Here’s tae us! Us of the burning fingers, aching feet, sprained vocal cords and cramping forearms; us of the wide-eyed wee hours and red-eyed early mornings; us of the technically proficient, technologically deficient school of rock. Out with your sleek machines! Temperamental atonal strings add intrigue; action you could fit a bus through shreds unwanted fingertip skin; amps roused only by physical punishment (kicks are king) build character; splintering drumsticks lend proceedings a frisson of excitement. Complain not! Adapt! Make a merit of your instrumental inadequacy!
Here’s tae us! Us who do this because we love to, but who never forget remuneration. Away with you hobgoblins who shriek we cannot have it both ways: the two aren’t always the mutual exclusivities you maintain. Yes, this here weight in our pockets is a comfort, but truth be told we’d settle for a much lighter load if made to (though them with the purse strings can remain ignorant of that fact just a wee while longer thank you kindly). Here’s tae us! Us who perform and pander to whatever room the night presents. Hostile, hoolit or half-asleep; we play on, regardless. May the sickly blend of clashing alcohols curdling in our bellies – culled, as always, from a 360⁰ tour of the room with toasting glasses held high in salute – mark our dedication to the cause. An audience is an audience is an audience. Here’s tae us! Us who know our place. For now… Covers may well be the fast-food of performance music, but know this: an occasional bite does make a diet not. Catch us some other mealtime.
Here’s tae us! Us motley band of jobsworths who chug away down here at ground level. They say this industry is glamorous. Ha! The world of music is an iceberg. For every shining sparkle above the surface – those glinting lights illuminated by the sun that the great unwashed think is all there is to it – there are legions of us lurking down here at the underbelly. But fret not: your chances of melting away are much slimmer here than up there in the sunlight. Make your choice between fame and sanity.
Most of all, here’s tae us! Us, we, we all. Who else would put themselves through all this for something they love? Damn few. And they’re a’ deid, mair’s the pity.