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Shitty gig


Morizzle

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Yesterday I had my first ever gig from hell... I was scheduled to play with a jazz quartet in a small gallery for a private birthday party. When we get there after a 30 minute drive, the space they cleared for the band is about 10 square meters. To make things worse, half of the space is already taken in by an ugly rosewood baby grand. So I quickly check the piano. The action is shitty, the thing is slightly out of tune, but it's still "jazz-out-of-tune" :D , so mostly because of the little real estate we got, we decide to go with the baby grand. When we're set up (the bass player practically sitting on my lap) the lady of the house shows us the "band room", where cold sausages and mineral water await us. Yummy.

So after a while we start to play, without soundcheck because we are idiots, and we play a very easy jazz standard. Somehow, the bass and tenor player completely fuck up the theme. After about one chorus I know why... the whole piano is about 3 quarter tones to deep. So even the whole band transposing the tune makes matters worse. Somehow we finish the tune (I don't know what the audience thought, it must have been terrible to listen to) and I rush to the car, get the CP33 and K10. Of course, there is no space to set it up other than where the baby grand stands, so I close that thing, put the CP33 on top of it and finish the rest of the set Wakeman-style... standing. :facepalm:

Of course, after the first set the lady that hired us for two sets asked if I could provide cocktail piano in between the sets (yes, it's not in the contract, but people want to talk during the break while they're having dinner and it would be so nice to have some background music yada yada yada) I didn't want to cause a scene, so I played two pieces.

You can probably already guess that all other circumstances just perfectly fit the beginning of the night: when we tear down, there's a very annoying drunk patron just standing in the way trying to make some stupid conversation about how he loves violins and why none of us plays it, and of course: very little pay!

I think this evening has been the most shitty gig of my life so far. Luckily, I have no time to be demoralized, I'm off to rehearsals with another band in an hour. Anyway, I've learned my lesson: test the piano with the band before you start to play!

 

 

It's not a clone, it's a Suzuki.
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Now you know better. There are lots of ways to make sure problems like those don't happen. Mostly, ask in advance.

 

"Private party? What size is the space we will be given to play?"

"Will you be needing music between the sets? Because that's extra."

etc.

 

If someone else booked the gig, bitch at them.

"I'm so crazy, I don't know this is impossible! Hoo hoo!" - Daffy Duck

 

"The good news is that once you start piano you never have to worry about getting laid again. More time to practice!" - MOI

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If that's the shittiest gig you've had so far, you are actually lucky.

 

It didn't involve flames. Or falling light trusses. Or guns. Or rain dripping on your keyboard. Or loading in and out down an ice covered stair. Or....

 

;)

Moe

---

"I keep wanting to like it's sound, but every demo seems to demonstrate that it has the earth-shaking punch and peerless sonics of the Roland Gaia. " - Tusker

http://www.hotrodmotm.com

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If that's the shittiest gig you've had so far, you are actually lucky.

 

That's exactly what I was thinking. It didn't involve someone pouring beer on your equipment, your guitar constantly falling off you and not staying in tune, your keyboard crashing to the floor with white keys flying everywhere, the grand finale in which you are supposed to be doing mind-melting feedback on guitar not working because for some reason the distortion pedal gradually gets less and less distortion until it does nothing at all, having to walk with your equipment for half a mile, your drummer dropping acid and instantly forgetting every single song you do, and on and on...

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If that's the shittiest gig you've had so far, you are actually lucky.

 

It didn't involve flames. Or falling light trusses. Or guns. Or rain dripping on your keyboard. Or loading in and out down an ice covered stair. Or....

 

;)

+1

 

Experienced all of these except the guns, thankfully.

 

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing."

- George Bernard Shaw

 

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Sorry about your experience.

 

Who booked the gig? It's their responsibility to communicate with the buyer about adequate space for the band. If the buyer mentions they have a piano on-site, it's up to the booker to make sure the piano is in playable condition. And then you put all of this into a contract.

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If that's the shittiest gig you've had so far, you are actually lucky.

 

+1.

Have had a few similar scenarios, and beyond, on private party gigs. A couple of bar gigs have gone to a different level entirely. Seeing a fight is one thing, having it become interactive (not by choice) is quite another; especially when the two guys involved end up on the stage - knocking gear around like a couple of enraged bulls. :taz:

'Someday, we'll look back on these days and laugh; likely a maniacal laugh from our padded cells, but a laugh nonetheless' - Mr. Boffo.

