1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Whatever Can Go Wrong Will

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by Petary791, Mar 18, 2005.

  1. Petary791


    Feb 20, 2005
    Michigan, USA
    So I just had a gig about 30 minutes ago. I'm packin up everything, and I packed extras of (almost) EVERYTHING. I even brought duct tape for God's sake. So i'm warmin up (about an hour before the show) and I wasn't even shredding anything and my E-string goes really loose. I'm thinking, "Oh ****, *** just happened." I look down and my E-string is droopy. I tried jamming it back in the hole (STFU!) but it was no use. I packed everything but extra strings. Now I will have an extra string for now on.

    Whatever can go wrong will.
  2. Ahh, another incidence of Murphy's Law; and on St. Paddy's Day too. :meh:

    I'm a firm believer in O'Leary's correllary to Murphy's Law which states:

    Murphy was an optomist :p
  3. rfalter


    Jul 20, 2004
    Pasadena, MD
    We played a gig once where the club owner tells us 20 mins before we go on that our snake cable needs to be taped down in this one area. Nobody has any duct tape, so our soundguy runs to HD at the speed of light and returns with a couple of rolls. We go on 15 mins late. We ALL have duct tape in our gig bags now ...
  4. xshawnxearthx


    Aug 23, 2004
    new jersey
    extra strings should def be in your tool box
  5. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Indianapolis, IN
    wow, I would have NEVER left the house unprepared. It's just not professional.

    This is just a short list of crap that you HAVE to bring with you... or risk be ridiculed, or not called back on a gig:

    • extra strap (even a cheapy-one)
    • duct tape
    • one FULL set of strings
    • pen or pencil, w/scrap paper
    • spare sox
    • spare shirt (or 2 if you sweat profusely)
    • double the amount of cables you would usually use (if you use effects or not)
    • Philips and Flat screw-drivers
    • plenty o' 9volts
  6. wingnutkj


    Mar 27, 2003
    Good list, j-raj. I think I'll add a pair of socks to my bag-o-tricks I take to gigs.

    In addition to the list, I've got the following in my bag-o-tricks:

    - Earplugs. I usually have my own set, plus a few packs of bog-standard foam plugs in my bag for giving out to anyone who needs them.

    - Tuner. I've got one on my pedalboard, but having a spare is useful. Just be sure to it's still there at the end of the night.

    - Leatherman tool. Actually one of the cheaper copies, but it's got the pliers/cutters, knife blade, scissors and a 12 part hex screwdriver set, so it's ideal for gigs.

    - Wire cutters. Proper ones, because the leatherman clone isn't really up to handling bass strings.

    - roll of velcro cable ties.

    - 4 socket extension cable

    - band stickers

    - torch (one of those credit-card sized LED ones)

    - A couple of CDs of music to play between bands.
  7. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Indianapolis, IN
    thanks wingnut,

    good list as well, I like that you mentioned tuner... I actually use a pedal tuner, Boss TU-2 (so I can mute and tune on the fly), but I get a great deal on those Korg Chromatic CA-30's... So I put one in each of my gig bags and one stuffed into my SKB rack case... I have 6 in total. These are just back ups and lenders for the un prepared members of the band or cats I hire.

    My sense of pitch has gotten crazy good in the last 20 years, so if I sense that a someone is off... I'll motion to the cat and then point to ground where my pedal tuner is and ask if they need to borrow one.... Or if I'm in a bad mood I'll just throw a CA-30 at someone (usually a guitarist), seriously!... It tends to happen on rock and blues gigs more than fusion and jazz gigs. :D
  8. bassman314

    bassman314 I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process...

    Mar 13, 2005
    Bay Area, CA
    I keep the following in all my cases/gig-bags:

    20' cable
    3' cable
    Phillip and flat head screw driver
    hex wrenches
    String cutter/winder
    Needle nose pliers
    regular pliers
    Roll of electrical tape
    Extra strings
    pen and pencil
    Leather Strap (w/ Dunlops for my EB's)

    All of these have come in handy at some point.

    I also have a second gig bag for my music, extra cables, etc. that I keep my soldering Iron, solder, de-solder braid, wire cutters, extra tubes, DMM, 9-volts, and cleaning supplies... should prolly add a roll of duct tape :D BTW those EHX pine boxes are awesome for storing stuff like tools, tubes, etc. in a gig bag and have them be safe.
  9. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Indianapolis, IN
    you could definitely pimp someone's ride with that list.
  10. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    My corollary to Murphy's Law:

    The more intense and foul the odor of the last flatus you expelled, the more beautiful the woman will be that walks in on you right then.
  11. Or someone's bass :D
  12. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Indianapolis, IN
    man, I know about that...only too well.

