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How was the NYE gig?

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by armywalaby, Jan 1, 2012.

  1. I'm probably gonna leave the act that I played with, but it has been coming for a while. How was your gig? Any funny stories?
  2. Steve


    Aug 10, 2001
    As far as NYE gigs go, this year wasn't bad and was better than most. No really drunken stupidity...some guy coughed up $50 for Freebird about halfway through the night, then came up after last song and offered us another $100 if we'd do it as an encore tune so, it was a good paycheck.
  3. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    1/3 the expected crowd as members of a certain fraternal organization (think "antlers") are boycotting the lodge in response to internal political strife. Most had paid their NYE fees prior to the meltdown and were not offered a refund. Sucks for them, good for us...the show must go on.

  4. lowfreq33


    Jan 27, 2010
    Endorsing Artist: Genz Benz Amplification
    For the first time in years I didn't play on new years. Partially situational, partially conscious choice. I have to say I didn't miss "amateur night". Maybe it's because I'm getting mature in my 30's, but drunken buffoonery just isn't very amusing anymore.
  5. SBassman


    Jun 8, 2003
    Northeast, US
    Tonight was actually my first NYE gig. For whatever reason, my past bands have never been booked for NYE.

    It was generally a big success. The bar made big bucks, and everyone enjoyed the music.

    Notable for me was the fact that I played the entire gig on an acoustic UBass.

    Other notables were:
    - A very drunken guy at the very top of the night - who needed an eject after bothering us while playing one too many times.
    - A woman actually asleep at the bar, while sitting up.
    - Someone crashing into and annihilating our poor lady singer's music stand and chart book. [she was a sub, and those were critical tools tonight. Somebody completely flattened it all, and others scrambled to pick it up and get it back together.]

    All in all, a very good way to spend a NYE night.
  6. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    Mine will go down as one of the worst.....ever.

    About 2 weeks ago, a local bar contacted us BEGGING us to play NYE. They had previously booked a band that cancelled and they were desperate. The band I'm in is fairly new and not really ready for a full length show, but we reluctantly agreed.

    We showed up last night and the place was about half full. Bear in mind, this is a small club, and 75 people would probably fill it up nicely. About an hour into our setup, the bartender started running everyone out, stating that he had "reservations" for every table in the place. So, about 30 minutes before show time, the place was almost empty save a few regulars. He was even turning people away at the door, saying he was booked solid.

    We finally questioned him, and he assured us that "the owner has booked all of these tables." But, here's the problem: the owner is out of town. Start time comes, and we're playing to about 15 people. The bartender looks worried and starts making phone calls. About 5 songs into our first set, he comes over and tells us what happened. The owner had decided not to take reservations, but he never informed his staff. To make matters worse, he had put the following message on the bar's Facebook page:

    "We're gone for the rest of the year! Have a safe New Years and we'll see you in 2012"

    He had intended to put that on his personal Facebook page, but was logged in on the bar account instead. A number of the regulars saw this and assumed that the bar was closed. Those that showed up were turned away.

    After that discovery, the bartender started letting the walk ins sit down, but the damage was done. We ended up playing to a pretty sparse crowd most of the night. To add insult to injury, the bartender tried to stiff us at the end of the night, claiming that he didn't have enough money to pay us. That's where having a 6'10" drummer comes in handy.
  7. BassChuck

    BassChuck Supporting Member

    Nov 15, 2005
    Sat this one out. First time in many, many years since I left the group I was with. It was a pleasant time to walk about in the evening with family, watch the local show, dancing and ice sculturing with chainsaw... you know, American kind of stuff. Got home early, asleep enough to be wakened by fireworks at midnight. Anxious to get the new year started, its going to be a great year musically.
  8. My band didn't book a gig this year, so when I found out a good friend of mine from Chicago was bringing his folk/bluegrass band up to play near me in Northern Michigan I decided to hang out at his gig last night.