 

We need a barfing cat emoticon!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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If that's the shittiest gig you've had so far, you are actually lucky.

 

I agree. But I don't want to pile on - a crappy gig is a crappy gig and no fun. At least you were playing with other players you didn't hate, and you WERE playing jazz. I would have thrown on the iPod between sets as a compromise with Ms. 'play between sets even though we didn't discuss it'. And you actually DID have food, which is better than many a gig I've played.

 

But having said that, sorry you had a bad night. Doesn't sound like fun at all, especially that horrible first tune. :(

Kawai C-60 Grand Piano : Hammond A-100 : Hammond SK2 : Yamaha CP4 : Yamaha Montage 7 : Moog Sub 37

 

My latest album: Funky organ, huge horn section

https://bobbycressey.bandcamp.com/album/cali-native

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Or rain dripping on your keyboard.;)

Oooooo...I had one of those last Sunday night. Outdoor gig at a very nice 850-seat amphitheatre, killer sound system, temperature about 70 degrees at 7pm. 6:50pm...the band leader is studying his iPhone...turns to us and says, "Thunderstorm headed our way....we start playing NOW!". Sure enough, halfway through our first song, the drops begin to fall....

www.wjwcreative.com

www.linkedin.com/in/wjwilcox

 

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If that's the shittiest gig you've had so far, you are actually lucky.

 

That's exactly what I was thinking. It didn't involve someone pouring beer on your equipment, your guitar constantly falling off you and not staying in tune, your keyboard crashing to the floor with white keys flying everywhere, the grand finale in which you are supposed to be doing mind-melting feedback on guitar not working because for some reason the distortion pedal gradually gets less and less distortion until it does nothing at all, having to walk with your equipment for half a mile, your drummer dropping acid and instantly forgetting every single song you do, and on and on...

 

Oh God! It's all coming back to me now! And to think that after so many years of retirement from playing, I was thinking: "When I retire (from my non-musical career), I'll be in a band the next day--it was the best job I ever had!" OMG!

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Haven't seen a fistfight or bullets yet playing a private function in someone's home. The thought of that beyond belief these days, although I can recall a few incidents playing keggers out in the boonies back when I was younger. And bars - well that's another matter.

 

Usually the worst parts about playing in someone's home are space, and load in and out. I played an anniversary party last July where the only way to the back deck (where the hostess wanted me) was either through the house- which was all in white carpet - or around the outside of the house and up the back stairs.

 

I voluntarily took everything all the way around the house and up those stairs. I've done too many of these and know the issues.

 

Other than that they're usually easygoing gigs where I've been treated almost like another guest. They bear little resemblance to their lounge counterparts. Sets are relaxed, I'm always fed, and alcohol - well if I were still drinking, there it is in abundance.

 

Conversation is a requirement though (if you're an introvert maybe this is a liability, but I kind of like it).

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If that's the shittiest gig you've had so far, you are actually lucky.

 

I agree. But I don't want to pile on - a crappy gig is a crappy gig and no fun. At least you were playing with other players you didn't hate, and you WERE playing jazz. I would have thrown on the iPod between sets as a compromise with Ms. 'play between sets even though we didn't discuss it'. And you actually DID have food, which is better than many a gig I've played.

 

 

+ 1

Be grateful for what you've got - a Nord, a laptop and two hands
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The biggest objection I have about playing gigs where alcohol is served is that.........alcohol is served. :freak:

 

Private parties are usually a bit easier to control. Most of the time, people come as couples, so the drunken man may have had a lady with him (somewhere). If not, drawing the attention to the drunk that is in the way to the person that hired you is the best thing to do. I have little patience with people that are intoxicated. I don't take gigs that are open to the public anymore; you never know who/what is going to show up and how drunk the people are going to be. That's why I don't carry a firearm to my gigs, just a small baseball bat. :taz:

 

 

Mike T.

Yamaha Motif ES8, Alesis Ion, Prophet 5 Rev 3.2, 1979 Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 73 Piano, Arp Odyssey Md III, Roland R-70 Drum Machine, Digitech Vocalist Live Pro. Roland Boss Chorus Ensemble CE-1.

 

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Haven't ever carried my replica Excalibur sword to a gig - scared that if I did - some drunk might just lose his head.

 

:) ( I think)

Howard Grand|Hamm SK1-73|Kurz PC2|PC2X|PC3|PC3X|PC361; QSC K10's

HP DAW|Epi Les Paul & LP 5-str bass|iPad mini2

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."

Jim

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