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Dave's Etiquette #2461

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Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby Dave B » Tue Aug 28, 2018 9:05 am

Morning all. Today I want to talk about an issue that I suspect we've all come across and how we can deal with it. The scenario is as follows :

You are due to play an outdoor gig in the summer where multiple bands are on the bill. There is some shared gear (PA, mics, monitors, basic drumkit) and an ok space for the band (an actual stage - even off the ground - possibly in a marquee). The drinks are clinking, the bar-b-q sizzling, people are happy and when you get there (with plenty of time to spare), the next band are just getting ready to kick off. Nice.

Band finishes. Professional courtesy prevents me from commenting on their performance, but they seem to have had a good time. Your gear is already quietly stowed by the side of the stage in readiness for a timely switchover - people often forget to allow time for that. Most of the band move their stuff off the stage and it's almost clear. Even the drummer is out of the way.

Except for the one .... person - in this case a guitarist - who insists on slowly chatting, coiling an odd cable, randomly moving some strange bit of kit about 6 inches to 'sort things out', mill about a bit more, effectively block half the stage and generally kick back and relax - he's had a hard time playing after all.

All the time, you are patiently waiting. Then you stack your stuff closer to the stage. Then you move on to the stage and offer to help. "No thanks - I'm ok". Is this guitar stand yours or the stages? (repeat a couple of times as he's in his own world) It's his it seems. So you carefully move it closer to him - clearing space as you do so - and he just carries on regardless. Coils another cable. Moves a guitar case to the left a bit. Ambles about for a while. Doesn't notice that half the next band are already set up and he's holding up the other half. Ambles about a bit more. Then picks something up and wanders vaguely to the front of the stage leaving a gap you can get gear through. So you pounce.

Now, under current UK law, it's illegal to punish this kind of bad behaviour by death. It's a shame as it's a neat system that ensures a) no repeat offences and b) less noise pollution.

Likewise, if you get angry and start shouting, you come across as a Bad Person. Unfairly in my view.

I mentioned this to a couple of other musicians, both of whom had had similar experience and both were distraught to find out that summary execution is not an option. Seems it's a fairly command and aggravating offence.

So my solution is :

a) never be that guy
b) if you find yourself being that guy, apologise instantly as you get yourself and your gear off the smegging stage
c) we bring back the village stocks / rotten fruit (*) punishment for anyone caught repeat offending

(*) or soggy quinoa for those in Shoreditch / Notting Hill

It's the only way... :bouncy:
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby Bob Bickerton » Tue Aug 28, 2018 9:36 am

So where was the stage manager in all of this?

I find single syllable words said with rhythmic intent works well..... go.....now... leave.... go.... go.... now....

Amputation is surely a kinder resolve than death and most musicians would be anxious to not lose limbs and fingers..........

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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby Phil Ward » Tue Aug 28, 2018 10:18 am

Dave B wrote:
Except for the one .... person - in this case a guitarist - who insists on slowly chatting, coiling an odd cable, randomly moving some strange bit of kit about 6 inches to 'sort things out', mill about a bit more, effectively block half the stage and generally kick back and relax - he's had a hard time playing after all.


Can I just point out that it's not always a guitarist.....




Oh no, hang on, my bad, it IS always a guitarist :-)

P
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby Wonks » Tue Aug 28, 2018 10:43 am

As Bob said, where was the stage manager in all this?

I would suggest that the taking of certain substances may have had an influence on the chap's behaviour.
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby Humble Bee » Tue Aug 28, 2018 11:28 am

I've seen this many times and just ask the guy/band (nicelyish) to hurry up and get their gear off the stage. It has worked out well.
Sometimes takes some more powerful communication tho... :x
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby desmond » Tue Aug 28, 2018 12:03 pm

'Hi! Great set, enjoyed it immensely! We're on next, and we're setting up, so this space needs to be cleared now. There's plenty of room to sort out your gear off-stage."

And if necessary:

"We can get the stage manager, or we can start removing it ourselves, if you're having difficulty if you prefer..."
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby Wonks » Tue Aug 28, 2018 12:12 pm

"if you don't hurry up, we'll play you a song our bass player wrote".
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby garrettendi » Tue Aug 28, 2018 12:26 pm

Wonks wrote:"if you don't hurry up, we'll play you a song our bass player wrote".

