Meet BULB – Our Lead Electrician: 35 Years & 69 Festivals!
Our electrician, Bob Cannon, better known as – and usually ONLY known as – “Bulb,” has been with the Pecan Street Festival longer than anyone, except for Shannon Sedwick and Michael Shelton.
He is, in and of himself, an Austin institution. He has been behind the scenes of so many things that have made this city the city that it is, but with little recognition. John T. Wright, Pecan Street Association board member, noted that in his past work as a promoter, he would schedule weekly coffee sit-downs with his maintenance/electrician leads; that “they became good friends and mentors, and their foundational contributions and ideas were invaluable.” So it is with Bulb.
He provides power to the entire event. From the lights and fans in the vendor booths, to the sound systems on all three stages, to the grills and coolers for the food vendors, this show literally cannot run without him!
“More than an electrician, Bulb is a hero,” noted Luis Zapata, Special Events Management, producer of Pecan Street Festival. Luis highlights Bulb’s “Master Fix-It” abilities: if other service providers had an issue they couldn’t resolve, Bulb found a way to fix it and keep the festival running smoothly. Luis says when he arrives at 3:00am Saturday morning before the show all stressed out, he sees Bulb’s truck and the stress dissipates. He also values Bulb teaching him blues guitar riffs during the down times!
This will be Bulb’s last festival to be in charge of all things electrical as he moves slowly into retirement, but will consult and train the new workers over the next few festivals.
Bulb says he’s “honored to be recognized for having provided a comfortable and safe environment for millions of people!”
THE LONGEST RESUME IN AUSTIN!:
In April of 1982, Bulb first lit up the Austin Blues Heritage Festival and wired Brook’s Home Cooked Meals at 418 E. Sixth St. – the second venue to have live music on Sixth St. when it opened 20+ years earlier. In May of that year, he worked his first Pecan Street Festival – and has worked every one since.
In 1983, he became the in-house electrician for the Austin Opera House and in his 10-year tenure until it closed, he brought light and sound to the likes of Ray Charles and Stevie Ray Vaughn for their live album recordings.
Also in 1983, he installed the electrical system for Southpark Meadows, the 30,000-seat natural amphitheater, and managed the system for several hundred concerts until it’s closing in 2000.
Other venues he helped build or managed electrical for shows, concerts, private parties: Austin Music Hall; La Zona Rosa; The Backyard; Stubbs; Zilker Park (Blues on the Green; Freedom Fests; ACL Fests; 4th of July Celebration); Auditorium Shores (AquaFest, Reggae Fest, Fun Fun Fun Fest, Spamarama and many, many more); Waterloo Park (Fun Fun Fun Fest, Chronicle Hot Sauce Festival, Ice Cream Festival, Spamarama, various concerts); Travis County Expo Center (Republic of Texas “ROT” Rally; Texas Heat Wave; Makers Faire, various concerts); Old Settlers Fest and concerts at the Seaholm Power Plant.
He’s also worked: the A2K Festival; ROT Rally events on Congress/Sixth St.; Bat Fest; Motorola Marathon; New Year’s Balldrop; SXSW (for 30 years: once handling 15 shows at a time!); the Chronicle Music Awards; Armadillo Christmas Bazzaar; Gay Pride Festival; Aqua Palooza; Buchanan Dam 50th Birthday Party; Viva Zavida/Mexicarte Museum; Woody Awards; Swamp Romp; White Water Amphitheater on Canyon Lake; events in Luckenbach, TX; Cedar Park Center; Circuit of the Americas Amphitheater; Lollapalooza, Rosenberg, TX; The Houston Astrodome (U2 live broadcast); and t.v productions for Uplink Studios.
He’s also had long-term customers including several hot rod shops, Maggie Mae’s, Jackalope, Moose Knuckle Pub, The Library on Sixth, The Belmont, and Antone’s.
And this is just the short form! 😉