The Rookies

Yacht Rock played a private party for Yahoo last night at Andrews Upstairs in Buckhead.  What used to be a cool room to play has morphed through the years into a pretty horrible sounding space.  The stage at one point was kind of a cool thing with lots of different levels and spaces…now it's a triangle in the corner, and the low end mush is deafening.  It's a tough room for even the best (Kip Conner) sound guys;  we showed up to two people setting up who admitted they'd never run sound for a band before.  The front-of-house person works in the office for the company!  Wow.  Here's a twenty-something inputs…mix it!  Who sends two rookies out to mix a seven piece band for a private event in a club with a questionable PA?

As you expect, we had a difficult night.  The set up/soundcheck took over three hours (when we set up and run our own sound with the band's PA, it takes an hour and a half).  They had to hold the opening of the doors while we continued dealing with feedback.  Bad channels on the mixer, bad channels on the snake, bad cables…ouch!  We probably would have never played the gig if it hadn't been for Greg Lee and Ganesh Giri Jaya taking over and plugging everything in for them.

The weird thing was that a third sound guy (who seemed to know something about what he was doing) did finally show up and help solve things, but as soon as the party got up and running, he left (or fled).  Any issues that came up after the first twenty minutes were basically left unfixed.

So anyway, that was weird.  I don't know who was to blame for that, but it made things difficult/slightly embarrassing.

Mark Dannells at sound check...

The smoke machine worked really well.  We were totally fogged in at one point.

As far as our performance, I can't really say.  The stage sound was a mess--there was a big low mids roar--it sounded like we were playing next to a giant dishwasher.  On top of that, the monitor mixes were forever changing--in the first set, Bencuya's keyboards got louder and louder on stage.  In the second set, vocals would completely vanish from the monitors mid-song.  I wonder what it was like out front?

I guess things were OK.  The party attendees seemed pretty happy right from the first note;  they even demanded an encore.  Yahoo!

May we never play this room again…

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