Rock Hard: Closing In On Home

It was easy to tell we were headed towards then end of our tour because there was a sense of relaxation, familiarity and silliness that creeped into the crew once we reached Cleveland.

They’d all had a good day at the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame and we were all primed for the gig that night but just like our previous tours as soon as they could see home in their sights the crew started to play little jokes on us. I guess it was their way of winding down and getting a few back on us for being ‘rockstars’. None of us minded and the regulars that had been with us a few years all kept things under control so that they didn’t become dangerous or stupid.

During sound check some Muppet, we don’t always find out who does things thanks to the unity of the crew, changed my mic with Benji’s.

Dean was already sitting on his drum stool twirling sticks between his fingers and getting comfortable when the three of us, Benji, Mark and myself, came out on stage and grabbed our instruments. Each of us casually walked to our spots, throwing guitar straps over our shoulders and preparing ourselves for a quick fire five song set, hopefully without any breaks.

After a second or two I looked at Mark, he nodded to suggest he was ready. I looked at Benji and he told me he was ready in a voice clear enough for us all to hear. And then I looked at Dean who also nodded and started to count us in for the first song.

About a week before Cleveland our first sound check song had for some reason become Loki, a short and fast beat song from our first EP. The mildly interesting thing about Loki as far as sound check goes is that the intro to the song goes for about a minute before any vocals kick in.

So there we were, four of us pounding out a collection of notes for nearly a minute, then as the first verse approached I stepped up to the mic. Now before sound check I don’t do my full vocal warm ups because we don’t usually give it our all, but I do give it a quick go to remind it it has to work for a living, so I knew it was there somewhere. However when I stepped up to that mic and started to sing and heard nothing come out I did kind of get worried.

By the end of the first line my brain was telling me, thankfully, that it wasn’t my voice that was broken because I could feel my vocal chords actually working. As relief washed over me the band stopped and Dean called out asking what was wrong and what followed was about twenty minutes of those around us saying that everything was fine. That was followed by nearly five minutes of laughter from the crew when it was pointed out to us that the connection on the back of the desk had been changed.

When it came to owning up to the practical joke no one took responsibility, Adam swore it wasn’t him and that he checked it all connections as they were made. I kind of believed him, not just because I was engaged to him, but because if you’ve ever seen Adam connect his desk, or his ‘baby’ as we sometimes call it, at a show you’d know there is no way he’d make a mistake.Several of the crew looked more guilty than others and a couple almost looked they like were going to out themselves but none of them actually did so rather than push something that didn’t really matter than much we let it fly and got back to what we were doing.

The rest of sound check, once the mics were changed back, went well. We had a few loose connections and Adam needed to redo a few levels as we moved around the venue listening to what we were playing but in all the sound check worked well.

By the time we hit the stage for the gig none of the day’s positivity had faded and we had a great gig. The venue rocked, the crowd rocked and up on stage we rocked. There was a couple of bum notes and a few little mistakes but for the most we ran like a well oiled machine and the crowd responded in kind. Because the crowd were giving us so much we treated them to three encores, the third being extended to four songs instead of three, and by the time we all got off stage and back into the band room we were absolutely shot. All four of us had drained our tanks so much even sitting down felt like too much effort.

So what happened two hours later when we got back to the hotel? You guessed it Adam put the hard work on me. Honestly the guy is hot and he really does rock my world but bloody hell I had to figure out how to throw his little read wagon off the one track it always seemed to be on.

Having declined his offer politely, which he accepted with no problems, I went and had a shower to get rid of Hella. When Adam came into the bathroom and broke me out of a trance like state standing under the hot water I think even he realized just what sort of state I was in. So not only is he hot and rocks my world, he’s also one hell of a polite guy because he dried me off, helped me into some underwear and a t-shirt and put me to bed where I slept solidly for five whole hours!

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