Friday, December 11, 2009

The Loyal Fan

1998 was a great year for the band. It was our first year as a band and no band could have asked for kind of opening gig that our band got. The opening college act for an anti-Nuclear protest/music festival which had the who's who of the local rock scene as well as the then biggies from the Indipop fraternity. After playing to a crowd of over 4000 people its kinda tough to keep your expectations low as performers.

We soon realised the Indian aam junta does not give a hoot about rock bands and live musicians unless they're playing Bollywood music. A time when this was never more apparent was when we were asked to do a show at a theme park called FantasyLand (which was like the poor cousin of EsselWorld). The organisers wanted three rock bands to play over the weekend. No problem from our end. In fact we were downright thrilled as this was our first paid gig. We ate dinner at a Chinese stall outside our Bandra hangout post the gig. I think the money just about covered that meal...

We were supposed to play on a Saturday. The day dawned and our car was this big ole Sumo arranged by my dad. It came with a driver too which we were more than happy about coz it meant an extra pair of hands to help out with the equipment. So we loaded the gear into the car and we headed to the venue. We set up our equipment and began soundcheck. The setting was the amphitheatre there and there was space for about 300 people to sit comfortably in there. About 100-120 people show up - mostly curious at hearing the sounds emanating from the soundcheck. The gig starts just as the sun is setting.
It wasn't a very great show to begin with. Within about 10-15 mins of us playing, the crowd realised that we weren't going to play Hindi music (We did later but by then it was too late...). And they obviously weren't fans of Stone Temple Pilots or the Goo Goo Dolls, so about 45 mins into the show we're down to about 30 people in the audience!

By this point in time we didn't care either. There were technical issues with the sound, guitar strings which broke and were being fixed on stage... well you get the picture. And of course people continue to filter out of the amphitheatre. So now we're pretty much getting to the end of the gig and there's about 12 people left at the end of the 90 minutes or so that we were up there. The break up of 11 - 5 of us in the band, 1 organiser, 2 sound guys and 3 of Zeus's college buddies who'd come from all the way from town to show their support. The gig got done. Our friends clapped for us. We heaved a sigh of relief that the torture was finally over and started to get our cables and equipment together. Afore-mentioned buddies also come onto the stage and are generally shooting the breeze with us as we get our shit together. The stage lights are still on so we can't quite see into the empty seats out there.

Zeus's buds: Great show man... nice one guys...
Us: yeah thanks dudes... it wasn't a 'rock band friendly' crowd but what the heck...
Zeus: if nothing else we played for you guys.. our fans... exclusively!
Zeus's buds: haha yeah right... truly honored... Not! but hey we have to tell you there is one guy out there who seems to be a hardcore fan of your band. (pointing into the stands) can you see him there?!
Us: what? really?!
Zeus's buds: For sure man... he was here when we got here in the beginning. I mean even during soundcheck he was sitting in the same seat. People came and went... but this guy he didnt move man. He seems to be totally into the stuff you guys were playing. See see he's still sitting there...

By now all of us peering intently to spot this fan...

Zeus: Him?!... oh fuck...  that's just BF's driver (!!)

And thus ends the tale of our loyal 'fan'. Disappointing gig to be sure but I guarantee every single guy from the band reading this one is smiling right now :)


オテモヤン said...


Aastha Gupta said...

Heh. More, pliz.

Blackfayth said...

Wow! I almost forgot about the existance of this blog... Well thanks for the words. I don't do much writing these days but hey who can say what the future holds :)