Jul 19, 2006
Curse Of The U2 Drum Riser
Back in the States again after a little stint in Europe... I was filling in as drum tech for Chad and the Chili Peppers in England. His longtime tech Chris had a horrible accident at the beginning of the tour and wasn't able to return for two months. It was certainly my first touring experience as a big time drum tech and I have a new appreciation for the road warriors who do this demanding work for a living. Leave it to the young-uns I say.
Everything the Pep's do is first class, and even though the schedule can be grueling, the band takes care of their crew. Saw some incredible shows - I spent every show onstage to the left of Chad. My job consisted of setting up the drums, changing heads, polishing cymbals, connecting the new drum light system (which being a prototype triggered by sound gates was a pain in the ass), playing a sound check to set levels in the mains and the in-ear monitors. There are so many great stories to tell and the crew themselves are some really fun and wonderful people, who were remarkably patient with me as I learned the ropes. The high point: playing soundcheck every day in an empty soccer stadium with the other instrument techs. We usually performed the Peppers' hit "Give it Away".
An old knee injury came back to haunt me and the offending joint popped loudly as I was coming off the drum riser after soundcheck one day. I was taken by ambulance to the hospital and treated by a very friendly staff of British doctors and nurses.I hobbled back to the show to enjoy my my status as the second drum tech to fall in the line of duty on the Euro tour. Chad chalked it off to the drum riser, bought second hand from U2. Damn your Irish drumsticks Larry Mullen! You gotta laff.
I'll go into more detail about the in's and out's of the tour in a future posting, but here's a low res onstage movie in the meantime.