    I used to hate those silent and uncomfortable elevator rides, as well.
  13. form52


    Mar 17, 2005
    I couldn't count how many times I've hauled two or more bags full of stuff into a gig or studio and had the guitar player make some stupid comment like.."Why do you think you need all that stuff?"
    Only to have him come up to me at some point later on and ask if he could borrow something. (I also need to add this to the 'stupid things non-bass players say' thread)


    The bag(s) change contents pretty often depending on if I'm going to a studio or a show, but I simply would feel strange if I didn't include the following at all times.

    Tape (both Duct and electrical)
    a soldering iron and solder
    a metal nail file (you'd be suprised how often this thing comes in handy)
    at least eight 9v's. (i hate that basses now are being made with 18v preamps/pickups. as if worrying about one battery per bass wasn't enough)
    two AAA batteries for spare tuner
    Spare tuner
    Ten 3-5ft cables
    Five 20ft cables
    Two spare sets of Strings (better safe than sorry)
    Screw Drivers (various types and sizes)
    Hex Keys (various sizes)
    a knife
    ear plugs (mine and a box of cheap foam ones for people who never seem to remember to get their own (guitar players))
    20ft roll of 1/2" velcro
    scissors (to cut strips of velcro when my cord wraps vanish (again... guitar players))
    a stapler (if I need to create new cord wraps)
    Two SM58 mics and one SM57
    my own Direct box (most small clubs don't have their own or the ones they do have are ancient and nearly useless)
    Two sets of GUITAR Strings. (couldn't count how many times I've played gigs and the guitar player didn't have a spare set.. and .. sure enough.. Murphy rears his ugly head)

    I'm sure there's more, but I can't think of it without actually looking into my bags.
  14. Petary791


    Feb 20, 2005
    Michigan, USA
    Hey everybody thanks for the lists; but I play in a local band that has like 30 minute sets. :p I should get some more stuff though.

    I need a steady job.
  15. wingnutkj


    Mar 27, 2003
    :) I forgot about that - I've usually got a spare set of strings and a capo hidden away, but I never tell the guitarist, because then he'd have no incentive to remember anything.
  16. bassman314

    bassman314 I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process...

    Mar 13, 2005
    Bay Area, CA
    I have capos for me... *L* I don't know HOW many times we've changed keys... 2 seconds before worship starts... so I'm like.. I don't want to have to come up w/ my bass lines all over again on the fly, so I cheat :D

    Yes... I suck *L*
  17. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Indianapolis, IN
    naw man, you don't suck... it's called gig-smarts, like street-smarts, but it's knowledge that you gain from being on gigs...cool inventive concept.

    THe only thing about Capos to remember is that your intonation will gradually get sharper as you go higher up on the neck... even for g#$tarist. It's just a good, quick and easy way to jump on a transposed piece. I use this mental capo. :D ... granted it's intonation isn't perfect either.
  18. I mostly do the 1 hour set/ 2-3 band show thing as well. To bring a frickin' duffle bag full of stuff is overkill. There's always a used set of strings with each of my basses, that way I don't have to stretch strings too much and they're already trimmed. I have a Leatherman tool with a pliers, knife, and screwdrivers built into it. I use a pick so I carry a bunch in each case, have some taped into my rack, have a big stash in the car and usually grab a bunch on the way out. I have fuses taped into the rack, More often than not, I'll have an extra instrument cable. Everything I bring is either in the rack or in the instrument case.

    When I do guitar gigs, it's a little different. I'm more likely to break a guitar string, so not only do I bring spare strings, but I bring a spare guitar as well. Because my amp is a head/cab setup I bring a bag or case with cables, pedals and such. Since I use one of the older Marshalls with the removable impedance selector, I keep a jumper wire taped to the back of the amp with the impedance diagram written on a separate piece of duck tape.

    To bring strings for a guitarist is really kinda wrong. OTOH, I used to keep a drum key with my guitar stuff. :)
  19. bassman314

    bassman314 I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process...

    Mar 13, 2005
    Bay Area, CA
    As I've gotten better, I've noticed I've needed it less and less.. part of getting to know my fretboard better... I think the last time I used it, it was 'cause we switched from like F to F# on a piece (NO clue why.... our piano player can be odd sometimes) and suddenly I'm like.. huh?? This literally was like right before the service started... "We're gonna place this in F# 'cause I don't think the bass (singer) can hit those low notes this morning.... yeah *L* whatever... He and I have competitions on who can make the lower note...
  20. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Indianapolis, IN
    Wow that's gotta be nice... I can't remember when I have played less than 3 set gigs/1 band... The recent few gigs that I play in Buckhead (ATL's Party Central), you start at 10pm play straight till close, somewhere around 2:30am no breaks!, actually that's what I have to do tonight!!!!... Cause if you stop, the party-goers leave and go to a club next door or down the street...

    Man, like 10 years ago when I was doing casino, hotel gigs and realbook stuff... it isn't uncommon to do 4-6 set days... 4 days on, 3 days off... bring a lunch... and a dinner. :p