Apr 10, 2006

monday report

The Few played a show in Vacaville. It was at a coffee shop with a drive thru. Now since i booked this gig I kinda feel responsiblie if anything should go wrong. So when we show up and there is no stage, and the place has a drive thru my band is looking at me like "what did you make us drive all the way up to Vacaville for?" we see some teens and a few old people. this isnt looking good. but we were early so we figured when the "show" starts people will come. We see a punk rawk looking kid out front and ask him if he knew about the show. He told us he'd never heard of this place having shows but he knew the guys from the other band and was there to see them. We felt a little better. We waited in the parking lot for a few then we saw the other band arrive. they were setting up and we asked if they had a PA. Something I assumed they'd have and assured my bandmates was something we didnt need to bring. Turns out the place didnt have any house PA system and that the other band didnt have a singer... so NO PA system. see, my assurance was based on the 1000's of shows i've played in my life as a drummer and the fact that a: venues hosting shows provide a PA system to plug microphones into. and b: bands have singers. I was a little miffed that they neglected to mention this fact. i told them they werent allowed to play shows, they arent a band yet. not until they get a singer. the dude got kinda defensive and said "we dont need a singer, were instrumental" which means, they couldnt find a singer. Luckily, Jose brought his microphone. I quickly tried to turn this unfortunate circumstance around. I asked if we could plug our mic into their guitar amp if we could find a cord and a mic stand. they agreed and gave us the most retarded directions to the "only" music store in town. Me and Jose high tail it all the way out to this store that ends up being closed. as were driving back we spot a little hole in the wall music store, that IS open and WALKING DISTANCE from the coffee shop we are trying to play at. ugh! so I whip the 'SUZU in with my tires screeching like in a cop movie. theres a kid with one white eye like the old blind master in a kung fu movie and this other girl who was cute for a 16 yr old tom-boy that worked in a store that sells mostly violins and trumpets. They probably had the hottest band dork sex ever. that or the kid with the wierd eye had wet dreams about it. anyway, they were pretty useless. they had like 20 of the same half a mic stand. Or an $80 "German Made" mic stand. $80? fuck you man. so we got back to the venue... lol "venue"? we got back to the coffee shop and after contemplating and trying to justify doing an acoustic jam session Jose is ready to just go home.
I feel responsible so i'm trying to pull something out of my ass to make this show happen, then it hit me... Radio Shack! they have microphones 'n shit, yea! so i ask the kid how to get there and he tells me the most retarded way in the world...using gas stations and mexican resturants as land marks. and like the music store, he tells me this long confusing way to get to somewhere thats right next to the freeway exit we used to get here. I'm like "why dont i just go back the way i came right down this road here?" his 17 yr old brain clicks and his eyes light up "oh yea you could go that way too" no shit asshole. so I instill one last gleam of hope in Jose and we go to the Radio Shack. We walk in ignoring the wierd kid and some old lady who work there and mumble something about microphone cables and the wierd kid pokes his head out of the employee huddle and says "right wall, left side, in the corner" what do you know, microphone shit! thanks wierd dude. we get the cable and ask if they had stands and he starts with "yes, yes we do, what flavor would you like?" flavor? this isnt ice cream its a mic stand. I jokingly say "vanilla" because we want the plainest cheapest one they have. he doesnt get my joke but returns with "excellent choice" okay. he goes in the back and brings out 2 models. there was a continued awkard exchange of banter between him and us.. then we left.
Now were back at the venue the other band is starting, I unload my drums, the place is packed full of Mall Rats and some parents. not so bad. I think i evaded a possible ass lashing from my band and we get ready to put our rock faces on.
The other band finishes. they werent bad but needed a singer. got a lot of comments about that outside. anyway. they finish and in true "this is our first show!" form they leave their shit up and hang out with their friends. hey fuckers, get your shit out of here so we can set up and start before you leave with all your friends. these guys broke every rule of the stage.
1. dont invite a band from out of town that is relying on your fanbase to have an audience and make them play after you. that is just RUDE.
2. if there are bands after you, get your shit and go as soon as you can. as a general rule you have 5 minutes to get your shit off the stage. and the following band has 5 mins to set up. 10 minuite change overs keep the show flowing nicely. sometimes there's exeptions but most of the time try to keep this in mind.
3. Dont break down gear on stage. EVER. most venues i've played have a "no cases on stage" rule. So even if you resist the urge to celebrate how great of a set you just played rather than getting your gear out of the way, and you DO decide to handle your shit, DONT ever, break down your gear on stage!! no cymbals should be removed on stage, no guitar cases should ever be seen on stage. bottom line.
4. if you are facilitating the show, or inviting a band to your town, tell them EVERY pertinent detail. address, load in time, show time, set lenght, venue details, cover charge... whether or not you need to provide a PA system or not!!!
ok I'll stop here on that rant but my story isnt over.

So, we finally fanagle them to break down thier shit. I see the drummer starting to take off his cymbal so i suggest... "why dont we just move everything out at once, it will be faster" his pre-adult eyes light up again ".. yea that's a good idea huh?" sweet man you rule now move it, people are leaving. what, on more than a few occasions Jose described as "a mass exodus" was becoming appearant to me. Jose's and now Boaz's blood pressure began to rise. shit how am i gonna put out this fire? everyone is leaving, unbeknowst to the fact that there is another band setting up. I tell Jose they are just out there smoking and they will come back when the music starts again. i knew this was unlikely but i think my hope was starting to rub off on the rest of my band. we're about to set up the make-shift PA system when some guy, not from the other band walks off with the amp we were gonna use. WOOOAAH HEY MAN, we were gonna use that to sing through. he, the owner of the amp knew nothing of this. now here i'll add another one to my list of rules.
5. Own your own gear! holy shit they dont have a singer OR thier own guitar amp? how are you even a band!?
So we get the guitarist to talk the guy into letting us use it. he was al bummed because he was gonna miss the big party everyone was going too. OH AWESOME a party!!! of whom everyone that was at our show was invited, and that starts conviniently when we start playing. fuck me in the goat ass batman. Jose at this point is pissed. I've never actually seen him pissed so it was wierd. I felt really bad but at the same time we had all the ingredients to rock. we were set up PA working a handfull of people who decided to stick around. I told the guys "fuck it, lets just rock the shit out of these kids and get the fuck out of here" he agreed, but insisted that he'd play as loud as he could and not tune his guitar once. OK fine, let the rock begin.

and rock is just what we did. we threw down in true "The Few" fashion and blew the other band off the stage. impressed the shit out of some kids, loaded up and asked where we could get some good food on our way out. again, i get the grand tour de vacaville directions to a place thats right down the street. what is up with these kids? they all send us to a mexican dive called BALDO'S. good call for them, BALDO'S had the best burrito i've had in a really long time. if little more than nothing, thanks for the burritos Vacaville.


jimbizzle said...

dude... that angers me. I would have probably left. I know you were dealing with rookies, but still. I don't think G2K was ever like that when we started.

Anonymous said...

how did the singing sound through the guitar amp?