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..one thief would be sufficient.
Yes. I agree. If you read my previous posts on this thread you'll see I take all common sense precautions. You're right, caution is not equivalent to being overly paranoid, which was my point. For example, I definitely don't walk around armed to the teeth, ready to shoot anyone who even looks at my horn! I guess that's where my agreement with jgreiner ends; seems his 45 caliber insurance policy somewhat contradicts his point about not being paranoid. :)
 

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All this to make what $200?? I’m now questioning the value of risk management
 

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I too have some legal firepower with me where ever I go in the U.S. It isn't paranoia, it comes from experience. However, that does me (and you) no good if the theft happens behind our backs.

But what I really want to say here is that out of all of these posts, no one mentioned being prepared to give a detailed description on the police report! Do any of you have the serial numbers of your instruments written down and more importantly, handy where ever you may be?

So your horn(s) are missing and you call the police or are directed to the nearest police station with jurisdiction. What are you going to tell them? How are you going to describe the things? Serial numbers . . . SERIAL NUMBERS!!! They are critical to any hope for recovery. DAVE
 

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I too have some legal firepower with me where ever I go in the U.S. It isn't paranoia, it comes from experience.
As a Canadian who's never fired a gun, I'm genuinely curious to hear what past experience has led you to carry one in a music club, Dave. I'm asking because it's way outside of my own experience. In Canada, you just don't see civilians carrying firearms outside of gun clubs or rural areas, and anyone who did show up armed to a bar, night club, or concert hall would likely cause a panic before being arrested by a SWAT team. Not that we don't have occasional night club shootings up here, but they're usually gang-related, not sax-related.

Are American live music venues dangerous places? Should I be wary of accepting a gig at one, should the offer ever arise?
 

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Zoot: Forty+ years in law enforcement, 30 as an officer in Los Angeles and Whitefish, Montana, three as an Army MP, 12 as a supervising investigator (on staff) for the Motion Picture Association of America. Numerous threats over the years, some by folks who are still loose on the street (a long story). I've seen it all. You will never SEE me carrying but I have two with me at all times. As we continually see on the daily news, violence can come anywhere - inside one's home, church, restaurants, train stations, airports, the dry cleaners, the therapist's office, a trad-jazz festival . . . you name it.

And, it isn't even involving thieves and regular crooks - it may involve a disgruntled spouse of the guy washing dishes in the place where you are playing. It happens everywhere, including Canada. I was chief of police in Whitefish for nearly four years . . . sleepy little Whitefish. And, I played in a popular trad-jazz band around Flathead Valley at the time. You wouldn't believe the stories I could tell you about what goes on in Small Town, USA.

Two guns? Ask my adult son about that, being a deputy sheriff in L.A. County and having used the last round in his second gun to save his partner's life. Most of us go about life naively thinking it will never happen to me, but some of us know otherwise. It CAN happen to you (me).

I don't mean to be an alarmist, just pragmatic. Most folks will never see it happen. But then again, most folks don't even know what to look for. DAVE
 

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Zoot: Thanks.

I want to clarify some things that some of you may not know . . . active-duty and honorably retired peace officers (as defined) may carry a concealed firearm anywhere in the U.S. if they've met the requirements set forth in HR218, a U.S. federal law signed by President Bush (the second) several years ago, and have the approval of their retiring agency.

Private persons may carry a concealed firearm if they have a permit, usually issued by a local sheriff or police chief, but the license may be restricted to within their own state OR other states if the other states recognize the permit. Some do, some don't.

I have complied with the requirements set forth by LAPD and HR218. I choose to carry a concealed firearm. One reason is that long ago I refused to become a victim if I could resist. Another reason were the threats and the things I saw and investigated over the course of my career. I have NO intention of taking enforcement action anymore. I just want to protect myself and my loved ones.

One thing that few ever think about is once a person has a firearm in a public place, what to do with it if you can't carry it inside the venue. Many large public venues these days have metal detectors and refuse to allow anyone with a firearm, even legitimate permits and off-duty active-duty officers, from entering with the weapon.

That sounds reasonable enough until you consider what happens next? Where do I put the thing when I'm stopped at the metal detectors before I enter the venue? Leave it in my car? Was I even in my own car when we came to the venue? Where is my car? How far away is it? Can I get to it (e.g., valet parking) if I have to return to it? Is the public safer with the gun in my car, subject to vehicle-burglary? Or is the overall public safety better off if I keep control of it?

I offer that the gun (and the public) is safer in the hands of its trained owner than laying in the trunk of someone's car. So even if I wanted to leave my gun in my car before playing a gig, how is public safety enhanced by doing so? It isn't. Better with me than in my car.

Back to how to prevent the theft of your instruments. After I posted above, I checked the app on my iPhone where I had all of the info on serial-numbered property I often have with me. The app was no longer supported by IOS11!! Had I needed it, the app would not open. I've quickly made new notes on my iPhone, recording serial numbers on horns and other things I'm likely to have outside the house. DAVE
 

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A statistically more likely threat than thieves or armed assailants: inebriated a-holes who start manhandling your sax, either when it's on the stand or while you are playing it.

