I knew it was gonna be a bad gig when...

1 hit wonder

Well-known Member
When someone yells "Freebird"
I heard a performer on stage correctly reply, "Be careful what you ask for." Because you might just get it.

That said, we play it. Doubtful that any other band around here does. About 2 times a month we play it as the last song.

The response can be quite interesting. Sometimes people who've been with you thru the night get up and leave, but not soon enough for them. Others try to dance until they realize the time changed and they stand there realizing they can't go the distance. Younger people who've never seen it hang around unsure if they should be into it, but they want to see it all for the experience. Others video all that they can right on top of you. Some are going to rush the stage when you're done to congratulate you.
 

alparrott

Platinum Member
Some of the old chestnuts that make me cringe:
- Some part of the deal falling through, i.e. "I know we agreed on x per band member, but all I can pay is (25% of x) per man"
- Being on a double/triple bill and being informed *at the gig* that you'll be using someone else's kit - or the other drummers are expecting to use yours
- Showing up for a gig and finding ridiculously bad infrastructure (i.e. one extension cord for the entire band, please set up on this patch of dirt in the burning sun, the provided PA is less powerful than your average karaoke speaker)
- Utterly hostile event/venue staff who can't be pleased about anything
 

CarloRock

Member
... Quando il Booker dice "il tuo set sarà DURANTE la cena.. ... poi per tutto il tempo durante il tuo set, il direttore del locale ti dice di rifiutare perché "le persone non si sentono parlare".. .. Allora perché cazzo hai prenotato una rock band durante la cena, Imbecille?
🤦🤦
 

BobC

Member
That's walking papers to me 😃.
I wish I could have walked, but we were playing a fundraiser in town, and there was no leaving. We were committed. I pulled all the rags off before we started and then put them back on when we were done. The "soundman," I suspect, was not happy.
 

Xstr8edgtnrdrmrX

Diamond Member
I used to say, "It's also your responsibility to bring people in."

Years ago, we played a bar in NJ, and that night, the only crowd was 12 losers watching sports on TV. After the first set, the barmaid told me the owner wanted to see me downstairs. I went down, and he started berating me for not bringing people on. I fired back, "And where's your crowd? All you brought in was 12 guys watching hockey. That's bullsh**. Don't give me sh** for not bringing anyone in when you didn't either."

He calmed right down, we cut a deal, packed up and went home.
Good on you Commander. Stand up to the people who try and pin bringing in the crowd on the band. It's his place, not yours. He backed down not because he knew you were right, he backed down because you challenged him like a man should. He knew he had no leg to stand on. He's probably not used to musicians attacking him. Good one.

yep. We have done the same i the past as well:
"Where are all your people?"
"Where is all of your advertisement of the show?"

after we called them out, we have had club owners threaten:" well, I am not booking you again"
to which we answered:" great, that solves our problem...."

Some of the old chestnuts that make me cringe:
- Some part of the deal falling through, i.e. "I know we agreed on x per band member, but all I can pay is (25% of x) per man"
- Being on a double/triple bill and being informed *at the gig* that you'll be using someone else's kit - or the other drummers are expecting to use yours
- Showing up for a gig and finding ridiculously bad infrastructure (i.e. one extension cord for the entire band, please set up on this patch of dirt in the burning sun, the provided PA is less powerful than your average karaoke speaker)
- Utterly hostile event/venue staff who can't be pleased about anything

and/or finding out that all off the sudden that the order of bands have changed, and you are now in a different slot
 

steadypocket

Gold Member
A week or so ago, I knew it was gonna be a bad gig whenever my country band walked into the venue, and the sound guy said he was in a metal band. So many gates. So much compression. ON EVERYTHING.

Many years ago, I knew it was gonna be a bad gig whenever the organizer who booked us said, "The size of the crowd you'll have totally depends on the amount of people you brought with you."

In the not too distant past, I knew it was gonna be a bad gig whenever I found out we were opening for a watermelon eating contest.

How about you?
You just haven’t played the right watermelon eating contest. Those things are crazy popular in these parts.
 

steadypocket

Gold Member
You know it's going to be a bad gig when the backline kit is a set of electronic drums.
To my surprise, some honky tonks in Nashville now have e-kits as house kits. They were all of the high end variety though. Guess they’re easier for the sound guys to dial-in.
 

Anon La Ply

Renegade
When the main band's road crew told our guitarist and bassist that they had to use their amps rather than use their own. Then, as we started, their sound guy walked out and left a low level hum on the PA going for our whole gig. That was no one's finest hour.
 

Tamaefx

Silver Member
You know it’s gonna be tough when, your drum kit just half setup, you give a kick to try out, and the bartender says « ouh la la ! it’s too loud, can’t you tame it down ? »
 
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SmoothOperator

Gold Member
Thinking back on it, he could have had a gun in his desk.
Reminds me of that job out of high school.

Me: "So I have this idea to organize our web page."
Boss: "See that?", pulling a drawer with a gun out of his desk.
Me: "Ummm"
Boss: "Thats a 45."
Me: "Err"
Boss: "know what I do when the sales weasels get to me?"
Me: "...."
Boss: Dry firing at the stuffed animal on his desk.

Me: "So like about the web page."
 

PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
You know it's going to be a bad gig when the backline kit is a set of electronic drums.

I played at a radio station on a backline edrum kit. The sound tech freakin' watched me carry in my entire kit before telling me I won't be needing it. I could have punched him. Then I get on the ekit and the "snare drum" pad only triggers maybe 50% of the time. During a commercial break, I unplugged it and replaced the pad with the "rack tom" pad. It was much better after that, but it still sucked.
 

classikdrummr

Active Member
I knew it when they told me the gig was at a neighborhood yard sale.
My buddies and I were only 13 or so and after being regularly asked to play softly and non offensive, we decided it was a good time to play the overture to 2112. Cops came and we got fired.
Way to go Big!
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry" - Administrator
Staff member
...when a 3 piece band was asked to set up on a 4 x 4 stairway landing.

I left.

The other two continued on as a 2 piece and at the end of the night for all their hassle...they got stiffed.

I'm glad they got stiffed. The guy that hired me was a disgusting human being in every sense
 
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