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Another Paying Gig...


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ANOTHER PAYING GIG! This one’s on the Coast, at the Bay City Arts Center, five miles from Garibaldi. SATURDAY, 7 MARCH, 7 P.M. $5 cover charge, split between me (60%) and the Arts Center (40%). They’ll sell refreshments, and I’ll sell CDs. They were excited about the idea, which was really gratifying. (And many thanks to my daughter for making the suggestion.)

I would like to be playing with a band for this gig, too. The Arts Center, an antebellum-style Masonic Lodge built in 1927, has a nice stage and a dance floor that covers most of the upstairs—and I have noticed some folks in Bay City do like to dance. I assume the Portland guys aren’t interested in hauling themselves and equipment two hours each way over the mountains to the Coast—though I’d love to have them be the band (they are really good). I’ll undoubtedly have to tap local resources for the band. There are quite a few musicians in the area who know me, and that I’ve played with; the question is who’s available and interested. Ideally, I’d like to have a bass player, and both a “whiny lead” (fiddle, harmonica or accordion) and “non-whiny lead” (guitar). I’ll need to talk to all the folks this week.

So now I have two notices to send out to the “joelist,” and another set of bulletins for the Facebook and MySpace accounts. There’s a smaller number of local media to deal with in the immediate area, but I can reach further afield—maybe an hour’s worth north and south. The media folks in Licoln City, Seaside, and Astoria won’t know who I am, but maybe if I act like I’m Big Time, they’ll think I am.

What to play? I should assume, until told otherwise, that it’s a 2-hour gig; the Arts Center tends to attract a family crowd, and I should assume a lot of folks will have their kids. With five hours of material to draw from, there should be no problem devising two hours of “family-friendly” fare. Everything I’ve written is pretty simple—one big advantage of country music is that it’s easy to follow.

This is, I think, the first time the Arts Center has booked somebody local to do a concert, and if this one can draw a big enough crowd, there may be more—both for me, and for other local artists. There’s plenty of talent hiding out in these woods—I’ve met a lot of it—but it hasn’t had outlets. The Friday Night Group in Garibaldi has been not only the only game in town, but sometimes the only live music in the whole region, for much of its seven-year run.

Can I have the Five-dollar Album together in time for the Arts Center gig to be a CD release party? I don’t know. I’ve definitely got some work to do to pull that off; I’d want everything ready to manufacture within a week from now, and I’ve got four songs (I think) I want to re-do for the album. It’s not so much my parts I worry about—I have gotten pretty good at getting what I want on tape (or on chip) in one or two takes—but I’d like to have a better lead than just my guitar on each one of those.

If not, there is maybe St. Leif’s Day (March 29). I would really like to be playing music somewhere on St. Leif’s Day; since the old Swede is the patron saint of bagpipes (among other things), it is appropriate to celebrate the occasion by playing music. And it’s a Sunday this year. If I promote the idea heavily, it may happen somewhere.

THE “BROKEN RECORD”: Time-and-motion studies were something I did a lot as a city manager—I always wanted to know how long it took me and others to do things, so I could figure out how to be more efficient. For the “Broken Record,” assembling the cases, including printing the covers on photographic paper, took on average six minutes apiece. It’d have taken less time had I less primitive tools. The liner notes are taking twice as long to print and assemble, because there’s more trimming. I can’t factor in my original desgn costs, because that’s nothing but my time, and it took longer because it was my first. The next time (assuming there’s a next time), it’ll be faster because I know what I’m doing and the templates already exist.

Costs? There are 20 CDs, each with cover, label, liner notes, and (of course) CD, and they all have to be mailed to their respective recipients. Looks like total out-of-pocket costs, including postage, will come to just about $3.70 per CD, and that’s not bad. I wouldn’t save any money by hiring out the printing and assembly—the cost is almost exactly the same—but I would save time. A lot of this is work I can’t do very fast myself because I don’t have the proper tools.

UPCOMING: Ghost Hole Wednesday; the Friday Night Group on Friday (of course); band practice Saturday—last practice, I think, before the Big Gig. A birthday party on Saturday, too, at which they may be playing music. I believe the Devil done lost his workshop—I no longer have idle hands.

Joe

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