**** Ponderings ****
Is it a quandary to impact the environment by having a tremendous amount of humans gather for a giant rock show to promote social awareness of the impact that a the tremendous number of humans have on the environment? Is the event itself in it's magnitude directly undermining it's own cause? Busses, trucks, planes and trains haul masses of bottled water and beer drinking humans to create a mind bending amount of trash to promote reducing trashing our world. The hypocrisy was most purely embraced in full ignorance by Duran Duran's singer's attempt at self elevation when he walks on stage spewing "Raise your hand if did not arrive here on a private jet." As if somehow throwing spikes at the fellow performers gathering for a common cause would have some sort of positive spin.
More specifically, I arrived on an overnight bus ride of misery and left on a private jet to get to the next show that same night, with the rest of Peppers core crew. No other other way we could make the jump to Denmark for the show we had booked long before the Peppers were personally asked to support Live Earth by Al Gore. We all jumped many hoops. So one could ponder, would it have been better that Peppers not play? Was the environmental impact of transporting the band and crew to the event excessive compared to the effort towards of catalyzing humans to take up the mission of walking more softly upon the planet we tread? If the answer is yes, could than same response be applied to the event as whole and therefore it should never have existed?
First I must say that I fully support treating the world we live with care and respect. Whether it is global warming, decimation of other species or obliteration of the key components that necessitate healthy life, I feel that care and respect should be considered in all avenues. What concerned me was not the events existence but it's lack of thoroughness. Cool concepts like "return 10 empty cups to get a free beer to promote recycling, reduce the mess to be cleaned" that they do at the Werchter Festival in Germany and how Roskilde pays cash for empties, was sadly missing. The laminate lanyards they gave us said they were made from 100% recycled fiber while the laminates themselves were plain old plastic instead of cool recycled paper. How much of the festival was powered by renewable power? All I could find was that the web site servers were, the festival itself, while we just plugged into the wall of course. In the back of my mind grows the thought the true change will grow from innovation in grass roots events that focus on awareness while maintaining near zero impact, setting an example rather that just preaching what "you" should do.
Perhaps to truly solve the issue we face, we would have to also address the speed at which humans mass produce more humans at alarming rates. Where do we draw the line on whether we attack each other or work together and how effective we can be at slowing down the inevitable, all remains to be seen. Regardless though, there should be little doubt that less splattering of the planet sure beats screwing it up faster.
**** End Ponderings ****
**** Sound Nerd Speak ****
So I am on little sleep, nearly all our gear in another country, I am mixing on a console I just met an hour ago and an EV X-Line PA that I have never used on a large event. Oh well, no biggie, it's just for hundreds of thousands of humans all over the world. What better time to play it safe? So I ordered in the best mixing board I could think of to handle the job. This is a big huge show and we all know that big huge shows must have big expensive complicated mixing boards so the soundman looks cool. Unless of course the soundman desired something small, fast, dependable, predictable and easy to setup. Hmmm, I see a $200,000 dollar Midas XL8, three $100,000 Digico D5's and $70,000 Yamaha PM 5D laying around the mix area here, all high end digital desks. Somewhere around here is my baby, aha, there it is on the left:
Oooooh, wow! Look at that $15,000 analog Midas Verona! Though the show could have gone smoother for me, given the fact that I had absolutely nothing in my favor, including loosing most of what little line check before I actually was given working snake lines and no time to play music through the PA so I could tune it, things went relatively well and compared to the various forms of trains wrecks I heard leading up to Peppers, it fell well into the window of good enough.
*** End Sound Nerd Speak ****
And off we go...
But not before grabbing a few pics
Meet Roadie Bryan, an awesome sound engineer and a long time friend, he mixes Foo Fighters, hanging with Roadie Daniel.
And just because I can, the gratuitous glamour shot with the guy that introduced the Peppers
Hurry up, we rocked and now we got to roll. Hour to the airport, two hour flight, 30 minute drive to the gig plus we lose an hour in the time change. Roskilde, the last show of this tour leg, here we come!