I wanted to share with all of you my awesome experince with Steve on this past Saturday. Steve and I have been talking for a couple months now about drums. I can not seem to find an electrontic pad that holds up to my abuse! So I emailed Steve for advise. Over that time we have had tons of "chats" about gear. Steve has given me a lot of great advise from everything from pedals to triggers. Steve knows his stuff...
So, this Sat I got the change to be a part of the Motley Crue Road Crew. Thanks to an invite from Steve. Needless to say, it was so awesome to see the production come together, and getting a chance to put the drum kit to together was, without a doubt, the best part. I figured you guys might dig the breakdown of my day....
12:00 PM--- Meet with Steve and get my Working Pass
I called Steve on his cell and I met him at the bus parking area. We had some breakfest sandwiches and talked about our upcoming day. I also got to meet some of the other techs. The bus was rad!!! Big TV, cool sound system, the works!
12:30 PM--- Set up the Jam Room
This is a special mobile studio that the band uses to work out new songs. My job was to put up Tommy's Kit. The kit was made up of Hart pads and cymbals, PDP rack and hardware, a DW 5000 Pedal, and a Roland TD20 brain. I think this was my "test". If I could hook this thing up with no issues, then Steve would trust me with the BIG KIT. We got it all set up in about 20 mins... then we set up the Pro-Tools, amps, and mics for the other band members....
1:30 PM--- Set up the Stage Kit
We then moved to the stage. All of the stage was put together including the light rigs and drum riser. So we pushed the 6 cases that hold the drums up the ramp, and got to work. The one thing that I was super impressed with was the PDP rack. That is top quality stuff. I mean super easy to work with and very strong. I think it only took us maybe 5 mins to get the rack up and locked down. Steve has everything marked as to where it goes on the rack so it was quick movin'. The drum riser has mounts attached to the floor, so the rack never moves and is in the same place night after night. After the rack goes up then come the drums. WOW.... I need to get a set of DW drums... they were sweet!!! The fuzzy coating on the drums is just that. Like a jacket, it is wrapped around the drums and stiched together. Its not glued or stuck to the shells at all (BTW- the shells are white!). It just wraps around them and is cut out for the lugs. Pretty cool recovering idea and did not effect the sound of the drums at all. Last we added the cymbals. As a Zildjian players I was jazzed to see the new Plats up close. They look and sound great but man that pryo dust gets all over em.... so here are the pics of the kit....
Then the sound guys came in and put on the mics.
Since Tommy uses both mics and Triggers, we had to wire up the triggers. Steve has laid out the trigger system before but, here are some pics of the racks... AKA DRUM WORLD!!!
And my BOY, Steve booting up the MAC!!
3:00 PM--- Line Check!!!
After everything was in place and set, they ran test on the sound board. I just sat at the drums and watched everything come together, this rink was slowly becoming a Motley Crue Circus! Steve was super cool and introduced me to all of the stage guys....
Kahuna-- is the stage manager.. at first I think he was weary about having a "fan" working with the crew. But after I pushed a huge load of road cases up the ramp, he seemed ok with me. This guy has a tough job. So much goes into setting up, and his job is to keep everyone in-line and on-time.
Darren-- the Bass Tech... I felt bad bad for him cause the keyboards wouldn't work!! But they got it....
Pryo-- the name speaks for it self. This guy can blow stuff UP!! Very cool team of guys working with him. I felt bad b/c the fire marshall was hassling him a bit. When Steve reads this, please let Pryo know I'm sorry about using his bathroom!!! LOL
I met so many people and all of them were really cool to me!
