The Advantages And Disadvantages Of Supporting An Established Band

Recently in a couple of my current blog posts I may have mentioned that myself along with the rest of my course performed on a support slot for the band Kiama on the 27th February at Base Studios, which gave us all an insight into how professional musicians approach a serious gig which can ultimately affect the image the band in either a good or bad way. As a support act for an established band your automatically seen as lesser beings and often treated in the same way in most cases as the main act doesn’t want to be shown up, and with the gear on stage most likely belonging to the main act there are guaranteed to be some mishaps along the way which I shall delve into.

The Pros of Being A Support Act:

Being a support act for an established band can give you the element of surprise in most cases as the audience may never of heard of you and has paid for their ticket with the intention of seeing the headlining act, which is where putting on an effective performance can essentially decide if the exposure is good or bad. A few months ago I got the chance to watch The Libertines at the Barclaycard as my brother had a spare ticket available which was a great way for me to get more exposure to a different genre of music which I had never really delved into. Having shied away from this genre I found myself looking forward to being able take in as much as I could which lead to me wanting to watch the support acts (The Enemy, The Sherlocks) prior to the headliners, and in my personal opinion from what I experienced on the night the end result had the support acts stealing the show.

And Now For The Cons :

Having experienced this I can tell you that using the other musicians equipment is a very risky move as I found out when it came to the sound check and the performance because I had to use the midi keyboard set up that belonged to the headliners keyboardist, and without the knowledge to properly get the equipment working I had to refrain from doing sound check, and at this point we managed to get in contact with the keyboardist to request assistance to which he declined as it was not his sound check that was transpiring. Eventually the keyboardist arrived in time for the headliners sound check to sort out his equipment and In the end I managed to get through the gig with a less than ideal sound level. In short this shows how little the main acts think of their supports and will often lend little help to no help at all when it comes to issues that doesn’t concern them.

Here is the footage from the show (I am in fact in the video, just out of shot):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ca-tCMrZ1WY

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