Saturday, November 15, 2008

Portland, I really love you, but...

You always stay out way past my bedtime. Seriously, I feel like the only twentysomething hipster in town who has an office job and has to work in the morning.. adding that to having the immune system of a consumptive artist, if I get less than 6 or so hours of sleep a night for a couple days, it's like an instant disease. Last night I went out to Dunes to see my friends Best Supporting Actress. The show was billed as starting at 9. Now granted, it was Friday night, and it's my own darn fault, I guess, that I work early saturday mornings. But even though tons of people were there, the first band, Tyrants, didn't even start until about 1045 pm. By then, I was falling asleep in my tequila and squirt (first drink, mind you!) and BSA were playing last. So I had to say "Um, sorry guys, but I'm super tired, I guess not tonight?" The thing is, too, that shows in many places (and especially at the Dunes) are like this even on the weekdays. Why is it cool to show up someplace at least an hour after it's supposed to start? and to start things late accordingly? What about those of us who need our sleep? Am I just getting elderly young?

12 comments:

Ste. Goldie said...

And the music is WAY TOO DAMN LOUD!

lol

seriously, it too loud and too late...

i'm over the band that takes 45 to play in between sets.

i'm over the band that thinks they are worth me losing my hearing over. (YOU AREN'T MONO!!!)

i'm over the venue that doesn't promote their shows.

I don't know ANYONE who really likes to wait until 10:45 for a show to starts. It's too fucking boring to wait around -- an sorry friends (and annoying hipster who thinks I'm looking at you all night because you are cool) -- but it's boring to watch you get drunk because you are so bored there is nothing else for you to do...

thanks for providing me an opportunity to share my HONORED CITIZEN opinions...

Dr. Something said...

I agree with everything stated in this entry and in Goldie's response, especially the comment about the ridiculous amount of dead time in between sets. I'm not much of a social animal. I go to shows for the music, not the chatting.

Another somewhat-related peeve of mine is the last minute booking of an extra band, so that there are 4 or 5 or 6 or 80,000 bands on the bill when you expected there to be 3. Too many bands on the bill = waaaaay too much set up and tear down time, and a feeble attempt to get more bands to drag a few fans to a show the club did absolutely nothing to promote.

Ste. Goldie said...

I want to make this a topic of a blog as well. We could make some interesting cases.

My senses don't lie. I know I would go to more shows if these things were changed.

-- Granny Gold

Apollo Spas said...

Ted from Tyrants here. Sorry we kept you up. I could have sworn we got started more at like 1020, but that's splitting hairs and besides which I was drunk. It's particularly vexing that we couldn't keep you around cos our whole deal is playing super short sets so we don't overstay our welcome.

Our basic assumption is always that shows will start one hour after the announced start time. Every time we've tried to play promptly at the "official" start time, we've played to six people because nobody shows up.

So this, I guess, is a vicious circle: bands go on late because people show up late because shows always start late because...

That said, it WAS Friday night.

Ste. Goldie said...

Hey Ted -- I am acutely aware of the hugely ridiculous problem bands have playing a show on time. Your justification is putting blame on everyone but yourself.

I would like to see bands and musicians take the initiative to stop wasting everyone's time.

I get "it WAS Friday night" and I totally get that YOU WERE DRUNK, however music fans deserve to be treated with respect, especially if they are telling YOU exactly what they didn't like. It's a shame you can't read this and think about how it feels to be on the other side of the stage.

Justifying and explaining your behavior away is not going to make me want to go to one of your shows.

I know plenty of music lovers AND musicians who hate going to shows because IT SUCKS to have to put up with this kind of shit ALL OF THE TIME. Bands act this way ON MONDAYS AND TUESDAYS AND WEDNESDAYS AND THURSDAYS AND SATURDAYS ALSO!

Has it even occurred to you that your behavior is catering to the lowest common denominator? The lowest common denominator being sloppy drunk assholes who like to talk through sets and don't have lives outside of the bar (aka jobs, families...). The majority of people who go to shows aren't part of the lowest common denominator. That is where you are WRONG. You assume that the majority of people at your shows like putting up with lazy bullshit.

Apollo Spas said...

You really ARE tired, aren't you?

Ste. Goldie said...

Ted - What are you? Fresh and new? God lord. I didnt even write this blog.

