron before a gig nor do I ask What Would the Crue Do? But I do like to go for a run 2 or 3 hours before playing so that I'm feeling some endorphin high and just generally feeling like my best self.

Oh yeah, and I like to shave just before a gig.


Edited by Adan (01/08/19 12:58 PM)
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#2967731 - 01/08/19 11:13 AM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: Adan]
Stokely Offline
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Registered: 12/15/12
Posts: 2088
Loc: Florida
Check the set list to make sure nothing was added that I don't know, and that my wife/mom know they are supposed to take care of the kids.

Such are the travails of the weekend warrior who only plays part-time in his band!

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#2967732 - 01/08/19 11:16 AM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: Stokely]
AnotherScott Online   content
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Registered: 10/19/09
Posts: 13143
...wonder why I keep doing this.
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#2967739 - 01/08/19 11:54 AM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: AnotherScott]
richforman Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 02/05/10
Posts: 1187
Loc: Long Island, NY
Hah! My regimen of pre-gig rituals has decreased over the decades. I might try to run through any big solos or recently learned parts at home some time earlier in the day, maybe an afternoon nap if it's a long or late gig, a light dinner, and on the way, a cup of coffee and a 5-Hour Energy, that's about it!
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#2967741 - 01/08/19 12:04 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: richforman]
ABECK Offline
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Registered: 01/22/01
Posts: 2743
Loc: Framingham,MA,UNITED STATES
Make sure I have water and snacks in the car for the ride home.

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#2967745 - 01/08/19 12:19 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: ABECK]
Josh Paxton Offline
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Registered: 06/16/10
Posts: 2089
I recall hearing an interview with Penn Jillette where he was asked if he had any rituals to prepare for a performance. He laughed and said, "The same way JFK prepared for a speech: coffee and a blowjob."

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#2967746 - 01/08/19 12:19 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: ABECK]
cedar Offline
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Registered: 10/04/14
Posts: 1102
Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: ABECK
Make sure I have water and snacks in the car for the ride home.


Me too!

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#2967749 - 01/08/19 12:30 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: cedar]
George88 Offline
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Registered: 04/13/12
Posts: 788
Loc: Nashville, TN
cancel the gig.

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#2967751 - 01/08/19 12:46 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: George88]
samuelblupowitz Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/09/17
Posts: 154
Loc: Ithaca, NY
Originally Posted By: AnotherScott
...wonder why I keep doing this.
Originally Posted By: George88
cancel the gig.

laugh I'm glad I don't need to feel too guilty that I feel this way every now and then.
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#2967755 - 01/08/19 01:05 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: samuelblupowitz]
George88 Offline
Gold Member

Registered: 04/13/12
Posts: 788
Loc: Nashville, TN
Originally Posted By: samuelblupowitz
Originally Posted By: AnotherScott
...wonder why I keep doing this.
Originally Posted By: George88
cancel the gig.

laugh I'm glad I don't need to feel too guilty that I feel this way every now and then.


Circle of trust, Sam.

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#2967757 - 01/08/19 01:14 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: AnotherScott]
FJR Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 07/07/09
Posts: 495
Loc: SF Bay
Originally Posted By: AnotherScott
...wonder why I keep doing this.


Definitely the same, if the gig is a (multi-band) festival!!... smile

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#2967758 - 01/08/19 01:21 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: FJR]
Tom Williams Offline
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Registered: 01/04/14
Posts: 1058
Loc: West Virginia
...gripe about not getting enough help setting up all my stuff.

...eat very very lightly.

...negotiate with the house sound man to send me a personal monitor mix.

...nap about 15 minutes if I can
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#2967760 - 01/08/19 01:30 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: Tom Williams]
jeffinpghpa Offline
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Registered: 05/22/07
Posts: 582
Loc: Charlotte, NC
Go for a #2 while I listen to material from the setlist on my headphones.
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#2967770 - 01/08/19 03:02 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: jeffinpghpa]
CowboyNQ Offline
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Registered: 06/14/15
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Loc: Adelaide, Australia
...smash down a beer and a schnitzel.

