1. #1
    Join Date Nov 2006
    Location Long Island, NY, USA
    Posts 11,533
    Rep Power 536871422

    Default Has a song by Jackson Browne been insulting stage hands for decades?

    Actually a single word in a song, and I'm sure it's inadvertent, but it would have been easy to correct.

    The problem, if there is one is in the 1st verse:

    Now the seats are all empty
    Let the roadies take the stage
    Pack it up and tear it down
    They're the first to come and last to leave
    Working for that minimum wage
    First I'll show you what I think it should be and then why.

    The offending word that should have been changed IMO is "minimum".

    The word should be changed to is "hourly"

    Both are, in effect 3 syllable words; the "ou" in "hour" sets up a dipthong.

    It's pronounced "ah were" at the transition between the two you can make out a hard u sound as in "tool". Ow is pronounced ah oo.

    So it makes no difference in rhythm or meter.

    Now the reason. The blurb says:

    "The Load-Out" is a song co-written and performed live by Jackson Browne from his 1977 album Running on Empty. It is a tribute to his roadies and fans. The song was recorded live at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Maryland on August 27, 1977, as part of the tour in support of the album The Pretender.
    I believe that was the intent. I just think Browne was a bit out of touch.

    First of all, were the roadies and/ or stage hands that were working on his tour really making minimum wage?

    I hope not.

    When he wrote that song, the minimum wage was $2.30. Adjusted for inflation that is supposedly $9.01 now.

    This is for working for a top act:

    Many radio stations played "The Load-Out" and "Stay" together as a medley, and, although it wasn't released as a single to the public initially ("Rosie" was the original B-side to "Stay"), "The Load-Out" charted as a tag-along to "Stay" on the Billboard Hot 100 singles charts, based on airplay. "Stay" debuted on the Hot 100 on June 10, 1978 as a sole A-side, but was listed along with "The Load-Out" on the chart beginning with the August 5, 1978 chart for eight weeks, both showing a peak at #20. "Stay" stayed on the Hot 100 for a total of fifteen weeks.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Load-Out
    Lets say you're on Browne's crew and you're actually making minimum wage. Do you want the whole world to know about it?

    If I were on his crew, I think I'b be singing a different tune, one that goes kind of like this:

    And it's bad, bad Jackson Browne
    Biggest mouth in the whole damned town
    We had hopes of getting laid
    'Til the babes found out what we're being paid



    Does what I'm saying make any sense or am I running on empty?


    (I had done some roadying in my yute but damned if I can remember what I was paid)
    Man! You have GOT to try a hit of this RANGE SUNSHINE!

    IMTBO = In My Thoroughly Biased Opinion
    CMIIW = Correct Me If I'm Wrong
    Never underestimate the amount of contempt a failed musician has for those of us who are still trying.
    If the party's good enough, you can actually suck to a remarkable degree.

    Greedle
  2. #2
    Join Date Nov 2006
    Location Bexley, OH
    Posts 2,346
    Rep Power 536871116

    Default Re: Has a song by Jackson Browne been insulting stage hands for decades?

    I've worked with him a couple of times. Nice guy.

    Those lyrics may be true-ish for non Union venues. Mileage varies greatly.
    I've only encountered him in IATSE houses which are definitely not minimum wage so I don't sweat it.
  3. #3
    Has Many Personal Intergritys Expensive Boat Anchor
    Join Date Nov 2006
    Location New York
    Posts 10,656
    Rep Power 536871392

    Default Re: Has a song by Jackson Browne been insulting stage hands for decades?

    whatever the accuracy of the choice of word, I tend to think his intent was to say they are underpaid for what they do.
    not to insult them, or anyone else actually making minimum wage.
  4. #4
    Join Date Nov 2006
    Location Bexley, OH
    Posts 2,346
    Rep Power 536871116

    Default Re: Has a song by Jackson Browne been insulting stage hands for decades?

    whatever the accuracy of the choice of word, I tend to think his intent was to say they are underpaid for what they do.
    not to insult them, or anyone else actually making minimum wage.
    yep, it's a tip of the hat to the working crew
  5. #5
    Join Date Nov 2006
    Location Long Island, NY, USA
    Posts 11,533
    Rep Power 536871422

    Default Re: Has a song by Jackson Browne been insulting stage hands for decades?

    I thought they were his crew, that they worked for Browne.

    In which case complaining about how little his workers are paid doesn't make sense. If he felt they were underpaid he could give them a raise.

    I take it that it isn't quite that simple.
    Man! You have GOT to try a hit of this RANGE SUNSHINE!

    IMTBO = In My Thoroughly Biased Opinion
    CMIIW = Correct Me If I'm Wrong
    Never underestimate the amount of contempt a failed musician has for those of us who are still trying.
    If the party's good enough, you can actually suck to a remarkable degree.

