Monday, 14 December 2009
So, I came home a week earlier for Christmas to be able to play a local gig in Glastonbury for the Frost Fayre. They shut off the highstreet all day long and at the bottom of the street is a gazebo for local bands. We were the first full band to play, and there was a fair-sized crowd who had gathered. As soon as we started to play, it was evident we had taken a risk with the one-practice we'd had, not having played together for a good 6 months, but nobody made any shocking mistakes so we got away with it! The drum kit I was using was like something from school; there was one mic on the kick drum but that was all and the rest of it, or what could be heard, just sounded shocking. During our first song, there was a power cut to half of the stage. As we started our penultimate song, we were interrupted for someone to announce they were in fact now re-opening the road. So everybody watching had to crowd on the other side of the road and watch us through passing traffic. As we started our last song, we were again interrupted, this time asked to stop playing so they could move the entire stage and face it round the other way. I felt embarassed enough just sounding so rubbish playing such a cheap, unmiked kit; it sounds silly but a decent drum kit that was miked up would literally have transformed the entire sound. After we were stopped, with no intentions of carrying on anymore, the council apparently shut down the entire gig. There were many other bands waiting to play and lots of people waiting to hear them; disappointment and anger was rife. This is exactly the reason I hate doing gigs for people who don't know what they're doing; it's just embarassing for musicians who aspire to be professional, but get interrupted by hippies and power-hungry councillors. Anyway, I can't even be bothered to go into a whole thing about it now, I'm sure enough people will write to the local paper and nothing will be done. It's a shame, because it does give young and inexperienced bands a chance to showcase themselves to a decent crowd, as well as providing more local drive for some better-known bands, at a time where we should be encouraging and nurturing the talents of our youths and providing opportunities like this for them. The cliche is that young people attract bad press, but there are enough young people doing good to silence their 'critics' and who aren't dillusioned and angry ASBO-hunting stereotypical yobs. Don't get me wrong, Glastonbury has it's fair share of petty crime, but I'd like to see the powers that be who cancelled Saturday's celebration of young and local talent enforce their reign of unnecessarity in the more deprived cities of the Country; we should be grateful for the compliance and willingness of our young generation here, and encourage them to take part in more events that bring together the community, rather than re-open a road for a few drivers who can't take a short diversion whilst youngsters rule the streets of Glastonbury with guitars in their hands instead of knives.