By the time of this show – April 2016 – my relationship with most promoters had deteriorated. So much so I pretty much couldn’t get in to the ‘big’ shows. And the Dominion Post expected a review but didn’t expect to have to do anything about it – they wouldn’t even ask for review comps; they were desperate for content and to not rattle cages or ruffle feathers. If a promoter said no they didn’t point out that they’d helped to promote the show by announcing it, maybe running an interview and ads – and that review comps to cover the event should really be part of the arrangement, a signing off of sorts. Nah, too hard to point that out – just blame the reviewer and do nothing. So I was left for most of my last couple of years to sort review tickets myself. Oftentimes I couldn’t – the promoter said no, or just didn’t even answer a request. And I missed out. And the paper did too. Now they don’t even care to run reviews most of the time.
Well with this, one of the last gigs I reviewed for the paper – I called on my buddy Anika Moa. We reminisced about this just recently when I chatted to her for my podcast. We are both Fleetwood Mac fans and had planned to meet when Fleetwood Mac played in New Plymouth in 2009. I went to that show. Anika did too. We didn’t meet up – but sometime after that we did. We had been in touch via text and messages and so on but eventually met in 2010 or 2011 or something. Anyway, by chance she was in town when Mick Fleetwood was playing with his blues band. And she offered to sort comps.
We had a bit to eat at Chow – me and her and her manager. And then went to the show – and I reviewed it. It was an okay show, parts of it were terrible, parts of it were great. It was nice to be there. And a fun night.
But it wasn’t without its little problems. The promoter strolled outside to talk to Anika and her manager. And I had to make myself scarce. If you’ve seen me you’ll know this is a problem. I grabbed my phone and wandered off down the road pretending to check it…
He returned a few minutes later, did a double-take and I was off again for a wee stroll…
It was pantomime stuff.
Then some of the NZ on Air people wandered past and bumped into Anika for a chat – they were introduced to me and could barely look me in the face.
All fun and games and part of the story of my time as a gig-review for the newspaper.
Stubs is an occasional feature here at Off The Tracks – looking back through the ticket-stub box and remembering how the show went down.