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Stevie C’s Blog.

What I’ve been up to…

Roadie: lighting tech, stage crew, spot-op, sound engineer, DJ.

April - June 2019

WMT

I’ve been working the usual array of events at WMT - including 80s Mania, Whitney, Mercury and Some Guys Have All The Luck (The Rod Stewart Story). As always, the bands were as good as the real thing. It’s worth mentioning because I was battling to stay awake at Rod Stewart, but not because of the band… Having had 3 hours sleep, hay-fever and several bloody noses - and standing with a 1200W MSD Arc fan-heater at the top of a packed auditorium on a hot summer day with no air-con having taken hay-fever tablets that warned you not to operate heavy machinery… I managed, somehow.

Webster Memorial Theatre Arbroath hosts Some Guys Have All The Luck (The Rod Stewart Story)
Webster Memorial Theatre Arbroath hosts Mercury. Yeah, this is the only photo I got, somewhat for copyright reasons; a vacuum cleaner that failed its PAT test.

Wrap Party

After one such show at the theatre - a kids dance show - we had to transplant some of the equipment from the show to Arbroath Community Hall for the wrap party. Some Might Say a touring-grade rig & desk is a bit overkill, but it made more sense than packing 2 rigs. We had the usual gig gremlins; Jiving Jim had an absolute choon playing - and when he bumped the sound up for the breakdown, Andy hit the strobe cue and pulled the circuit breaker. We had to run a 16A from halfway down the hall for the strobe; I also bumped into my nemesis: the distro board with a lock on it. My dodgy alter-ego would have considered breaking the lock or connecting into the cooker spur…

AM Lighting - now AML Event Hire providing disco lighting for a wrap party hosted by Jiving Jim in Arbroath Community Centre
AM Lighting - now AML Event Hire providing disco lighting for a wrap party hosted by Jiving Jim in Arbroath Community Centre

AML

I’ve been servicing lights and performing more PAT testing for AML; as well as for other companies on behalf of AML. I was so busy at some points that I may have caused the PAT tester to overheat. Needs must etc, so I put it in the fridge to cool down - would certainly make an interesting episode of Kitchen Nightmares… I’ve also had some issues with emergency lights coming back from a gig filled up with water.

PAT Testing and lighting service for AML Event Hire in Dundee. This light is working when unplugged - what is this magic?
PAT Testing and lighting service for AML Event Hire in Dundee. Europa PAT tester overheated and placed in fridge to cool down. Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares doesn’t have anything on this.
PAT Testing and lighting service for AML Event Hire in Dundee. This LED floodlight fails the visual test due to the frayed flex.
PAT Testing and lighting service for AML Event Hire in Dundee. Chandelier passed the test.
PAT Testing and lighting service for AML Event Hire in Dundee. LED fairy lights checked and passed.
LED Emergency Light filled with water and somehow still functioning. Small residual charge in the battery makes them glow eerily.

I reckon this UV LED chip looks like a load of tables in a venue. I also took delivery of some new movers, and had the chance to compare them to AML’s hire stock (that I’d just cleaned).

Lighting repair and servicing for AML Event Hire in Dundee. This UV LED chip looks like tables viewed from overhead in a venue…
Lighting repair and servicing for AML Event Hire in Dundee. Side-by-side comparison of Showtec Kanjo 60 LED moving heads and Infinity iB-16R
Lighting repair and servicing for AML Event Hire in Dundee. Side-by-side comparison of Showtec Kanjo 60 LED moving heads and Infinity iB-16R

BonFest 2019

AML supplied lighting and power distro for BonFest 2019. We had the usual gig gremlins of PARcans that kept blowing fuses, me falling over things and a generator failing one bar into the headliners opening song.

AML Event Hire in Dundee provided all power distro, generators, site lighting, emergency lights, cabling, stage & band lighting, strobes, PAR cans, moving heads and DMX control for BonFest hosted by DD8 Music in Kirriemuir. PA system supplied by audiowave.
AML Event Hire in Dundee provided all power distro, generators, site lighting, emergency lights, cabling, stage & band lighting, strobes, PAR cans, moving heads and DMX control for BonFest hosted by DD8 Music in Kirriemuir. PA system supplied by audiowave.
AML Event Hire in Dundee provided all power distro, generators, site lighting, emergency lights, cabling, stage & band lighting, strobes, PAR cans, moving heads and DMX control for BonFest hosted by DD8 Music in Kirriemuir. PA system supplied by audiowave.

I didn’t manage to get any gig photos, as I was busy at other gigs by that point.

Yes, I tried it again - doing too many events at once…
More to the point, why do so many events always happen around the same time?

DDE: Festival of Soul

As part of the DDE weekend, Audiowave was asked to supply PA and lighting for Festival of Soul being held in The Bonar Hall. Having forgotten what type of event this was, I ran backstage to reset a misbehaving light mid-show - and nearly wiped out after slipping on the talc sprinkled on the floor … I meant to do that.

Audiowave provided PA hire, sound engineering and a lighting rig with DMX control for Festival of Soul - part of Dundee Dance Event
Audiowave provided PA hire, sound engineering and a lighting rig with DMX control for Festival of Soul - part of Dundee Dance Event
Audiowave provided PA hire, sound engineering and a lighting rig with DMX control for Festival of Soul - part of Dundee Dance Event

DDE: Dundee Dance Event 2019

Having had 3 hours sleep and a pint of Guinness for breakfast, helped setup in Medina as usual; and having not returned to the Salty Dog for DDE - I quickly found a new home at the St Andrews Brewing Co who were hosting The Rhumba Club. I had the usual gig gremlins - dead power outlets and having to run cables from elsewhere in the venue.

