BassCliff w/ANB at Gilley's Las Vegas 9/4-6/2020

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by BassCliff, Sep 5, 2020.

  1. BassCliff


    May 17, 2012
    So. Cal.
    Greetings ladies and gentlemen, friends and neighbors, boys and girls, in-laws and outlaws,

    The Country Club Band is back at Gilley's, on the strip in Fabulous Las Vegas. The last time we were here was in February just a couple weeks before the virus madness struck. It's good to be back.


    We had a rehearsal on Wednesday at Arnie's place to knock the dust off and learn a couple new tunes. I think Dave is excited to be working with us this weekend. Paul is also with the rest of us hairy legged pickers as the utility guy.



    I normally go amp-less at this gig so I tossed a few basses, my suitcase, and a little practice amp (because we're going to rehearse some more new material) into the back of Big Betsy.


    I put my hanging clothes (stage clothes) on the hanger in the back seat and climbed in for the four and a half hour drive. Sometimes it's only four hours but there was more traffic getting out of town than I expected on a Thursday night.


    As I pull into Vegas I notice that the new Raiders stadium is looking pretty much complete.


    Johnny also drove up on Thursday, a little earlier than I, and we met up to hit the town a little bit.


    John and I both have birthdays in the same week so we decided to have a small celebration while we're out of town, cigars and drinks at a spot across the street.


    If you're wondering who took that picture, it was our lovely hostess, Ashley. She was very nice to these two old guys.


    We closed the place at 1am, the party was over. I headed back to my room on the 4th floor. Since we've been gone the hotel has resurfaced almost everything, new wallpaper, paint, carpet, new furniture, etc.


    I've got a pretty good view even though it's only the 4th floor. We're looking south down the Strip.


    I filled my fridge with essentials, good beer and energy drinks.


    After stocking up on cold ones I let Johnny talk me into playing some stadium blackjack. I'm a lousy gambler but I stuck $20 into the machine anyway. I made only $1 bets and won only a few hands. But my money lasted long enough for our server to deliver two vodka martinis. Twenty bucks for two well "martinis" is not that great of a bargain. I shan't gamble any more this trip, or probably ever.


    After losing all that money we were hungry so we wandered down to the "Sad Cafe" for a late meal. It's different in the employee cafeteria now. All the tables are distanced and the chefs have to serve your plate as you go through the line. You don't get to help yourself to the buffet any more.


    I opted for a bunch of protein and a few vegetables. The sausages were great. The chicken and fish were just OK.


    I slept really late on Friday and rolled into soundcheck a little after 3pm. You see the honky tonk now has tables on the dance floor which are properly distanced according to the local protocols.


    The area off to stage left is also distanced and the mechanical bull is closed.


    I just found out that there is now a backline here on the stage at Gilley's. But I'm not going to use this SWR rig. We're supposed to be, more or less, "ambient" music for the drinkers and diners. Besides, I'm all IEMs anyway.


    On the left is Daniel, our soundguy. He's working alone because Bob has been furloughed since this virus madness started. Daniel is always super nice and takes care of everything we need. It just takes him a little longer now that he's working solo. Dave brought his own snare and brass to put with the house kit.


    OSHA and other governing bodies require us to be masked up unless we're singing, eating, or drinking. Johnny Magic Fingers and I are smiling really big, just because we're glad to be here.


    We'll continue this three hour soundcheck in the next post. Thanks for looking!

    Thank you for your indulgence,

    Last edited: Sep 5, 2020
    JimK, mrcbass, jblock and 41 others like this.
  2. BassCliff


    May 17, 2012
    So. Cal.

    As we continue our soundcheck, here are the WMDs I brought. I will mainly play my Fender Kingman since this is a mellow, acoustic, dinner music kind of show. I'm even sitting on a stool.


    Making its debut at a live performance is my Kala U-Bass. I like using this for our bluegrass tunes. What do you think, @G19Tony?


