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SECURITY! how do you handle it on a live gig?
Old 12th November 2007
  #1
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Thread Starter
Talking SECURITY! how do you handle it on a live gig?

hey remote slutz,

What are your thoughts on security at gigs? Do you ever worry about doing a gig solo? Does anyone carry protection to gigs? Tips?
Old 12th November 2007
  #2
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Remoteness's Avatar
Lightbulb

Hey back you you!

Are you a Remotester?

My professional thoughts on security at gigs is relative to the type of gig you're doing and the location you're setup at.

If and when applicable, security is usually provided by the client or promoter of the event.

As a basic rule, all over night dates must have security from the time we leave until the time we arrive back to the location.

Almost every TV or film production shoot we work on provides full security.

We been to some of the best worst neighborhoods in the country.
So, we always consider our options when addressing these type of locations.

I have so many stories (3 decades of stuff) to tell, but cannot repeat them here.
Most of the security teams I've hired in the past are off-duty law enforcement folks and they carry heat.

Most major security firms offer armed and unarmed security officers at a price.
Old 12th November 2007
  #3
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springer's Avatar
 

I love it when my wife goes along with me as she is good at watching my stuff. But when she isn't there, I prioritize and always think about someone wanting to walk away with stuff...
- Try not to be diverted by chatters wanting to know "why I mic'd something that way..."
- Always scan and don't keep attention in one place too long. Most work like wrapping cords, breaking down stands, etc I can do without my eyes.
- If I can I take everything up on stage when wrapping up, that way if anyone wants to take anything they have to get up onstage and are easily recognizable.
- Mics first - ALWAYS !!!

Wives are AWESOME - oh I am scoring points...
Old 12th November 2007
  #4
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Thread Starter
Well see Im looking to get into location recording, however at the level that Im aiming for, there probably won't be substaintial security provided by the venue.

Im mostly worried about set-ups (ie. "Id like you to come out to shady-ville and record my band" and then a stick 'em up situation) than people walking off with stuff.

Anyways, keep your thoughts coming!!!
Old 13th November 2007
  #5
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Jim vanBergen's Avatar
 

In the late 80's and early 90's, I packed - I was living in an area that was dangerous. But clients get freaky when they see the thing on your belt, or sticking out under your jacket or pants. And then you start doing BIG gigs, where there is a lot of security, and you can't pack because the FBI, SLED, ATF, & Secret Service won't even let you carry a work knife.

When my truck was working, I kept the numbers of two security guards who were licensed in my phone, and could always score armed or unarmed in NYC for cash. Every club, venue, and client understands security, liability, insurance. As do we. I still carry insurance for my fly pack gear, and you'd be a fool not to. But for bands, SOMEONE is doing security, and there's a LOT of expensive stuff. Make it someone else's problem as well as your own, and hire great A2's (or interns if you're that broke) and keep a close eye. Also, for most location gigs, the band is gonna have most everything mike.

Use a minimum of your own gear, label them with something obvious, and keep the make/model covered up with tape. I never had someone try to steal my KM84s and KM85s, only the CAD E200s and E100s because they LOOKED expensive. But they were a pair to remove from the stand, and security got to them before they got stolen.
Old 13th November 2007
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim vanBergen View Post
... only the CAD E200s and E100s because they LOOKED expensive...
The grilles are solid gold, though... aren't they?
Old 13th November 2007
  #7
Gear interested
 

As other have said have the production ensure that they have adequate security on the job at all times. Write that into your contract. Even when security is present always keep an eye out for trouble and do your best to secure everything within reason. I did a broadcast job in Central Park NYC. My personal bag (laptop, digicam misc tools) was stolen from the monitor console position in a "secure" area. Production had security including one or two off duty police. The following day the RF tech's bag with similar items and much more was stolen from he RF tent. He had his very buried deep to avoid an easy grab. Production said they would reimburse the cost of the missing items. Then they fought which items were actually tools of the trade needed for the job. Then they wanted the police report which I complied. Then they failed to follow through on their promise. Due to certain circumstances it was difficult to press on. Lesson learned.

As far as personal safety and protection beyond the typical police and security provided or not provided. I am licensed to carry a concealed weapon in Florida and there are many states that have reciprocity with Florida and honor the permit in their states. As JvB noted this is all with the exception of areas where even a permit does not allow carrying.
Old 13th November 2007
  #8
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I love americans, what would your gun do to avoid someone steal your bag??