In my experience this tends to happen at weddings, seldom at clubs. The miscreant is invariably an adult male sporting a goofy grin. Haw, haw, look at me! I'm pretending to play a saxophone! One is tempted to kick his butt from here to North Dakota, but you never can, can you, 'coz he's probably the bride's uncle.

Children tend to cluster 'round, gazing in fascination at the horn, waiting respectfully for permission to touch it.

Women tend to ignore the horn & ask you what you do for a living.
 

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But what I really want to say here is that out of all of these posts, no one mentioned being prepared to give a detailed description on the police report! Do any of you have the serial numbers of your instruments written down and more importantly, handy where ever you may be?
This is a good, and relevant, point. Definitely a good idea to know the serial number. Another thing I did a while back was have my tech give me a valuation of the horn. That's important if you have it insured, but also a good written record of the make, model, condition, value, and serial number.

I'll leave the gun discussion to experts like Dave, but in terms of not being a victim, having spent much of my life, especially early on, in clubs, bars, and dodgy parts of town, I learned long ago that your mental state, awareness level, and how you act can go a long ways to avoiding confrontation and becoming victimized. I saw a lot of 'victims' bring it on themselves either by total lack of awareness, or more often, how they acted. That certainly doesn't excuse the perpetrator, but it's a factor. And Dave, I'm sure you know a lot more about that stuff than I.
 

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I’ve chained a bari sax to a large piece of the set at a dinner theater. Pure laziness not to take it home every night but I felt confident since they had a night watchmen and a lot more things a thief would go for.
I wouldn’t do it again since I heard some junkies stole the guts to their central air. It seems they do this for a few bucks at the scrap yard.
 

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JL: We call it "situational awareness" and you are spot-on. We all should be able to leave our cars and homes unlocked because, after all, it is against the law to steal things and no one has a right to our stuff. But of course, that is not how it works in real life.

There is the theory about "hardening the target" which has always been preached by local crime-control specialists. Whaler's chaining his bari to a large object is an example of that. While that wouldn't prevent a dedicated criminal from breaking the chain, it would surely stop an opportunist from seeing the horn, then quickly deciding to take it. That was the whole issue behind this thread.

Guns are not a deterrent. We can't just shoot someone for what is now probably a petty theft in California and a low-grade felony elsewhere (and I wont get into what constitutes petty vs. grand theft) committed behind our backs (or even in our presence) . . . even though some of us would probably want to do that when it involves our precious saxophone. Guns can't be used unless there is an immediate threat of great bodily injury. I think we all know that. DAVE
 

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Well stated, Dave. I sure agree with all of that. If I gave it enough thought, I could write a dissertation on all the times I have used 'situational awareness' to save my #@* (maybe a bit of luck too, but you sure can't rely on luck). Mostly in my younger days when I was 'out and about', hitchhiking around, going places and doing things I no longer have the inclination to do these days. But, man, you have to pay attention and keep your wits about you, as well as take precautions like 'hardening the target' (good phrase). I guess this is straying a bit off topic, but it does apply to protecting your equipment on gigs, etc.
 

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We ahd a thread a while ago, and after all the useful advice re: preventing the theft happening, we got down to dmage limitaion:

  • Make sure you know the serial number or be ready for those eyes to heaven looks from the local police who might otherwise be able to help.
  • Have the horn insured (though this may not help if you were negilgent in the first place, e.g. leaving it in an unlocked drssing room
 

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Came back to the dressing room one time after a concert set to find all our stuff trashed & flung around the room. (I suspect that one particularly annoying band member had pissed off somebody in the audience or tech crew.) Locked doors can be opened. Assume that no horn is safe unless you're blowing thru it.

And yeah, have serial numbers & photos in multiple locations. I'm gonna go do that right now.
 

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Assume that no horn is safe unless you're blowing thru it.
Even that's no guarantee, if you aren't watching; see that drunk lurching around on the dance floor, getting ready to stumble and take a dive right toward you? That could result in a visit both to your sax tech and the dentist!
 

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JL: Been there. DAVE
Yeah, I've had some close calls. Had to jump out of the way a few times. And I did watch a fellow sax player right next to me get his horn pushed into his teeth. Luckily he only suffered a cut lip and the horn was ok, but it could have turned out much worse.
 

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Discussion Starter · #58 ·
QUOTE: "But what I really want to say here is that out of all of these posts, no one mentioned being prepared to give a detailed description on the police report! Do any of you have the serial numbers of your instruments written down and more importantly, handy where ever you may be? "


What a great point! A long time ago I took pictures of my gear with close ups on SN & logos. They are on my cell phone so with me at all times.
 

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Oh, man! Is he still here? Somebody should call a cab & send him home to sleep it off.
He'll only replaced by another drunk out in the audience blowing a harmonica in the wrong key...
 
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