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Author Topic: What is your most embarrassing experience you have ever had in Audio?  (Read 15589 times)

Dave Slater

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Re: What is your most embarrassing experience you have ever had in Audio?
« Reply #10 on: January 27, 2011, 01:19:24 pm »

Most embarrassing moment in audio would have to be doing panto a few years ago

Let me set the scene...

The Panto is Peter Pan and we've just got to the bit where Captain Hook and his crew have found Peter Pans hideout and are about to enter through a door in a tree trunk

Now the problem is Hook always starts talking fractionally before the door is opened as if he's in mid sentence

Now I've missed the very start of his line for the last couple of shows and am determined not to miss it this time so I slightly pre-empt the cue

Unfortunately this time Captain Hook is still racing back from his dressing room after being caught short between scenes

He gets to behind the door and all we heard out front was "SHIT! I've forgot me hook!"

Of course there was deathly silence throughout the theatre as half the audience were parents

Then cutting through this cavernous silence was this lone voice from a little girl... "Mummy, Hook said shit!"

If the ground could have opened up right there...
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Jordan Wolf

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Re: What is your most embarrassing experience you have ever had in Audio?
« Reply #11 on: January 27, 2011, 07:08:59 pm »

Dave,

I make sure that every person I wire up gets the riot act: always, always, always assume that the audience can hear everything you say.  All of the show's higher ups are aware of this, too, so if something does slip out, the hammer doesn't fall [completely] on me.
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Ben Lawrence

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Re: What is your most embarrassing experience you have ever had in Audio?
« Reply #12 on: January 27, 2011, 09:28:09 pm »

I have a few but this one makes the top 5 for sure. Quite some time ago in my first year or two in sound reinforcement. I was working in a large ballroom that had air walls to split it up for separate functions. Well The room was split and I was testing the single podium microphone for the next event in front of the house guys moving tables and chairs around. I was in pretty tight with all of them so began my usual antics (at the time) on the mic test. I believe it started out with test one toe but quickly went from test to testes somewhere in there. Long story short I forgot to hit the room matrix up before the test and was made aware by a guy in a suit rushing in the room with a look of horror on his face stating. " We are in a meeting and are hearing every word of this". That was the first and last time that ever happened.

Geri O'Neil

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Re: What is your most embarrassing experience you have ever had in Audio?
« Reply #13 on: January 30, 2011, 01:30:18 am »

I've had two moments that stick out in my mind...

One was a Miss (whatever county we were in) pageant. Me, FOH, stage manager, lighting, followspots, and the pageant director (a woman, of course) were on clear-coms. During the pageant, we saw that the director had left her headsets, so we kinda started, well, being guys on headsets during a pageant. We didn't see her get back on the headset, and that was about the time I made the world-famous comment "yeah, she (the contestant at the moment) sure puts the 'cunt' back in 'country'". That's when we heard "I'M LISTENING TO THIS!!" from the director. Oops. She was waay better about it than we deserved and for the next 11 years, I asked her "You sure you don't want a headset this year?". "Noooo, I can manage without it, thank you very much!".

The second one was during a day-before load-in for a Willie Nelson concert outdoors. The upstage lighting truss was assembled on the stage, then needed to be handed off the deck to the Genies. The lighting guys had the hands hop on to the ground to catch the ends of the truss. One guy said he couldn't jump. "Ahhh, go ahead, be brave, don't be skeered, yer buddies did it, so can you!". The guy said "OKAY, FINE!", proceeded to remove his wooden leg, sat down on the edge of the stage, and got on the ground.

I took him to lunch later and bought him a steak in hopes of redeeming myself.... Very Happy

Geri O
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Art Welter

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Re: What is your most embarrassing experience you have ever had in Audio?
« Reply #14 on: January 31, 2011, 01:31:26 pm »

The mention of Willie Nelson made remember another  embarrassing moment.

His sound man in the 1980s had an ongoing “war” going on with the announcer/ production manager at the Minnesota State Fair, which they opened with a two day stint for years and years.

The sound man would do things like putting a Harmonizer on the announcers voice, pitch him up an octave with none of his actual voice in the mix, making him sound like Donald Duck.