My grandpa always said to me: "Piensa mal y acertarás". (Think the worst to be right). I always try to leave equipement in a tidy and controlled place. I ask someone to watch it when I go to the WC or to the car. I rarely leave important things like tapes (I make videos) in bags, I put them in my pocket. Just some basic precautions.

With big setups is more difficult, and it takes three seconds for someone to put a microphone in their bag...
Old 13th November 2007
  #9
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Jim vanBergen's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by videoteque View Post
I love americans, what would your gun do to avoid someone steal your bag??
FYI, I was carrying at that point because many people in the city were being mugged at gunpoint or knifepoint- for backpacks, wallets, even groceries. Thanks for assuming the worst.
Old 13th November 2007
  #10
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I wasn't assuming anything!

Fear for your life must be horrible, I can't blame anybody for it. We all have some fears, but I have been lucky and I have never been in a live or dead situation. Maybe if I had I would be the first one to defend weapons...

But so many times I hear/read US citizens who talk about their gun as if it was something magical or a cure for criminality, when in fact are tools used to comit crimes. Guns kills people and it would be better if they don't exist!!!

The best gun, is a shotgun microphone!!!
Old 13th November 2007
  #11
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Jim vanBergen's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by videoteque View Post
The best gun,
Is NO gun, my friend.

No gun is best.
Old 14th November 2007
  #12
Gear interested
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by videoteque View Post
Fear for your life must be horrible, I can't blame anybody for it. We all have some fears, but I have been lucky and I have never been in a live or dead situation. Maybe if I had I would be the first one to defend weapons...

But so many times I hear/read US citizens who talk about their gun as if it was something magical or a cure for criminality, when in fact are tools used to comit crimes. Guns kills people and it would be better if they don't exist!!!
Yes, as stated I was talking personal defense and not for securing my personal property. You certainly were assuming or you would have not said what you said. I don't want to take this off topic but I feel I must respond. I am glad you have never felt the need to defend yourself but unfortunately we live in a world where that need may arise. I don't believe that many think it is a the magical answer against all crime and danger but rather a fighting chance. I have looked down the barrel of a gun aimed in anger in my direction and it is no fun not being able to do anything about it as I had nothing on me. I was fortunate enough to live to tell about that. I know of several people who had incidents where they were fortunate enough to have been carrying as they owe their lives to that today. I certainly hope you never see the need for it. Not sure where you live but it must be nice.
Old 14th November 2007
  #13
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Remoteness's Avatar
I empathize with some of these comments on a variety of levels.

I was on the wrong side of a double barrel shotgun hold up at the Pilgrim Theater in Alphabet City way back in the day circa 1982.
I lived to tell the story because words are much more powerful than guns and thugs.

Yeah, Alphabet City when junkies and criminals ruled the streets.
Need I say, “It wasn’t a trendy place to hang as it is today”?

Furthermore, there are plenty of other stories that I really cannot get into, but I can say this:
“I bet they wished they never met my crew and me”.
Old 14th November 2007
  #14
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thedoner's Avatar
 

Hey GTD,

I have a portable remote rig consisting of 3 heavy road cases, a splitter box, a UPS, 2 mic cases and a large case for cables, tools etc. Even though technically I'm a one man operation, I wouldn't dream of doing a remote gig alone. There's always too much to concentrate on to keep eyes on you gear the entire time, although some gigs are easier than others depending on where you're set up in relation to the general public. I always hire someone to assist me when I take the gear out. It's always someone I trust and I always make it clear to them that protecting the gear is priority one...before, during, and after the performance. Granted, I could make a few more dollars without it, but it's well worth it in my book. Hell, on some gigs I wish I could afford to hire 2 people.

I also recommend getting insurance for your rig. To the best of my knowledge, portable rigs are not covered by homeowers/renters insurance once the gear leaves the house. I have a policy through State Farm which costs me about 400 bucks a year. Not cheap, but as they say "what price, peace of mind?"
Hope this helps

-Gordon
Old 14th November 2007
  #15
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videoteque's Avatar
 

Quote:
Not sure where you live but it must be nice.
I am from Spain, but I live near Rome, in Italy. Of course shit happens here too. We never know where or when it will happen...

