An interesting side effect of working so many hours in just 2 days to get a show up and down is that after working 21 hours straight you get a little loopy! For what it’s worth, I took this picture at 3:30am after the show was struck, everything was put away, and the crew was enjoying a quiet moment in the air conditioning of the building:
The only thing I remember about taking this picture is that I thought it was hilarious (go ahead and judge me, I can take it!) and had announced to anyone awake enough to listen that this HAD to go onto the backstage blog. It made complete sense at the time! : )
Rewind 7.5 hours earlier to 8pm on Saturday night…the EMP crew is changing over into the headliner and almost everyone gets a quick break during The Decemberists set to recharge and get ready for strike. Its been a good, but long day…and even though everything has gone smoothly, the crew is starting to get a little antsy about starting the strike.
We have a whole new group off crew folks arriving at 10pm, right as the show is ending, to help us take the whole thing down. The goal is to get the staging, power, cable, cable ramps and everything clear from the street as quickly and safely as possible!
Backline folks pack up the guitars, amps, keyboards and mics.
Audio engineers are packing away the monitor desks, front of house control board and audio snakes.
MPR and some crew are packing away the gear for the live feed and the recording.
We discover at the start of strike that the rented forklift has a propane leak and we are out of fuel. Hearts stop. But luckily Tony is there with his Bobcat to get things started and the head of our department finds a vendor in Golden Valley (on 11pm on a Saturday night!!!) with another propane tank! 45 minutes and a quick ride in the Walker van to Golden Valley later, we are forking on all cylinders!
As soon as we can cut a path through the exiting crowd, we move the Decemberists truck into position and start loading cases and strapping them in.
The bands slowly vacate the air-conditioned band trailers backstage (who wouldn’t want to leave such a fun event!?) so we can clean them out one-by-one. First to leave: Calexico. Last to leave: The Decemberists
EMP takes the left over beer (not much left over this year!) and sends the stuff left behind by the bands. Left behind this year: one pair of silver shoes and a pair of ipod headphones. It takes us a while to clean one of the trailers, though…one of the bands had a real “rock star behavior” day!
The trailers move out of the way so the staging can get broken down and motors bring in the roof.
The RV driving crew (David is back driving “Big Mama”) take a trip down to Shakopee to return clean, empty trailers.
By the time we get back, the roof is down and the staging vendor is loading up the truck with all their gear. The vendors are mostly gone and the cable ramps and cable is stacked and ready to be picked up on Monday.
Event golf carts are returned to the loading dock.
Rental radios are returned to master planner, Ashley (minus one antenna, sorry Ashley…we really looked for it!)
The only real casualty of the day was my clipboard. At some point during the day, it was lost.
And then run over by a couple of trucks.
And found at some point on Monday by some kind woman who found it in the street and returned it to the front desk!