Two nights ago, my husband played at Big Valley Jamboree in Camrose, Alberta, Canada. This in and of itself is pretty mundane. Tonight, though, its noteworthy as today a storm hit the festival and the main stage collapsed. As of right now, one has been confirmed with 60 others hurt. Billy Currington was finishing his set when it happened.
When I heard the news, I was literally in shock for a moment. Because on certain levels you really think it just can’t… won’t… happen.
How many times has my husband told me about their being in tornado watches and warnings. Trying to outrun storms in the bus. Etc. And every time they seem to get out unscathed. You slowly start to build this feeling of invincibility. Then… it does happen. The storm hits. And even though my husband wasn’t there tonight, it still hit far too close to home. It could have very easily been him scrambling off that stage. I had to hear his voice after wards.
Beyond that, though, the music community (especially the Nashville music community) really is like a family. Think of it kind of like a family tree, with all these little families making it up. And a branch of that tree suffered a very close call tonight. I worry for them all out there, and I send a prayer up that they all make it back home to their families safely every run.
Sidebar: I also find myself thinking about gear and equipment. This would have been a good time to be using backline, no? haha Not a time to laugh, but I admit, the thought crossed my mind. For musicians, their equipment is their livelihood… its like a computer is to a data entry specialist. They need it to do their jobs. Stage collapse can spell being sidelined in your line of work if your equipment is damaged in the event.
Like me, I’m sure there was that element of belief in everyone affected today that it just can’t happen. I guess this proved… it can and does happen. You just never know…
Article on the event: http://www.edmontonsun.com/news/alberta/2009/08/01/10337516.html