Sunday night as the last night Cliff Eberhardt (www.cliffeberhardt.net) and I played here in the southeast. The attendance was unpredictable, some laces lots of folks, some places ann intimate crowd, but all the shows went well. Eberhardt is the consummate professional and never delivered less than a great show. I hope that the same can be said of me. That’s the thing about performing. You give your all no matter how many or how few show up and we did that. We made certain that everyone got a good show, their money’s worth and a chance to talk with us if they wanted to do so.
We did four dates in four days and had a lot of driving between cities, so we took full advantage of the wolf nap that Farley Mowat talks about in Never Cry Wolf. You do twenty minutes. No more. Just twenty minues and you don’t become groggy and your voice doesn’t gum up and sound like it does after you have had hours of sleep. Just twenty minutes
I’ve been doing it so long, that I can sleep for exactly twenty minutes whenever I like. It’s a very useful thing to learn.
We get to the venue for the sound check and then we just stay there and play in the dressing room until show time.
It is amazing to me the number of venues that do not provide dressing rooms or any amenities. We played at this cultural center in Madison, Georgia and they treated us like familiy and royalty at the same time.
We had a great sound check, competent people all around and then a dressing room where we could sit and play. By the time we hit the stage, Cliff and I were on our game. For my money, we sang and played the best of the tour that night.
It is important to provide a place where the artists can gather themselves in private and prepare for the performance. This isn’t prima donna stuff, this is just experience talking. If you have these aforementioned things, you always do a good show and yo always sound great.
Even with the long drives and the little sleep, you can prepare for it and you can deliver the goods, but it is ever so much easier if the venue is also doing all that they can to make the evening a special one for all concerned.
That’s the other reality of it. People have come out to see you and you owe it to them to make certain that they have a special evening of it. I strive for that with every show and so does Cliff.
I recommend you do the same. That way, no matter what the circumstances, you have the satisfaction of knowing that you did your best and you had a positive impact on your audience.
They have done something very remarkable in coming to your show and sharing time with you. Time is the only commodity that none of us can get more of and when someone elects to share that time with you, you must recognizxe what a precious gift it is and make the most of it.
And this applies across the board to our entire lives. Pay attention. Do the best you can. It is its own reward. It is what Cliff and I did every night and it worked for us.