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Journal zedmelon's Journal: So am I out of line? 4

Okay, I found out a couple days ago that the band has a gig tonight. It was booked by some friends of ours, with their band opening for ours. Since I worked at the shop all day--and since I didn't get off my ass last night--I didn't get to post this in time to get any feedback before the "point of know return." :(

However, I'm still very interested in the opinion of friends who are completely uninvolved with the situation. Please let me know what you think.

We are an all-original band in a town with VERY lame support for original music.

We have also spent the past several months farting around with recording gear (acquiring a system, actually coordinating our mutual presence to use it, etc.). Therefore, we haven't played out much at all in the past year and should be pleased to have this gig.

However, I'm not.

Somewhere around a year & a half ago, my Mom was parking downtown in order to make an appointment with a proprietor of a local business. As she was preparing to get out of her car, a man--known as Smitty--backed into her car. Smitty is the owner of a local bar called the Green Light Tavern. The accident was across the street from it.

When the officer asked what happened, Smitty was congenial about the whole thing, "Yeah, I backed into her; I didn't see her." He basically admitted that the accident was completely his fault.

But once the ticket appeared, Smitty changed his story and said, "naw, man, I was already parked. She hit ME." Smitty maintained this stance when the matter went to court, and despite the officer's testimony that the story changed when the prospect of a moving violation became evident, somehow he STILL avoided the rap.

When Mom tried to get his insurance to pay for the damages, they said "no problem, sure. Oh wait, there was no conviction? Sorry, we can't cover the damages without a conviction."

Once I heard the story, I told Mom I would go talk to him, but she made me promise to leave it alone. I promised, but I also told the guys in the band that I will not play at the Green Light again. We've played there quite a few times, it's nothing special, and out of principle, I refuse to help him garner any more business.

Well, now we have a gig at the Green Light. Tonight. It wasn't expressly booked by any of the guys in the band, but one of us agreed to it.

Unrelated until now: A long time ago, I won a shirt in a raffle with the Green Light logo on it. I wore it to work in the yard, etc. It's still in okay shape, but after I heard Mom's story, I wrote "Fack the" above the logo.

"Fack the Green Light"
has a nice ring to it.

I'm not the type to hold honest mistakes against people. I was nearly killed on my motorcycle in 1998, and I didn't/don't hold a grudge to the kid. He missed a stop sign. We've all done it; I just happened to be in his way. I was in the hospital six weeks and never saw the kid again, but I still know it was an accident.

My problem with the Green Light Fiasco is that he lied to get out of trouble (which incidentally never works for me), screwing Mom in the process. It's not the money either. Mom got the repair done, and they still made their mortgage. It's the principle.

Anyway, here's my question: I know it's highly unprofessional to lambast the establishment hosting your gig, but I have a serious problem with doing the gig at all. Two days ago, I was dead serious about wearing that shirt to play tonight, and if Smitty wanted to know why, fine, I'll tell him. If he wanted to get physical, fine I'll let him (I can call Johnny Cochran on him).

I've thought it through a bit more, and I've decided to wear the shirt while we rehearse, and while we load gear, then change the shirt for when we play. I'll tell the guys that I swear I will not do another gig at the Green Light without my "lucky shirt." I've arrived at this being the proper balance between "working with" my friends and letting them know I'm damn serious.

Part of me feels like that's a pretty asshole thing to do to my band mates. Yet part of me finds it pretty assholish to not consult with me about booking the gig. Did they completely ignore it? Did they forget? Either way, I'm offended.

So by the time I read any feedback, it will be too late (sorry), but I'd like to know what you think.

- zed

This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

So am I out of line?

Comments Filter:
  • tough call, but I like the idea of a little private protest. I mean, its important to do the gig, its the professional thing, and in reality, any exposure you can get for your band is a good thing.

    I wore a home-made t-shirt that said "Fuck Syracuse Hardcore" when we played. It was at a time when I was getting really discouraged by all the shit in the scene at the time, and it was my own little protest. Foolish? Yes. Meaningless? Well, not completely.

    I was asked by a few about it, and my response was just
  • Some guy fucks with your mom, he's lucky not to get to know your knuckles up close and personal.

    I say whatever stand you want to take, whatever gigs you refuse to play at, you're completely justified. If your bandmates can't deal with that, then they can deal without you for that gig -- if that's the level you want to take it to.

    Wearing a t-shirt is a mild form of protest. I wouldn't be angry at you for spilling the whole story on stage.

    Just my opinion. Hope you worked it out OK for you.

  • ...but hard to follow through.

    Nevertheless I think you're 100% correct in boycotting TGL. Principle is principle, and sometimes you just gotta tell whoever doesn't like it to suck it up and move on. Yourself included.

    By now your decision is already made and you're either in bed or choking from the smoke. I hope you're satisfied with whichever choice you've made.

    Hey - the TGL is not a place you should be proud to play though...it's a fucking dive; it just happens to be one of the town's landmarks as we
  • You promised them you'd never play there again, right? I'da worn the t-shirt, see, worn it on stage and not played. Just stood there. I'da stood up there and said "I'm not playin, see, 'cause I got somethin' against this here Smitty fella. Now I'll take his money (assuming it was a paid gig), because he's wronged someone I know. I'll take his money, see, and I'll take his money five times, and then I'll play. But he better not wrong anybodys else, see? 'Cause karma's a bitch. And so am I."

    And then I would

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