Phrembah (a potato-like mystery) (phrembah) wrote,
Phrembah (a potato-like mystery)

Code Three To Santa Fe!

One time Jerry Jeff Walker and B.W. Stevenson were going to be at the Paolo Soleri amphitheater in Santa Fe.  Gar' P. Nunn, the keyboardist for Jerry Jeff (and the famed composer of "Home With the Armadillo") required a Hammond B-3 organ and ours was out with Journey or somebody.  But Journey or somebody wasn't using it that night, so what they did was air-freight all 200-300 pounds of it to Albuquerque.  Seems Santa Fe doesn't have anywhere you can land a plane big enough to carry a B-3.  So the only remaining problem was how to get the damn organ from the ABQ airport to Santa Fe.

I was the repair tech for this outfit. I fixed the shit as it came in off the road.  I wasn't a roadie, as such, but I was in town like all of the real roadies weren't.  So the boss calls me at about nine in the morning and tells me that the organ is coming in on flight such and such and I need to go get it and drive it to Santa Fe.  Oh, and I need to rent a truck because all of ours are on the road.  And I need to be there for sound check at 4:00.  Turns out, between renting the truck and waiting for the organ to be unloaded last because it was the biggest, there was barely enough time to pull the whole thing off.  And, being young and stupid, I was nervous as hell about fucking it up.  So nervous that I stalled the truck in the middle of the intersection at Gibson and Yale.  This was a long time ago and rental trucks did not have automatic transmissions.  This particular one had four on the floor, but it also, as was often the case, had a split rear axle or "brownie box" that gave you another gear between each of the main ones.  You had to double clutch (a maneuver I never truly got the hang of) to get into and out of the splits and you needed the splits to take off from a dead stop.  So, I got the thing stalled in the middle of this very busy intersection trying to take off from a red light, but I did get it going and got on the freeway and drove as fast as this diesel beater would go and eventually got there.

The gig was actually fun because, once there, I had nothing to do but drive the truck back afterward, so I could just wander around with my full-access pass stuck on my jeans and listen, or not, to the concert.  That was my first emergency run to Santa Fe.

But the day didn't remain saved for long . . .
Tags: compelling chronicle

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