Did a gig in the gaslamp district in San Diego last night - I don't normally do gigs in the middle of a busy downtown where there's no where to park, let alone load-in, but this was one of those special occassions. This venue is a Irish Pub and it's just long, narrow, and vertical. I loaded in from the front door, and discovered that the small band stage is actually on the same level as the bar. When the staff put the stage in, it closes off one of their entrances to get behind the bar, and it puts the band up about four feet off the ground. It connects with the bar which allows the performers to walk along the bar while people are drinking. I instinctively brought my Pearl Rhythm Traveler for its maiden voyage and we stuck a bass drum mic in front of the bass drum - it actually held it's own. In the picture where the drums are, directly behind it is another stairway that goes up to the managers' office where we would store cases and such. While we were playing, staff people would climb up on the stage to get to the stairs behind me so they can get up to the manager's office! It was totally crowded, but the crowds were fun. I had never played anywhere where everybody is just on top of each other. We're booked there a few more times next year, and it looks like a standard-sized 13/16/22 kit would fit too, but the band appreciated that I didn't take too much forward space. But I definitely need double-headed toms. Single headed concert toms just do not sound right nowadays. The bass drum was double headed and I was using my patina brass 6.5 Sensitone along with 14" New Beats and a 20" A Light Ride handling cymbal duty.
I joked that OSHA must have a field day with this place. When I'm work they tell us if we're working close the edge of an elevated area (from 4' and up), you need to be harnessed in tied off to a point on the ceiling. I thought it would funny if the entire band was wearing construction harnesses clipped to the ceiling so if you slipped off the stage, you'd just fly around the area in the harness! Maybe next time we're do that for a costume