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#2967771 - 01/08/19 03:04 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: CowboyNQ]
CEB Offline
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Registered: 06/03/09
Posts: 13164
Eat, dress, ibuprofen, 5 hour energy, play computer chess.
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#2967772 - 01/08/19 03:11 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: CEB]
EricBarker Offline
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Registered: 07/25/18
Posts: 269
I don't always do this, but when I can I like to setup earlier in the day. Then I bike to the gig. Most of the time it's only about a mile away, but one of our venues is about 5 miles each way. it's good exercise, I come in with the blood pumping. Also, if I have a bit too much and am over the legal limit by the time I leave, I don't have to worry about getting pulled over.

Unfortunately, it takes a lot of extra time, I have to make a trip earlier that day to setup and another the next day to pick up stuff. I always pack everything up so it's just a run-in-and-grab operation, but it's still extra work. I don't like that part of it, especially since I often bike as a way of avoiding driving!
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#2967775 - 01/08/19 03:23 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: CowboyNQ]
davedoerfler Offline
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Originally Posted By: CowboyNQ
...smash down a beer and a schnitzel.


my man. thu
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#2967778 - 01/08/19 03:30 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: EricBarker]
David Emm Offline
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Registered: 09/14/12
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Loc: Solder Huffer's Gulch
...make a point of peeing like a racehorse, because use of a 'trucker's buddy' onstage, even behind a scrim, is contraindicated. Worse yet, if you sneeze mid-stream and hit the power strip, your part of the show is over, perhaps permanently. How many amps was that, Smoky? HeadPop grin

That was awful. You people are corrupting me. I wish I had the character to stop this nonsense, but once you own several thousand in music gear, there is no escape. You are One Of Us. keys
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#2967800 - 01/08/19 05:39 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: David Emm]
cphollis Offline
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Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 2628
Loc: Massachussets, Florida
Umm, after all the physical things (food, sleep, etc.) I do a short visualization exercise.

I learned to do this maybe twenty years ago when I started doing the keynote circuit. Imagine yourself onstage. You're calm, you're relaxed. You engage, and it's working.

You say interesting things, the audience responds. You take that emotion and feed it back to them.

And you get a huge ovation once it's done. They invite you back. That's how it works for me.

OK, fast forward to gigging.

The setup will be effortless. Setup and sound check will go great. We'll be a bit rough for the first few songs, but then we'll settle in. The band will be calm, and play well.

Me? I'm going to sound great. I'm not going to screw up too much. My comping will be amazing all around. My solos will be artistic. Any performance issues with the band will be no big deal, and we'll deliver on the mission.

Here's the weird thing? More often than not, that's how it works out.

Our ability to visualize outcomes is a huge advantage.
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#2967827 - 01/08/19 07:37 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: cphollis]
Moonglow Offline
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Registered: 03/15/03
Posts: 4713
Loc: Northwest Indiana
Here are the highlights:

At home: Rest well, eat light, exercise. Review parts of songs in the set list I find challenging.

Driving to gig: Silence.

At the gig: Hanon exercises. More review of parts I find challenging. Red bull.

Minute or two before down-beat: Listen to the ambience of the crowd to try to ďtune inĒ to the crowd/room. 2:1 breathing.
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#2967831 - 01/08/19 07:55 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: Moonglow]
waygetter Offline
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Registered: 03/11/07
Posts: 788
Loc: San Francisco, CA
have the crew scan the audience for.... interesting and pleasant folks to have conversations with after the show.
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#2967856 - 01/08/19 10:57 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: waygetter]
ksoper Online   content
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Registered: 10/17/00
Posts: 3293
Loc: Murfreesboro,TN,UNITED STATES
The last thing I did before playing a gig was wash my hands. The keys were cleaned at sound check. One night as I walked onto the stage a local crew guy put his hand out to shake mine and not wanting to be a dick, I shook it. A tech saw it happen and said to me later, "That drove you crazy, didn't it?"

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#2967857 - 01/08/19 11:28 PM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: ksoper]
TommyS Offline
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Registered: 02/13/13
Posts: 610
Loc: SoCal
I call my wife and apologize profusely ; and assure her I will start looking for a real job tomorrow........

