everyone but ann margaret and the guitarist are dead by now.
I WAS IN THE WARMUP BAND FOR THE BAY CITY ROLLERS LAST GIG. TROOF.
Bands soundchecked in reverse order of appearance, then when they'd finished they'd just push their gear to the back of the stage while the next band set up. That way everybody only had to set up once. The last band to soundcheck was the first band on and they'd just leave their gear set up until the show. When an act finished, they'd strike their gear clearing the way for the next band to just move theirs up, plug in, and start playing. Like peeling some kind of demented rock n' roll onion.
The Bay City Rollers didn't show up when it was their turn, and after waiting a while the soundman gave up and soundchecked the other three bands. The last and second-to-last acts did their thing, then my band (the opener) did ours so our gear was onstage and we had an hour and a half for sushi next door. Hooray.
Then the Bay City Rollers walked in. One of their crews got busy and started moving equipment around, which got him a what-the-fuck-are-you-doing yell from the soundman. A bandleader (who shall remain nameless) yelled back something like "We're the Bay City Rollers, mate, and we're gettin' a soundcheck!"
"I don't care if you're fucking Led Zeppelin, put that mic back where you found it and get the hell off my stage!"
Which they did. He had them dialed in under a minute of course, soundchecks never withstand collision with the real world and are largely a placebo anyway. He made a faux-apology to the crowd about how bad the first song sounded, sorry but we didn't get a soundcheck (it sounded fine, and even if it did sound bad how was he going to know through the stage monitors? Ain't foolin' nobody, mister), but the soundman's girlfriend had been there all afternoon and knew what had happened. She yelled back "THAT'S BECAUSE YOU WERE TWO FUCKING HOURS LATE!" as loud as she could and the crowd busted up laughing.
It was an S-A-T-U-R-D-A-Y NIGHT
at Madam Wong's West, 2900 W Wilshire, Santa Monica, R.I.P.
and yes, they wore plaid. And eyeliner.
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