Over the weekend the West End festival in Glasgow really got underway and Kelvingrove Park was packed with carnivals, funfairs, people and music.
On the main stage was one of my favourite bands Captain Slackships Mezzanine Allstars a sensational reggae band with the best horn section in Scotland. Now, as I once earned my living as a singer in a reggae band I love to revisit my misspent youth by following the Captain and his crew, and whenever a top class reggae band visits Glasgow it is almost invariably this jolly piratical group that fills the support slot. So seeing them on Sunday reminded me of a discussion I had at one of those gigs a few months back when, as is often the case, the main act had horns provided by keyboards and the Captains team frankly blew them away. The reasons a lot of touring bands don’t bring horn sections is cost. If you were Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes – probably the best horn section in the world (no universe) – then it would be unthinkable, but too many reggae bands (IMHO) seem to think that it is an optional extra. So, in the spirit of endeavouring to find a solution, somewhere mid set of The Wailers at The Arches we hit upon a plan – why not crowdsource the horns. Seriously! Now hear me out on this! What you do is tell your fans you are touring, that you want a horn section, put the pieces on You Tube and ask for a horn section to come together in each location to do the honours. You could even audition them by SKYPE or during the soundcheck or something. The horns get the kudos of being – well in the case of the Wailers – honorary Wailers for the night – job done.
Now – don’t tell me it’s not possible. If you don’t believe it then check this out …..yes I know I have tweeted it before but it is just well…uplifting.
If you want to know a bit more about crowdsourcing – there are still a few places left at Social Media Unleashed 2 on Thursday night where you can hear how Dell do it. No horn section though.
In the meantime why not buy a Captain Slackships CD or download a track – and no, I don’t get royalties.