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Someone else moving your rig (once set up)


DaveMcM

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This past Friday night I had a duo gig for a ritzy fund raiser. I was shown where to set up and did so. Once finished and powered up, one of the event coordinators ask if we could move over and back a bit so people would have more walking room in front of us. We were already backed up against a seating area (fancy rug, 3 couches and 2 chairs). The person said no problem, she'll just move that area back so we could give more room in front of us. Okey dokey. That being done, I decided to take a stroll around the hall. When I made it back to the stage, I found my keyboard/stand had been pushed (more like shoved) forward and sideways, the legs of the stand were torqued which with a little more prodding would have made the keyboard fall off. The binder of charts the guitarist had put together had obviously fallen because many sheets were not in the binder rings. The cables from my pedals, A/C adapter and line outs were being pulled tightly. I had to unplug everything, remove the keyboard, re-adjust the stand and set everything back up. The woman who had designed the little seating area didn't like the fact that someone had changed her arrangement and took it upon herself to move her things back to their original location, without any thought for my equipment. I sort of lost it, which I am embarrassed about. She said she had never been spoken to so disrespectfully (note: I used no bad words and no name calling, only expressed how uncool it was to just push my stuff around like that) and I countered with, how about the disrespect shown for my equipment? Anyway, the whole situation made for an uncomfortable evening. I know I should have just taken a deep breath and gone about redoing my rig. Then again, she should have waited and asked me to move my equipment. Just curious how others would react to this scenario.

Wm. David McMahan

I Play, Therefore I Am

 

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i would have been indignant, astounded, etc.

 

the person sounds like a control freak . either she felt entitled to be in charge or someone put her in charge. So you and your band mates were between a rock and a hard place, where your rig was in her ' space'.

 

confronting people like this with some force is a no win situation. and its difficult to instantly recognize what makes these people tick. In hindsight, given the venue ( a classy one), tact was in order even while this person was out of bounds.

 

when I recently sold my townhouse and bought a new house, I experienced a similar situation

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Politely but firmly - I would first have informed her that the band did not move her stuff, an event coordinator made the decision. She may well have assumed that the band took it upon themselves to move her stuff and felt that her stuff had been moved, so she could restore her things.

 

Then get her name and details before informing her that if anything was damaged, the lawsuit would be forthcoming.

 

I have enough trouble with an idiot who plugs into my power strip, then unplugs both their gear and my power strip before the gig is over. It is generally known by others where I play that any attempt to move any of my equipment will result in very bad things, including paying for any damages.

 

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;)

 

The ritzy fund raiser (complete with fancy rug, 3 couches and 2 chairs) should have tipped you off that there would be people there who are prone to do this sort of thing.

 

Working in a wedding band for quite a few years, this type of buffoonery was expected. Usually the culprit was the mother of the bride.

 

It is for this reason that we musicians make the big bucks.

 

But, as you have now realized, this was your fault. Next time, put your rig on a rolling platform so the clueless old ladies can move your stuff around until they've got it just right.

 

:facepalm:

 

 

 

 

"Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent." - Victor Hugo
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Stuff like this happens. I would have done my best to handle it without losing my cool. The lecture wouldn't really help anything. She almost damaged your stuff but she didn't. If she had, that would be a different story.

 

I should add that I sympathize. And possibly would have also had a small meltdown. But it's not in anyone's best interest.

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I know I should have just taken a deep breath and gone about redoing my rig. Then again, she should have waited and asked me to move my equipment. Just curious how others would react to this scenario.

_________________________________________________________________

Two wrongs do not make a right.....if something like this happens again just go with the flow...do the gig,GET PAID, then express your feelings in a firm but civil manner to whoever screwed things up. Fortunately you had no damages. As they say in the NBA "No blood, no foul". Take the money and run.

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you should have punched her.

 

 

Tony's got it right,at least in spirit and I'm guessing he's speaking tongue in cheek. Hey Tony,very good to see you back here. Congrats on the move. Would I have lost it? Undoubtedly. Is that the right thing to do? That's open for debate but knowing myself,I can pretty much guarantee that I would have done the same as the OP. This kind of thing is a pet peeve. Sometimes you can only let so much slide. To the OP: File it away as an unfortunate experience and move on. If you never work for or with these fools again maybe that's for the best.

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I've been asked to move an already-set rig too many times. And I always wait until I've received word from the band leader, event coordinator, etc., before doing a final set for the rig (cabling, tape-down, and so forth). But, people have a way of changing their minds - especially at the the last moment. When that happens, I usually refuse their request - with a degree of diplomacy. Most folks don't want to hear about what goes into setting a rig, and how much time it will take to semi-strike and reset. So that normally does the trick, and they go away. For the last-minute, hard-core control freaks I find it a convenient time to take that ten-minutes-to-downbeat bathroom run.

 

Nobody touches my rig without prior permission. No one. I caught a couple of folks trying to move the rig once. They weren't happy after that. A relatively quiet tongue lashing is usually scarier than a raised voice. I don't suffer fools gladly; especially clueless ones :laugh:.

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I had a related incident recently. Two women watched our band carry the PA, lights, drums and all equipment into the building and put it all in front of the stage. When we had finished and were just starting to set up they came up and said you have to move all this we need that space right now. I asked why they didn't say something when we first started to set things there. All that did was make two women mad at me.
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Dave, it sounds like you know what's right. I've recently had some incidents lately (non-music related so I won't go into them here) and subsequently realized that it was my own attitude towards the situation that was making things worse for me.

