Monday, August 31, 2009

Just flew in from Germany, and boy are my arms...

I got back from Germany last week. The convention we were at pulled in a hair under 250,000 people over the course of five days. The days were incredibly long. We had a bunch of stages with both Beatles and RB2 set up, and people could come up and play. Our job was to facilitate the rocking, and fill in for anybody that was missing. That mostly meant that we were singing the whole time.

Of course, another part of the job is to make the games look awesome, which meant putting on a performance. So I was singing in full-on rock voice for five days. I made it 3.5 days before blowing out my voice.

Generally it was awesome, but really tiring. Some things about the trip, in bullet point format:

- Germans bring the metal. I sang Run to the Hills at least a dozen times per day. They also have some kind of fascination with Papa Roach, and Last Resort was the most-played single song on the RB2 stages all week. Second place was Linkin Park. Third place was Metal as a category.

- Germans really like Yellow Submarine. On the Beatles stages, they couldn't play metal, so they defaulted to Yellow Submarine. I think this had something to do with them being less comfortable singing in English, and 90% of that song is "We all live in a yellow submarine." One day's count had that song played 46 times on a single stage.

- Our main stage was 7.5 feet high. It was ridiculous, and also stupidly loud.

- We handed out shirts, but by the last day, we had a bunch left that we didn't want to take back. So we started what I called T-shirt Apocalypse. We'd get all of us Harmonix folks on stage. We'd play "Birthday", and everyone without an instrument would run around, dance, work the crowd up, and throw shirts. It was a ton of fun, and really got the crowd going. Slightly more scary was the time when we knocked over an amp from one of the piles at the front of the stage. It fell backwards onto the stage, which is good, because if it had fallen forward (off the 7.5') stage, someone would have died.

- Turns out I like wiener schnitzel. I don't know about sausages, as I had no wurst of any kind.

-I had no idea my feet could hurt that much, and I worked a lot of retail.

- If I sing loud enough, I can actually sing AC/DC in the correct octave. I'm not sure when I'll be able to replicate that feat.

- Lufthansa seats become solid after four hours, and actually grow spikes after six.

So that's Germany. In other news, The Beatles: Rock Band comes out in a week and a half. That's nuts.

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