    My PB5 is actually here just for backup this weekend.


    Yes Mr. Soundman, I'm ready for my soundcheck.


    Arnie and Paul are taking their turns, getting their levels, tweaking their IEM mix, etc.


    John is jus' chillin', waiting for his turn. He brought only two keyboards this weekend.


    Dave is happy the drum riser is level. Dave does not overplay so he does not have to be caged.


    After our soundcheck we have a quick band meeting. Who was that masked band?


    I noticed during soundcheck that the D string on the Kala bass was a bit weak. When I got back to my room I worked on the piezo pickup, trying to get the bridge to make consistent contact all the way across. I sanded the underside of the bridge a little bit and it seemed to even out the volume across all four strings


    Arnie brought three different acoustic guitars.


    Paul and I take the stage selfie. We're just about to get started.


    Paul brought four instruments this weekend, his pedal steel, dobro, banjo, and fiddle.


    Here's the view from my mic just before we start. It's a little slow but it will pick up. My mic stand is full of my sheet holder and the iPad for my IEM mix.


    Arnie points to his favorite bass player on this stage.


    Dave gives me the "stick eyes".


    I caught John chillin' again.


    Hi! I'm Cliff! I'm you're bass player!


    We started making live music in front of warm bodies. Even though there was no dance floor, and supposedly no dancing, as long they were wearing their mask while not sitting at the table, customers could dance right next to their table, a little bit. I'll be back in the next post to finish up. Thanks for looking!

    Thank you for your indulgence,

    Last edited: Sep 5, 2020
  3. BassCliff


    May 17, 2012
    So. Cal.

    Mark and Cristy and their friends came up from the OC to see us this weekend. We'll have even more friends coming out Saturday night. I hope I can reserve a table for them.


    The crowd was into the scene but they were not overly rowdy.


    Here are a couple of shots of the stage while we're on break.



    These four ladies decided to do a little line dancing next to their table.


    All the tables in front of us filled up. Most to our left were full too. They will only let as many people into the place as their are seats at the tables. Gilley's is trying very hard to comply to guidelines so they can stay open without being fined.



    All weekend we'll be playing from 9pm-12:30am, just three sets. At the end of the evening I thought I'd better get the gig report started. Here I am editing pictures and enjoying a local brew that I had brought from home.


    When I say local I mean right on the other side of the hill from my work. This is the Innovation Brew Works American Brown Ale. It's brewed at Cal Poly Pomona where they also have a restaurant. I've been there a few times for lunch and a glass of suds.


    Unfortunately this brew does not have the body I like in a dark beer. The barley flavor is nice but it seems watery, almost like a "lite" dark beer. I'm not complaining. It was a gift. But I'll probably not buy this brew. There are others at that brewery that I really like.

    There you have it, you're all caught up with the happenings as of Friday night. Hopefully we'll have a few TB members in the house tomorrow and we're planning to get together for a meal on Sunday. I'm looking forward to getting caught up with all my Las Vegas friends. It's been too long. I'll send more electrons very soon. Thanks for looking.

    Thank you for your indulgence,

  4. Bassed in NZ

    Bassed in NZ search of the impeccable groove...

    Feb 22, 2008
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Nice one Cliff - great to see you out and about and working within the parameters you need to. Thanks for sharing the fun with us! Sleep well mate & I look forward to Saturday’s continuation!
    Kitsapbass, Sore Thumb, McG and 2 others like this.
  5. dave64o

    dave64o Talkbass Top 10 all time lowest talent/gear ratio! Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 15, 2000
    Southern NJ
    I always look forward to another BssCliff gig report. Nice one!

