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Gig Report - Sofar Sounds Concert - Buffalo, NY 8/9/17. UPDATED WITH VIDEO

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by sevenyearsdown, Aug 18, 2017.


  1. sevenyearsdown

    sevenyearsdown Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Sanborn, NY
    So....I've been waiting for over a week to get the video of this gig for said gig report, but it ain't happened yet. I wanted to write the report while I'll still had it in the front of my mind, because it was a very new and unique experience for me. I thought it might be something cool to turn you guys onto. I don't have many pictures, but there is a good reason for that. Here is an excerpt from an article about Sofar Sounds:

    It’s not quite accurate to say that the first rule of Sofar Sounds is that you don’t talk about Sofar Sounds. It is almost like a secret society — shrouded in mystery, highly selective, and fueled by a revolutionary mentality — but for music lovers.

    Sofar seriously enforces some rules, though. You actually have to listen to the music. You need to stop texting during performances. And you’ve gotta stay the whole night.

    Its clandestine micro-gigs in unique locations take place in 86 cities across 37 countries around the world. The catch: Attendees in each community have to sign up (and be invited) to attend, and they don’t know where the shows are held until the day before the gig or which artists are performing until show time.

    Even as an international curatorial brand, Sofar still maintains its tight-knit identity, as local community members organize, film, photograph, and record the performances by homegrown bands on a volunteer basis. Since music fans themselves created this concert targeting the most passionate music performers and audiences, Sofar Sounds is ultimately changing the way we consume live music.


    I was able to take part in one these secret shows as part of Tough Old Bird. Even the band doesn't get much info until about a week before the show. Ours was on a Wednesday night in Buffalo, so I was skeptical. I've been playing this town for a long time, and this format sounded like dud to me. But as I'm becoming more and more aware lately, I was showing my age not knowing anything about these events. I was in a word, wrong.

    The event took place in the main recording room at GCR Audio in Buffalo. This is the Goo Goo Dolls recording studio, so use your imagination. I included a picture below of the room empty from the studio's website. The event organizers set up professional quality A/V recording gear throughout the room.

    The bands load in early and get setup. The only amplification provided is for vocal mics. Everything else is acoustic. Imagine if you will....it's like MTV's unplugged if in fact it was actually unplugged and live. By the time the first act played, the room was packed...and I mean packed. They must have figured out exactly how many butts could fit in the room, then sold a few more tickets! Every inch of the room that wasn't the band area was filled with people (including the control room), of all ages and walks of life.

    Everyone there was there for live music. Once the show started, the door closed, and no one came or went. There was no evidence of cell phone recording, texting, facebooking, etc. It was the most attentive audience I'd ever played in front of. It was almost nerve wracking....like wait a minute Scooby, everyone is paying attention to the bands!

    The room itself was beautiful both visually and acoustically. If you've ever recorded acoustic instruments in a studio with headphones on, that's what it sounded like in the room. I could hear every detail, good or bad just from the acoustics. It was a stunning experience for an acoustic musician.

    I know - not a lot of sexy stuff happening in a long post. I did this mostly to turn you guys on to Sofar Sounds. If the video ever becomes available I link it.

    Sofar Sounds
    YouTube Channel

    GCR Audio. The picture does not do the room justice.
    Goo-Goo-Dolls-Inner-Machine-12.jpg

    The bands were setup in the corner of the room opposite the control room window side. 1488.jpeg
     
  2. McG

    McG Goat Hill Gamblers

    Oct 6, 2010
    Costa Mesa, CA
    I'd never heard of Sofar. Such a cool thing. Neat you were able to play it. Perfect setting for Tough Old Bird. Hopefully the video will be available.

    I looked at the website and saw there is one right here in Costa Mesa next week, but it's sold out.
     
    dbase and sevenyearsdown like this.
  3. BassCliff

    BassCliff

    May 17, 2012
    So. Cal.
    Hi,

    This sounds fantastic! I did a similar gig for the grand opening of a recording studio school. We set up in the main recording room of Media Tech Institute in Oceanside and all the guests just hung about the whole facility. It was a great time being, for lack of a better term, "under the microscope". It made you really get serious about your performance, especially since most of the guests were musicians. I'm hoping you get more pictures and video or recordings of this engagement. It sounds exciting. Here are a couple of pictures from my gig at Media Tech in Oceanside.

