Thursday, September 26, 2013

Transporting Equipment

Eddie & the Otters never had the benefit of a road crew or an equipment truck.  During our first incarnation, Paul "Derf" Buriak (R.I.P.) held the title of honorary roadie because he had a van, but I don't recall him ever actually moving equipment.  If he did, it certainly wasn't mine.  (It should be noted that Derf had the foresight to secure a "Devo" vanity license plate).

We each moved our own equipment in our own cars, which had certain drawbacks.  First of all, none of us had particularly large cars - I had a '74 Mercury Capri, Jim B. and Eddie each had Honda Civics, and Jim S. had a VW Rabbit.  Doug didn't drive at the time, so he usually rode with Jim S.  The Capri wasn't at all suited for hauling drums, but I managed to squeeze everything in, usually with the trunk tied down.  Eddie tied the p.a. columns to the roof of his Honda, which seemed rather precarious.  When playing in the North Hills (the Evergreen Hotel and Mike's Valley Vue) we tended to caravan, with everyone keeping an eye on those p.a. columns.

We were lucky that the Hell Band and Ezy Elmer were so gracious in letting us use their back line and p.a. every time we played with them - that made all the difference.  When we opened for the Hell Band at Fat City, I was able to leave the club, drive home, and start recording their live broadcast on WYEP-FM before they started playing.

On occasion the other guys would help me carry my stuff in because it required so many trips.  This became problematic when I started using heavy duty hardware (Ludwig "Hercules" line) - the two duffle bags full of stands were so heavy that I'm sure I was MF'd unmercifully when out of hearing range.  Thanks guys!

Parking was always a concern when playing at The Decade - usually I got there early enough to grab a meter across from the side door, but occasionally I ended up blocks away.  On one occasion I got a ticket for parking in the Loading Zone while unloading my drums.  I beat it in traffic court after getting a rather inky look from the judge.

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