Here's a list of what I bring to a gig (aside from a guitar, some picks & an amp...)

1) STRAP: even if I'll be sitting down, I always play with a strap: the height of the guitar is always the same, and it is much better for my lower back.

2) MUSIC STAND: since I do not like reading music at gigs, I make sure I memorize all the music I'll be playing at my own gigs--just so that I don't have to carry a music stand around... and if I'm not the leader on the gig ? Then I'm stuck with the music stand :-(

3) EXTENSION CHORD: I always bring a 20-foot extension chord to a gig, unless I know beforehand that the stage area has an electrical outlet within a few feet from where my amp will be. You don't want to be stuck in an awkward corner, and you don't want to ask the manager of the restaurant to rummage through the kitchen to find you an extension chord... extra bonus tip: for those corporate gigs, a black extension chord will look better than a bright orange or yellow one...

4) POWER STRIP: if I'm the leader, I make sure I also bring in a strip, just in case the bass player forgot his extension chord. (I used to also take an extra tie to some gigs, in case the drummer forgot his...)

5) GROUNDING ADAPTOR (3-prong to 2-prong): that one is crucial ! In a lot of older buildings, the outlets often are 2-prong ones. Most amps have a 3-prong plug. Here's another reason to always have one of those in your gig-bag: a 2-prong adaptor will allow you to reverse the polarity when plugging-in your amp. Sometimes, that's all you need to do to get rid of an annoying hum-- not all amps have a ground switch. You want to make sure that both prongs are of the same size, so that they can indeed be turned around. If not, you can always file down the larger one.

6) SPARE FUSE(S): once, and only once in my career, I blew a fuse (well, not me, but my amp). I cannot tell you how proud I was to have a spare one in my guitar case !

7) SPARE TUBES: I have blown enough tubes at gigs to know that it is a good idea to have some replacements.

8) SPARE STRINGS: spare strings.

9) SPARE AMP ? OK, that may sound like overkill, but I'll admit that for some occasional high-profile gigs I do not think twice about taking a second amp with me, just in case...

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