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Blog: What Is A Gig?

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This week I intend to begin the GRAND UNVEILING of the ROCK DATA what I have been updating over the past month or so, as part of the preparations for GIG ONE THOUSAND, coming up on Thursday 2 February.

As you'll see if you follow that there link, I have set up a whole extra SUITE of FUNCTIONALITY on the website whereby each gig in The Database Of ROCK now has its own dedicated PAGE, which has details about who played, what songs were done, and various other bits and bobs. Actually, GIG ONE THOUSAND isn't a hugely brilliant example of this as hasn't happened yet, but if you look at, say, this previous Totally Acoustic show you'll see that there's a WHOLE HEAP of info there which can then be DRILLED DOWN into even further. For instance, if you wished to see ALL the gigs I have played with Mr Matt Tiller you can click on his name to get a full list, or if you clicked on Mental Judo in that setlist you can get lyrics, notes, and details of every time it was played at a gig and every album or whatever it has appeared on.

It is a WHOLE HEAP of data and no mistake, and I'm hoping to UNLEASH it even further in future by making it a properly downloadable dataset. HOWEVER, before I do that I want to air it in public a bit (i.e. like this) to try and identify any errors, and thus I need to discuss some CAVEATS.

The main caveat is around the very idea of "What Is A Gig?" As you'll see from the lists of past gigs there is room for some DEBATE about some of the items included. For instance, sometimes I have included RADIO SESSIONS as gigs, and sometimes I HAVEN'T. The reason FOR doing this is that these sessions tended to be live events for an audience, you know, like a gig, and even when they were recorded they were done LIVE and, to be honest, often had an audience similar in size (1 person) to some of my "proper gigs". The reason for NOT doing this is usually because I forgot to put it in the system.

Similarly, when I have done two SETS under different GUISES I have sometimes put that in the system as two seperate gigs, and sometimes as one. Good examples of this are some of the many times I have done gigs with The Pop Art Allstars. Usually this would be at an EVENT whereby I'd do my own set earlier on in the day, and then later on (and in a significantly more lubricated state of being) I would go and sing a song with the "house band", generally a cover version to do with whatever the THEME of the day had been. As well as being EXCELLENT, this was also, I would argue, CLEARLY two seperate gigs.

The MURKINESS of this occurs when I have done a solo set and a Validators set, or a solo set before one of me and Steve's SHOWS. Does that count or not? Sometimes I have said YES and entered it as such, other times I could simply not be bothered with the ADMIN and put it in as ONE.

THUS you might say "Hang on Hibbett, but surely that means it ISN'T 1000 pure unsullied definite gigs?" to which I would say "AHA!" and look slightly enigmatic, before going on to say that there are also LOADS of gigs that I know happened but are definitely NOT in the system because I don't know when they were. There's all sorts of gigs from the previous century, for instance, that clearly happened but are NOT in the system, and then there are various stand-up comedy sets I've done, PLAYS, Panel Appearances, radio shows and ALL SORTS that didn't make it in that could very reasonably have counted.

What I'm saying is, there are all sorts of ways we could define a "gig" and how it should be counted, and all sorts of historical research which could be undertaken to uncover 20-30 other occasions which could easily be called gigs, but to be honest I cannot truly be arsed with doing so (NB if I write this all up as an academic paper I will find a fancier way to say that). THUSLY and THEREFORELY this dataset - this KILOGIG or MILLENIGIG, if you will - DOES contain details of one thousands gigs of some definition or other, and indeed if further investigation was undertaken it's as likely as not that GIG ONE THOUSAND would STILL be the thousandth one in this list, so I'm just going to go with that!

What I'd REALLY like to do is to do a proper PROJECT and actually DEFINE a gig somehow, but that would require TIME and possibly MONEY that I do not currently have. If I did then I would surely first answer the question of "What Is A Band?", which we shall have a vague go at TOMORROW!

posted 23/1/2023 by MJ Hibbett

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Comments:

"various stand-up comedy sets I've done" raises questions. so. many. questions.
posted 23/1/2023 by eddie izzard was never funny

Yes. Sadly, not so many laughs.
posted 23/1/2023 by MJ Hibbett

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