4:30 PM--- My Alone Time
Steve and the boys headed off to eat, shower, and take care of personal stuff, so I was allowed to leave and come back for the show, or I could just chill out and hang... Of course, I choose to stay... how many chances would I get to sit at Tommy Lee's Drums and look out into the sea of empty seats... So for a couple of hours I just sat with a pair of drumsticks rapping on the sidefills, and grinning like a butcher's dog! It was cool that Steve and the guys trusted me. I think they felt bad that we had run out of stuff to do, but I was in heaven on the kit... I must have cleaned those Plats 50 times, took the ripples out the front bass drum heads, put wraps on the drumsticks, and watched the stage performers pratice their stuff. Management would bring VIPS up on the stage to see it, the light guys were fixing a broken VARI-LITE, and the sound guys were working on a blown sound board... that's when I got my change to ROCK....
They sent a dude up from the sound crew to re-line check the drums. Needless to say, this dude was not a drummer and he couldn't hit the drums hard enough to open the gates and set off the tiggers, so they asked me to play for a bit............. HELL YEA!!!!!!!
That kit is a monster!!! The DW9000 pedals are sooooo smooth... the snare is huge... the toms are tuned perfectly.... it was a religious experince.... I also learned that Steve don't like when people play when he is not there (sorry bro). But he was cool when I told him that the sound guys MADE me do it!!!! In fact, he seemed happy that I got a chance to whirl around a bit.
8:00 PM--- ShowTime!!!
Once the show started, I headed out to sit with the Lighting Guys at the Front of House. Too much was going on backstage, and I would have been in the way. I think Steve though I was bummed out b/c I couldn't stay in DRUM WORLD during the show. Not at all.... with all the pryos and wires back there... I was much safer out front! The show rocked... the kit sounded great, the stunt kits were a big hit, and the fans got every pennys worth from the band! Sitting and watching the show, after seeing it all come together was really cool.... I have a whole new respect for the people that make rock concerts happen.... this crew knows what they are doing!
10:30 PM--- Tear Down
Right after the show I was told to report back to the drum kit. Up came the cases and down came the drums. Within mins, the kit was taken down and stowed away. Once I closed a case and gave the ok, the "hard hat" dudes would take it to the truck... Steve stood on the riser and took stuff off and I put it in the cases. He handed me the cowbell, which had taken a beating durning the show and said "Dude, thats for you". My little peice of that monster kit...
We then moved on to the Jam Room and torn everything down and put it in the cases. Here comes the "Hard Hat" dudes... and off go the cases... it was like the migration of the whales!!! A sea of black cases.... moving into the trucks... 8 trucks worth!!!
11:30 PM--- ALL DONE
We were finshed. I had a cowbell, a pair of drumsticks, and a crash course on the life of Steve. It was awesome! At 11:30 I realized I never got to meet Tommy and, strangely enough, I didnt really care. Sure, it would have been cool to meet him, but hell, I was too busy working! I didnt realize how much of a "gear head" I was until I got to play with all of the top on the line stuff, I was amazed at the quailty. And Tommy crushes his drums... I mean CRUSHES....
So me and Steve said goodbye. There is no real way to thank him for the experince he gave me...unless free labor counts!!! This was the coolest musical experince I have ever had. Sure playing in a band is great, but there is so much more than that for me... I love playing drums, with a band is great, but I still love playing drums... and I got to play TOMMY'S LEE DRUMS!!!!!!!!!!
Steve.... your are my BOY!!!! You hooked me up!!!! I owe ya big...
So, me and Steve said goodbye.... I found Kahuna and said thanks.... and Pryo too... I hope that I will get to be a part of something like this again!!! I told Steve when I left, that if he ever needs tech.... I'm his guy!!!
Here is a pic of my loot............. as you can see the sticks are well used!!!!
I hope you enjoyed reading my "story"... If you get a change to see Motley live.... JUMP ON IT!!! We can debate all day about how good drummers are... but you'd be a fool to miss Tommy's show..... and trust me... Steve makes it all sound RAD!!!
I do have one pic of me sitting at the kit.... but I forget to upload load it to my web server... I will post it later!
Steve---- Thanks again Bro!!!! Enjoy the Combos!