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QuestionMark

Worst Gig, Part 2

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Awhile back there was a posting string about one’s worst gig. At the time, I did not participate because I felt that all of my gigs had always been enjoyable...even to be so lucky to have any gig seeming to not be worthy of bit..ch..’n

 

But, yesterday’s gig made me think of that posting string as it was my worst gig because:

 

-a guy who juggles walked right next to me (why is beyond my wildest nightmare) and, started juggling as I was playing music, and to top it off every time I would complete a song, the ratchet juggler would stop juggling, making me feel (or appear) like I was the juggler’s music DJ or something. Which, to him, I apparently was.

 

-balls kept flying out from the juggler, potentially hitting me as I was playing.

 

-the whole situation definitely was making it hard for me to focus on my playing. Talk about distractions...

 

-since 3/4 of my set is jazz music (the other 1/4 singer-songwriter stuff), I found that since I can change the rhythm whenever I feel like it with my jazz stuff, I found myself at times changing my rhythm, just to throw the juggler off as I figured he probably was juggling to the rhythm I was playing. Sure enough, it messed him up, but it didn’t stop him.

 

-when I couldn’t take it anymore and took a break and went over to the manager and told her that juggler guy doesn’t belong here, asked if he was also hired, told her it is taking away from my music...I was told he wasn’t also hired, but that it’s okay he’s juggling because the people like it...which basically meant I should just keep playing because I was a hired hand. So much for my music being my art...so, I went back and played, basically looking the other way but highly distracted.

 

-when I finally reached my last song, about an hour and a half later, I announced it would be my last song, and the obnoxious juggler abruptly left. Two minutes later, a lady walked up to me and tipped me $5. I couldn’t tell if she had enjoyed my music or finally realized the juggler and I were not an act or if it was out of pity that I had persevered through the juggler hacking my gig.

 

My worst ever gig for sure. I felt like a circus performer.

 

I am only writing this so the gig can have some positive meaning to me. Meaning, hoping my relaying it will get a few laughs from y’all in my retrospective telling of it. And, to lighten myself up a bit this morning from yeaterday’s downer of it all.

 

One can’t make this stuff up!

 

QM aka Jazzmam Jeff

Edited by QuestionMark

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Well... I would post about gig miscues I have had...

 

But

 

frankly

 

 

I cant even....

 

Juggler?

 

Clowns?

 

Two things that scare me... 1) Nuclear War. 2) Carnies... circus folk... small hands... smell like cabbage....

 

You will win this thread.

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One ball actually hit my ukelele that I had placed on the floor next to me as I play a few songs on it during my set. Ukes and jugglers.. it, I’m guilty too of helping to make it circus-like...

 

QM aka Jazzman Jeff

Edited by QuestionMark

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I'm impressed with the changing tempo strategy... may not have fixed the situation, but you got a little bit of your own in there :) Not sure how flexible you are in your gig choices, but I would probably cover that issue (make sure it didn't become an issue again) before I signed up for any more gigs at that place.

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Yes, Jazzman, Sal’s right- Going to be tough to top The Juggler. Truly a lesson in go with the flow. My own worst gig experience pales in comparison.

 

Maybe the juggler saw it as Freeform jazz. Coulda been worse? Just be glad you did not have this interpreter sharing the stage with you:

 

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=FWHIkdx0dRw

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Yes, Jazzman, Sal’s right- Going to be tough to top The Juggler. Truly a lesson in go with the flow. My own worst gig experience pales in comparison.

 

Maybe the juggler saw it as Freeform jazz. Coulda been worse? Just be glad you did not have this interpreter sharing the stage with you:

 

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=FWHIkdx0dRw

 

 

I seen that recently , is it not the sign of a world gone mad ?

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You did well not to tell him to feck off

 

I spent half the time I continued playing thinking of doing exactly that.

 

 

The other half of the time I kept thinking of just walking off.

 

I am amazed I didn’t put either into action!

 

QM aka Jazzman Jeff

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I seen that recently , is it not the sign of a world gone mad ?

 

It is a sign the world has gone mad, especially as the heavy metal music the band was playing in the video was better off not being heard and the sign interpreter (if she was even real) was too kind in her signing to how the music actually sounded. But, even if she was a real signer, at least I can rationalize her. A juggler, no. Plus, in my situation, the juggler was literally right next to me to my right hand side and there was no actual stage.

 

QM aka Jazzman Jeff

Edited by QuestionMark

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This is one of the most bizarre things I've ever heard.

 

we've had to keep a few harp players from getting to close to stage area now and then, but a Juggler?? What the he11!!

Edited by kidblast

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Yes, Jazzman, Sal’s right- Going to be tough to top The Juggler. Truly a lesson in go with the flow. My own worst gig experience pales in comparison.

 

Maybe the juggler saw it as Freeform jazz. Coulda been worse? Just be glad you did not have this interpreter sharing the stage with you:

 

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=FWHIkdx0dRw

 

 

Haha! I jut watched the new Jim Jeffries special on Netflix (he's a pretty offensive comedian) and he talked about how it throws him off when there is a sign language interpreter at any of his shows.

Edited by sbpark

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The juggler may not have been aware of how rude he was, especially if he plays there regularly and the owners like it. He may do that all the time and since it's allowed, he doesn't think it's an issue. Still, unless I knew ahead of time that his interference/or-joining-my-performance was part of the deal I'd have also said something. I play the Kansas City River Market each month and at times you just have to be a butthole to some people, especially if they see you are drawing a crowd.

