Gig Survival Kit

I ran across this very sleek Electronic Musician Emergency Adapter Kit and it inspired me to post my own Gig Survival Kit. I used to carry a similar collection of adapters, but now I only carry a few adapters augmented by a set of tools.

Gig Survival Kit

From left to right and top to bottom:

  • combination phillips and flat head screwdriver
  • soldering iron
  • sponge and solder
  • electrical tape
  • spare battery (for Basic Stamp)
  • stereo 1/4″ to 1/8″ adapter (headphone adapter)
  • wire cutter and stripper
  • wire ties
  • (2) RCA to 1/4″ adapters
  • ground lifter (lifesaving hum remover)
  • multimeter
  • outlet tester
  • flashlight
  • tres chic cosmetic bag to carry it all!
  • (What you don’t see in this picture since they’re carried separately: (2) DI boxes, a reasonably long extension cable for power, and the various audio cables needed for my performance rig.)

I began carrying the soldering tools when I started performing with sensor-augmented instruments using the Basic Stamp and I soon realized that they made most of my adapters obsolete. If I needed some strange cable, it was usually possible to make it on the spot.

The most often used pieces of kit are definitely the flashlight, the spare battery, and the DI boxes. I’ve had plenty of sour/funny/skeptical/scared looks from the heavy-metal sound guy at the club when I begin unpacking my weirdo electronic gear. Then I pull out my DI boxes and I see expressions of relief and gratitude from the sudden recognition that our gear can now speak a common language.

Oh, and the girly-girl cosmetic bag? Simple. It’s free (if you’re male, ask a female friend who wears even a little bit of makeup), it’s unmistakeable which makes easy to find on a dark stage, and it never fails to impress that heavy-metal sound guy.