Session Drumming Month: Nightmare Gigs



Nightmare gigs and sessions happen to all of us, even hugely successful drummers. Take a look at these, and make yourself feel a little better about your last gigging disaster.

'That's Not It!'

Ralph Salmins: "At the Montreux Jazz festival in about 1998 Van Morrison turned round to me during an 8 bar tenor solo on a ballad and screamed "That's not it, that's not it, that's not it, that's not it!'"

Swiss Chris' session nightmare

Swiss Chris: "After College working at the classic Funky Slice Recording studio in downtown Brooklyn, 1997, doing drum-programming/ acoustic/ electronic drum recording/ writing/ arranging with Mr. Bluefor an MTV Show. We also recorded a whole EP for Mr. Blue's band 1 ADAM 12, we were about to blow up and sign a big record deal and be famous. We never did and additionally to not blowing up, the biggest New York Hip-Hop station stole one of our songs and used it for a radio commercial."

Stuffed dogs + fairy lights = disaster averted

Cherisse Osei: "One of the first times I toured North America with Mika we had a show in Salt Lake City and our equipment got stuck in the snow so we had no set and no musical equipment. We managed to find a film props rental place nearby and rented an assortment of odd items including a huge inflatable hand, a throne, a bicycle, a stuffed dog which we covered with fairy lights! We luckily managed to hire some equipment from a rehearsal studio nearby and did an acoustic gig in front of this weird and wonderful set we had created and the gig went down a storm and was one of the best of the tour!"

For more session tips, tricks and stories pick up the latest issue of Rhythm and take a look at our online Session Month.

Rich Chamberlain

Rich is a teacher, one time Rhythm staff writer and experienced freelance journalist who has interviewed countless revered musicians, engineers, producers and stars for the our world-leading music making portfolio, including such titles as Rhythm, Total Guitar, Guitarist, Guitar World, and MusicRadar. His victims include such luminaries as Ice T, Mark Guilani and Jamie Oliver (the drumming one).