    A couple of days ago he called me and said, "hey, we're playing 'Sir Duke' at our gig and we'd like you to sit in on it. Bring your electric and pedalboard and we'll DI you in. Show up for soundcheck and we'll make a quick pass through it."

    My wife and I head to the venue early, I get there to find out there's an opening act and the sound guy is pushing to get everything checked and ready to go, so there won't be time to run through the tune. No big deal, I assure them I know the tune well and will be able to adapt to their version of it with no problem.

    At midnight the band breaks into "Auld Lang Syne," then immediately breaks into "Sir Duke." I'm standing out in the house dumbfounded. It turns out that I was supposed to take the stage during "Auld Lang Syne" and then be on deck for the sit in, but there was a miscommunication and it was too late to do anything without stopping the show. Again, no big deal, I figure I just won't be sitting in.

    Three tunes later they call me up and I have no idea what I'm doing. The singer calls out the title of a bluegrass tune and says it's in G. I have no idea of how it goes. I look at the upright player and say, "um, you might wanna hang and help me through this." So we proceed with two basses, electric and upright, I'm plodding through it, the banjo player, mando player, and my friend on the dobro are playing some scorching solos and I'm enjoying myself despite the chaos.

    Just before my friend finishes his solo he looks over to me and nods, which I know means that I'm up next for a solo. After a brief moment of panic, I kick on my compressor for a little punch and boost, and, inexplicably, a decent ripping major pentatonic bluegrass solo emanates from my electric bass. I've LISTENED to a lot of bluegrass and actually played upright with a few Americana/folk bands a few years ago, but this is my first attempt at this kind of solo on my electric and somehow I manage to pull it off.

    After the show everyone is complementing me on my solo, I'm being honest and saying I probably couldn't do it again if you held a gun to my head, they all think I'm being modest. I have an open invitation to sit in again (this time on Sir Duke), but I think I'm going to make sure I have my bluegrass solo chops together before I play with them again...just in case.
  9. We had a good show last night. It was actually the first time I had done a NYE gig in about five years. We didn't make a ton of money, but enough to make it worthwhile. The crowd wasn't huge, but it was steady throughout the night, and the owner said he wanted to have us back again. So all in all a good night. It's been a long time since I didn't get home until 3 AM, though. Fortunately today should be nice and easy.
  10. C47


    Mar 16, 2010
    New Hampshire
    Played NYE eve on Friday to a packed well known club. Woman twisted her ankle and
    EMTs hauled her off. Nobody even stopped dancing. Sound guy had everything right.

    NYE itself was more subdued at a local lodge. No dancing at all until the second set (and we always get em moving on the first set). But it was an older crowd. Good paycheck tho, and got booked for next year and a girl-girl wedding in April. 2 Encores.
  11. Phalex

    Phalex Semper Gumby Supporting Member

    Oct 3, 2006
    G.R. MI
    It was insane! Smallish club, (read biker bar) with a very appreciative audience. The stage was right next to the front door, and based on the number of unconscious people I saw them carry outside, I'd say liquor sales were pretty good!
  12. We had a great NYE gig last night, despite the comedy of errors that preceded the gig.
    Guitar player, (band leader for 1 of the bands,) doesn't show for setup or soundcheck. finally mosies in at 9 and explains that he was at a wake the night before and didn't get to sleep until 9am that morning.
    The general manager who we booked the gig with was on vacation and left the manager in charge of the evening, who then decided to take NYE off and subbed out her job to the manager of a restaurant in the same building.
    The GM sent the replacement manager an email outlining our pay...which was totally off. (this is why you always get your payment details in writing people!)
    I showed him the email that I had from the GM outlining and confirming the actual pay and after me explaining nicely but very firmly that I wouldn't even consider playing for less than the original deal, we got what we wanted.
    On a sidenote, I really don't understand this whole "let's try to screw the band out of money" mentality bar owners/managers have. It's like they don't understand that we are all intelligent and hard working business people that aren't going to just blithely go along with whatever they decide the deal is at the end of the night. Ah well, jokes on them... most of the toughest, hardest dealing people I know are seasoned professional musicians.
    The bar itself had a respectable crowd, but a late one so the place was pretty empty for the first set.
    No one in the band got hammered, no one in the crowd fought, I got a great paycheck, and people danced. This was probably the most laid back, and easy NYE gig I've ever done.
    I hope everyone else had a great night!
  13. SBassman


    Jun 8, 2003
    Northeast, US
    All the ingredients of a great night.