Stevie C and AudioWave.co.uk providing a complete rave sound and light system - comprising D&B PA system, Logic monitors, Pioneer DJM mixer, CDJ Nexus, intelligent lighting and strobe lights with DMX control. Busy programming DMX cue stacks.
Stevie C and AudioWave.co.uk providing a complete rave sound and light system - comprising D&B PA system, Logic monitors, Pioneer DJM mixer, CDJ Nexus, intelligent lighting and strobe lights with DMX control.
Stevie C and AudioWave.co.uk providing a complete rave sound and light system - comprising D&B PA system, Logic monitors, Pioneer DJM mixer, CDJ Nexus, intelligent lighting and strobe lights with DMX control. Features: The Rhumba Club

Tayside Contracts Awards

I might as well jinx it; this gig was a celebration of my anniversary working for AM Lighting. It wouldn’t be a proper gig without several star cloths developing a fault the night before, one of which was an intermittent fault. I had to throw the cloth about a bit to break it completely (to make the fault more obvious) before fixing it. I do enjoy fixing star cloths (in a geeky way) - just not up a ladder during soundcheck.

AML provided LED star cloths, moving lights, PARcans and a mirror ball for the Tayside Contracts Awards, Held in Dundee’s Caird Hall
AML provided LED star cloths, moving lights, PARcans and a mirror ball for the Tayside Contracts Awards, Held in Dundee’s Caird Hall
AML provided LED star cloths, moving lights, PARcans and a mirror ball for the Tayside Contracts Awards, Held in Dundee’s Caird Hall

Stick around for the same-as-last-year post processing treatment of the mirror ball photo.

Steve Page Lighting

In my bid to work with/for everybody in Scotland, I found myself employed by Steve Page Lighting (www.dundeecentral.co.uk) removing festoon harnesses and installing LED fairy light canopies for a wedding venue in Fife.

working for Steve Page Lighting installing LED festoons and fairy light canopy for a wedding venue in Fife

DUSA Grad Ball

AML were involved with the DUSA Grad Ball again this year, so I was there helping with LED flood lighting, power cabling, the gigantic mirror ball, truss, stage, PARcans, star cloths, battery uplights… You get the idea.

AML providing LED flood lighting, mood lighting and all site power for the DUSA Grad Ball 2019 at Dundee Uni. LED lights installed into marquees, greenery, bushes and gardens.
AML providing LED flood lighting, mood lighting and all site power for the DUSA Grad Ball 2019 at Dundee Uni. LED lights installed into marquees, greenery, bushes and gardens.
AML providing LED flood lighting, mood lighting and all site power for the DUSA Grad Ball 2019 at Dundee Uni. LED lights installed into marquees, greenery, bushes and gardens.
AML providing LED flood lighting, mood lighting and all site power for the DUSA Grad Ball 2019 at Dundee Uni. LED lights installed into marquees, greenery, bushes and gardens.
AML providing LED flood lighting, mood lighting and all site power for the DUSA Grad Ball 2019 at Dundee Uni. LED lights installed into marquees, greenery, bushes and gardens.
AML providing LED flood lighting, mood lighting and all site power for the DUSA Grad Ball 2019 at Dundee Uni. LED lights installed into marquees, greenery, bushes and gardens.
AML provided a gigantic mirror ball, truss and spotlights for DUSA Grad Ball 2019
AML provided a gigantic mirror ball, truss and spotlights for DUSA Grad Ball 2019

Other than one of the DMX receivers dropping sync, realising the uplighter batteries were dead the day before, and being bollocked by the HSE Idiot for kneeling on a flightcase (he wanted me to spend an hour chasing a ladder that didn’t exist to raise me up the literal 2 inches needed to do one sodding cable tie), I really enjoyed doing this event.

AML provided LED up-lighters, stage, LED PARcans and star cloths for the main stage of DUSA Grad Ball 2019
DUSA Grad Ball 2019 showing the mirror ball at night; with the spotlights and festoon harnesses in the background
DUSA Grad Ball 2019 showing the mirror ball at night; with the spotlights and festoon harnesses in the background

LITD

Graham and I were sitting in the pub after LITD was over and done for 2018, and we both mused that it would have been better with a bubble machine or two - so that’s exactly what we did for LITD 2019. As always, the PA system was supplied by AudioWave.

Stevie C helping DD8 Music (Kirriemuir) with Live in the Den 2019; bubble machines on hire from AML Events (AM Lighting) with PA hire supplied by audiowave.co.uk
Stevie C helping DD8 Music (Kirriemuir) with Live in the Den 2019; bubble machines on hire from AML Events (AM Lighting) with PA hire supplied by audiowave.co.uk
Stevie C helping DD8 Music (Kirriemuir) with Live in the Den 2019; bubble machines on hire from AML Events (AM Lighting) with PA hire supplied by audiowave.co.uk

Worth a mention was the thunder storm towards the end of the gig, to which the band played Thunderstruck by AC/DC. I have proof that God doensn’t exist. Had he/she existed, the flash of lightning would have timed perfectly with the band singing “THUN-DER…”, and not been 12 seconds out of sync.

Live Music

Aside from the obvious BonFest, LITD and WMT bands, I’ve been attending a few other gigs in my time off. Ro Cawdor at St Tams Bar, Montrose Music Live, Headroom, Restless Natives, Marty Gellatley, Miami Vince, The RNLI Beerfest at the Fishermans Tavern (Broughty Ferry), Fannyboot and Junkyard Dogs.

One More Thing…

Having previously celebrated whatever it was with a trip to The Fishermans Tavern in Broughty Ferry and buying a PAT tester while under the influence, I celebrated a year with AML by sending it for calibration. I’ve also started trying to write my own software for it…