Sunday, July 6, 2008

Headaches & Rewards

Last weekend we did our big yearly show that we throw each year called SUMMER OF HATE in Cleveland. Me, Rob, and Trevor set up the show and we were concerned that due to rising gas prices and the overall current state of division in the world of "hardcore" in 2008 that the show may not go so well.

I showed up to the show at 5:30 (late) and the show was to start at 6. There was already a line of people standing outside and a good number of others scattered down the street... our worries of a show w/ low turn out were put to ease. at this point I was running around with a clip board trying to find and organize the bands and tell them exactly when and where they were playing. I then went into the club and the people working there told me the schedule of times/bands differed from the one they were given previously... and tried to tell me that mine was incorrect. After some time and talking to 10 different people, it was straightened out. At this point, it was 6:15 and the doors had not been opened and we were already off the time schedule which we made for the show. Furthermore, the venue told me they would not let anyone in the show without being patted-down and searched for weapons. As people were finally allowed to start to trickle in (and I do mean trickle) the 1st bands had to be started at the same time to allow all 13 bands ample time to play and stick to our posted time schedule. Also, coordinating equipment for the bands to use, trying to get the guest lists sorted out (the venue didn't want to allow 7 PEOPLE for the entire show!) and whatever else was going wrong. At this point, I remembered why I stopped doing shows 5 years ago.

Eventually, everything was back on track and any/all troubles of the early goings ons were forgotten. All the bands showed up and played at the scheduled times and everything ran smoothly. We got over 300 people to come to a show which was booked, promoted, and run by us... for us. There were no fights, but there were quite a few broken noses and jaws (including mine). All the bands were either the best of the best bands from our region and bands that we felt best represent the best in HC from the US. At the end of thre night we were paid exactly the amount of $$$ by the club that we had promised the bands and we paid every dime (plus some extra out of our pockets) to the bands. Myself, Rob, or Trevor made no profit (as promised). In a socialist/ideal world of hardcore, all shows would go this way, but usually someone makes a profit off a show (whenever there is one to be made, of course), or someone gets in a fight, or some bands cancel... but that's just reality. I am just thankful that all of our work provided a great time/show for everyone who attended and all the bands that played. To me, that was enough justification for all of the headaches and hard work we put into it and was a far greater reward than any profit we could have made off the show if we'd have charged double the price for admission. Also, seeing old faces come out that we have not seen in years was great and also reward enough.

Every band played a great set. WISDOM IN CHAINS ended the night with an hour+ set which included the majority of their material from all of their albums and blew the roof off the place. It was great to see so much energy after such a long, hot, and physically demanding show. We had been worried that the crowd might not have any energy left by the end to give to bands like KNOW THE SCORE, STOUT, and WISDOM IN CHAINS, but all the bands had awsome sets and it was great at the end of the night to talk to the bands and hear them ask us "when can you bring us back???". All the other bands (NO END IN SIGHT, BACKHAND, A DEATH & A PROMISE, TASTE THE STEEL, RIGHT IDEA, COFFIN BROTHERS) all gave it their all as did the crowd. it was great to see so much positive energy and pretty much no negative energy come out of the show.

We look forward to doing the show again next year. Please support your local bands and promoters who are doing shows by us, for us.