Last night we played, what I believe, is the most powerful and tightest gig we have ever played as Manning. I could hear all the band really well thanks to rather good monitoring (Nightingale Audio Systems bless ya) and without a doubt the new line-up of the band was so together it was frightening!
I’m not sure how we did on merchandise, but we came away with a nice lump sum from the door take which will now be put in the kitty to fund America.
This got me thinking… and I’m sorry to go on here because I did say I wasn’t going to mention a previous band ever again, but in the context of things I believe this is warranted…
In all the time I was in a previous band I piled almost £4000 into recording an album I get very little recognition on and absolutely no money out of – so much so that I now actually disowned the album (I’m not proud of it and I don’t think it shows me as a good bassist), plus it cost us £2000+ to tour Europe… and for what?
After all that gigging you would think the band could do better, but it was like climbing the wrong escalator when so many other (poorer) bands seemed to have got on the right one… you might get there eventually, but you’ll be physically and mentally drained by the time you do, and along the way you might have to stop for a breather – at which point you’re sliding backwards all the time and other people are passing you on the other escalator.
I realised in the end that it wasn’t going anywhere, except all over Europe paying loads of money to be someone elses roadies in exchange for a token support slot… and when you try doing it on your own it’s hard… and yes, you’ll play in front of 10 people in a place in Switzerland with the arc of fear firmly planted in front of the stage.
Running around wiping has-been bands arses and collecting them from airports didn’t work either. One Firefest we were the bitches of Gotthard on the promise of a gig… Yep… Opening slot at the pre-show party… nice packed house, but no-one gave a shit. Really. They didn’t. And we provided gear… upstairs… in Nottingham. Yep… they had our number.
We played with Great White… yep… gear bitches again. They turned up after the stage was set, played, annoyed the crap out of me (bass man – why did you insist on keep covering up the ventilation fan on top of my amp and then wonder why the thermal cut out tripped?) and gave us precisely crap all… the measly 4 bottles of water and multi pack of crisps as Shepherds Bush Empire was crap – there were 1000+ in there at over £12 a ticket!
So I suppose you could say in 9 years we floated. Never going up the evolutionary tree, but never really going down either. One final thing occurs though – I regularly watch Youtube, Flickr etc. because no matter how many thousands of people you have on Myspace, you’re still only collecting names. Real fans post fan videos and fan pics on the web… fake fans just say “oh thanks for the add”.
I definitely put this episode to bed at the right time. Farewell.
Next stop…. RoSfest!