    Greedle
  6. #6
    Join Date Apr 2010
    Location Second largest French City
    Posts 1,267
    Rep Power 536871038

    Default Re: Has a song by Jackson Browne been insulting stage hands for decades?

    whatever the accuracy of the choice of word, I tend to think his intent was to say they are underpaid for what they do.
    not to insult them, or anyone else actually making minimum wage.
    This indeed.
    The emotionally and tonally deaf cannot hear the important things and never will. They will scream to the heavens the rest of us are wrong and produce useless papers to prove their point.
    Anybody claiming to be the first probably wasn't!
    www.timvandeven.com
  7. #7
    Join Date Nov 2006
    Location In a Mobile...backstage...all by myself...
    Posts 1,861
    Rep Power 536871100

    Default Re: Has a song by Jackson Browne been insulting stage hands for decades?

    Yea, I've always looked at it the way weedy says.

    I worked his show a few times. The best was when he did this song, he personally asked our lead rigger, who definitely looked the part of a roadie, to come out on stage with him. This guy was one of the most quiet, understated, not-a-limelight kinda guy.

    When he walked out on stage, spotlight on him, and then 15,000 people roared and cheered him, we could see him blush brighter than the lighting grid.

    But it was nice to see him give props to the people putting up the show.

    Not to bogart the thread, but this is apropos:
    Another artist who impressed me this way was John Michael Montgomery. On most shows the artist is in the bus and they're gone or relaxing or partying while the crew strikes the stage.

    After the trucks were loaded, his road manager hopped on the bus and said "ok...they're done".

    He then came out and shook our hands...all of us on the gig, to thank us for doing what we do for him.

    I always appreciated that...
    Follow Click Track Audio on Twitter

    Check out Click Track Audio on Facebook
  8. #8
    Join Date Nov 2006
    Location Bexley, OH
    Posts 2,346
    Rep Power 536871116

    Default Re: Has a song by Jackson Browne been insulting stage hands for decades?

    I've got way more "good" stories than bad. This makes me think of folks like Brad Paisley holding the door open for me, Wayne Newton also shaking hands with every single person on the crew and thanking us mightily, numerous folks who just ate with us (granted, show crew is much smaller than load/in or load/out crews but it's still very cool). Doc Severinsen was having a rough day in after a long flight and was a little rude to me when I didn't get enough reverb in his wedge fast enough at sound check but after the show (which went great) not only apologized, but we spend two hours shooting the shit while he smoked cigars. It was very cool. Just been a few hip hop stars and bitter has been types that weren't all that nice of folks to work with, but I can take their money just the same. OTOH, most folks are totally decent and a few are exceptional.
  9. #9
    Join Date Sep 2009
    Location Quake City
    Posts 11,744
    Rep Power 536871394

    Default Re: Has a song by Jackson Browne been insulting stage hands for decades?

    It's not an artist, but....

    In 1978 I was working for Bill Graham's FM Productions sound shop. Our two major acts at the time were Heart and The Commodores and we had the Heart PA in the shop for a two week mid tour overhaul*. Everybody was working 12 to 16 hour days getting everything in top shape and they were having dinners driven in from good restaurants so nobody had to leave for dinner. One night the dinner car pulled into the shop and it was Bill driving. He went around and shook everybody's hand and personally thanked us all for doing a good job for him and the band.




    * - this was the huge hemispherical system originally built for The Grateful Dead, dubbed "System 80", if anybody's interested.
    http://www.johnnyoklahoma.com/

    Originally Posted by Bob Ohlsson
    Everything is some mixture of awesome and suck. We simply want the awesome to be highlighted sufficiently that it distracts listeners from the suck.
    Originally Posted by Bob Ohlsson
    The appropriate role for science is the study of observed phenomena to gain an understanding. It is not dictating what people ought or ought not to be observing.
    Hey, if I'm Grumpy, where the hell is Snow White????
  10. #10
    Join Date Nov 2006
    Location Long Island, NY, USA
    Posts 11,533
    Rep Power 536871422

    Default Re: Has a song by Jackson Browne been insulting stage hands for decades?

    On most shows the artist is in the bus and they're gone or relaxing or partying while the crew strikes the stage.

    After the trucks were loaded, his road manager hopped on the bus and said "ok...they're done".

    He then came out and shook our hands...all of us on the gig, to thank us for doing what we do for him.

    I always appreciated that...
    Maybe I'm missing something, but that doesn't seem a heavy lift.

    Do a lot of acts take the crew for granted?

    How hard is it to say "thank you for a job well done"?
    Man! You have GOT to try a hit of this RANGE SUNSHINE!

    IMTBO = In My Thoroughly Biased Opinion
    CMIIW = Correct Me If I'm Wrong
    Never underestimate the amount of contempt a failed musician has for those of us who are still trying.
    If the party's good enough, you can actually suck to a remarkable degree.

    Greedle

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts