I imagine other musicians must have their ritual event preparations…
Last time I talked about why events like Detling feel very special. Yesterday the new Elites Bass strings I ordered from The Bass Centre arrived – so it’s time for one of my annual Detling preparation rituals.
Of course band rehearsals have already started and I’m sure other folk have their own rituals, but in my case I like to leave it until a couple of weeks before the event before restringing my basses and giving them a quick annual service for the week*. That gives the new strings a couple of weeks (including rehearsals) to settle in and just take the initial edge of the new-string-sparkle.
My quick annual service involves removing the strings, waxing and polishing the body and neck of unvarnished finishes, treating the fret-boards with lemon-oil, fitting new strings, checking the intonation and changing the battery on active instruments – I always do this as a matter of course once a year, it’s not worth the risk of a battery failing mid-set.
Once that’s done it will be time to check and test amps, speakers, pedals / tuner / rack units / patch settings and anything else I’m planning to take with me. (This will be a shorter-than-usual process this year because, partly due to a recent bad experience with coffee and partly due to a more complicated set of change-overs than in previous years, I’m traveling a little lighter this year).
Finally I will check through my stock of basic spare parts and tools (in the past battery clips and jack sockets have failed in the middle of the week necessitating on-the-road repairs) and I will feel that much more ready-to-go.
3rd rehearsal this coming Saturday – Detling now 17 days away …hope to see you there!
*Every couple of years, or after periods of heavy use, I take my guitars to a well trusted and professional instrument technician (Brian Rodgers) for a full service including checking / adjusting the neck relief – but in between I’m confident enough to carry out a basic service myself.