On Friday night The Tweeks “donated” a reasonably loose and sarcastic set for a charity gig called “Babystock”, run by a local musician/med student by the name of Eamonn Deverall. The gig raised money for a new ultrasound machine in the Philippines. It was well promoted and well run, and apparently they raised enough money to buy the machine! Well done! From The Tweeks' point of view, our onstage sound was shit, and we played a bit crap. Ahhh well the crowd seemed kinda into it.
Speaking of onstage sound, the onstage sound HAY MAN! had in The Blue Pub in Methven was great! In fact, the whole gig was freakin' fantastic. The Blue Pub is right up there with The Redcliff Cafe in Te Anau in terms of an awesome rural gig to play.
Now let me explain to you some things about rural gigs. In many ways they are an oxymoron when compared to “city” gigs. For one, the band almost always gets paid a reasonably good guarantee. They will also get good meal, accommodation, and a generous bar tab. The band will also have to play for about three hours, to a few country bumpkins who want to hear “The Gambler,” “To Be With You” etc. Dragon's “April Sun in Cuba” would probably be considered “edgy”. So yeah, you can imagine what it's like when a bunch of skinny white guys sporting “gay” haircuts jump onstage straight after the rugby in one of these places.
Now the experience of playing a rural gig can be horrific, scary, and plain depressing. It can also freakin' rule. Welcome to The Blue Pub. Every time I played there Luke Piper, the bar manager, has been the most incredible host. We were made to feel totally welcome and comfortable, he wasn't demanding, and put up with our constant demanding for drinks once our tab had run out at about 2am. More importantly, he'd talked up HAY MAN! to all the local's and by about halfway through the night they were up jumping around, doing the twist, pulling the fingers, getting on the microphone, and asking us to play Stereophonics songs.
Now as I said earlier, we had great onstage sound. This is all due to the fact that the Blue Pub is one of the few rural venues to have it's own, fully working, full-range sound-system. They also provide you with Chris, a quiet, likable sound guy. In fact the only venue in New Zealand I can think of that also provides this is Mightymighty in Wellington! Isn't that mental?
So there ya go, ring up Luke at the Blue Pub, and book yourself in – if you can get a spot!