Any advice for a fly in gig with no gear?

Discussion in 'Band Wagon' started by JustABluesGuy, Sep 12, 2016.

  1. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Friend of Leo's

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    I'm going to be sitting in with my cousin's band the end of this month on lead guitar and backing vocals (for the most part). I have a copy of the set list but will not be able to practice with them until the day before the gig.

    They do a mix of covers and a few originals, some of which I'm familiar with others not so much. I'm flying into Costa Rica for the show, so I plan to bring my own picks and fingers and not much else.

    If I am lucky I will be able to borrow a guitar and an amp. Last time I sat in with them I used one of their guitars when they weren't playing it (on mandolin). I wasn't able to do any "tweaking" to the sound other than adjusting the guitar's pots.

    Anyway, I'm just looking for advice on using strange gear, and playing new material without much practice time.

    Fortunately I'm very familiar with a few of the songs, but it's three sets of 13 songs each.

    They tend to do a good bit of arranging (and last minute key changes) so I am not going to be attempting any note for note versions, not that I really even could.

    I'm planning to focus my practice on getting the "feel" of the new songs, and try to "approximate" any signature riffs, but I will be improvising "on the spot" for the most part with all of these new songs.

    Any tips to help me be as prepared as possible? Mistakes you've made that I can learn from and avoid?

    Thanks in advance, and BTW, everyone is invited to the show!
     
  2. Axis29

    Axis29 Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Relax and try to enjoy yourself. It's music. It's family.

    My best advice, try to listen to the same versions they're working from. Be able to hear them in your head as much as you can. Put them on your iPod and listen, listen, listen.

    As for other folks gear, it is what it is. Try not to get hung up on it (see my first paragraph).
     
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  3. Steve 78

    Steve 78 Friend of Leo's

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    I haven't done this before, but I would try to get a recording of their rehearsal if possible so you can practice along to the songs as they play them. I would also try and work out beforehand what the borrowed gear will be if that's possible. Maybe pack an EQ and/or dirt pedal so you have a little control over your sound without having to tweak someone else's gear if that is an issue.
     
  4. trev333

    trev333 Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I think you should at least wear pants on the plane.... ;)
     
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  5. RyCo1983

    RyCo1983 Tele-Afflicted

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    Buy used from Guitar Center and return before you leave?
     
  6. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Friend of Leo's

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    Hi Axis. Thanks for the advice I didn't mean to sound worried. It's going to be a great, small gig with a small, friendly, middle aged ex-pat crowd. I just want to be as much of a benefit to the songs as possible.

    The only thing with using the same versions of the songs is that they don't really do anyone else's versions. They do their own arrangements.

    For example, we're doing City of New Orleans, and I asked if it was the Arlo Guthry version or Steve Goodman's original. I was told it was neither. It's "their" version.

    That actually makes it easier for me because I can do my own arrangement of the lead parts without much concern about trying to "mimic" the originals either.

    I'm not nervous, just a perfectionist who is far from perfect and wants to put on a good show.

    Thanks again for the tips!
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2016
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  7. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Friend of Leo's

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    Prude!
     
  8. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Friend of Leo's

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    Hi TheFlyingAlamo. I'll check, but I don't think there are any GC locations in Costa Rica.

    Too bad. I hear the exchange rate is great!

    Thanks!
     
  9. RyCo1983

    RyCo1983 Tele-Afflicted

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    I must have misread. Thinking you were coming from Costa Rica.
     
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  10. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Friend of Leo's

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    So far, I have recordings of three songs out of about 30 songs. I will ask if they have more or could do some quick demos of their practices. Thanks!

    I'm concerned about taking any pedals because they often want you to demonstrate that they work as intended before you can take them...

    Maybe I could risk bringing my EHX Soul Food in my checked bag?

    Thanks again for the tips!
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2016
  11. Steve 78

    Steve 78 Friend of Leo's

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    I've only taken pedals to Japan and New Zealand, so you'd know the situation in Costa Rica better than me! If there's a risk of losing the pedal then it's not really worth it.
     
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  12. rebelwoclue

    rebelwoclue Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    I've been schlepping teles and now a Travelers Speedster with either a irig/Ipad or a Flyrig5 in a gig bag as a carryon- never had any problems with customs or the airlines. Just sayin...
     
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  13. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Friend of Leo's

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    I didn't really make it very clear did I? I would have thought the same.
     
  14. 4pickupguy

    4pickupguy Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    Been carting guitars and iPad, Jawbone speaker for recording when I travel for my job now for years, no problems so far. Take a guitar and your main pedals and just score an amp in country?
     
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  15. slinger

    slinger Friend of Leo's

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    I'd say get that fly some gear and go for it!
     
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  16. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Friend of Leo's

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    Thanks for the feedback. I might try and at least bring my guitar and a couple of pedals.
     
  17. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Friend of Leo's

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    Thanks! I think I'm going to try it. I'm awfully used to my own guitars. It takes me a while to get comfortable with different guitars.
     
  18. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Friend of Leo's

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    That's the top recommendation I've been getting so far. Thanks!
     
  19. codamedia

    codamedia Friend of Leo's

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    ^^^ THIS ^^^

    I do a lot of fly gigs... I take one guitar (w/accessories) and a scaled back pedal board and use a provided amp at the other end. I thank the great Jerry Donahue for sharing his knowledge of air travel when baggage is an issue. Take the neck off the guitar and put it in a suitcase with your clothes. I have traveled the globe several times with one suitcase and one carry on.

    As for learning songs.... It doesn't sound like it's a pressure gig (eg: band on tour), just do your best and have fun. If you are an "extra" then all the parts should already be covered. Intros and endings are always the most important - try to get those down. If you have a copy of the sets, the same applies. Spend more time on the first song or two and the last song than you do on the ones in the middle of the set.

    Just my 2 cents.... enjoy your trip and have fun!
     
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  20. Jupiter

    Jupiter Telefied Silver Supporter

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    Take the Squier!
     
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