    The main control room also had video effects.

    p9120051.jpg

    The video effects were made possible by the green background in the main recording room.

    p9120067.jpg

    p9120058.jpg

    p9120038.jpg




    Thank you for your indulgence,

    BassCliff
     
  4. sevenyearsdown

    sevenyearsdown Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Sanborn, NY
    Another upright player who I know locally, and is roughly 10 times better than I am was there backing a jazz singer who performed first. He kind of disappeared after his set, but came back in the studio as soon as we started.....and sat about 4 feet away from me. I got nervous real fast. Super nice guy, but I know he was checking my playing out.
     
    Sore Thumb, BassCliff and McG like this.
  5. sevenyearsdown

    sevenyearsdown Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Sanborn, NY
    Hey Cliff just curious if music is your profession? If you have a day job plus all of those gigs, well that's impressive. I play a weeknight or two and I'm beat to tar with my 5am get up.
     
  6. Oddly

    Oddly Supporting Member

    Jan 17, 2014
    Dublin, Ireland.
    I love the Sofar concept ... definitely checking that out.
    Anything that encourages true music fans to get to see live music is a great thing.

    Glad you guys had a good night!
     
    McG and sevenyearsdown like this.
  7. BassCliff

    BassCliff

    May 17, 2012
    So. Cal.
    Hi,

    Sorry to horn in on your gig report. I hope you don't mind I shared a little of my similar gig, which happened about ten years ago. Let's see more of your gig if you get a chance.

    I'm a weekend warrior musician with a full time day job. I don't play many late night bars so my 7am wake time is tolerable. Most of my gigs are done by 9 or 10pm, home before midnight and usually earlier.

    Thanks for sharing your gigs. Do you usually play upright? Do you break out the Fender electric sometimes?


    Thank you for your indulgence,

    BassCliff
     
    dbase, pjbassist and McG like this.
  8. sevenyearsdown

    sevenyearsdown Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Sanborn, NY
    Share away!

    I'm an upright player exclusively these days, but the Fender is still in the closet.
     
    dbase, McG and BassCliff like this.
  9. sevenyearsdown

    sevenyearsdown Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Sanborn, NY
    As promised. It took them a while to edit, but they did a fantastic job.

     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2017
    mwbonsall, Joebarnes, dbase and 7 others like this.
  10. Inky13

    Inky13

    Nov 13, 2016
    Buffalo NY
    That's super cool! Great to see some hometown music.
     
    dbase and sevenyearsdown like this.
  11. Very cool concept, and very well executed. Your music seems to suit the feel of the room and the vibe of the audience. Thanks for sharing!
     
    dbase, sevenyearsdown and McG like this.
  12. McG

    McG Goat Hill Gamblers

    Oct 6, 2010
    Costa Mesa, CA
    That was great Jay. Man, I just love Tough Old Bird! :thumbsup:

    Those Sofar Sounds shows look like a lot of fun.
     
    dbase and sevenyearsdown like this.
  13. sevenyearsdown

    sevenyearsdown Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Sanborn, NY
    I'm happy with how it turned out. The room was so live that it was hard for me to get a handle on dynamics. I'd never been in a room like that before, and was more accustomed to NOT being able to hear half of what I'm doing. I was hearing acoustic detail that I'm not used to, and it took me a bit to adjust. That and I was ridiculously nervous with cameras and mics everywhere, as well as a fantastic bass player sitting a few feet from me.
     
    Sore Thumb and McG like this.
  14. McG

    McG Goat Hill Gamblers

    Oct 6, 2010
    Costa Mesa, CA
    Adjusting to a Live room and actually hearing myself well - Happy when that happens. :)

    Cameras and mics everywhere - No problem, used to it as I video record every gig and audio record rehearsals. ;)

    A fantastic bass player sitting a few feet from me - Legs turn to jello, hands sweat, hit a clam and the brain fritzes out. :eek:
    Kinda line Sean Penn in Sweet and Low Down when he's in Django's presence :laugh:
     
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  15. BassCliff

    BassCliff

    May 17, 2012
    So. Cal.
    Hi,

    Nice job! It can be a bit intimating when everyone is looking at you and listening to you, especially someone who you know is an excellent player. That was an excellent performance.


    Thank you for your indulgence,

    BassCliff
     
  16. sevenyearsdown

    sevenyearsdown Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Sanborn, NY
    Thanks for the compliments everyone.
     
    dbase, btmpancake and McG like this.
  17. McG

    McG Goat Hill Gamblers

    Oct 6, 2010
    Costa Mesa, CA
    So true. I played a gig once with Cliff sitting ten feet in front of me. Yeah, keeps you on your toes ;)
     
    dbase, Sore Thumb and BassCliff like this.
  18. I played with a musician/comedian from the 40's and had all kinds of celebrities in the audience. Living on adrenaline in those days.
     
    sevenyearsdown and McG like this.

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