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Gig Report: Southern Roots at American Legion Post #2

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Moonrider
(@moonrider)
Posts: 1305
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OK - now that I've slept 12 hours, and had my breakfast of coffee, pain meds, and brandy soaked fruitcake ( Wooooooo, Christmas! LOL!), it's time for the last Gig Report of the year.

We were at American Legion Post #2 in Petersburg, VA. it's called the J. Thompson Wyatt post, but I think it should be called the "Party Animal Post," cuz that's what these Vets were. We started with a crowd of about 300, and with late arrivals it peaked at about 400. Normally, the older Vets will head out about 10:30 or so. Not these guys and gals, they were with us right until the last song and the encores (yes - encores.)

It was pretty obvious these folks were there to party from the get-go. Normally we do a pair of "not on the setlist" songs to finish our sound check (about 30 minutes from the actual show start) and make sure the monitor mixes( we have 3 monitor mixes - stage left, stage right, and drummer's mix ) are ok. We wander into "Working Man Blues" and the dance floor packs :shock: We make a few adjustments and crank up "Under the Boardwalk" and we have a floor full of shaggers (That's a DANCE, you Brits!)

Once the show started, it didn't matter what we played. There's a group of dancers for every single song. Cheers at the beginnings, hoots and hollers in the solos and smiles everywhere you looked.

Speaking of dancers, we had one young lady that copped some Candy Johnson moves (Candy was the "shimmy" dancer in four Annette Funicello / Frankie Avalon beach movies.) I heard our bass player "glitch" in a song - looked over and he had a classic "deer in the headlights" look. This young lady had planted herself directly in front of him, caught his eye, and put all her assets in motion so to speak. It was . . . pretty impressive to watch. He most definitely got an eyeful.

As the night went on, the crowd and the band both let their hair down a bit. They teased us with requests all night and we teased right back.

"Free Bird!" Mel: "You won't like Doug's free bird. He'll need three steps head start if you insist" - then rip into "Gimme Three Steps"

"Wooly Bully" Jeff: "I'm bald! Don't go there!"

"Wipe Out!" Me: "Not tonight, dear. I'm working."

. . . and so on throughout the evening and the last song "Wonderful Tonight"

Then the lighters lit up and they started chanting "More! More! More!" . . . and our faithful wag shouted for about the fourth time "Wooly Bully!" Mel says "You asked for it. Remember - these guys have no idea how the song really goes, and these guys have never ever played it." (Absolutely true statement!) He launches into the opening chords and we traipse along in his wake with a totally improvised version, that rocked the house (thanks to vast experience with the endless permutations of 1-4-5)

It was a great way to finish up the year for us

Playing guitar and never playing for others is like studying medicine and never working in a clinic.

Moondawgs on Reverbnation

 
Posted : 23/12/2012 6:19 pm
jwmartin
(@jwmartin)
Posts: 1435
Noble Member
 

Maybe I need to check into some American Legions around here. Sounds like a blast to play. Do y'all get paid or work for tips?

Bass player for Undercover

 
Posted : 23/12/2012 11:47 pm
Moonrider
(@moonrider)
Posts: 1305
Noble Member
Topic starter
 

Maybe I need to check into some American Legions around here. Sounds like a blast to play. Do y'all get paid or work for tips?

Depending on the event and venue size (bigger venue = more and heavier PA cabs), we charge $450 to $600 USD. We'll generally pull in another $100 bucks or so in the tip jar, and the post commanders at both posts kicked in yet another $100 on top of that this year. Plus free food and (soft) drinks for lagniappe.

If the members like you and your show, they're really nice gigs to get, and you can count on regular repeat business from them. We also add a little kicker that if a venue is willing to contract for multiple shows then they get a nice break on pricing. We'd rather book three shows for $450 each, than one show for $600. We know we have $1350+ coming in and they know they just saved $450 on entertainment costs

Playing guitar and never playing for others is like studying medicine and never working in a clinic.

Moondawgs on Reverbnation

 
Posted : 24/12/2012 3:46 am
Dan Lasley
(@danlasley)
Posts: 2118
Noble Member
 

Maybe I need to check into some American Legions around here...

Ditto!

 
Posted : 24/12/2012 3:00 pm
Tommy Guns
(@tommy-guns)
Posts: 314
Honorable Member
 

That's an AWESOME gig report!!!! Love playing to those kinda crowds!! I'm sure you'll have more of them in 2013!!! :D

Ambition is the path to success...persistence is the vehicle you arrive in!!!

 
Posted : 26/12/2012 8:30 pm