Please explain to me what it means to be TIRED. Does it mean "played out", "old"?

Are you self righteous and pompous? Arrogant and rude? Do you put yourself on a stage and expect people to bow down to your awesome talent? Jesus Christ. Please tell me why you can't hear the opportunity for growth coming out of this blog and it's commenter's...

Your sarcasm is weak. Your lack of humility is repulsive.

Dr. Something said...

I also don't understand this concept I keep encountering more and more these days of extremely short sets being preferable. If I go to a show and have to wait an hour for a band to start and they only play 20 minutes before I have to wait another 45 minutes for the next act, I feel ripped off. If you're any good, the audience should enjoy and want a full set (ca. 50 minutes). Or is this just me? Does this seem completely ridiculous to anyone else?

The lack of respect and professionalism in the club scene is rampant. There seems to be a lot of laziness on the part of bands, clubs and booking. Many places will book anybody, but then the responsibility of dragging anyone to the show falls entirely on the performers, who drag their friends who've already heard them to the show. There are no regulars, because sometimes the music is good, but sometimes it's awful. There's no quality control. As long as you have friends to bring, you can play.

And so few clubs and bands use (or demand) contracts. There's no economic or legal obligation to start on time, play a full set, ergo a complete lack of professionalism.

And then there's no commitment to the audience. Admittedly, I've started shows a little late, if the audience is pretty thin at the start, but anything more than 30 minutes is unacceptable, in my opinion, because I don't want to punish the people who have come on time to see us, and I hate having to wait more than a half hour for a show to start, myself.

Dr. Something said...

I guess I'm stuck in rant mode, so another comment. I really like your point, Goldie, about not catering to the lowest common denominator. I think in addition to the fact that many people who attend shows are not just there to get drunk and talk through every set, that there is a very, very large group of people who would go out to shows more often (or even go out to shows period), if they knew that the music would start pretty much on time, if there were a place in their neighborhood with consistently good, ore even regular acts that they already know and like, and if they know that they aren't going to get their ears blown out. I know a lot of people who are just really busy with family and jobs and an number of projects. For these people, going out is pretty special, and they need to know that the show their going to will actually be fun. And, personally, I'm really excited about the smoking ban finally taking effect in January. I know a lot of people who will not go to shows in a smoky place, and I tend to avoid doing so unless I really, really want to see a particular band.

I think there's currently too much of a culture of shows being something to endure if you're cool/badass/scene enough to do it. I think there's a huge mass of potential show-goers, people who really appreciate music and dancing and performance, who just can't take all the disregard for their schedules and comfort. (Another portion of of these folks are under-age kids, who have far too few opportunities to see shows. *shakes fist at OLCC*)


I think there's a LOT of great music in this town, but there are a lot of severe problems with the club scene that are keeping many people from hearing the best of what Portland has to offer.

Ste. Goldie said...

Dr. Something -- I think there's currently too much of a culture of shows being something to endure... God I love that! You are on the money with that one phrase! Thank you for your commentary. It's always a pleasure to hear from you. Especially when we are in agreement ;-)

I want to write my own blog about this matter. Then we can address this head on instead of buried in comment land. Amber Dawn you open the best cans of worms!

Amber Dawn said...

I have been at shows too where my band\other bands waited to play because NOBODY and I mean NOBODY (except the band member's girlfriends\boyfriends and like one other person, and these people count but if I wanted to play a concert for my boyfriend I could just do it at home) is there, mostly this has happened at the Holocene. And one time at the Chaos Cafe when the band who was supposed to play before us didn't show up until like 1 or 1.5 hours late and nobody else did either. Then it's tolerable if confusing to sit around and wait and eat some food and play dominoes or whatever until it's time to play. But what I was talking about in the blog is when like, everyone's there, the bands are there, and they're still playing some dumb home movie made by the bartender's friends or something on the wall and you have to go to work in the morning. Then, in the words of the immortal dr. something, a show does become something to endure..

Amber Dawn said...

Oh and ted, since I realize (after not checking the comments forever) that your comment was more directed at me :
THERE WERE PEOPLE THERE. So your excuse is hella lame. And if you're drunk and wait till after 10 to play, you've already overstayed your welcome. you might be nice otherwise, I dunno. but your excuse is worthless.