This is indeed a sad thread.
Old 14th November 2007
  #16
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Remoteness's Avatar
Lightbulb People are not perfect...

Quote:
Originally Posted by videoteque View Post
...Guns kills people and it would be better if they don't exist!!!...
Let me make something perfectly clear...

Guns don't kill people, people kill people!
And, it would be very nice if they did not exist!

IMO, a gun is just another tool -- It becomes a weapon when you use it in that way.
Old 14th November 2007
  #17
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Quote:
Guns don't kill people, people kill people!
And, it would be very nice if they did not exist!
thumbsupthumbsupthumbsup
Old 15th November 2007
  #18
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Quote:
Guns kills people and it would be better if they don't exist!!!...
It would be great if they didn't exist, but the fact is that they do, and they aren't an evil thing on their own. Guns kill people the same way a fork made Rosie O'Donnel fat. The problem is not the gun, the problem is the person holding it. Remoteness is right on with his remarks in my book.

And to me, it's obvious that people outside the United States don't quite understand how guns play a role in American society. For that matter, there's a relatively loud section of people within the United States government that don't understand it very well either. I went and dug up the numbers to help you guys understand how it works: We have 1.4 million people in our armed military forces, 10 million armed police officers, and 290 million people in our remaining population. 50%-60% of the general population own 215 million MORE guns. That means if you meet only 2 Americans in your entire life, chances are 1 of them owns more than 1 gun, and isn't in jail for using it incorrectly.

Now, do you ever wonder why no foreign nation has had the desire to invade US soil before? It's probably not the military they need to watch out for....

As far as guns just being tools for crime, I hoist the b.s. flag. The prison population for ALL (gun involved or not) violent crime in the US compared to the number of guns contained in our population means at the most .005% of guns in the US gets used in a violent crime. That means at least 99.995% of guns are NOT used in a violent crime. In fact, violent crime is more closely linked with population density and poverty levels than gun density.

Anyway, we're talking about how to keep your gear safe from theft and damage. If you're not comfortable with the idea of a gun being close for whatever reason, good. I don't want to see a gun in the hand of someone who's nervous! There are definitely other ways to give someone at least an attitude adjustment anyway. Did you know that an SM58 in your left hand and a 4' slice of mic cable in your right make one wickedly effective...

er....

mmm....

talkback mic?





todd
Old 15th November 2007
  #19
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Ruphus's Avatar
 

Thumbs down

As once professionally educated in martial arts I know that tools are made to weapons, and that a knife can be used exclusively for civilzed tasks just as a pen or just extremities can be for killing.

Yet, don´t blur facts by misusing that isolated circumstance.
There is a lot of crime happening only because of posession of guns. Far too much crime would had never happened had there not been the omnipotent feeling of coarse minded gun carriers.

In fact it is naive and irresponsible mentatilities and constitutions far from due contemporary understanding that leave weapon manufacturers without control and even legalize gun posession.

Each and every penny that has been generated by weapon manufactury should be confiscated and allocated to victims, be it of victims of criminals or what you call military action. The manufacturies being modified to civil use.

All portable tools made for killing should be banned through wholy and strict international action.
F*** away with stupid & archaic base and give room finally to civilisation and responsibility in the 21 century!

Ruphus
Old 15th November 2007
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Juan T. View Post
I don't believe that many think it is a the magical answer against all crime and danger but rather a fighting chance. I have looked down the barrel of a gun aimed in anger in my direction and it is no fun not being able to do anything about it as I had nothing on me.
If you had your gun what would have done? Maybe not having a gun at the time is the reason you, (and possibly other people around at the time) didn't die!

Are you guys really willing to get into a gunfight, and/or kill someone over a piece of gear?!?!

As someone who has lived in NY city most of my life, and doing this job for thirty years, and who regularly travel to the far corners of the world to do my job, (the only place I've never worked is Antarctica), and never felt the need to carry a gun, this is new for me.
Old 15th November 2007
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shaddai View Post
The problem is not the gun, the problem is the person holding it.
Sorry to disagree.
A gun's primary purpose is to kill or injure. And it's a tool way more powerful than a man's hands or a knife.
The victim can be a deer you've been hunting, or a guy wanting to steal your gear, or a guy wanting his gear not to be stolen.
The problem is that the person holding the gun is a human being and therefore occasionally will make mistakes. He might think the moving thing behind the bush is a deer when in fact it's a fellow hunter. He might think the guy approaching his gear wants to steal it when in fact he wants to ask how that Urei actually sounds. He might think that it's ok to kill people to get their property.
A gun which is owned only for security reasons, the owner hoping he'll never need to use it, can still be stolen and used to kill the owner. If he didn't have a gun, it could not be stolen, and not used to kill him.

