Sunday, April 22, 2007

132 channels



Sometimes I feel like a studio engineer in one of those great big studios in LA or NY that has one of those 132 channel mixing boards running from one end to the other pushing up this and adjusting that. My day Friday started at 7:10am. I poured a cup or two and checked my Email before running out the door to go to work at about 8:30. By 11am I had two coats of paint slapped on an accent wall and was starting on the other 3 walls on the bedroom I was working on. At 2pm I had 2 coats on everything and was grabbing my check and walking out, another happy, if not thrilled customer.
At 3pm, the guys show up at Margaux's and we load in and do a pretty thorough soundcheck, hoping that the people would suck up some of the reflection off of the brick walls and metal ceiling. The acoustics in this place were atrocious. We were done at 5 and at 6pm we were on the airat WKNC radio on the campus of NC State University. We had a great time talking up the new Live CD (which will be reviewed in the Philly Inquirer this week- BTW!) and show with ("see you guys on the airways in 10, 9, 8...") Stevo and by 6:45 we were walking out the door.
I had enough time for the 30 minute drive home to change clothes and eat. I was walking out of the Chinese joint at 7:45 and headed home with take-out. After eating I had about 10 minutes to throw my legs up before getting ready to leave. Out the door a little after 9, I arrive at the club at 9:50. I am informed that showtime is NOT 10:30 as previously expected but 10:15 instead. Hmmm... I call Dave to see where he's at. He's 15 minutes away. He'll walk in and throw a guitar on and we'll get the party started. I'm told by both the resturaunt manager and the head bartender to keep it down!, and this is before note one is stuck. Yikes! We're already on "one" on the amps and I'm using the smallest sticks known to man (besides 2 toothpicks)and the smallest cymbals I own. "You'll wanna start off low and then you'll be able to kick it up as you go along" says the dude. Uhhhh...OK, but we only got one gear. Let's see... we have about 3 slow songs..I guess "All Dressed Up" from The Yayhoos record would be the best one to start with. So we do and it was fine, only a few folks sticking their fingers in their ears. Dancers were immediately on their feet. From there I figgered we could get away with "Mr. Busdriverman" and we saw a few more toes tapping and a few more smiles. We continued, keeping it as much on the down low as possible. Sorry, but we're just used to cranking up the truck and pushing the pedal to the floor. I haven't felt this restricked since Lauchhammer.
The first set ends about an hour and 20 minutes after it starts. We didn't lose too many of the older crowd that was there but the "kids"(30 and younger) were having none of it. One left in disgust after we wouldn't play Journey. Doesn't give you much hope for the future of music does it?
We hung out for a few and got right back to work at midnight. After losing about half of the crowd during the break, the room got even boomier and less managable. Dude tells me we gotta turn down for the second set. I'm speakless. OK, what's below one on the amps..zero! I guess we could'a put the live record on and done a Boys2Men/Milli Vanilli thing. We came to the conclusion that the room (which USED to have baffles in the ceiling but were taken out because they collected dust) was just not set up for what we do. It was worth a try and the money was good but we were just not gonna be able to make it work, not in the room's present acoustical state. So we were done at 1am and out the door at 1:30, just in time for Jack and Greg to run over to Slim's and close it down. They called in their order before walking in the door at 2. Is that legal? Anyhoo, I got home about 2:30am and took Advil PM just so I could make myself sleep late.
At 10:22 I was up pouring coffee again and preparing to do some cleaning up and going to the dump. I gotta start gettin' rid of all this crap around here. I need to haul off a load of these damn guitars!
About 3:30 Nathan and I left for Durham to meet Jack at the D-BAP (Durham Bulls Athletic Park). The weather was glorious and we had a great time watching Saturday afternoon baseball. After the game we got to meet a few of the players and get their autograghs. We were home by 9pm and I was beat down. Everything finally caught up to me and my old ass had to crash.
Today I'm off to do more recording with my friend Bob Wallace. It's never a dull moment when you're trying to manage 132 channels in your life.

Thanks to Gigi for the pic!

1 comment:

Creener said...

Damn. I was at the game Sat, too. Wish I'd have known. Was stuck way out in the Lawn "seats" - I guess grass is a seat.