2004-08-15 19:24:05 UTC
how these will turn out and there are so many variables that can go wrong
like the stage setup and sharing of gear, the sound company and the
attitudes of the headliner. Luckily, everything went well this time.
The venue was a multi-level outdoor club on the water at Lake Texoma (TX/OK
border) with the partially covered stage literally over the water. We
showed up around 4pm and the sound company was still tweaking the backline
for the headliner so we stood around and bs'ed with the crew. The sound co
guys were cool, no attitudes. It turns out that one of our ex sound techs
had worked for this company and they shared our dislike for the guy. I'm
just glad he wasn't still working for them. They had huge monitors all over
the stage, including 2 big wedges for each guy up front and for the drummer.
For mains they had 8 dual 18's for subs and 8 dual 15's and horns for tops.
A total of sixteen 18" subs, sixteen 15" full range and 8 compression driver
horns. The venue was pretty large and outdoors so I guess they felt they
needed plenty of sound reinforcement. There was a monitor engineer with a
monitor board set up on stage left. FOH was about 50' out in front and they
had a light tech as well for the dozens of PAR64 cans that would cook us
The Georgia Satellites flew in with only guitars, so the sound co had a
rented backline for them. Marshall JCM900 stacks (yuck), a nice flamed
maple DW drum kit, an Ampeg "refrigerator" 8x10 cab with head for the bass
and a basic piano keyboard. After the backline was set and the Sats did a
little soundcheck (they seemed like they had been drinking for a while
already) we set up our gear in front of their gear. Luckily the sound co
had extended the venue stage with an additional 8'x24' stage addition in the
front. We set up and soundchecked by around 6-6:30 and the show didn't
start until 8:15, so we had some time to kill.
Yo Howldog, I talked to Ricky and told him you said hi. He knew right
away who you were and said he knew you and "the chick singer". He seemed
like a pretty laid back guy. They had definitely been drinking before the
This is the good part. They sent us over to the restraunt and fed us
for free (steaks and seafood). After we ate they took us to our dressing
room, which turned out to be a suite overlooking the lake complete with
bedroom, living room, bathroom and kitchen. The fridge was stocked with
beer and booze and there were snacks and stuff. We wished we had gone up
there earlier but it's probably best that we didn't because who knows what
shape we'd be in by show time. When it was time to go on they sent a golf
cart for us to take us to the stage. I think I want this at all shows now,
there's something about being driven around on a golf cart that I like.
The crowd was a little smaller than I expected when the show started,
but they kept coming in and by the middle of the show it was pretty full.
We went on around 8:15 and our first set was decent but nothing to get
excited about. We took a short break and went back on around 9:45 to a much
fuller house. Our second set was good. Of course I had put the better
material in the second set, but we were just playing better than we had in
the first set as well. A lot of times when you open for a national act the
headliner won't even come out of their rooms until the opening act is
finished, but about halfway through our second set the Satellites were
hanging out over in the "backstage" area, tuning up and getting ready. We
had the crowd going and the last 3 songs were back to back winners with the
place on their feet.
When we ended the crowd was yelling for more but we had to get our gear
off the stage and let the Satellites take the stage. We tore down out gear
(with the help of the sound co stage crew) and cleared the stage in 7
minutes. For a 6 piece band this has got to be a record, at least for us it
is. As we were loading off gear the Satellites guitar player commented to
another band member "shit, we have to follow that" which was a definite
compliment IMO. We definitely didn't hold back anything in the second set.
As soon as the Georgia Satellites took the stage the crowd was on their
feet, the light show was better and the FOH cranked up the sound. It's a
shame, but the opening act never gets more than half of the "show" because
it's always held in reserve for the headliner. I understand why, I just
wish we could have gotten the whole "show" too, but that's not for opening
bands. The bass player for the Sats played a clear Dan Armstrong bass. The
guitar player had a purple PRS Custom and some sort of odd looking guitar as
a backup, plus a clear Dan Armstrong guitar tuned open. The Sats played a
few originals but even more covers (Stones, Chuck Berry, Eddie Cochran,
George Jones, etc...). To be completely honest, they didn't play as well as
they could have, probably due to the alcohol. They had energy on stage that
carried the show, and the bass player knew how to talk to the crowd, but the
playing wasn't up to par with a headliner. I don't know if it was just an
off show for them or not, but I was a little disappointed in their set.