Cruel And Unusual Punishment
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby Dave B » Tue Aug 28, 2018 12:34 pm

I'm still leaning towards the stocks. I do think we've lost something by losing the village stocks. It seems that that happened about the same time as we stopped bothering having a village idiot and just did the job en masse ourselves....
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby Bob Bickerton » Tue Aug 28, 2018 12:47 pm

Come to think of it, I’m reminded of an incident some years ago when a brass band started to set up on stage when we were STILL playing...... my good wife (who is not known for her diplomatic skills) had words with the said brass band member and a tussle ensued. It just so happens that the local motorbike gang were in the audience and didn’t like the way the band member was treating my wife, so they started to roll up sleeves and it looked like it was all on for a moment. It would have been interesting to see who would prevail between the bikies and the brassies, but we made a strategic retreat before things got out of hand.

Sort of the opposite to the OP’s predicament.......

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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby Thunderbass1 » Tue Aug 28, 2018 1:38 pm

Oh yes, MD's of amateur ensembles (particularly choirs)...
I remember engineering a live studio set, being broadcast nationally with household names, when a fellow walked in (straight past a red TX light over the closed door) and started laying out chairs. When challenged by the presenter he replied huffily that his booking (a BBC club freebie) started straight after ours and he needed to get ahead! :round1:
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby CS70 » Tue Aug 28, 2018 2:57 pm

Dave B wrote:Morning all. Today I want to talk about an issue that I suspect we've all come across

My technique is to start moving stuff off stage, without much asking and talking. Not throwing it about, but just moving it quickly out of the way. That invariably gets the guy (or guys) attention in about ten seconds. Almost always they want to do it themselves but take the hint and start working quickly. If they don't work quickly enough, I repeat.

Never tried it coming after a death metal band tough.
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby MarkPAman » Tue Aug 28, 2018 4:31 pm

<Shouts>
"Hay Dave, there's a guitar amp & stuff on stage already - if you use that it'll save you breaking yours.... again"
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby Kwackman » Tue Aug 28, 2018 4:56 pm

Either "There's a girl at the back stage area wants to meet you"
or "some bloke's been talking to your girlfriend all during your set..."
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby blinddrew » Tue Aug 28, 2018 10:16 pm

I say take off and nuke the entire site from orbit.
It's the only way to be sure.
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby Wonks » Tue Aug 28, 2018 10:58 pm

blinddrew wrote:I say take off and nuke the entire site from orbit.
It's the only way to be sure.

Not a great idea a) when you'll be playing there in 5 minutes time b) want an audience to play to c) want a drinkable beer after you've finished playing.

But otherwise, it's a good suggestion.
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby Studio Support Gnome » Wed Aug 29, 2018 12:30 am

f*** off or i'll play YOUR guitar
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby Dave B » Wed Aug 29, 2018 8:22 am

Some great suggestions here, although I suspect Kwackman's may result in the guitarist running after his g/f and leaving his stuff on the stage still. And I fundamentally object to CS70's suggestion - I've got all my stuff to hump, why should I move some bone idle git's gear as well? That's urine extraction territory.

Currently can't decide between MarkPAman's and Blinddrew's. I mean ... look what happened to the dropship last time they tried the latter ... ;)
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby CS70 » Wed Aug 29, 2018 9:09 am

Dave B wrote:Some great suggestions here, although I suspect Kwackman's may result in the guitarist running after his g/f and leaving his stuff on the stage still. And I fundamentally object to CS70's suggestion - I've got all my stuff to hump, why should I move some bone idle git's gear as well? That's urine extraction territory.

Currently can't decide between MarkPAman's and Blinddrew's. I mean ... look what happened to the dropship last time they tried the latter ... ;)

Haha the trick is that you ain't gotta move it for real, just look like you do - they come running in ten seconds straight ;-)
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Re: Dave's Etiquette #2461

Postby BigRedX » Wed Aug 29, 2018 9:34 am

Sometimes getting the previous bands equipment off the stage is the least of your worries.

IME unless the stage manger is running things super efficiently, as the day goes on the things over-run and the time slots available for the bands gets smaller and smaller.

I've played one festival where this was happening, and so in an effort to get things back on track the stage manager indicated to the band currently playing that their next song should be their last. They then proceeded to launch into a 10 minute prog-rock epic that was in complete contrast to all the three and half minute pop songs they's been playing up to that point. We ended up having to trim 3 songs off our set to compensate.

At another with appalling organisation, things over-ran so badly that our band was left with less than 15 minutes to set up and play before the curfew. It was at this point that we discovered than a mis-communication between our manager and the organiser meant that "backline will be supplied" was cabs only...
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