Arlen Roth Says “The Show Must Go On.”
This winter in particular has been really rough on my gigging, and I’ve literally had four straight gigs cancelled due to storms of one form or another...ice, snow, sleet, freezing rain, nor’easters, they’ve all taken an equal role in shutting down my “live” engagements! Tonight could be another such disaster, as I have to go into NYC to play with the Les Paul Trio, and they’re expecting 7-10 inches of more snow again by me! Not to mention the fact that this gig was cancelled for the same reason 2 months ago, and this night is aActually the “make-up” for the first cancellation!!
New York is a late-night town, and on Monday nights, the Iridium was where Les Paul held court for so many years. It’s a great tradition they have kept going since he passed away, and it’s always an honor to in a way, fill his shoes. Of course, nobody could ever fill those shoes, but we all love to have the honor of sitting in, and playing where the great man entertained so many, for so many years! Also the fact that myself and my daughter Lexie are now on the Les Paul Tribute album and documentary, “Thank You Les”, it makes it even that much sweeter to be seen and heard with Lou Pallo and the Les Paul Trio on these special Monday night gigs!
“The show must go on!” is certainly a cliché’ we’ve all heard down the years, and there were some pretty treacherous times on the road where just that very sentiment nearly spelled disaster for many of us. I can recall getting the entire Garfunkel crew and band to not take a plane in an ice storm to get to an “off day” in Flint, Michigan, and another time when me and my band along with Duane Eddy were almost persuaded to not get on a plane during a literal “white out” situation in a snow storm in Buffalo, NY! On that occasion, we just lifted through the fluffy snow and clods from the “lake effect” snow, and there wasn’t even any turbulence!
There have been many airplane and vehicle disasters that have occurred in this industry just for that very reason of the “show going on”, but I still believe in erring on the side of caution, and always putting safety first. I don’t care how important that particular gig might be…there is always a way to try to “get around” dangerous travel situations if need be…and it’s also better to “be late, than never!” So, for the time being tonight, the show MUST go on, and hopefully will have a good turnout that will prove that it was all worthwhile!!
Gibson.com’s Arlen Roth, affectionately known The King of All Guitar Teachers, is music lesson pioneer and the quintessential guitarist. An accomplished and brilliant musician — and one of the very few who can honestly say he’s done it all — Roth has, over the course of his celebrated 35-year career, played on the world’s grandest stages, accompanied many of the greatest figures in modern music and revolutionized the concept of teaching guitar.