The Band Scramble

Some of the Music Festivals I go to, have what they call a band scramble. You pay five bucks and sign an entry form with your name and address and sometimes, what you play and sometimes not. Who ever is running it will pick out the groups they think will work together and like as not a lot of the entrants will be the ones who don’t have much experience. My band mate Garry says “come on lets all five of us enter; we’re bound to win something and the prize money can help pay for gas ‘sides it’s always fun”. That sounds like a good idea so I say OK… A lady comes to me and says we are in the band scramble together and we will all meet and practice under the pavilion. The number of entrants this time meant we would have six groups of five players and singers. I could tell that my group didn’t have much experience so when we all got together I took charge and asked the lady what song she would sing and she said “What Ya Gonna Do”. I said fine that will be good. I turned to another member of our group holding a bass and said you play bass? ” Yes I played bass all through college but I could play guitar if you want me too. I said no we need a bass: do you sing? “yes I can sing blues, my first love, or country, I’m pretty good at that or maybe some rock and roll. Good I said which do want to do ” well I haven’t sang in a while and I would have to brush up on the words but I can sing if you want me to. I say “No that’s fine we have five members and we only get four songs”. “Well he said I like to sing and I can sing if you want me too”. Well OK I said what song do you want to sing? ” well what do you think I should sing, blues or country?” I said Country really goes over well at a country music festival so I guess country. Do you know your Cheatin’ Heart? Oh yes I know that one but I’d have to brush up on the words a little. Well, I said, how about Elvis Presley “You Ain’t Nothin’ But A Hound Dog”. He whispers; why don’t I play guitar because I have played with that guy over there and he doesn’t have very good rhythm. Oh; well OK you play guitar and I’ll play your bass. He says ” what keys will we be playing in I only know a few cords”……Now by this time I’m wanting to scream at him ” look fella you got the job I can’t fire you just tell me what you want to do”…….but I said well just play bass we need it to sound good. I turned to the next guy and asked what song he would do and he named an old slow gospel I knew well and I said good I like that one. Now it would sound great if we could sing harmony along with him can anyone sing harmony? The bass player says oh yes I love to sing harmony. I said good you want to sing bass or tenor? Well I sing bass but I haven’t done it for a while I’d have to brush up on it, can you get me the words? My nerves are starting to unravel but I respond as calmly as I can “Well we only have half an hour to practice so just sing tenor and I’ll sing bass… OK lets practice the first song, it’s called “What ya Gonna Do”. I asked the lady do you play guitar while you sing she said yes but I only know these three cords…she demos the three cords….OK weeellll when we get up there don’t plug in just act like your playing and I’ll cover you….the guy with the gospel song has a little portable key board he says boy a harmonica would sure sound good on that one, do you want me to play harmonica on that one. I said yeah it would; you got one?.. he unrolls about six from a rag you bet …but I haven’t played em’ in a while I’d have to brush up on it…… When we get on stage the lady plugs her guitar in, and takes my microphone, the guy with the key board steps on my guitar cord while I’m bent over and I can’t straighten up and the guy with the bass is running up and down the neck like a trapped rabbit. You guessed it we didn’t win…..