So why shouldn't one minimize the risk of mistakes and have as little a number of guns around as is absolutely necessary?
Old 16th November 2007
  #22
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Remoteness's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by pkautzsch View Post
...So why shouldn't one minimize the risk of mistakes and have as little a number of guns around as is absolutely necessary?
I hear you loud and clear, but even if all the good folks around the world melted their firearms, we would still have a world where only the bad folks would be armed.

I don't think it's the responsibility of the recording engineer to carry a gun to protect their equipment and crew.
I feel it's up to law enforcement, the producer of the show and the security company they hired to secure the production environment.

IMO, my home is another story and until the laws change in the States, I have the right to protect my family and property.

With that said, I've been on the wrong side of a gun barrel and I got out of the situation by using my mind and saying the right words. That may not work everytime, but I still believe I have the right to live even when someone else thinks otherwise.

Protecting yourself goes much further than the weapon you use.
If someone is trying to murder you or your loved ones (IMHO) you must use any means to make that not so.
Anyway you look at it its a bad situation to be in.

And, I hope we ever have to be subjected to this kind of terrible possibility.
Old 20th November 2007
  #23
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Thread Starter
lmao! What happened to this thread!?

"I love americans, what would your gun do to avoid someone steal your bag?? "


once again, TO BE CLEAR!

Im not worried about having my gear swiped, im worried about getting MUGGED/ROBBED!!!!!!


anyways....
Old 20th November 2007
  #24
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Jimbo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by videoteque View Post
Guns kills people and it would be better if they don't exist!!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Remoteness View Post
Guns don't kill people, people kill people!
And, it would be very nice if they did not exist!
So, what can we do to get rid of all these people?



....more guns??
Old 20th November 2007
  #25
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Remoteness's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
So, what can we going to do to get rid of all these people?



....more guns??
We should kill them with the guns we don't want...

Just kidding of course!

I'm afraid that there is nothing we can do about it and that's a shame, but its part of human life as we know it.
Old 21st November 2007
  #26
Gear nut
 

This whole thread remind's me of Lord Of War (the movie)

"There are over 550 million firearms in worldwide circulation. That's one firearm for every twelve people on the planet. The only question is: How do we arm the other 11? "
Old 22nd November 2007
  #27
To address both ends of this thread:

I keep a good eye on my gear, and like everyone here, pack the most vulnerable and "eye-catching" gear first, which is many times the mics or the laptops. I am fortunate that in most places that I work, the security is pretty good or I am in a place that rarely has problems in the first place. In truth, if I think that I will be in a high risk area, I will either charge enough to hire my own security, or I will not do the job. Generally, the later.

As for the gun issue, I often have to work in places where guns are not permitted in Texas, even with a license. So, many times carrying a gun isn't an option. However, I am a concealed handgun license holder and I do carry one much of the time when it is legally permitted. Just to give a little bit of my view; as has been said, it would be great if guns didn't exist, but they do, and criminals will be the first to have them. I would rather defend myself with a gun against a gun than depend on my wits. I'm not that witty, and neither are many criminals.

In Texas, you are required to take a class to get a license, part of that class is instruction on using alternate methods of defense, or evasion. Sometimes, those methods don't work. Ask any of the victims that have been attacked, many not by firearms, but by someone that simply was physically able to overpower them. Ask a 100 lb rape victim how well it worked trying to defend herself against a 200+ lb male attacker. For us remote recording guys, how about 3-4 unarmed men bent on physically hurting us or killing us for those expensive looking cases that we are loading in a truck in a dark alley.

Would I shoot someone to defend my gear? Likely not. Would I shoot someone in self defense? You bet your a$#. There's a saying, "Better to be tried by 12 than carried by 6." For those unacquainted with that phrase, in the U.S., 12 is the number of jurors in a trial. Six is the number of pallbearers at a funeral.

