puck is a great room. this needs to be said upfront.
and yet, up until this night, i haven’t really had a good experience there.
my first gig there was with dan may, opening for the refugees, playing to roughly nine people. after that, i went in as part of graham browns’ band, onstage with about six to seven more people than should have been on there in the first place, and it was cramped and awkward, and it just kinda sucked.
and the third time wasn’t looking to be much different, out of the gate. i got a later start than i wanted to, and traffic was ridiculous…so my mood was appropriately reflective of this as we arrived at the end of soundcheck.
there were two other acts on the bill, both opening for j.d. malone, who i was playing with – erik balkey, who was pretty good, and EAZ3, who were not. don’t get me wrong, they were nice enough guys (save for this eric dude, who kept repeating this “osama-obama” mantra of his until i wanted to smack him), but if they were playing for free a block from my house, i’d probably go to the movies.
nonetheless, i wanted to maintain my soundcheck etiquette and, as such, i didn’t bother to set up until they’d done their own soundcheck and were finished.
not that there was any need for worry – mike lightkep did his customary amazing job of setting everyone up and blending me in on the fly when it came our turn to play. and thankfully, most of my sour disposition had melted away by then, as well. when we got up to play, we came out of the gate firing on all cylinders and kept it going for the whole set. avery was somehow armed with a microphone, and he and jd started this dialogue that had me in stitches…danny manchester, jd’s new bass player, was stellar in his debut (considering that we did zero rehearsals before the show).
jd did one new song, that the band had never played before…i can’t remember if it was in D or E, but we had a lot of fun with it, too. all in all, it was a good night – and i’m glad that i finally had a good gig at puck before idlewheel goes there in october.