I was booked in the common back up band to a Dick Clark All Stars of Rock and Roll tour. Dick, being a savvy business kind of guy realized that if he hired a core combo of versatile professional players that the groups who mainly were all about their singers (like the Doo Wop bands), all about the singer (Dion Manucci), and the other headliners the changes in between acts and the sheer size of the tour would be reduced considerably. It was fun. We were playing great 50's and pre-Beatles 60's tunes (I think this was sometime in the early 80's)and taking our bus and truck caravan all over the country. We played lots of ballparks, lots of county fairs, while averaging four shows a week and thousands of miles of asphalt.
By the time we hit Phoenix we all knew and enjoyed being around each other. We were booked at a fairly new, fairly swank Hyatt Regency downtown. We had four different gigs within decent driving range of downtown so we were also enjoying a nice break from sleeping on the bus and stuff.
The only problem was that we were booked into this hotel at the same time as a huge Shriner's convention. Don't get me wrong, I love the charity stuff the Shriners do, it's a noble thing to help burned kids. It's just that when they get together and put on their funny hats they can be kind of overbearing.
We finally, after about two days of drinking in bars full of Shriners, eating in restaurants full of Shriners, waiting for our bus standing around groups of Shriners, just retreated to our own floor of the hotel. We ordered room service instead of going out, brought back bottles (sometimes cases of bottles) to our room instead of going to the bars and were mainly trying to keep to ourselves.
Usually after we got back from the show a room or two would be designated as "party central" and we would gather to unwind and jam and entertain what ever local road cookies managed to finagle a bus ride back to the hotel with us. All was going well. The Shriners were having their fun, we were having ours.
Let me make this part of the story very clear.
It wasn't me that started the water fight.
It wasn't me that escalated the water fight from squirt guns to ice buckets filled in the bathtub.
It wasn't me that started any of the wet towel action.
It certainly wasn't me that started the wet pillow fight.
I was, however, the guy that took the firehose off the wall, charged it and then hit the "UP" button on the elevator. When the doors opened on an elevator full of Shriners I was the hippie that hosed them down like civil rights marchers on a bridge in Alabama.
That was me.
I'm still laughing about that one.