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Environmental Studies.

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by TrevorG, Oct 1, 2020.

  1. TrevorG


    Nov 30, 2012
    Someone just said something on another thread that’s made me think. Pandemic aside - What’s the worst venue you’ve ever gigged in and how often have you done it? Cleanliness, back stage facilities, stage access etc. How base does it get?
  2. luciens


    Feb 9, 2020
    All of them.
    I've always heard all these stories about making a little extra money playing bass, or gigs where you don't need an amp because there's a sound guy who routes you to the FOH, and other such strange stuff. But I've only been to one gig that even had a PA, and even then that jerk (he's at every gig) ran up on stage and ran us off after the 3rd song.

    That's mostly why I quit gigging. I just couldn't afford to play bass for money anymore, and none of my bands ever made it all the way through the whole set on a gig.

    As for the worst venue in terms of environment, it was probably Joe's Generic Bar down on 6th street in Austin, TX. I don't know if Joe's Generic is still there, but it was truly a hole in the wall.

    I loved it. It was the best place ever, even though the audience always hated us, I loved playing there.

  3. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    There was a place in CT. that we used to hit occasionally 'back in the day' (mid 90's) where the mens' bathroom didn't have a toilet anymore but just the opening in the floor where one had once been. Also played a place in RI where when you asked for the backstage/greenroom, they pointed you to a door that took you out to the back alley where the trash cans were kept.
    TrevorG likes this.
  4. 4 Strings Good

    4 Strings Good Supporting Member

    Mar 6, 2014
    I know it's sacrilegious to say, but CBGB's was absolutely disgusting. Every surface of the place was slick or sticky. Stage was tiny, sound awful. No real backstage. And the bathrooms... Glad I played there but only to say I'd done it.
    bassfran, jazzburst77, wraub and 11 others like this.
  5. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    worst? :laugh: way too many to name --- IME: they're all the "worst" but at the same time they're all the best!
    how often? as often as they'll have me. my favorite venue these days is a hole-in-the-wall joint that only seats 50-75 people (pre-plague). i have played there so often that i know where the birds roost. :roflmao:

    venues? i like 'em all! :D
    TrevorG likes this.
  6. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    Totally agree CBGB was nasty. Great fun but really just about as narsty as it could be.

    But 688 in Atlanta was dee-skusting. You'd pretty much get syphilis if you touched anything back stage. The best way to keep from getting dysentery was drinking Rolling Rock from a can and using your lighter to kill anything on the top of the can. There was this special "swamp" smell by the bar. Think crab legs and mangos. Don't miss that smell. But that place was 100% magic. Iggy's painted set list survived for years.
    688-pic_orig.jpg iggy-1_orig.jpg
  7. TortoiseBass


    Aug 26, 2020
    Never had a gig, wouldn’t know.
  8. Winslow


    Sep 25, 2011
    Group "W" Bench
    I'll quote myself from an older thread:

    I'm getting a flashback to my drumming days (shhh... I won't tell if you won't!), playing a show on the front porch of a run-down house that hadn't seen very much maintenance in what must have been 30 years. The floorboards were creaking and rotted to the point that in some places, they'd completely fallen through. My face must have shown the concern I felt about putting a drum set - and my person - on that surface, because after showing me where to set up, the band leader paused and added, "Good luck." :nailbiting:

    Back in this thread: Sorry, I have no idea whose idea it was to play there, or why. :roflmao:
    wraub and EddiePlaysBass like this.
  9. Steadfast

    Steadfast Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2015
    Search Me
    The Black Angus in Puerto Rico. The most unsanitary whorehouse I ever gigged in.
  10. nealw


    Sep 9, 2007
    Atlanta, GA
    In the 90s we were an indie rock band and had just released a CD on a small label. Our very first gig supporting the CD was in Florida. Don’t remember the town or the name of the venue. We drove 6 hours and arrived at a concrete block 1 room building. No windows but you could see daylight through holes where mortar used to be.

    The owner and his wife were already drunk when we arrived in the late afternoon and were shooting pool. We ended up playing to about 5 or 6 people. Halfway through the set, the owner, who could barely stand by then, stood in front of the stage yelling “Scorpions! Play the f’ing Scorpions!” Not the only time I’ve been heckled, but it was the only time I’ve been heckled by the club-owner. Kind of set the stage for the whole summer. We did not play any Scorpions.

    In the late 80s I played in a cover band in Camden, Alabama. A woman peed herself on the dance floor during the 2nd set. She stayed and continued to gyrate for the rest of the night.
    EddiePlaysBass likes this.
  11. There was a place called the “Club Foot” in Austin, Tx back in the early ‘80s. Mostly a new wave and punk hangout, but a lot of different well known touring rock bands played there. Had previously been a Montgomery Ward warehouse, and had a corner stage with a huge column just in front of the center of the stage. The bathrooms were pretty bad, but I’ve seen worse. The sound was really pretty good. Good times there.
  12. nbsipics

    nbsipics Boredom is Dangerous Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 8, 2016
    Well at least the heads were immaculate...
  13. juancaminos

    juancaminos Supporting Member

    May 30, 2003
    USA, Phoenix, AZ
    A MC Group clubhouse that shall remain unnamed...All dirt floors, all dirt outside. Thick dust in the air at all times. The floor was dusty in some places and muddy in others. We stood on old dirty pieces of carpet and cardboard. We did this gig twice that were "unavailable" after that.
  14. Michedelic

    Michedelic MId-Century Modern

  15. Ggaa


    Nov 26, 2018
    Long gone...
  16. Esteban Garcia

    Esteban Garcia bassist, arranger, aelurophile Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2018
    Portland, OR
    Satyricon in Portland was pretty skanky, but that's just the most notable. There were others skankier for sure.
    james condino likes this.
  17. jnuts1


    Nov 13, 2007
    jesus dude try a new hobby maybe?
    luciens likes this.
  18. sonojono

    sonojono Supporting Member

    Let’s see, during the beginning days of my post punk band I played at this run down bar In Corona, California right next door to a strip club.

    Long story short I had a prostitute come up on stage as we covered a Nirvana song as she stripped in front of us and proceeded to touch herself as she was rubbing up against my microphone stand. The GF wasn’t happy, I was shocked as hell that I still kept performing until security yanked her out of the stage to throw her out.

    We had three more songs to finish but we ended up closing with the Nirvana song. I couldn’t recover from that scene and having flashbacks still haunts me at times..
  19. Yools


    Jul 24, 2009
    Deepinaharta, TX
    Nope... Joe's Generic is long, long gone. I never played there, but spent a good chunk of my first couple of years in grad school hanging out there on weeknights.

    Headhunters on Red River in Austin was possibly one of the nastiest dives I ever played at - tiny stage, filthy, terrible sound, always a great time. They did a "Bar Rescue" episode there, and their portrayal wasn't too far off. Unfortunately the show ruined the place, and the location is still shut down.
  20. Rick Wakeman told a story of his early days gigging in one particular West London pub that I also played in during the same period. The floor of the gents was always running in water overflowing the urinals.
    The bands drummer played barefoot and Rick hid his shoes one night.
    The poor guy went barefoot to the toilet during the break.
    What passed for carpet throughout the pub was suspiciously sticky.

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