 

One way some people put it is "you can't help stupid," but I won't even be that negative about it. Everyone has their thing. What's true or right for someone else isn't necessarily right or true for you, or vice versa. When I remind myself of that, and the fact that getting angry and expressing myself badly makes things worse, not better, I end up doing better and feeling better about it. I think it's better that I handle any situation where I feel okay despite what someone else does.

 

At least, I try to anyway. :)

 

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I would have probably reacted similarly to you, but as I think about it, for her it was not so much intentional disrespect as ignorance.

They don't "get" the value of the gear, or the importance of having it set up just right. The binder...well it fell accidentally and she was so in her own world of how she felt things should be that, that the binder falling was an unfortunate casualty.

 

I remember once there was an event for a Buddhist Temple I was involved in where a group of bell ringers were performing. I got some instruction from the leader on bell ringer notation and arranged some Buddhist music into what I thought was what they wanted.

 

It sounded fantastic! however I recall one of the bell ringers looking down her nose at me and stating that I "obviously had no idea how to write proper music for bells!" I literally laughed as I apologised, adding I don't actually get much call for bell ringing arrangements.

It never occurred to this woman that hers is a rather specialized discipline, and the odds of encountering many people who are bell arrangers is slim. (there is also the fact she was playing Japanese music, which is not exactly in her comfort zone).

It was a good life lesson for me, that we can get so deep into our own thing that we forget the rest of the world knows very little about it, and most of what they do know is likely faulty.

 

I think it was still out of line for her to move the equipment. She should have sought you out and asked you to move it if it had to be just so. I think despite my life lesson, I would have been pretty pissed off too.

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you really should have punched her. or knocked all her stuff over, broke some things, something more than "how dare you...".

 

its not for you, its for the next musician. her indignant surprise indicates she has not learned the lesson yet. so if you could swing by there, if its not too late ... the brotherhood counts on you.

 

attaboy, thanks in advance!

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The words "no harm, no foul" come to mind. I always bend over backwards to keep the customer happy. But that also includes keeping my gear in plain sight -- especially if there's no barrier between my gear and the unwashed public. NO ONE moves my gear unless I'm involved.

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I wasn't going to comment but...

 

Maybe you shouldn't have left your rig alone. Or out of eyesight once it was set up. Not for more than a few seconds at best.

 

Ignorant people abound - they will move your gear, unplug it and then set drinks on it if you let them.

 

 

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I played for a while at a church where the kids had no conception that our instruments were OUR property, not the church's, and would move stuff without permission, or borrow things and forget to return them (not actual THEFT, it was still in the church SOMEWHERE; I remember one keyboardist having to chase all over looking for a pedal he needed. He wasn't amused.......)

I was there as a guitarist, and didn't let anybody touch my stuff, much less LEAVE it there to be handled by dimwits, excuse me, UNEDUCATED PEOPLE LOL

The sax player bought a big box with a padlock for HIS stuff.

 

One person lent some equipment to that church, and it got damaged somehow and the pastor told them, "nicely", in essence "that's too bad.....' Me and the sax player eventually quit that band - too long a story for here, LOL.

 

Not to put a stigma on all pastors,of course: at another church, someone accidentally knocked over my guitar, breaking the headstock, and the pastor told me, "it happened on my watch, so get it fixed and send me the bill,' which he had the decency to pay.

 

I never really played in bars, though I'd go listen in one on occasion. I've heard plenty of stories, of course! (Apes in human clothing wanting to play your equipment DRUNK, etc. etc.)

 

 

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I wasn't going to comment but...

 

Maybe you shouldn't have left your rig alone. Or out of eyesight once it was set up. Not for more than a few seconds at best.

 

Ignorant people abound - they will move your gear, unplug it and then set drinks on it if you let them.

 

you should be able to set up your rig and leave to go to the can without someone else also working their mucking it all up.
The baiting I do is purely for entertainment value. Please feel free to ignore it.
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I wasn't going to comment but...

 

Maybe you shouldn't have left your rig alone. Or out of eyesight once it was set up. Not for more than a few seconds at best.

 

Ignorant people abound - they will move your gear, unplug it and then set drinks on it if you let them.

 

you should be able to set up your rig and leave to go to the can without someone else also working their mucking it all up.

 

I agree.

 

But why is it that most everyone here has a similar story?

 

The chairs were moved. The woman found that they had been moved and made the assumption that the band did it without consulting anyone (her). So, she was PO'd at the band and didn't (want to) give any thought to the harm she could have done by moving your equipment.

 

How to keep this from happening? Stay with the equipment, or have another bandmember stay with it.

 

It's unfortunate, but it doesn't surprise me. This could happen at a ritzy gala or a biker's bar. Short of standing guard at your keyboard, I don't know of any other way to keep this type of thing from happening.

 

And what if this had happened after you agreed to play for exposure ? :facepalm:

 

I dunno. I like people. But this is one more reason why I'd rather hang out with my dog. :cool:

 

 

 

 

 

"Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent." - Victor Hugo
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"We need to leave room for the disco and people walking by. We left a space for you.......... "

 

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