A week ago Friday, I went to see Cowboy Mouth play at BB King. When I found out that they were playing so close to my birthday, I think I damn near shit myself with excitement.
They’re that good.
Plus, they were playing at BB’s which might I remind you is where my James works his monitor magic, so on top of getting to see a shit your pants good band I get to carry around that internal badge of pride that I’m going home with the man who’s making sure the band can hear what the fuck their doing.
I love going to shows James works because of that. It just makes me all squee inside.
Anna came with me, cause she’s my loyal concert buddy and well… after you’ve seen Cowboy Mouth once (the first time we saw them was at Highline Ballroom back in June) you’ve got to see them every time they come to town. It’s just one of those things.
We started out towards the back of the room because we got a table because she wanted to eat, but since we wanted to get up and dance and be merry with everybody else we closed out during the first song.
And dear goddess was it LOUD.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I like loud. It’s just that… well… if my ears are telling me “OW!” in the first song, that’s not really what you’d call a good thing because if you start in the “OW!” range by the end of the show you’re going to get to the “OH MY GOD! I’M GOING TO KILL THE FUCKING ENGINEER!” range and well… I happen to like sound engineers and don’t like to make a habit of murdering them. (So, if you happen to be Cowboy Mouth’s engineer and you ever find yourself at BB’s again, hint. Start slightly quieter than you think you need to be. Kthxbye!)
So, I turned to Anna and made the executive decision that the best place in the house to be considering the volume was somewhere over by monitorland. What I didn’t expect was for James to invite us to hang out in monitorland.
And this is the part where I geek out just a little bit and admit how stupid I am at times.
I don’t know why, but the whole concept of monitors sort of eluded me. I mean sure, I got the fact that the monitors are what the band uses to hear themselves, and I knew that each member of the band has their own mix which is tailored to what they need to hear but somehow I missed the memo in regard to how it was possible for the monitor engineer to mix several different things at once and manage to hear himself think.
In case the concept of this has eluded you too, I’ll fill you in on a secret. There’s a button. And when you press it, it plays whoever’s mix you want to listen to and adjust. You listen to them one at a time on the monitor that’s at your feet.
OH MY GOD! It’s like MAGIC OR SOMETHING!
I also felt like a pretty damn big idiot for not realizing that’s how it works without having to observe the phenomenon myself.
But anyway. The name of the band is Cowboy Mouth!
Not from the show I went to, but to give you a little taste…. You Can’t Always Get What You Want / I Believe In The Power of Love filmed at WI State Fair in August 2010.
One of the things that I love about Cowboy Mouth shows is that no matter what sort of sour mood you came to the show in, you leave at the end of the night believing that life is amazing and that you can do anything that you want in life.
They never cease to amaze me and inspire me.
When Anna and I met up with James after the show at the bar we always go to, he dutifully brought momentos of the show. Anna and I both got one of John Thomas Griffith’s guitar picks and he gave me the set list from the stage.
Now, if I could only train him to get things signed…