    My brother and I cancelled our annual BWO (Boys Weekend Out) trip to Las Vegas this year, so hopefully things will return to a more "normal" state by next summer so we can start them back up. One of these years we're going to time it right and be there when you guys are so we can stop in and see you playing.
  6. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    fun to get a basscliff gig report and it's interesting to see the 'new world order' at work in an entertainment capital.

    always great to see the wonderful pics and to get the skinny from a real pro! thanks for sharing your gig experience, cliff! :thumbsup:
    Kitsapbass, Sore Thumb and BassCliff like this.
  7. G19Tony


    Apr 27, 2018
    Las Vegas, NV
    Can't wait to hear it. I'm pretty confident, you will make it sound better than I could.
  8. growlypants


    Nov 10, 2012
    Still the best, aren't you?!!!:thumbsup: Glad to see establishments taking the conservative path towards getting back into it. Great shots of everything, and thanks again for the post, sir!!
    richntiff, Sore Thumb, McG and 2 others like this.
  9. G19Tony


    Apr 27, 2018
    Las Vegas, NV
    I hope to meet Drummer Dave, (being a drummer and all) The other one never seemed very affable. Dave does.
    Sore Thumb, McG and BassCliff like this.
  10. filmtex

    filmtex Commercial User

    May 29, 2011
    Annsman Pro Audio Dealer
    Nice report. Glad to see you guys kind of back in the saddle. We're all hoping for that return to normal thing I keep hearing about. I'm headed to Fredericksburg in a few hours. Keeping my fingers crossed we don't get rained out.
    BassCliff likes this.
  11. nixdad


    Aug 15, 2008
    Los Angeles, CA
    Cliff, oh Cliff, oh Cliff.
    Why am I sensing a little more balance in the world right now after reading you report?

    I keep telling myself it's not because of the sausages, but I could be wrong.;)
  12. CBRXJ


    Jul 31, 2010
    Apple Valley Ca.
    What strings are you using on the Kingman?
    BassCliff likes this.
  13. EatS1stBassist


    Apr 15, 2016
    So cal
    Great gig report! Good to see your happy face. Lol!:thumbsup::thumbsup:
    BassCliff likes this.
  14. Dean N

    Dean N

    Jul 4, 2006
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Best gig reports on earth.

    Cigars, good beers, good food, music, pics, great story.

    Thank you, Cliff, for being excellent to us TBers.
    Kitsapbass, Sore Thumb, McG and 4 others like this.
  15. Tony In Philly

    Tony In Philly Supporting Member

    Oct 25, 2007
    Filthydelphia, USA
    Thanks again, Cliff! Glad to see you back in action again. I especially enjoyed seeing the "stripped down semi-acoustic" bit too. Versatility and flexibility is so important these days, that's for sure!
    Sore Thumb, nixdad, McG and 1 other person like this.
  16. 74hc


    Nov 19, 2015
    Sunny California
    Ah, the world is beginning to right itself and pulling back from the brink when Basscliff starts posting regular gig reports again. :)

    Thanks for the gig report.
    Sore Thumb, McG and BassCliff like this.
  17. MrLenny1


    Jan 17, 2009
    New England
    Back in business Cliff.
    I've never seen so many cases at a rehearsal spot.
  18. McG

    McG Goat Hill Gamblers

    Oct 6, 2010
    Costa Mesa, CA
    Hi Cliff,

    So nice to see you guys back in Vegas. The semi-unplugged setup is cool, Dave is the perfect drummer for it. I hope some video surfaces. :cool:

    Hey, my birthday is in the same week as you guys. Wish I could have been there to join in the little celebration. Happy Birthday Cliff and John!! :)

    I hope the Las Vegas Bassmigos chapter is able to join in the weekend festivities. I always like seeing the smiling faces of those mooks. :thumbsup:
  19. Joshua Pickenpaugh

    Joshua Pickenpaugh

    Apr 16, 2001
    Thanks for a peek at the small slice of normality that is happening out west. I miss these reports...and the pictures of your food and beer, oddly enough!
    BassCliff and nixdad like this.
  20. kevindahl


    Aug 21, 2006
    Vancouver, BC
    Awesome report as usual. Thanks for sharing!
    BassCliff likes this.
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    Primary TB Assistant

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