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Stevie C’s Blog.

What I’ve been up to…

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

Morrissey

March - May 2015

All I need is Morrissey, as the song goes. This was my first non-working gig in a very long time, - part of his last tour (allegedly) - and my first time out in Glasgow, for a very long time. It was still scary being in a different city, even with Ross, Eddie, Dawn & Darren. I’m getting better at managing anxiety.

Something occurred to me while standing here - with who knows how many people above and around me - just how small I was. Oh, and how did Dawn get entry no problem with her bag, yet Ross with his similarly-sized Man Bag got stopped by security?

I had the opportunity to ogle all the LED fixtures and flower-shaped blinders during the warm-up act. A partition Cyc fell away to reveal a drum kit with what looked like neon/LED in the rims and a series of programmable screens (much like the ones from the casino in James Bond Diamonds are Forever). I loved their use of the lights in that I think I’ve seen all they have, but then add in another toy. Case in point, they had these LED strobe lights and flower-shaped blinders. The drummer walked into his kit and threw the snare into the audience before walking off-stage. No more encores.

The only reason for the (4:3 video) was to ask lighting groups on social media if that was a spot-op above the stage, and “What Kind Of Blinders Are These?”. They answered a question with a question: “You Went To A Morrissey Gig On Purpose?”

We were herded out (symbolic of farm animals & his closing number Meat Is Murder). Having been treated to PETA video graphics during MIM, all 5 of us swore never again to eat meat. Until we got to the kebab house. Ross insisted I include a photo of it.

Ross insisted I put this photo in here of the Glasgow kebab house with a roof indoors. Incidentally, this is Justin Bieber’s favourite kebab shop.

The Morning After

Before our departure back to The ’Dee, we took in a few sights: Wetherspoons (for brekkie), The Iron Horse (I put money in the JukeBox and the management turned it off after 2 Oasis songs), The Waterloo, Delmonica’s Bar (Ross and I wondered about recreating the lights for The Salty Dog) and The Underground (formerly Revolver) - my favorite thus far.

The Morning after the Morrissey gig: In Del Monica’s Bar with Darren, Ross and Eddie.

Burnside Inn Alyth

Ross and I had been booked for a party in Alyth at The Burnside Inn, for a 50th (there was no way she looked 40, let alone 50). I brought the usual 4 scanners, some moon flowers, a centrepiece sequencer and lots of LED fairy light strings. Ross fell in love with the natural food shop hut with an honesty box. I managed to break my POS PAS camera.

50th Birthday Party Celebration Event at The Burnside Inn Alyth. Sound, Lights and Music by Stevie C and DJ Ross.
50th Birthday Party Celebration Event at The Burnside Inn Alyth. Sound, Lights and Music by Stevie C and DJ Ross.
50th Birthday Party Celebration Event at The Burnside Inn Alyth. Sound, Lights and Music by Stevie C and DJ Ross.

Burnside Inn Alyth, Again

I’ve given up attempting to entice an ex-lecturer here for a beer and a catch-up. Sorry, Nick.

I was here with Ross again, and as my camera screen was cracked, I took 100 photos and hoped one of them was decent. Also, the cheap 12v 100W EFP lamps I’d bought were rather dim. I had enough spare; the seller refunded them without issue and I went Osram instead.

As an anecdotal testament to Ross’ uncanny knack for music selection, there was a period of him being topless (a customer spilled a drink on his laptop) where I lent him my Mac. Without any extra media or software, he rocked the pub from open to close - with choons I didn’t even know I had.

I was sitting alone at the bar (no change there) feeling out of place (no change there), when this well-meaning party-goer attempted to engage me in conversation. “Why are you not coming over to join us?” she asked. I joked that I was the stripper. What happened next will haunt me for the rest of my life.

DJ Ross and Stevie C doing Lights, Sound and Music at The Burnside Inn, Alyth
DJ Ross and Stevie C doing Lights, Sound and Music at The Burnside Inn, Alyth
DJ Ross and Stevie C doing Lights, Sound and Music at The Burnside Inn, Alyth

DDE 2015

It’s Dundee Dance Event again. I sat BonFest out as I wanted to arrive fresh. I was also disheartened from the BonFest recording saga. I say this every year, but this DDE was the biggest yet, I had more scanners and some proper lasers to play with.

It took about 5 hours to setup 3 lighting rigs and 3 interlinked PA systems - all with clean power (once I’d repaired the DJ table). The Salty Dog already had so many LED lights, but that should never be a reason not to add more. We installed some scanners, a moon flower and a disco dome in the lower bar. The Void/Salty Dog Function Suite had the main share of lighting, including more scanners, a 16" mirror ball, lasers, a Soundlab Vista (a budget version of the NJD Datamoon), a 900W fogger and a LED PAR bar borrowed from a DJ pal.

Dundee Dance Event 2015 Hosted by The Salty Dog Dundee and DJ Ross. Sound & Lights by Stevie C.
Dundee Dance Event 2015 Hosted by The Salty Dog Dundee and DJ Ross. Sound & Lights by Stevie C.
Dundee Dance Event 2015 Hosted by The Salty Dog Dundee and DJ Ross. Sound & Lights by Stevie C.

The head-trip was just after I finished setting up: someone turned on a tap and all 3 sections of the pub were instantly rammed, staying that way until the end of business that night. A lot of people did say that this was by far their favourite venue of the day. It was so busy me and Joel ggot sent out for ice as the ice machine couldn’t keep up.

Dundee Dance Event 2015 Hosted by The Salty Dog Dundee and DJ Ross. Sound & Disco Lights by Stevie C.
Dundee Dance Event 2015 Hosted by The Salty Dog Dundee and DJ Ross. Sound & Disco Lights by Stevie C.

Arts & Crafts

Does remixing counts as A&C? I’ve been going back to old projects and starting from scratch - removing all bussing, effects and plugins - and getting much better results, even on JukeBox speakers.

I’m still painting light bulbs (like the Rainbow variety I did for The Salty Dog at Dundee Dance Event) and collecting empty liquor bottles and refilling them with LED fairy lights.

Stevie C painting more light bulbs for the Salty Dog Dundee for Dundee Dance Event

Lost in translation

Even with my voice and the loud environments I live in, I’m still blown away by people’s interpretation of my speech. For instance, “Can I pinch your Tobasco” = “Can I have a pint of Tobacco”. “Just a can of Tango” = “Pint of Lager”. “Tayside Dayrider” = “Single to Arbroath”. “I’ve got the exact fare” = “I’m a junkie and want change”.

One More Thing…

I’m moving away from the “Cool & Groovy Blog Graphics” as I have been forced to upgrade my version of iTunes. Yes, I’m using iTunes for graphics creation, namely the Stix plug-in, which seems to have its options stripped out in version 11.

As ever, I’m looking for sound, light and AV gigs. I’ve also been looking at 9-to-5 stuff and thinking “Hey! I could do that!”, except I can’t because I don’t have a silly bit of paper that you have to pay handsomely for a one-day course for. It’s dispiriting being told I’m not wanted because they won’t get a grant for employing me, or because they assume disabled = crippled.

I’ve been listening to: Morrissey, The Smiths, Morrissey, The High Flying Birds, Royal Blood, APB, The Prodigy, AC/DC, 808 State, Madonna, Arctic Monkeys and Morrissey.

What time is it?