Sax on the Web Forum banner

1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Distinguished SOTW Researcher
Joined
·
2,848 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
So we're standing onstage ready to start the first set. There was an opening act who brought a lot of friends, so the place is pretty full for early in the evening. Unfortunately that meant that we set up an hour early, and didn't have a chance for a last minute sound check since some of the band showed up during the opening act's set.

We're about to start, but.......the bass player can't get a sound. Switch cords, nothing, change batteries (active electronics in the bass)...nothing. The drummer hands him his keys and says "there's a working amp at my house, go get it." Wait! Try another cord, nothing. Try another battery...ah ha! The first replacement was a dud. All this time we're standing onstage, the keyboard player is trying to tell jokes, and I'm mortified.

One, two....wait, no guitar sound. No worries, he has a spare guitar on a stand. Switch guitars....nothing. He looks at his rack of pedals. How many batteries are in there? Plug the guitar into the now certified bass amp....it works! So after jiggling and who knows what, the guitar setup works, and we begin the set about 15 minutes later.

All I can say is I've never had reed problems bring down a band like that. Maybe we need a disaster recovery plan....start as a duet. Do you know the changes to All The Things You Are?

Discuss......
 

·
SOTW Columnist, Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
23,006 Posts
This kind of thing drives me crazy! A couple of years ago the band I was in used a large, complicated PA that the drummer owned. He wouldn't let anyone else hook it up and the rest of us would have needed to spend several hours learning how. Problem was, he really didn't know it well enough himself. If he got one of the dozens of wires crossed or in the wrong place, nothing would work. He'd get to the gig almost 2 hours early, spend time messing with that sound system, spend more time setting his drum kit up, then 5 minutes before the gig, we'd turn on the sound system and guess what? Nothing. So he'd crawl back there with a flashlight cursing and rewiring, while the rest of us stood around, also cursing. It was a nightmare. On top of all that, this system was way bigger than what we needed for the clubs we were playing in.

Finally I went out and bought a much smaller, simpler system that took less than 15 minutes to set up. It worked every time. Simpler is better. And if not real simple, everyone needs to know their own equipment and have backups.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
680 Posts
Don't ya just love it when you get to an outdoor gig and the people who booked you have generously provided a single 15 amp circuit to run the entire show? PA, stage gear , lights etc. ....we'd be better off with a hamster in a wheel.....
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2009
Joined
·
3,204 Posts
We're trying to convince our guitar player to have his gear checked and tuned BEFORE we get on stage. Works every so often... We always do a soundcheck before anyway,so at that moment we know already everything works.

And for the regular broken-string problem (with the retuning in the middle of a set, try to fill that up...), they invented the backup guitar :D

When something happens that needs more time, normally we cue the bass player and the drums, they play a steady rif (2 chords max) and one of the others goes loose on that.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
3,875 Posts
Jolle said:
We're trying to convince our guitar player to have his gear checked and tuned BEFORE we get on stage. Works every so often... We always do a soundcheck before anyway,so at that moment we know already everything works.

And for the regular broken-string problem (with the retuning in the middle of a set, try to fill that up...), they invented the backup guitar :D

When something happens that needs more time, normally we cue the bass player and the drums, they play a steady rif (2 chords max) and one of the others goes loose on that.
The bands I've played in with guitar players and they've always had a backup or 6. Still, we have a song in reserve that we can play w/o guitar to give him time to replace the string and tune.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
1,364 Posts
In these events, make sure you're guitar player has an acoustic, the drummer something portable to bang on and the bassist can work unplugged (a squeezebox for the keyboard player's useful too). climb down into the audience and do the gig unplugged right in the middle of the crowd- a good musical excercise and works well as a piece of 'theatre' too..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
112 Posts
One of my former bands was playing a Battle of the Bands show at my alma mater. I think there were five bands and every band got three or four songs (winning band plays a full set at the end). One of our klutzier friends was standing next to the outlet with the extension cord for the P.A. and managed to pull it out of the wall. We didn't really know what was going on until the middle of our third song. Needless to say, we didn't win. Ah, the joys of live sound.
[Our friend's last name is Hondle. He was so notorious for being a klutz that his name became a verb (as in "don't hondle it up")].
 

·
SOTW Columnist, Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
23,006 Posts
Jolle said:
We're trying to convince our guitar player to have his gear checked and tuned BEFORE we get on stage. .
Oh man, don't you just love it when you take the stage after a break, watch the guitar player climb on stage last, then when you get ready to count in the tune, the guitar player bends down to his tuner and starts tuning up! There was a 15 to 20 minute break when he could have done that........
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Top