After visiting the previously mentioned breakfast joint and preparing for the first day back at work, I walked with (the man they call) Pants and we caught up while strolling the short journey to the rehearsal facility. A truck waited for us and at the allotted time we began unloading it, transferring the contents indoors where we will spend the next five days sprucing up our act.
There’s no band today, but Leonard called by to say hello. We call this a tech day; the mission is to set everything up and ensure it works, clean things a little, perform some maintenance, test out some new gadgets and generally get back into the swing. So far almost everything seems in good condition. Two of the amplifiers in my charge have problems with their reverb tanks; an ongoing woe from the autumn North American leg of the tour.
Despite owning a few guitars at home, I haven’t touched one since Brooklyn in December. Playing Mitch’s Telecaster today, I felt the calluses on my left fingers had softened and my playing technique was rusty. The slackness is due to the time spent writing words and not music these past couple of months.
The shared apex of my achievements today was the changing of eight sets of guitar strings and playing with a new toy, a piece of equipment we’re experimenting with, a speaker attenuator. Plainly speaking, the attenuator is used when you want to turn up the amplifier to drive the valves a little harder, but keep the overall volume down.
After we’d set up and linechecked, The Winning Team decided on a quick trip to a popular DIY establishment where we purchased some ABS plastic tubes which we will use to roll our carpets that we may keep them in spiffing shape. While there, I bought a couple of new tools to aid my evil plans of backline domination.
Returning to the hotel after a fine day’s work, I changed into some jim-jams and flopped on the bed with a laptop, trying hard to stay awake. The jetlag is bad enough, but when the hotel’s internet goes down, I realise there’s nothing to do to keep me awake. Nothing. This unlucky state is what my life has become. Perhaps I should take up knitting.