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Author Topic: Got rained out - should know better!!  (Read 1879 times)

Debbie Dunkley

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Got rained out - should know better!!
« on: August 12, 2017, 06:01:39 pm »

Band got booked to play a pool party today. Weather forecast was so typical of Raleigh area NC at this time of year, around 50% chance of rain basically all day. I know better and said we shouldn't do the show with our a backup plan but got persuaded into turning up because the guy who hired the band said if we turn up he'll pay us anyway. Well, when we got there the sun was shining and it was clear blue skies. They provided those silly lightweight sun canopies and we set up the speakers under 2 huge patio umbrellas in their heavy bases and figured we'd take the chance. 
Could have been a lot worse. When the heavens opened, band stopped playing, it was action stations and everyone did their bit.
We shut down the gear, unplugged and wheeled everything to the closest undercover area which happened to be the restroom entrances.

The cables got drenched along with the drums and some cases but we did OK for the most part. Someone threw us some towels and we wiped down as much as we could under the canopies. We simply dries off the cables and threw them in the case - no coiling or anything.  ....Everything is drying out in my garage with my dehumidifier running in there. Lots of coiling cables tomorrow...we have another one booked outside but I'm going to call it - similar forecast.

Why do folks in NC insist on having so many outdoor shows in the summer when the weather is so unpredictable? I didn't play anywhere near as many outdoor shows when I lived in CA and I lived there for 14 years!... In the UK either...
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Steve Alves

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Re: Got rained out - should know better!!
« Reply #1 on: August 12, 2017, 06:05:43 pm »

Just as bad in South Florida. We purchased Undercover NY rain covers for our QRX rig and use them at EVERY outdoor show regardless of weather forecast.
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Steven Alves
South Florida Sound, Fort Lauderdale, FL
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Steve Loewenthal

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Re: Got rained out - should know better!!
« Reply #2 on: August 12, 2017, 06:12:49 pm »

Our band still accepts outdoor gigs. We just like to play no matter how miserable the  heat. Columbia SC is not that much different than Raleigh NC in predictability. I lived in Miami Florida for 32 years. There it seemed very predictable in the summer: at 4:00 PM it will rain.
:)
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Steve Loewenthal

"I'm, just the guy in a band that owns the PA and I'm trying to figure out how it works. (Been trying to learn somethin' about it for about 20 years and I hope somethin' learns me soon)"

g'bye, Dick Rees

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Re: Got rained out - should know better!!
« Reply #3 on: August 12, 2017, 06:15:43 pm »

My weather plan was to have tarps/bungees ready at each stack, subs pre-tarped and set 6" off the ground.  Always scout possible flow from downspouts, slopes, etc.

Bread bags to pop over mics, trash bags ready for "monitor condoms" and 2x4 VSP's (valuable short pieces) on hand to get things off the deck.

Cut power, tarp up and wait for the rain to stop.  Weather radar phone apps are handy...
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Steve Loewenthal

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Re: Got rained out - should know better!!
« Reply #4 on: August 12, 2017, 06:50:22 pm »

Weather radar phone apps are handy...
+1
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Steve Loewenthal

"I'm, just the guy in a band that owns the PA and I'm trying to figure out how it works. (Been trying to learn somethin' about it for about 20 years and I hope somethin' learns me soon)"

Tim McCulloch

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Re: Got rained out - should know better!!
« Reply #5 on: August 12, 2017, 07:06:23 pm »

My weather plan was to have tarps/bungees ready at each stack, subs pre-tarped and set 6" off the ground.  Always scout possible flow from downspouts, slopes, etc.

Bread bags to pop over mics, trash bags ready for "monitor condoms" and 2x4 VSP's (valuable short pieces) on hand to get things off the deck.

Cut power, tarp up and wait for the rain to stop.  Weather radar phone apps are handy...

Yes, they let you have some idea of when you can start packing up....

Of all the free weather info sources I've found the Weather Underground "Best Forecast" to be pretty accurate.  The timeline graphic has been good to me...

Promoters and others who do outdoor shows this time of year are either gamblers or in deep denial, shaking their collective fist at Mother Nature, who then pisses down rain, hail and high winds as a form of loving parental discipline.  /nudge, wink.  Actually she's just a mean ol' gal who ran out of picnics and parades to rain upon...
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g'bye, Dick Rees

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Re: Got rained out - should know better!!
« Reply #6 on: August 12, 2017, 08:01:13 pm »

Tim...

