This chart was inspired during my Summer of 1980 southwest tour with the Bobby Claire band, a motel chain touring act that presented third-rate ripoffs of Elvis Presley and Mac Davis Vegas shows, complete with polyester jumpsuits, a smoke machine, and a huge American flag.
The vertical scale on the chart measures from our best-case scenario — the Palm Beach Days Inn Lalo Shifrin Room — down to our worst-case: a 1950s’ fallout shelter in the Buena Vista subdivision in Moedee, Oklahoma. The horizontal scale measures the amount of time spent on the job including rehearsals. Notice how the sharp decline in singer quality precedes the meteoric rise in ego and room quality. Also, band members’ room quality and attitude drop off sharply as rehearsals end and the singer actually arrives on the scene.
Black line – singer’s room quality
Red line – singer’s ego level
Blue line – singer’s talent level
Brown line – band members’ room quality