Roadies with a sense of humor

In our line of work we often deal with frustrated permanents (roadies that travel with the show) that just want to get things the fuck done so they can catch up on some sleep. They’re rude, and no fun to work with.
 
And then there’s the kind of roadie that has an unbreakable optimism, friendly, a nice guy. Ironically, they get things done much quicker since they’re such fun to work with, you enjoy your work and there’s no time wasted on finding the guy you’re supposed to stick with, a jerk.
 
To the point. I just found a bundle of papers again that I took with me during a load-out (Nandrin Festival). THey didn’t need it anymore so eh. I thought I might learn from it, maybe. I don’t know what it’s called, the first few pages are missing, but it has a description of sound and light equipment nescessary for each show. It was a festival so each band has its own chapter with a list of demands. Usually it’s all very contract-ish and dry, like in the Vaya Con Dios listing (it was all in english):
C. PRODUCTION REQUIREMENTS
 
The Promoter agrees to furnish to Artist, at the Promoter’s sole expense, the following:
The Promoter also agrees to provide Artist’s Production manager with full venue details including P.A. and lighting specifications, stage, venue and backstage plans at least four (4) weeks prior to engagement.
 
  1. Sound (SYSTEM HAS TO BE SET UP AND OPERATIONAL ON ARTIST ARRIVAL)
  • FOH speaker system:

First class, line array or stereo 4-way speaker system capable of a clean, full range response from 20 Hz to 20 hHz

And with sufficient power to maintain a level of 120 dB at mixing position without distortion.

Note: Because VAYA CON DIOS show includes music with large dynamic ranges, we would like to stress that the P.A. System be equipped with ample headroom. For the same reason, compressor/limiters on the P.A. System will not be accepted for either soundcheck or performance!

Only acceptable brands are: V-DOSC, CLAIR BROS, ADAMSON Y-18.

IF THERE IS A POSSIBILITY TO FLY THE SYSTEM, THE SYSTEM HAS TO BE FLOWN!

 

 And so on. Boring and no one understands 2 words of it. Well I do know what ‘flying something’ means, but I still don’t have a clue what he wants, exactly. So I page through the bookish, wet thing. Joe Cocker, Karma Fever, Babylon Circus, Ozark Henry. Boring, boring, although rarely mildly interesting.

And then I turn the page, and it says "IGGY AND THE STOOGES" at the top. Kickass. On top of that, the roadie who wrote this, was without a doubt high on weed. Halfway the first page it goes like this:

 

PREFERRED DESKS:

MIDAS XL4 / HERITAGE H3000 / XL3 / SOUDCRAFT SERIES 5. In that order.

NO YAMAHAS and NO BLEEDING DIGITAL or I will chop it into a hundred pieces, and each of those pieces I will chop into a hundred pieces… so that’s like, er… tenty hundred?

Anyway, then I will douse them into petrol and burn them. In accordance with local and national guidelines on the burning of bits of shit mixer, of course. SO DON’T DO IT. I’m like a big nasty man if I get upset…

We will supply all microphones and vox mic stands. That are easy to throw. And hard to break.

We will need intercom and backtalk mic, switched up unbearably loud in the drumfill. As usual.

Racks & mixers must have lamps. With bulbs in them. That work.

Please supply all microphone cables inc. 3 x 20metre/50ft cablesfor the main vocal lines.

Any questions please contact

Rik Hart! He da man! As they say,

Mobile / cell / handy (phone number here, I’m not going to put it on the net -Maarten)

Efax (same deal. -M)

or email (dito. -M)

Do it now

next page


 

MONITOR REQUIREMENTS

 

We need: one {1} monitor man who speaks good English and is not afraid of death.

{Only joking… or am I?}

Also, he needs to know a little about monitors. This may seem a little obvious, but believe me…

For example, in Santiago de Compostella, in Galicia in Northern Spain, they appear to think that if they just ignore riders like this, then supply a fat, bearded hippy with a digital monitor desk (doh!) who doesn’t know shit about eq-ing, and monitor wedges (the little speakers on the floor in front of the artists that give them feedback on how they’re sounding -Maarten) that would be better suited to wedging doors open, and a load of stage managers and PA geezers and promoter reps who shout a lot, that this is the same as actually providing what a band needs in order to do a gig with the best of their ability. And that if they deny that their gear is no good, it will suddenly, mysteriously, become good.

I’d just like to say that the next time the Stooges get booked for their festival, I’m going to turn up with some pickled eggs, a small blue vibrator with a jelly dolphin balanced on the shaft, a set of dog-eared ecyclopedias with the volume E-G missing, and a screwdriver that’s been accidentally dropped down the toilet.

