I have spent more than one late night in the studio working on sound for a band that is particularly exacting. Most of them in actuality are rather particular, which makes for challenging work. I do my work well and with pride, and that often means overtime hours. And I mean really late. The job has to be perfect. You would expect nothing else from me. I work with a lot of different musicians and each has its particular requirements. I don’t get tired when I am on a roll so I stay alert and alive until the work is done. You feel good when you put in a really long session that gets fabulous results.
When it is time to call it quits and head on home, I pull out my trusty LED flashlight and head for the car. This is an essential item for someone in my business. When the client keeps you in the studio long after dark, you enter a danger zone called the local parking lot where studio employees like me park. Let me tell you that it can be a horror story. The neighborhood is not the best and at night the lot gets littered with broken beer bottles and assorted trash. It is poorly lit, not that you want to see this mess, and it is hard to find your car unless you have a regular spot. This is not a bad idea for us late-nighters. I have been known to move my car closer to the studio back door around seven o’clock before the parking lot mayhem starts. I don’t know why it attracts the slobby drinkers who are carousing the streets after ten and then they go on for hours. Maybe it is because it is dark and they are not visible to the authorities who try to pick up people who are rowdy in the street. It can be dangerous if the crowd gets belligerent. You want to be unseen by them so as not to provoke a verbal attack or worse.
Most of the time things are calm enough and people move on. They know seeing the lights in the studio window that business of some type is going on. They never try to enter our sound haven. It is as simple as bolting the door. But you have to make your way through the broken glass and debris on many a dark night. I have asked the city to put in more powerful street lamps, but so far nothing has transpired. I will keep trying. So, in the interim, it’s just me and the LED flashlight alone in the dark. No one wants to confess fear about leaving the studio alone but musicians often do it together. They don’t want to have to conk an aggressive drunk bystander on the head with a bass guitar. But don’t let me give you the impression that there are negative aspects to my job. I love every late-night minute of it, and so far I have been safe and secure in my car as I proceed home.