As far as guns being dangerous in and of themselves, the best example I can give is the one the instructor used in the class. He said, "If you lay a loaded gun on a table and no one touches it, it will do nothing but gather dust. It will not mysteriously go off when someone passes by. In order for it to go off, someone must pull the trigger."

I know not everyone shares my view, and that's fine. I won't flame you for yours if you won't flame me for mine.

Scott
Old 22nd November 2007
  #28
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I don't want to flame anybody either, but can we at least discuss the topic?
Quote:
Originally Posted by plus6vu View Post
Ask a 100 lb rape victim how well it worked trying to defend herself against a 200+ lb male attacker.
Is this a really valid argument in your case? Don't you think it's an insult to the victims of this horrible crime to use their situation in this way?

Quote:
For us remote recording guys, how about 3-4 unarmed men bent on physically hurting us or killing us for those expensive looking cases that we are loading in a truck in a dark alley.
Shoot them dead?

Personally, at some point I would just give them the gear. I do not want to kill someone over a case, (or truck) full of gear, and I certainly don't want to be killed over said gear either. We can always present arguments to justify anything we want to do. But the fact is that 99.99% of the people doing this job will probably never face these situations you presented.

Not saying it's impossible....just highly improbable.....

Quote:
Would I shoot someone to defend my gear? Likely not
.
Great to hear that.
Old 22nd November 2007
  #29
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Kyle S's Avatar
 

i usually carry throwing knives with me. really have to be in a good position to use them or youll just piss off someone. itd be good to have a pistol as a backup. would not hesitate to blow someone away if they wanted to harm me or take off with my shit.
Old 22nd November 2007
  #30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Samc View Post
I don't want to flame anybody either, but can we at least discuss the topic?
Is this a really valid argument in your case? Don't you think it's an insult to the victims of this horrible crime to use their situation in this way?
Sure, we can discuss it. I just usually find that most people are not open to discussion, they just want to argue and try to make the the other look inferior.

Do I think it's an insult to those people? I'm not sure I understand why you would think that it is. I was simply using that case to make the point that there are cases where an unarmed person needs an advantage due to size or some other variable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Samc View Post
Personally, at some point I would just give them the gear. I do not want to kill someone over a case, (or truck) full of gear, and I certainly don't want to be killed over said gear either. We can always present arguments to justify anything we want to do. But the fact is that 99.99% of the people doing this job will probably never face these situations you presented.

Not saying it's impossible....just highly improbable.....
I agree, it's highly improbable. And I take measures to keep it that way by not putting myself into situations that raise those odds.

The point, again, was not about stuff/gear, it's about personal safety. However, stuff - especially expensive electronic stuff, has a certain appeal to criminals and tends to attract them.

There are criminals out there that do not stop at taking the gear, even if you passively let them. Besides, who of us wouldn't at least make an attempt to prevent the theft of an expensive piece of gear unless the thief was showing a weapon? Numerous events can happen at that point.

Further, there have been cases in the "club district" of unarmed gangs of 4-6 beating up people for no apparent reason. They didn't rob them, didn't rape them, they just beat them up. One that I know of spent some time in the hospital due to extensive injuries.

Me? I'm usually in churches and symphony centers, and they're relatively secure. But as I've said to people, read the news. People have been attacked, by all methods, in schools, churches, restaurants, and the list goes on. If you think that wherever you are is "safe", I'll bet I can find an instance where someone was attacked.

The concealed licensing in Texas was fueled by an incident that occurred at a Luby's restaurant in a smallish town. He killed 22 people. George Hennard

Is this an everyday occurrance? No. Was he crazy? Yes

One fact is that it did happen. It could happen again, anywhere. In fact, it already has several times. Guns are here and are not going away anytime soon.

In Texas, if I remember correctly, a non-license holder is statistically 7 times more likely to commit an offense with a handgun than a licensee. Handguns in the hands of law-abiding, responsible people are not the problem. Handguns in the hands of criminals are, and there are already laws that make it illegal for felons to have them. That doesn't seem to bother them much.

I doubt that you see it this way, so please don't be insulted, but I am constantly amazed at those that think that any gun law or moral standard is going to prevent a criminal from having a gun, committing a crime or being violent. If criminals respected the law, they wouldn't be criminals.

Scott

Last edited by plus6vu; 22nd November 2007 at 07:22 PM.. Reason: just one more thought
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