And then, when they say, "That’s not the stooges",

I’m going to say "Yes it is!"

And then they’ll say "No it isn’t".

And I’m going to say, "Yes it is!!!"

See how they like it, the fuckers.

 

Anyway, where was I? Oh yes…

We do not have our own monitor man, because in the future robots will work for us and make the world a better place.

 

 

Sorry about that rant about Santiago, by the way. It’s just that battering people is sooo 80s, don’t you think?

The next page contains the information you require.

Bear with me. Not a real bear.

By the way, our guitar roadie, Chris, assures me that the panda is not of the genus "Bear", but is actually part of the "Pig" family. Could this possibly be true? And if not, why would he risk telling me, then me telling the whole world, this half-baked theory? Unbelievable.

next page


 

IGGY’S VOCAL ONLY.

Wedges must be bi-amp, powerful, very loud, uncompressed and unlimited.

Also, can we arrange to have them off the front of stage inside the barrier [there is a barrier, isn’t there?] -on flightcases, possibly? This will make me very happy, like a happy little bunny rabbit.

About Iggy’s vocal – we need lots. The best thing is, make it strong and punchy, a bit like a boxing kangaroo.

Then turn it up.

When you think you have turned it up enough, turn it up some more.

The Four Horsemen of the Apoca-vocal.

 

Mix 2 – side vocal wedges

IGGY’S VOCAL

SAXOPHONE [during the songs marked "saxophone"]

Bi-amp as above; one on stage left, one on stage right, facing towards centre stage,

and switched up so loud it feels like they are eating your ears.

Mixes 3 & 4 – sidefills left and right

Stage left and right fill 

IGGY’S VOCAL

KICK DRUM

SNARE BOTTOM

SAXOPHONE

GUITAR [if the fills are in mono, it goes in mix 6]

For the sidefills, can we have two great big enormous things please, of a type that might be venerated as gods by the inhabitants of Easter Island, capable of reaching volumes that would make Beelzebub soil his underpants, and driven by amplifiers that could provide the power for a Monster Truck Rally.

They should be as far downstage as possible, and only 12 – 14 feet [4-5 metres] from center [centre] stage.

Mix 5 – Guitar wedge. Stage left

SNARE BOTTOM. [I know it’s always bottom. I’m obsessed with bottoms. I make no apology for that.]

BASS GUITAR [just the D.I. please]

Clear and bring like the sound of jackboots on wet cobblestone.

Mix 6 – Bass guitar wedge.

SNARE BOTTOM.

IGGY’S VOCAL

Oh, and during the show, could you just catch his eye and mouth the words ‘I love you.’?

Thanks.

Mix 7 – Drumfill.

KICK DRUM

SNARE BOTTOM

We would like to use the wedges for the drums, please, put them on a box on his left side, with the horns pointing roughly straight down the drummer’s ear canal; and when I say wedges, of course, what I mean is big, powerful buggers; dormant volcanoes, ever waiting to erupt into streams of audio lava.

Mix 8 – Saxophone wedge

ERRRR… SAXOPHONE

 

Here are several quick ways to find out if the wedges you are using are not really very good:

  1. They were removed from the parcel shelf of a 1974 Ford Cortina.
  2. When you look underneath, it says ©The Disney Corporation – collect all 5 from BURGER KING
  3. They can be lifted above head height – by your wife.
  4. Er…
  5. That’s it!

 

 

 

 

BEFORE WE HAVE A LOOK AT THE STAGE, CAN I JUST SAY THAT WE LIKE TO KEEP IT AS CLEAR AS POSSIBLE, ESPECIALLY AT THE FRONT? MY INSURANCE DOESN’T COVER ME FOR ALLOWING ROCKSTARS TO FALL OFF THE FRONT OF THE STAGE…

THIS MEANS NO LIGHTING OR MONITOR CABLES, A.C. POWER BOXES, TIN TOY TUGBOATS, TELEVISION EVANGELISTS, TELEVISION CAMERAMEN , SUBSTANCES RELATED TO THE MANUFACTURE OF CREOSOTE, PLASTIC SEAHORSES, BAILIWICKS, CREPESCULES, OR KOOKS.

THIS WAY IGGY CAN RUN AROUND IN HIS CUSTOMARY MANNER, LIKE A CRAZED RUNNING-AROUND-TYPE-THING, AND WE CAN ALL RELAX IN A HAZE OF SELF-SATISFIED PANIC. JOLLY GOOD! THANKS.

 

(And then the map of how the stage should be organised. -M)

 

The cool thing about this, is that I understand most of it! I didn’t understand 3 words of what the others wrote, but I can follow here. It’s both amusing and efficient, like they all should be.

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