Any experience with "wire dryer"?  I'm thinking of the spray we used to use on automotive ignition wiring.
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Geert Friedhof

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Re: Got rained out - should know better!!
« Reply #7 on: August 12, 2017, 10:33:40 pm »

Band got booked to play a pool party today. ... Bla bla...  n the UK either...

Buy rain covers or something. You are not the only one.
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: Got rained out - should know better!!
« Reply #8 on: August 12, 2017, 10:58:14 pm »

Band got booked to play a pool party today. Weather forecast was so typical of Raleigh area NC at this time of year, around 50% chance of rain basically all day. I know better and said we shouldn't do the show with our a backup plan but got persuaded into turning up because the guy who hired the band said if we turn up he'll pay us anyway. Well, when we got there the sun was shining and it was clear blue skies. They provided those silly lightweight sun canopies and we set up the speakers under 2 huge patio umbrellas in their heavy bases and figured we'd take the chance. 
Could have been a lot worse. When the heavens opened, band stopped playing, it was action stations and everyone did their bit.
We shut down the gear, unplugged and wheeled everything to the closest undercover area which happened to be the restroom entrances.

The cables got drenched along with the drums and some cases but we did OK for the most part. Someone threw us some towels and we wiped down as much as we could under the canopies. We simply dries off the cables and threw them in the case - no coiling or anything.  ....Everything is drying out in my garage with my dehumidifier running in there. Lots of coiling cables tomorrow...we have another one booked outside but I'm going to call it - similar forecast.

Why do folks in NC insist on having so many outdoor shows in the summer when the weather is so unpredictable? I didn't play anywhere near as many outdoor shows when I lived in CA and I lived there for 14 years!... In the UK either...

Hi Debbie-

It's kind of like that here in the Plains states, too.  Hot and windy in the summer, but on almost any given day you could have a drenching rain storm followed either by a whole lot more rain, or 105F temps with matching humidity.

We've had to team up with stage/roof/back line providers to arrive at definitive points where action is taken, particularly involving lightning and winds.

I think small providers need to do the same thing, except you'll probably need to coalesce with caterers instead of stage providers, but there needs to be some specific criteria as to what circumstances trigger a specific action, like lightning within 15 miles and moving toward us results in stage evacuation "stand by", when it's within 10 miles we clear the performance area of entertainers, crew and non-essential staff, at 6 miles nobody should be on the stage or in its immediate proximity.

Rain?  If you can keep your power stuff bone-dry, sure... but if you can't, you need to kill power at the beginning of the rain and keep it off until you're certain that everything is dry and will remain so.

This is why 'rain or shine' production costs more:  it's expensive to buy and maintain water-resistant electrical distribution equipment for portable use.  Setup requires a whole lot of vinyl e-tape, plastic bags and weatherproof switch gear (including your distro being rated for outdoor use).

I despise promoters who wait until a situation becomes *obviously* dangerous before postponing or cancelling a performance.  I understand the commercial aspects of such actions and I think too many know a jury will be unlikely to make a large award in a weather-related injury or death claim, so they push stuff to the bitter end.  That's how we ended up with the Indiana State Fair/Sugarland roof collapse, deaths and injuries a few years ago.  It was about the Benjamins, not the safety of the band & crew, the local crew, the audience or state fair staff.  /rant
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"Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven's sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possible can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something."  - Kurt Vonnegut

Debbie Dunkley

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Re: Got rained out - should know better!!
« Reply #9 on: August 12, 2017, 11:50:57 pm »

We played last night and got in very late - about 3.30 am and we drove home in torrential rain - like nothing we have ever seen before. Add to that we had also also written off the show today according to what the forecast had shown all week. So we woke up tired and once we got the call to turn up today, we had very little time to think and we were not prepared really. We also found a water stain on our ceiling - probably from the rain- and we were trying to find out where the leak came from so we were a bit distracted too.
We left home at 10am for a 1pm show.
We took what we already had in the van from last night . We usually take bags, tarps, towels and other items when there is a chance of rain but we were not well prepared this time.
Anyway, everything is nice and dry now and should be fine - cable coiling party tomorrow.
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A young child says to his mother, "Mom, when I grow up I'm going to be a musician." She replies, "Well honey, you know you can't do both."
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