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#2967871 - 01/09/19 03:07 AM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: Josh Paxton]
I-missRichardTee Offline
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Registered: 09/04/11
Posts: 7258
Loc: S. Ca. USA
Originally Posted By: Josh Paxton
I recall hearing an interview with Penn Jillette where he was asked if he had any rituals to prepare for a performance. He laughed and said, "The same way JFK prepared for a speech: coffee and a blowjob."


Na na na na ( sounds like na but is actually NO four times like a triplet and an extra note) you heard the story incorrectly
it was Bill Clintons preparations... rotflmao

Being a goofy guy aside
It is what I do AFTER the set, that is interesting. My mind is flying high, ( NOT drugs or booze, NEVER those ) and talking to appreciative audience members, is difficult, because I am in another state of mind... I am not at all in a social space, but in a state I have no words for.... a wordless state.


Edited by I-missRichardTee (01/09/19 03:17 AM)
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#2967873 - 01/09/19 03:29 AM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: cphollis]
I-missRichardTee Offline
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Registered: 09/04/11
Posts: 7258
Loc: S. Ca. USA
Originally Posted By: cphollis
Umm, after all the physical things (food, sleep, etc.) I do a short visualization exercise.

I learned to do this maybe twenty years ago when I started doing the keynote circuit. Imagine yourself onstage. You're calm, you're relaxed. You engage, and it's working.

You say interesting things, the audience responds. You take that emotion and feed it back to them.

And you get a huge ovation once it's done. They invite you back. That's how it works for me.

OK, fast forward to gigging.

The setup will be effortless. Setup and sound check will go great. We'll be a bit rough for the first few songs, but then we'll settle in. The band will be calm, and play well.

Me? I'm going to sound great. I'm not going to screw up too much. My comping will be amazing all around. My solos will be artistic. Any performance issues with the band will be no big deal, and we'll deliver on the mission.

Here's the weird thing? More often than not, that's how it works out.

Our ability to visualize outcomes is a huge advantage.


Only thing about this cool practice, is for me I do not wish to dictate the outcome. I mean, I do, my ego does; but the wiser part of me knows music is a gift to us all, including me as a soloist. The less thinking, visualizing, planning , the less me, aka the less ego, the better. it is a Piscean idea... hearing and reproducing the music you hear in your being. The music is out there somewhere just like an inventor .. the ideas are out there, we merely tune into that world. I do not want to take credit for music that may come through... I mean, ego DOES, but not when playing it.

Mentioned somewhere recently... Sonny Rollins said thinking messes up the music.


Edited by I-missRichardTee (01/09/19 03:31 AM)
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#2967874 - 01/09/19 03:42 AM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: I-missRichardTee]
JerryA Offline
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Registered: 08/02/00
Posts: 7252
Loc: New England
... take the gum out of my mouth.
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#2967878 - 01/09/19 04:15 AM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: JerryA]
Al Quinn Offline
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Registered: 08/13/14
Posts: 1246
Loc: Center Moriches, NY
Warm up
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#2967884 - 01/09/19 04:47 AM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: waygetter]
Josh Paxton Offline
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Registered: 06/16/10
Posts: 2089
Originally Posted By: waygetter
have the crew scan the audience for.... interesting and pleasant folks to have conversations with after the show.


I do kinda the opposite of that: I personally scan the audience for which people I most want to avoid, and which are the most likely to make the gig difficult.

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#2967897 - 01/09/19 06:02 AM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: Josh Paxton]
stoken6 Offline
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Registered: 05/12/12
Posts: 2074
Panic about whether I've packed everything.

Cheers, Mike.
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#2967909 - 01/09/19 07:13 AM Re: OT: Just before the gig I . . . [Re: I-missRichardTee]
Outkaster Offline
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Registered: 02/25/06
Posts: 6362
Loc: Rochester, NY

I donít have the best bladder and I am always concerned with having to piss onstage. Sometimes itís the anxiety that day before the show that triggers it. Especially if they are long sets so I watch what I drink. On hot out door days itís not as much as of a worry as you can sweat it out. I try to work out before the gig but most of the time I do it the day before. Usually because I run the band I am doing last minute errands like social media posts, checking on merchandise and making sure the girl singer get there. That in itself is like dealing with two other girlfriends. facepalm facepalm
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