July the 4th gigs are usually pretty tough because it's always hot and humid and you're always outdoors. Some cities do their fireworks displays on different days for whatever reason, and some of the gigs are earlier in the day. I might end up doing 4 shows over 3 days, and I often end up seeing several fireworks displays. I'm not interested in the noise. (I make enough of that myself.) I do enjoy the colors though.
Almost every year I play Whiteman Air Force Base. They never have their display on the 4th, usually a few days ahead, I assume for security reasons. I hate getting on base, as security is so tight. One band had to do without their bass player because he was from Switzerland. He was legal and everything, but being from Switzerland kept him out. He had to wait out the show at a nearby McDonalds. The Air Force display is always enormous, as Boeing pays for it, and it goes on for quite a while. Even though it takes us an hour and a half to tear down, we're still usually stuck in a traffic jam for a half hour, and leaving the base is like finding your way through a BF Skinner box. It's so confusing, that you can ask an MP how to get out, and they never know! I've done that a couple of times. But, you can usually get in a line of traffic that's moving really slow and after a half hour or so, you'll get out. I didn't have to play the Base this year though.
I usually look at July 4th as a really lucrative time, but a lot of hard work! John
I have not gon to a fireworks display in over 20 years I think. It just does not give the same excitement to see them as it once did. That said, people fire off the things illegally here by the lake all summer, even though it can start a horrible fire, so I do see them and the cats do get scared. Noise-wise, I hear gun fire a lot too. You can shoot on the BLM above us, just really you cannot because it is a land locked BLM. But people get there and I have heard pistols and automatic fire plenty of times.
I hope you enjoyed the "gigs" (right phrase?) you did over the holiday!
Hope everybody had a good one! I had to work, of course. We started playing at 11:00 AM. It was about 86, hot and muggy with no breeze. Bass player started getting sick, but felt much better when we were done. When we finally tore down, we beat a thunderstorm by minutes. I was pretty well beat for about 3 hours afterward. When I got home, (only about 10 minutes away) I was surprised to see that I'd sweat clear through a thick leather strap and the tops of my cowboy boots. I was hotter than I'd realized, although I remembered having to play with my eyes closed a few times because the sweat burned them.
After I got home though, I stripped off the sweaty clothes and put on a bathrobe and the most strenuous thing I did for the rest of the day was watching a granddaughter watch fireworks, which stopped about 10:00 when the rains came back.
Tonight I play in Pittsburg, (the little one in Missouri). We're supposed to play outside there too, but it'll be late in the evening so probably a little more comfortable. There've been thunderstorms here all morning, so playing outside is a little in doubt. The lightning has been striking so close to the house I couldn't sleep. I don't even have my laptop plugged in. It's calming down outside though.
Saturday I have to go to the Lake Of The Ozarks, about an hour and a half away, but I won't have to work. Just a late breakfast meeting about what we'll be doing toward the end of August and beyond. John
Happy Fourth of July!