The road outside the concert hall is chaos. Two 45ft trucks and three buses are reversing the wrong way up a one way street, getting into position for the load in.
On the crew bus the production manager starts waking up the four lighting crew and the three caterers.
Inside the hall twelve local crew arrive and get ready to help unloading the trucks.
The first truck starts unloading. The first off is the catering equipment, this includes everything from cookers to fridges, juicers and microwaves. One of the caterers goes shopping to buy the £400 worth of food it will take to get through the day. The other two caterers start cooking breakfast for the crew.
Meanwhile the lighting crew and the local crew start setting up the lighting rig. The complete rig weighs about three tons and takes around an hour to hang in the roof.
While the lighting crew finish off setting up the lights, the second truck manoeuvres into position ready to unload the sound equipment.
The four sound crew are wandering in to get their breakfast.
The sound crew start setting up the PA (sound system) – it is capable of putting out around 20,000 watts and positioning is very important to the final sound. If necessary, the entire system can be flown in the roof (about three tons).
The caterers start serving lunch for around 20 people.
The backline crew (the people who look after the band’s personal equipment (guitar, drums etc) wake up from their drunken slumber and wander into the gig and start setting up the instruments on stage.
The crew start checking all the microphones and instruments. This is called a “Line Check”
The band arrives at the gig and does a soundcheck. This means playing five or six songs to check all the sound, lighting and backline equipment.
The merchandise staff arrive to start setting up their stalls.
The band finishes their soundcheck and the crew start setting up for the support band.
Everyone stops for dinner. About 45 people have to be fed every day.
There is a meeting with the house security staff and ushers to make sure that the audience will be safe for the concert.
Doors open and the first James fans come rushing in to secure a place at the front of the stage.
The support band start their set.
After much rapturous applause, the support band leaves the stage, and the James crew start getting ready for the show.
The stage should now be clear and another linecheck takes place.
The stage is now ready. All the microphones have been checked, all the guitars tuned, all the lights dimmed and it’s time for the band to take over.
After all the encores, the band leave the stage, the audience leaves and the load out starts.
All the equipment that came in during the day has to be dismantled and loaded back onto the trucks.
The crew have finished loading the trucks, they go to have showers.
The trucks and buses leave the venue to drive to the next show.