Maybe that's why I've been gradually going over to as low-tech an approach as possible for playing out.
We just heard a terrific little group* last week that was completely acoustic - 2-guitars/string bass/violin/vocals - and a pile of things (cans, hubcaps, wash tub, etc) to bang on. And it worked. They were great. Entertaining even. Amazing what musical talent alone can do.
I used to be a heavy-duty customization and tweak freak. These days, all I use is my instrument, a cord, and an amp.
Oddly enough, I've discovered I can accomplish everything I'm trying to accomplish musically without needing any of the technology I used to lug around.
Friends used to joke that I'd be happiest if my bass had nothing but
a volume control. But that was before some companies started coming out with artist signature basses that just had a volume knob so I guess I wasn't the only person thinking along those lines.
I have no intention of scrapping all my electronic toys. They're too damn useful to completely walk away from. But until the software gets to the point where it can be run reliably on a general purpose OS, I'd rather leave my laptop at home.
*BTW: The band is called Caravan of Thieves
) in case anyone's interested. They do an odd-ball gypsy swing/cabaret type thing. Funny, slightly sinister lyrics with a lot of visual humor thrown in. Really nice people offstage too! Definitely worth seeing live.