When we took over the sound contract, we were required to have a small mixer which would directly interface with our PA system, so the announcer could not be sabotaged.

All went went well the first day, Willie’s engineer had no way to mess with the  announcer. The second night, after Willie’s show, the announcer as usual said “Ladies and gentleman, the Minnesota State Fair Fireworks !”

The fireworks were set to music, which was on a cassette I had carefully cued up to start immediately upon the announcement.

I hit “play”, no music, no meter movement, just rolling silence. The band engineer had run the cassette  to near the end, past the recording, requiring it to be rewound.

Don’t remember whether it took 30 seconds or a minute to rewind, but with about 20,000 people waiting to see the fireworks, it seemed like forever  Shocked .

Art Welter
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Scott Smith

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Re: What is your most embarrassing experience you have ever had in Audio?
« Reply #15 on: February 05, 2011, 08:57:34 am »

A couple minor embarrassing moments, both at a large outdoor city event:

First was playing a soundtrack with the cd player tempo knob accidentally slid all the way to the slowest position... the poor young girl sang like a trooper all the way through to the wrong speed.

The other was doing this big city event mixing from side stage behind a stack of subs and tops.  It was a "B" level national act singing to soundtracks as well, and it was discovered that the bass was causing the rack CD player to skip badly (fortunately before the headliner came on).  Quickly I found a boom-box, and set it on a pillow to play the sound tracks.  The promoter gave me a look I still remember... but was happy to see the show go on without any further problems. Shocked
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Jason Lavoie

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Re: What is your most embarrassing experience you have ever had in Audio?
« Reply #16 on: February 05, 2011, 09:57:15 pm »

for me it was when I was tossing the director's "warmup" (cassette) tape back to him. and I accidentally clipped a bench on the way by, causing the casette to explode and send the tiny reels of tape unspooling towards him.
the worst part is that although none of us were fond of the content of that tape, I still shouldn't have laughed after the streams of tape headed in his direction!
ahh, those were the days..

Jason
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Bill Burford

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Re: What is your most embarrassing experience you have ever had in Audio?
« Reply #17 on: February 17, 2011, 12:21:08 am »

I show up for a tour.... filling in for some guy they were firing.
this was just the final leg (3 or 4 dates) and an after party in NYC.
anyhow,
I didn't know this but the band and the road-manager were promised that I had 2 paddles and and a full senheisser system with the fanny packs (band had the moulded ears already).

here's the kicker: they didn't need this the first show.. the first show was the show where I was to "take over" and they were still using the other guys shure system.
I was going into this thinking the actual band members owned the shure system.

ok, we go to the next show.. this is a supporting act btw.  
there is no sound-check.. nothing.. Luckily its a Midas because I don't even have a memory card yet.. the lead singers are asking me for my senheisers and paddles.
well-- the road manager is sort of a big-wig even for this supporting role.. the way he said it and the way he looked at me:
"You'RE KIDDING ME??????? OH FUCK ME! " HE punched the wall right besides me..
and this is the FIRST I have heard about this and I just rode hundreds and hundreds of miles from my comfy bed I just wanted to hide in....
I literally went to the headliner's FOH guy and the guy this was even more embarassing.. I asked him if I could borrow his senheissers.. HA HA HA
(I felt terrible for my guys)---> horrible career move I know.
so anyways.. the head engineer LET ME HAVE EM!!!!
he did this POST SOUND CHECK for a freaking superstar.
can you believe this?  Its true.  No, this isn't a dream.  I never got to wake up.  The embarassment didn't go away for the entire tour and I felt like I could have rung someones neck.
well.. as Cable guy says  : Git er done..
I just never really figured out quite how that could have happened to me like that or what I should have done about it?
Sabotage like a MO-FO.  I am so lucky the headliners were able to patch everything back in to their rig so fast!!!!  
(not to mention wipe off the sweat, rip off tape, they were on a completely separate system.. our foh board ran into their's but.. you get the picture..)
I think the stress and embarrassment of those times have never even been approached for me. . . even when I do something really stupid: its like " WHO CARES!!!!! " its nothing like that tour..
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