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Anyone have a great way to beat the heat playing summer outdoors ?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by SWRnut, Jun 17, 2014.

  1. SWRnut

    SWRnut Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2008
    Columbia, SC
    We have several outdoor gigs coming up over the next couple of months and in the South, the humidity and heat make it pretty uncomfortable at times. I am looking for any suggestions to stay cool while out in the summer sun.
    Thanks !
  2. Light clothing, electric fans, lots of cold water and wipe down towels / rags for you and your bass.
    Bunk McNulty likes this.
  3. Ewo

    Ewo a/k/a Steve Cooper Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2008
    Huntington WV
    Sunscreen and short sleeve. Best I can tell ya!

    And a do-rag on your head if yer bald like me. Sunburn on bald pate = ouch, yeah....
    IGotGas likes this.
  4. letsrumble


    May 23, 2010
    I'd get one of those neck-cooling wraps (or two or three).
    IGotGas, PaulNYC, Remyd and 1 other person like this.
  5. jgroh

    jgroh Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2007
    Well, Im sure its probably out of your budget, but we played an outdoor festival in essentially a metal "shed" in 95 degree weather last year, and the drummer brought a portable air conditioner. The kind that IT companies use to keep computer racks cool (he owns a tech company). It looked like a dehumidifier. But holy crap did that help! So, uh, either that or a bermuda shirt.
    DreamError likes this.
  6. Someone gave me one of those golf shirts made from breathable fabric. It does help somewhat......
  7. pflash4001


    Dec 2, 2011
    I'm planning on building a few of these sometime this summer.

  8. Clark Dark

    Clark Dark

    Mar 3, 2005
    I've always kept a little Styrofoam cooler filled with ice and bottled water. When the ice melts however I soak a towel in that cold water and drape it on the back of my neck... "and I'll be cooler than cold in my ghostly haberdashery" And don't forget the importance of hydrating yourself in the summer heat.
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2014
  9. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    Ice, water, and towels. I've played gigs hot and lived through it, but few things suck as hard as trying to play with sweating hand making your neck sticky.
    IGotGas likes this.
  10. theduke1

    theduke1 Supporting Member

    Dec 22, 2010
    Manitowoc WI
    Don't play outside ever:D
    BassChuck, IGotGas and SWRnut like this.
  11. Dave W

    Dave W

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    Lots of water and if possible stay in the shade, or at least out of the direct sun.

    We always seem to have an outdoor gig scheduled on the hottest day of the year right in the middle of the day.
  12. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011
    Plenty of those sweat catcher wrist bands and doo-rags to stop drips. The fan is your friend. The squirrel cage type moves a lot of air for it's size but too big and it becomes a distracting noise. Of course any fan is going to be a noise issue if it's big enough or running fast enough. In serious heat, a squirrel cage on the floor (tilted up a bit) and a stand fan, both pointed at you will keep you from (heat) stroking out. A small personal cooler with water is also handy if the venue does not provide such backstage.

    Also something to cover your rig if you set up before sundown and play into the night. In high humidity conditions moisture will form on EVERYTHING when the sun goes down and the temp drops a few degrees. It can get bad enough water will drip from stuff. I did some outdoor shows in high summer in NW FL a while back and I bought me an MIM j to play so I wouldn't have to expose my MIA J to the wet conditions. Yes, it was that bad.
    IGotGas and Bunk McNulty like this.
  13. Richland123


    Apr 17, 2009
  14. Joedog


    Jan 28, 2010
    Pensacola FL
    Most outdoor summer gigs in this area provide tents or a roofed stage for the band. The Sun can be BRUTAL here! Have you asked for a tent? If not, maybe the venue will go halves on one w/the band? It makes a WORLD of difference on a hot, humid, sunny day! Also comes in handy for those afternoon pop up showers (protecting the equipment)! Never had to chip in for a tent, but have played many gigs where if we didn't have one, we'd have considered it!
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2014
  15. MrLenny1


    Jan 17, 2009
    Gatorade,lots of fluids,take it easy on the booze.
    tarps for shade etc...
    I hate outdoor gigs.
  16. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    No choice here....especially @4 bills per show.
    My Avatar is from the Va. Beach Oceanfront, June 2007.
    Nowadaze, it is a permanent stage. Back in the early '80s, I played the same spot...no overhead shade.
    I was in my 20s then...so it was a pair of OPs + no shirt.
    Nice bikinis all about, too.

    Definitely limit the brew in-take...stay hydrated! A towel & bottled water on-stage, too!
  17. Jhengsman


    Oct 17, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    As someone who plays indoor without air conditioning for the past year I wish we had a tent
  18. Bow tie

    Bow tie

    Jan 9, 2014
    Upstate NY
    Any tips for helping the actual playing? I played last night in high humidity and stunk up the deck. Slow fingers, sticky fingers, Etc.
  19. The wrist bands mentioned above and cornstarch baby powder on the hands helps me a lot. Fans are a must. Drink water or gatorade type struff. Stay away from sodas and especially alcohol..Turn and baste every 45 minutes.. oh wait... that's for another thread. ;)
  20. eslavs


    Jun 23, 2012
    I have to try the powder. We play outside a lot during the summer, always under cover - the summertime south Florida sun is killer. One thing I have noticed is that it's way tougher to play my P that's wearing flats, the stickiness from the humidity seems amplified with the flatwounds, making it tough to play.

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