Matte Finish Is One Of Gaffers Tape’s Best Features

Pro Gaffer Gaffers Tape From TheTapeworks.comGaffers tape is woven cloth tape, made from cotton thread, it is not shiny like duct tape (reinforced vinyl), and thus does not reflect light.

Set designers and stagehands rely on this  finish because it means that they can make repairs, secure cables, and hide things the audience shouldn’t see, simply by applying a strip of tape.  It is almost invisible in most performance environments.

A tape that does not draw attention to itself and doesn’t reflect bright lighting has countless uses.

TheTapeworks.com
Voice 866-386-8335
Fax 800-327-6651
Email sales@harrisonbros.com

Harrison Bros. Inc.
47 North Chatham Pkwy.
Chapel Hill, NC 27517

What I Really Learned During 30 Years In The Trenches

ShovelUntil recently, my chosen career was in concert and special event production.  I spent more than 30 years doing sound, lighting, staging and event management.  It was a great run-I got to see the country and make dozens of great friends.  I saw more than my share of great shows along the way.

So, what did I learn that I consider really valuable today?  I can coil cables, level stages, mix sound for live TV and focus lights from the top of a 20 foot ladder.  Those were all hard-won skills that served me well, but they don’t have a lot of value today.

The most valuable skill, by far, was being able to make decisions.   Producing large events and concerts, every day was a string rapid-fire decisions, all focused on the starting time of the show.  There was never a chance to kick around a lot of options or “sleep on it”.  Not enough time

Fortunately, these were not decisions of the life-or-death variety, and if I was able to get two out of every three right, I was usually a hero.  There was never the option of putting off the decision until later.  The show would be today whether I made a decision or not.  Choosing “not to decide” was the same as “choosing to fail“.

The Only Time That Matters Is “Show Time”

I reality, the more decisions I made in a day the more likely I was to get really good results.  Making a couple of decisions before my first cup of coffee always gave me new options that got me closer to an on time show.  That was the goal.

Actually providing good entertainment was the job of the performers and their hands on technicians.  My job was to make enough correct decisions to insure that they got to do their job.

Making lots of decisions can be risky, even painful.  Rarely will it do the sort of damage that is almost guaranteed by making no decision at all.

I Thought Engineers Drove Trains

Toy TrainIt is always amusing to me me how the live events business has allowed such practices as referring to sound persons as “engineers“. This is a good example of how the special events production industry has evolved outside of the mainstream.  Real engineers have college degrees. They face rigorous testing and must be licensed before they ply their trade.  All a sound “engineer” needs is a Sharpie and some gaffers tape!

I’ve Been There and I’m No Engineer

We were in the outdoor staging business for many years, and I must disclose, upfront, of being guiulty of more than one questionable decision. We are all deeply committed to the concept that “the show must go on“.  I am now amazed that over a period of more than 20 years no one ever asked me who designed this roof, who built this stage, and what are their qualifications?  The ability to buy imported trussing and lifts makes things even worse.

Somewhere along the way, our commitment to hard work and quick thinking manage to allow us to escape the scrutiny (government and otherwise) that similar industries must submit to every day.  Those days will end.

Can “Fly By Night” Be A Good Thing?

We  joke that building stages was like having a construction job without a lunch break.  The joke should  also include “and without a permit“. The building of temporary structures puts performers and audience members at the same sort of risk they would be exposed to when shows are in permanent buildings.  The fly-by-night nature (I don’t mean this in a derogatory manner, since we literally do “fly-by-night)  of what we do allows the work to escape the inspection and permitting process.

The evolution of stage roofs  a tent over a flat bed truck to massive structures like that ones in use today happened in rapid fashion.  The notion that an unlicensed contractor can hang thousands of pounds of equipment over the heads of audience members and performers without being subjected to formal training, licensing and inspection now must come to an end.

TheTapeworks.com
Voice 866-386-8335
Fax 800-327-6651
Email sales@harrisonbros.com

Harrison Bros. Inc.
47 North Chatham Pkwy.
Chapel Hill, NC 27517