sound-system-setupI mentioned a few posts back that I had people talk to me while setting up my sound system. They were friendly and well-meaning, but they kept asking questions. Which disturbed my routine and I missed a couple of steps. It’s harder to find the problem later when you think you’ve done everything as usual.

When the show has begun, it’s harder to adjust on the fly. You use every trick in your book and sweat a lot. If you’re lucky – and you know what you’re doing – you can get good sound for the audience at least. Which is the important thing. In a smaller venue, like Angela’s at the Crosswalk, the performer can still hear herself, she just doesn’t know how it’s coming across to the audience. But in a larger venue, it could potentially be a disaster.

But the point I’m trying to make is that when the sound man is setting up the system – particularly if he is setting up the system from scratch – avoid talking to him or her, if possible. Say hi and ask a question of course. But try not to engage them in extended conversation. They may be running late for one reason or another. They are volunteering after all, as a general rule. Either way they will have time to talk after the sound system is ready and before the show begins. Particularly, if the sound man is also the host. It’s a little different in places with a built-in sound system, like Poor David’s Pub, with a professional sound man. But still, let the sound man do his job. He wants to hear from you, but he also has a job to do. You will sound better when you play as a result. And thank him when you leave.

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.