We recently saw that exclamation on an old concert routing, an admonition originally intended to ward off tour bus drivers from venturing into the unknown.

Of course, things may seem different in the new millennium, but what about today’s concert road crews? Do superstitions, myths and legends still have a place in the 21st century?

It wasn’t too long ago when various aspects of the supernatural, the unnatural and the uncola still played an integral role in the concert industry. Often, after the last risers, lighting trusses and hernia trusses for shows like Ween or Dolly Parton have been loaded out onto the waiting trucks, an old concert hand will gather the road crew together and entertain them with tales of how it used to be.

Ah, yes, those old chestnuts often whispered at truck stops, Holiday Inns and free clinics. Tales of how the stage techs would practice ancient rituals as they offered up live chickens to the guitar gods right before shows by B.B. King and Van Halen, stories about midnight ceremonies involving chants and blood sacrifices right after a show by Yanni or the Scorpions, and legends about the mystic practices performed by tour accountants right before they settled up payments for performances by Social Distortion, R.E.M. and Jimmy Buffett, all played a role in the concert biz of yore.

But things are different today, for the world of hi-tech concert presentations has no room for fables, fantasies and lore. Today’s concert professionals have no time for superstition, tall tales and old saws about tossing salt over one’s shoulder before Sting takes the stage, or avoiding walking under ladders during shows by The Warlocks and The Suicide Machines. Today’s concert scene relies on skill, truth and science, and the hardy concert pro will have no truck with the superstitions and legends that made up the live music profession during the days of yesteryear.

Here there be monsters? Of course not. Not today, not tomorrow, and certainly not next week. For we live in modern times, with modern solutions to modern problems, and tour managers, roadies, and soundmen no longer fall back on superstitions and ancient rituals to ensure top-notch performances by Andrea Bocelli, Brian Wilson and KMFDM. Today it’s skill, knowledge and experience that drives the concert industry, and tales of creatures lurking beyond the darkness waiting to pounce on the unsuspecting bus driver are only remnants of a bygone era. