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#977079 - 09/20/12 05:09 AM Your Worst Ever Gig  
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 4,248
Roy Cooper Offline
Roy Cooper  Offline

Top 100 Poster

Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 4,248
I was just siting here and something from the past jumped into my mind, and I smiled. Of course at the time (30 years ago) I was livid.

I used to manage singers and get gigs for them. Would visit the venues, sort out the date and provide big posters etc. In those days it was up to the venue to get the punters in on the night.

So I got this gig and on the night I turned up with the singer. He set all the gear up and off he went.

Well he was a great act and never had any complaints, and the pay due was not a lot.

As they evening progressed, no one turned up to see or hear him. Apart from us that is.

Turned out, that the date clashed with some big football match on the TV and in those days, no big screens in the venues..lol

Anyway after 1 set (about an hour) the owner calls me over and says, 'Tell Him I Ain't Paying Him'. And he made his point by using the 'F' word in there as well.

I gotta say folks I felt terrible. I walked over and said, 'He ain't paying you 'cause no one turned up. And I used the 'F' word as well.

The singer said, OK, packed his gear and we all went home.

I just wondered if anyone else had a worst gig they wanted to share with us.

God Bless Roy and Helen


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#977082 - 09/20/12 05:19 AM Re: Your Worst Ever Gig [Re: Roy Cooper]  
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 7,997
Mike Caro Substudio Offline
Mike Caro Substudio  Offline

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Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 7,997
NY
Some story Roy,

I'm thinking worst performance or worst time?

I played my first gig with my band when I was about 12 years old.
First paying & concert show when I was 14. So you can imagine it was COUNTLESS gigs for me...

But ya know it's funny now that I can't play em, and perhaps never will again I can't think of not ONE single bad gig at all smile

All the best
Mike


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#977085 - 09/20/12 05:50 AM Re: Your Worst Ever Gig [Re: Mike Caro Substudio]  
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 49
T.Wallace Offline
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T.Wallace  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 49
Nova Scotia, Canada
My worst gig was just a couple years ago. A new pub opened in town and they were booking musicians left, right, and center none of them country. Well the owner kept getting requests for country and he decided, even though he hates country music, to try it. He got in contact with me and asked if I'd do a show for him on a Friday night. We made all the arrangements fee, times, etc etc...

I posted the show on my website, and facebook. I had friends and family coming in from all over the provience (I live in canada).

The owner wasn't that vested as he didn't like the kind of music so he took a half hearted approach to my show (I didn't know until later). The first sign was he didn't advertise any act there on the night in question...he always did for other acts but all I got was a wing night sign. Secondly he took the night off ('cause he hates country music) and forgot to tell his staff I was coming. So I arrived and said Hi and they said sorry your not playing here tonight. I made them call their boss and he confirmed I was, but they had already turned people away saying I wasn't there that night...So I start to set up and the owner decides to come in to see me and get out his PA and said to use it instead of mine, so I do.

Now I'm sound checked and ready to go, the crowd that shows up (the ones that came not the ones they turned away) starts drinking and having fun and all is great. It ws a good performance by all standards and I think all is well. I finish up and get ready to leave and thats when I found out no one had been able to get food (other than appetizers) because "no one was booked to play" the chef had gone home. To top it off the owner had left again and didn't leave my money so I din't get paid that night.

The next day I called him up at home, he wasn't real impressed I got that number (I love small towns), and demanded he get me my money. He tried to stall saying it was a small crowd and they weren't happy and blah, blah, blah....

So after tellin him all the mistakes his "staff" made he decided it wasn't my fault and he paid me.

Now to his credit his manager no longer works there, and I have played there again without any issues. I have him pay me before the show. I will never forget that first night

#977471 - 09/22/12 05:44 PM Re: Your Worst Ever Gig [Re: T.Wallace]  
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,608
Rick Heenan Offline
Rick Heenan  Offline

Top 200 Poster

Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,608
Lockport NY, usa
I'm with Mike, never had a bad one but, there are a few I wouldn't do again. There was the wedding reception where the brides mother would come up on stage and grab a mic in the middle of a song to make a weird announcement or just because she could, and say hi to her guests. A lot of BS.

Even went so far as to ask her husband to intervene. He had been married to her for 25 yrs, and told us we were on our own. No help there. Had to play one song for 22 minutes while mom had a dollar dance for the bride. Got to the point that nobody wanted to dance anymore, so she used the mic to chastise all the non-dancers.

We earned our money that night, and shied away from weddings for a few years after. On the other hand, played for a friends sons wedding and it was the most fun I had in years.

#977474 - 09/22/12 06:32 PM Re: Your Worst Ever Gig [Re: Rick Heenan]  
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 6,108
ben willis Offline
Top 40 Poster
ben willis  Offline
Top 40 Poster

Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 6,108
Ft. Myers, FL. USA
Hi Roy, this was more of a lesson learned. I was hired to play weekends at an Irish Restaurant owned by a husband and wife. I told them upfront that I don't play Irish standards like "Toora Loora loora" and "Danny Boy". I play Irish instrumental fiddle tunes (jigs, reels etc.) and some Gorden Lightfoot (for some reason, people think Gorden Lightfoot is Irish). They said that was fine. They just want an Irish sound while diners sat and ate corned beef and cabbage, Shepard's pie, and drank Guinness.

My first night went great. On the second night, I took my last break around 11:00 PM. A local musician who I knew was sitting at the bar. He approached me as I was sipping a beer and asked if it would be alright for him to get up and play a couple of Irish tunes while I was on break. I said OK and let him play my guitar. His first songs were "Toora Loora Lorra" and "Danny Boy". Needless to say, I didn't play the last set. He took over my gig with my own guitar.

At the end of the night when I got paid, the owners told me that they were going to look for other "acts". In other words, I was fired.

I ran into the guy who hijacked my gig a few months later and asked how it went. When I told him that I was getting paid for my gig he couldn't believe it. He was playing the gig that he stole from me for free.

The lesson is to never let someone get up and play while you're on break.


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