Monday, July 16, 2007
SAMARKAND GIG BLOG: Madlab Saturday July 14, 2007
RYAN JEWELL + LARRY MAROTTA
Saturday, July 14 2007
Crikey, what a night. Where to start. When Brian J Mitchell contacted me out of the blue about doing a solo guitar set at this gig, I don't think anyone had in mind that I'd open and close the show in two different bands. But, um, yeah. Give me an inch and pretty soon I'm practicing my rock guitar moves AND my drum fills.
The planets aligned for the first Samarkand gig since January 1994. Michael Million was already planning on being in town for the weekend, so it worked out perfectly. He still remembers all of the songs & can play whatever instrument is required. We had one rehearsal on Friday night to get acquainted with the whole thing, the updated arrangements, the effects, the, uh, whatever. The pyro cues. Not really.
The magic night finally arrived & we all descended on Madlab. I hadn't been there in many years. I've only played one gig there. FZZY PMPR opening for Mark Gunderson's The Weird Lovemakers in January 2000. Madlab is a theater, not really a rock club. But I think we wedged our rock club stuff into it fairly well. My only beef is that we didn't have any monitors on the PA, so hearing myself sing was difficult. I'm gettIng ahead of myself.
To paraphrase Flight of the Conchords, attendance was over the triple digit mark. It was great to see all our peeps in the hiouse & especially being so vociferous.
So, yes, the magic night finally arrived & we all descended on Madlab, despite the suck-ass directions I gave everyone. Michael Bill & Ashley were already there when I got there at like 7:40. Then Michael Million & his sister Maureen arrived & then Brian Mitchell and Jerry Kranitz came out into the parking lot to greet us & show us the secret back loading door parking area thing. Which was very handy. Jerry of course does theee Aural Innovations & he's a nice guy, very friendly. Same with Brian, it was cool to finally meet both of them & find out that they're both pretty cool guys. It's nice when everyone's nice.
We supplied the PA, so we got that set up... then I began the nightmarish task of plugging in all of my crap! I still can't believe how many little individual things needed to be plugged into something else. I could probably put myself out of my misery & just load the entire Samarkand show onto a laptop & be done with it. But until that happens I have to carry a sequencer, synth, keyboard (just in case).... guitarwise, the Jaguar was the primary axe with the Silvertone tuned to DADGAD for "Obsessing." And the Steinberger was on the floor as a backup. Oh yeah, note to self: bring guitar stands next time.
Michael Million played Ray's used Ibanez bass through his new Pod floor effects, into Michael Bill's bass amp. My guitar rig let me down almost immediately, but I guess something had to give with all the little fiddly pieces requiring my attention.