Edited by MissouriPicker

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Am I the only one here wondering exactly what/where/what kind of venue/situation this gig occurred in?! Random jugglers who weren't booked, but show and just perform for the heck of it for well over an hour?! At least he was only juggling balls and not chainsaws, flaming torches, machetes, etc.

Edited by sbpark

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It was pretty large farmers market. They booked me about six months ago. I was hired to play there a few times last year and it was a pretty good one. Someone there told me that the prior week he had shown up and apparently he just did again when I was hired to play there, yesterday. The vendor person who told me was there the prior week told me that last week he brought a boom box or something with him. Apparently, yesterday he thought I was his boom box. Although, it’s a good thing he didn’t also have his boom box playing yesterday as I was playing. That would have been wayyyy invasive.

 

I have been hired to play at other street fairs/markets, nothing like this has ever happened.

 

Life can be a surprise (or test of some sort) at times, I guess.

 

QM aka Jazzman Jeff

Edited by QuestionMark

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This afternoon I played another gig, this one on the patio of a restaurant during the restaurant’s lunch hour. No jugglers, clowns, or other disruptive characters to my music.. What a joy to perform and be able to again focus on the music I was playing. Life goes on...

 

QM aka Jazzman Jeff

Edited by QuestionMark

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I am quite certain I would have told him to find another spot, and then, if he persisted, I’d have just packed up and left. Let them keep the money...nothing is worth that .

Rb

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I once saw a very famous singer grab his (heavy base) mic stand and poke this very annoying customer right in the face with the base of it - everyone cheered as the bouncers took the nuisance for a date with the kerb out front!

 

It has crossed my mind many times, but I have never done that.

 

It has also crossed my mind what a wonderful sound the national steel body reso would make as I swung it to the side of a nuisance's head! But no, we just watch it all happen, don't we?

 

One of the worst ones was when I was in a blues band playing at an outdoor gig and (we thought) we were doing well when the promoter guy decided our act needed spicing up and sent up one of the strippers that usually danced in between bands. We got asked to play a song we didn't really know all of, and vamped on the chorus over and over.....and over and over some more as the girl got stage fright and wouldn't strip. The promoter kept yelling out to her to go ahead, but no... The band and the tune we played fell in a heap and a bang crash ending. Stinker! Don't know what happened to the girl after that but we had a few songs to go and we never got it back together, sounded terrible......embarrassed.

 

 

 

BluesKing777.

Edited by BluesKing777

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BkuesKing777-you’ve got me thinking maybe what you experienced with a stripper while you were playing music may have been even lower on the totem pole than the juggler I experienced!!! Although, did I tell you the juggler was dressed like he was out of Alladin? With MC Hammer-type pants, to add to your visualization. Still your stripper on stage and all that occurred may have been an even lower on the totem pole musical performing experience...although it does have shades of the legendary Hamburg experience of the Beatles. Mine, meanwhile, was out of Barnum and Bailey/Ringling Bros.

 

One can’t make this stuff up.

 

QM aka Jazzman Jeff

Edited by QuestionMark

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One ball actually hit my ukelele that I had placed on the floor next to me as I play a few songs on it during my set. Ukes and jugglers.. it, I'm guilty too of helping to make it circus-like...

 

QM aka Jazzman Jeff

 

 

 

 

Shoulda used the uke as a bat and tried for a homer, of coarse that would likely end gigs there, but what joy to be had LOL

 

Johnny

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BkuesKing777-you’ve got me thinking maybe what you experienced with a stripper while you were playing music may have been even lower on the totem pole than the juggler I experienced!!! Although, did I tell you the juggler was dressed like he was out of Alladin? With MC Hammer-type pants, to add to your visualization. Still your stripper on stage and all that occurred may have been an even lower on the totem pole musical performing experience...although it does have shades of the legendary Hamburg experience of the Beatles. Mine, meanwhile, was out of Barnum and Bailey/Ringling Bros.

 

One can’t make this stuff up.

 

QM aka Jazzman Jeff

 

 

Nope, can’t make this stuff up!

 

 

And....the roadie came up when we were packng up and gave me a cassette tape he made direct off the mixer with most of the set, including IT. (and......the guitar, me, sounds fantastic but of course, they forgot to put any bass guitar or bass drum in the mix! So I kept my copy and the others....trod on theirs!)

I could call it the ‘Blackmail Tapes’ - live to tape with the singer saying: ‘Come on, baby,’...over and over, hoping she would get on with the strip, but...no.

 

 

BluesKing777.

Edited by BluesKing777

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Wow. You have a lot of patience. That is really awkward, but I did get a chuckle out of it. Let's hope he doesn't show up at the next gig.

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I would have confronted him and made him quit. Period.

 

Redneck.

 

25 years ago I sold a 3 piece rock band to a strip club. Yep.

 

We played Classic/Southern Rock (and originals) while the show went on. It went off very well, the crowd dug it and we had plans to do it again but the drummers wife thought it was a really bad idea. I mean, for some reason she was relentless in her opposition. To the point that he folded.

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I would have confronted him and made him quit. Period.

 

Redneck.

 

25 years ago I sold a 3 piece rock band to a strip club. Yep.

 

We played Classic/Southern Rock (and originals) while the show went on. It went off very well, the crowd dug it and we had plans to do it again but the drummers wife thought it was a really bad idea. I mean, for some reason she was relentless in her opposition. To the point that he folded.

 

 

Haha. Nice work if you can get it

I’d have been looking for another drummer

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