Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Nerves of Steel: The Aftermath

I thought it would be fun to make a quick list of the funny things that happened last night at the Party in the Park (for another interesting commentary, check out what Ninja had to say), although I would like to state for the record that the estimated attendance, at least from where we were standing, was entirely overestimated. Nevertheless, here, in all its glory, is The Doc's Party in the Park Memories.

5:00 - Show up for sound check. It is drizzling and the stage is not yet set up. We are informed that our 15 minute sets are more like 10 minutes, and that we should return to the stage by about 6:15 or so and do our sound check.

5:40 - Burgers and fries in the beer tent. Relatively decent.

6:05 - Rain stops. Unfortunately, my thermos leaks all over my bag, spilling on my books and ensuring that my hoodie smells like green tea and lemon juice for the rest of the night.

6:15 - Return to stage, other band is still soundchecking. Nobody knows what's supposed to happen with us; we end up warming up behind a Ryder truck while the other group soundchecks.

6:40 - Still no soundcheck. I begin to get nervous.

6:50 - We get our microphones and sing one song for our warmup. We're also told that we're not allowed on the stage when we're performing because they didn't allow any room for us up there when they're setting the next bands up. With no monitors and little visibility, I begin to get even more nervous.

7:00 - "Party" officially starts. Crowd = 6 people.

7:15 - The end of our first set. We manage to corral about 35 people onto the lawn, then turn the stage over to Global Country featuring Mike Goutchie, who put on a very crisp and well-played show.

7:16 - Ninja: "What a gong show!"

7:35 - We get a group photo taken, and then another with Katie Mission just before she goes on stage.
Astro: "It's the same pose as the last picture, except there's a girl in it."
Ninja: "It's just like all of our pictures. Except I usually use PhotoShop."

7:45 - Doc: "Does that guy have a joint? I can't smell it, but it looks like a joint."
Barber: "No, it was just a rolled ciagarette."
Ninja: "Dude, even I knew it wasn't a joint."
Doc: "How many have you seen?"
Ninja: "...one."
Jago: "And it was with PhotoShop."

7:50 - We get our cheque. Let's blow this popsicle stand!

7:52 - Clouds start rolling in again, menacing figures on the horizon.
Doc: "It's gonna rain."
Barber: "I'm an optimist - it's not going to rain."
Ninja: "I'm an Optimist Prime - it's not going to rain. Now let's transform and roll out."

8:00 - Start of second set. Crowd = approximately 200 people.

8:05 - 11 drunk Estonians show up, start conga line to "Istanbul (Not Constantinople)".

8:20 - End of second set; Le Fuzz start late due to technical difficulties. They are very good; a little mellow for a party, but very talented and play a wide variety of World Music.

8:21 - We get photograph taken with two people from the Czech Republic who really enjoyed our sets. They say we should put on a show there: "You would sell out stadium!" I tell them we'll come if they front the plane fare.

8:22 - Doc's first beer. Free beer - we're kind of like rock stars.

8:23 - RAIN. People abandon the lawn and head to the beer tents, except for the Estonians, who stay and dance under the stage awning. Ninja and Astro join them and proceed to get soaking wet. The rest of us hide in the Ryder truck.

8:52 - Le Fuzz Frontman: "Vive Le France!"
Estonians: "WOOOOO!"

9:00 - Rain stops, Kow begins third set as Captain Tractor begin setting up. Crowd = 12 people.

9:10 - Kow stops to allow the guys to finish their set up, but they tell us to keep going. So we do, except they keep sound-checking over top of us, drumming and slamming out loud guitar chords and counting '1-2-3' into the mics, so we can't really hear ourselves and do a pretty piss poor job. Luckily, the crowd can't hear us either.

9:20 - Kow ends set, crowd = 150 people. Captain Tractor starts. We are not rock stars.

9:22 - Someone kicks a five foot high blue ball in the field; people start kicking and pushing. Doc: "There's gonna be a fist fight in about 5 minutes."

9:25 - Doc's second beer. Free beer just tastes better.

9:26 - Ten-year-old kid in red hat knocked on ass by blue ball.

9:50 - Estonians, the life of the party, enlist the Canadians and begin a huge dance party at the front of the stage.

9:55 - Captain Tractor sing 'The North Saskatchewan Pirate'; Kow joins the dance party.

10:00 - Kow's last set. Crowd = over 1200 people.
Jago: "How many people have been here since the begining?"
Crowd: "WOOOO!"
Jago: "Bullshit!!"
Ninja: "Why do we even give him a mike?"

10:15 - We end our set, which you could actually hear. Crowd seemed to like it just fine, especially the Canadian-Estonian Dancers. I even got a hug from a Canadian gold medal winner (Volleyball) and a drunk gymnast from Kamloops. Bomba starts and seriously rock the place out. It was incredible; I have to see them live again.

10:16 - Doc's third beer. (Hey, I don't have to sing any more.)

10:19 - Drunk Kamloops gymnast flashes Bomba.

10:21 - Ninja: "Jago, how many beers have you had?"
Jago: "...two."
Doc: "Have another."

10:25 - Drunk Kamloops gymnast flashes the crowd.

10:26 - Doc's fourth beer. Mmmm.

10:30 - Go out and dance to Bomba. Did I mention that they were incredible? Meet an Australian softball player named Ken who quite liked our sets, and congratulated us on a job well-done.

11:00 - Bomba finishes up, and we send the crowd away. "You don't have to go home, but you can't stay here. You know; noise bylaws..."

11:05 - We do an encore for the only two people who were cheering for it, including - yes - the drunk Kamloops cheerleader. When we are done, the other girl offers us sexual favours. I am reminded why I typically stay away from drunk people.

All in all, it was a fun night, full of dancing, great music, and some free munchables. As for Kow, we had a good time, and the crowd - and the other musicians - rather enjoyed us. A fun time, and a good warm-up for Fringe, even if my pre-show jitters were all for naught, and I caught a head cold from performing in the rain. Ah, the life of a faux rock star.


Nezbitt said...

What? You guys didn't learn from the "dead babies" Fringe fiasco? Never give Jago a mike!!

Jago said...

In my defense, I'll only say that it honestly, in my mind, fit the mood of the crowd. When one woman offers us her "vagina," I can justify a quick cuss.

As it was said, there were only six people at the beginning of the evening, and I did correct myself to the three volunteers who WERE there at 7 pm.

Sylvana said...

Sounded like you had a great time.

Aldon Bee said...

Jeez, man you guys get all the groupies!!

The Doc said...

Aldon, I think you're missing the word "worst" in there somewhere...