Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Vending & Vendors - The Future Of Shakedown Street

 I'm going to preface this blog by saying this is not an official DSO statement.  These are just my thoughts. ... that's what blogs are for, right.

   Vending .... Back in the day, it was a fun part of the overall experience of going to shows.  A whole mini economy developed around the Grateful Dead where artists and food vendors, who were usually on tour, sold their art and tasty treats to the locals so they could get gas money to get to the next show, food, maybe hotel or camping, and of course, tickets.  We all know this.  Of course there was the bad apples who never went into the show and were just sucking off the scene, selling counterfeit tickets, and doing other illegal activities, ...which as we all know, caused problems.  For the most part, the venders were there to catch as many shows as possible and they used vending as a means to get to the next show.  Most of the major problems happened toward the last few years of the Grateful Dead when the whole scene was enormous.  They Grateful Dead were playing football stadiums where there could often be just as many outside a show as inside.  
    Vending in recent years has carried on of course.  Phish shows have quite a scene, Furthur, and Widespread Panic to a lesser degree.  I'm sure others exist.  The smaller scene makes it much less of a problem than in the early 90's which is nice.  It's nice because the colorful characters who gravitate to such a vending scene are a part of the whole concert experience.  Also, it's fun to go hang out with your friends during the day near the venue and get all the talking out of the way so you don't have to catch up by talking during the music (hint, hint).  At such times, it nice to have a cold soda pop or a grilled cheese to munch on.  
 So what am I getting at?.....  Vendors at DSO shows.

    Seeing a couple of vendors at a DSO show is not uncommon.  Sometimes even a small shakedown street will pop up on occasions.  It's been a little rough for vendors at times because they have been trying to sell to a crowd of hundreds  and not thousands or even ten's of thousands.   ... hard to make enough gas and food money to get to  the next show.  
   Lately, I've been noticing a few more venders which is leading me to believe there is beginning to be enough people where venders can sell enough to help supplement their travel expenses.  And I have to say, it's nice seeing the familiar face from night to night in the audience.  We are all making friends and that's a large part of what makes this music and scene so fun.  

O.K. ... So what I'm a getting at still?  ...

In my opinion... ALL VENDERS ARE WELCOME AT DARK STAR ORCHESTRA SHOWS .... as long as they are not doing those things they know the shouldn't be (illegal activities) and as long as you are not upsetting the particular venue where we are playing.  We want to be invited back!   
     I'm not a fan of the laughing gas venders.  You guys stay away.   You are not welcome.  Hippy crack creates a bad scene.  Mostly the people who sell gas balloons are no fans of the music and are just there to take advantage of the audience.
    Although I (nor any other band affiliate) can be responsible for your actions ... as far as I'm concerned, IF YOU ARE AT THE SHOW TO SEE THE MUSIC,  YOU ARE WELCOME TO VEND (at your own risk).   FOREMOST, BE RESPECTIVE TO THE VENUE, THE FOLKS WHO WORK AT THE VENUE, AND TO YOUR FELLOW SHOW GOER. ...and CLEAN UP YOUR TRASH.   DO THE RIGHT THING AS YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR OWN ACTIONS.   
    We, the band, have no pull over what the venue allows so if they say pack it up, PACK IT UP.  Follow what ever the venue personnel  request so we can continue to come back.
 The cool thing about the size of our scene is, at this point, we can have a scene with out it being a major problem.  Have fun and take care of one another!  


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1 comment:

  1. Nicely said. I am an older Deadhead and love the Shakedown Street scene, but can do WITHOUT the drugs and balloons.
    Rick of Vermont