If it can go wrong, it will go wrong. And it will go wrong at the worst possible moment. What’s more, your audience will neither appreciate nor care why it has gone wrong; they’ll just see five panicking blokes in suits making no noise where a band should be.
Battling curveballs like crazy electrical hum, inexplicable feedback or equipment failure due to dodgy power/spilled pints requires forethought and a pretty serious band toolkit. Remember, people and costumes break as well as gear: plasters, headache pills, safety pins and Superglue can save a gig every bit as much as spare fuses, snare skins and soldering irons.
“When you play in a function band you can often end up in a marquee in the middle of nowhere, so it’s really important to pack spare kit. Always take two guitars to pre-empt the inevitable mid-set string break – it will happen on one of these nights. Carrying two amps might be impractical, but you could take an amp modeller to plug into the desk if your amp fails.” Stephen Lawson, Editor, Total Guitar
About the author:
Owen Bailey is a guitarist in a successful function band, and he regularly breaks rules six, nine, and strings.