Tuesday, May 6, 2008

The Gig That Wasn't

Now I have a new computer, I can actually read this blog without the multimedia content crashing my ancient PC. By the end of the week I should be on broadband, so I'll be able to participate fully with all the podbean stuff.

In the meantime, something I never blogged about at the time, The Gig That Wasn't.

In a dark, dark town, there was a dark dark street. In that dark dark street, there was a dark dark room. In that dark dark room there was a dark dark corner. And in that dark, dark corner was... well, me.

The gig was a double headliner at The Peel in Kingston, featuring Jump and band I'd gone there to see, Panic Room. I'd seen Panic Room's debut gig a week before way out in the sticks in Lydney Town Hall (If you've never been to Lydney, think 'one cow town'), and that was pretty good for a first gig. On the final date of their very short tour I was expecting them to be even better.

Disaster struck 20 minutes into Jump's set, when the sound went, and the room was plunged into darkness. Jump's lead singer somehow managed to keep the audience entertained for another half-hour, in which the the venue management discovered it wasn't the a blown fuse. The entire neighbourhood was without power. With the electricity company saying the power would probably not be back before midnight, it was match abandoned at that point. So I didn't get to see Panic Room.

Ironically, the only other time that the only music I've seen was 20 minutes of the support act was last September's gig by Fish in Manchester, in which Fish managed to lose his voice in between the soundcheck and the warmup, by which time the support band were already on stage. And Fish's band and Panic Room both share the same drummer. Is he cursed?

What saved the evening from being a total loss for me was unexpectedly meeting Heather Findlay of Mostly Autumn right after the abandonment of the gig. I have met her a few times before at Mostly Autumn or Odin Dragonfly gigs, but we'd only really exchanged pleasantries rather than had a serious conversation.

Anyone else got any 'gig cancelled at last moment' stories?


goneforeign said...

Christ, so what happened next with Ms Findlay? Are you going to let it hang there?
So where did that 'serious conversation' lead?
I hope it was a Mac.

treefrogdemon said...

I once saw half of the Everly Brothers...it was the first night of the tour and I'd somehow persuaded my dad to drive me to Walthamstow (from Potters Bar) AND to come back for me afterwards. But Don Everly had been taken ill that day and gone back to the States, so Phil was on his own; and it was really weird because Phil always sings the harmonies and he didn't actually know the tunes. Which sounded funny. Plus he kept looking anxiously to his right where Don should have been, obviously hoping he would suddenly reappear.

I profited from this experience many years later by winning an Everlys' rarities CD from the Mark Lamarr show, on the strength of knowing which Everly sings harmony.

DarceysDad said...

D'y'know, I don't think I've EVER had a gig cancelled on me at no notice?

There's been the usual re-arrangements due to "scheduling conflicts", injuries, band members leaving and so on, but none of it last minute. Gutted that Lyle Lovett never re-arranged his, but as that was almost certainly because of poor ticket sales (Shame on you, Yorkshire!) I'm resigned to never seeing him.

I've sat through some temporary power cuts, but none that have had a gig cancelled completely.

All in all I reckon that makes me statistically off-the-scale lucky.

In fact, looking at my wall here, I can only think of one the other way round - ten years ago Thunder had to cancel their Bradford show when (I think) singer Danny Bowes broke his leg. They did a signing-session at the local HMV as part-apology. A couple of biker types (who couldn't make the re-arranged show and were out of pocket for some unclear reason) were threatening to get seriously nasty until - in an extremely rare showing of both bravery and wit: I normally possess neither - I somehow defused the situation with my gratitude that I now COULD go to the show. The original date was whilst I was away getting married; my tour poster has "Cheers, Rich. See you after the wedding!" on it with everyone's signature.

Unfortunately they wouldn't go as far as playing Flawed To Perfection as the encore at the re-arranged gig, but you can't have everything!

Tim (Kalyr) said...

I wonder whether I should just leave that one hanging.

We talked of a mutual friend who was very seriously ill, and sadly has since died.

There's a song about him on their new album - don't anyone let you believe that a song is diminished if you know who it's about; it ain't true.

goneforeign said...

Sorry I was so flippant.

Tim (Kalyr) said...

Don't worry, you weren't to know. And the rest of the conversation was on far happier subjects; I also congratulated her impending new arrival due in September.

Blimpy said...

Mrs Blimpy Mcflah attended the Pixies glasgow gig about 92ish, where after 3 songs the crowd snapped the barrier at the front, and then caused the stage to collapse!!

End of gig, and their last Scots gig for over a decade, I think.