October 31, 2005

Cream 2005: MSG reunion run


All three nights of the Madison Square Garden 2005 run.

Madison Square Garden, New York, NY, USA

Using a two hour DAT tape, and a fresh set of batteries, panic began to set in around the time of the false start to White Room, as a glance at the meters showed one bar left, and approximately 15 minutes of tape. Would they play the same set as London? Could I risk changing tape and battery between White Room and the next song? (Mind you, as any field recorder knows, there is no way of knowing what or how long the next song will be, let alone the length of the banter in between...and the only pause between songs of any length up to this point was after Rollin' and Tumblin', as Eric chuckled, "You okay? You ready?" at Jack's winded state of health after his wailing harmonica/vocal jaunt that number, and even that pause was only about 20 seconds....I decided to risk it and let the tape run....and as Ginger launched into an extended solo, my gaze alternated between the time remaining counter on the DAT, the battery bar, and Eric's non-chalance sitting in the darkness on the side of the stage chatting to a stagehand about this and that, joined by Jack a few MINUTES later while Ginger still played, and even Jack finally rolled up his sleeve and glanced at his watch and he and Eric shared a giggle as I fidgeted frantically to get the extra batteries, and a fresh tape, and remember which way the batteries went in, and again thought "Should I swap out now during "Toad"? Did they launch into a new song out of Toad in London? Will the battery please, please, please hold out for another 5 minutes, when lo and behold, the stage hand wiped the neck of Jack's bass, handed him his guitar, and he and Eric rejoined Ginger for the conclusion of a ten minute Toad, the crowd went wild, and just before I quickly swapped out tapes and batteries, as the lights dimmed during the pre-encore applause, I noticed there were 2 minutes left to spare....oh the joy! the anguish! Just another day in the life of a taper...

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