  14. Kitsapbass

    Kitsapbass What key is this?

    May 26, 2005
    Bremerton, WA
    It was kind of a crap-fest; thanks for asking.

    Got a call 2 weeks ago to play one of the local clubs - the dj got a better gig - so, we were ready...ish to play this gig. Kind of. We're having problems with a certain member of the band having one or twelve too many and then screwing up the 3rd and 4th sets...which happened again last night.

    I swear, if it wasn't for the fact that I'm friends with these guys, I'd be out.

    On a positive note, we got double our normal fee and I'm looking forward to getting my cut on Wednesday (rehearsal night)...
  15. Flyingfrets


    Dec 25, 2011
    Sat this one out unless you count running through most of the Beatles catalog earlier in the afternoon/evening. Getting up to speed for a Beatle act (no costumes, but just about note for note tunes). Worked with several of the guys before and the vocalist/rythmn guitarist isn't an egomaniacal d*ck. Should be a good year!

    Rang in the New Year with the wife & son. Nice evening...
  16. SBassman


    Jun 8, 2003
    Northeast, US
    Excellent. Good for you guys.

    I live in screw-the-bands-ville, so we did NYE for the same fee as any other night.
  17. I don't think it could've been much smoother. I played my first gig with a new band last night, after only 4 rehearsals over 2 weeks, with Christmas smashed right in there. The material wasn't necessarily that hard; a mix of modern country, R&B, Soul, and pop/rock... but a lot of complex arrangements with unison riffs and hits and the occasional bar of 2 or other things that would be easy to blow through.

    The gig was at a casino, so the place was packed with people EVERYWHERE. We had a great response, though. Casino management thanked us for sounding great, and the rest of the band said it went a lot better than they expected for a first gig with a new member. They are mostly veteran players who've gigged and recorded with some "names" over the years, so they expected a lot. Thankfully, I was able to deliver.

    Overall, it couldn't have been much better. Oh... and we got about 3x the normal rate... :)
  18. Great night for me - we did a "reunion" gig of a band we had together about 10 years ago that dissolved quickly amid personality conflicts, but by now all of that is water under the bridge. Our frontman is an incredibly prolific songwriter (has something like 1,500+ songs to his name) and I'd forgotten how good so many of the songs we used to do were.
  19. Richland123


    Apr 17, 2009
    We played at an Elks Lodge about an hour's drive away. There were about 200 people there and they gave us free prime rib dinners. The unusual thing was that they ended up with twice the amount of people they normally get for New Year's Eve because our band was playing there and they had to open up the banquet hall at the other end of the building from the bar/dining room. Therefore, they had to have us set up and play in the connecting hallway between the two rooms and we faced a short wall about 12 feet in front of us. It felt like there were two different parties going on (one at each end of the hall). The great news is that everybody had a good time, the people were wonderful, and they want to book us again at the Elks for other events.
  20. ::::BASSIST::::

    ::::BASSIST:::: Progress Not Perfection.

    Sep 2, 2004
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    No NYE gig for me.... but not for a lack of trying.

    1. Drummer has well paying gig setup. It falls thru 2 weeks before the gig.

    2. Another opportunity comes up, but they are only offering $300. $300!!! Um... no thanks. We're not suckers.

    3. Drummer from my other band has a gig we could easily do, but then decides to stay at home with his wife.

    Next year will be different!

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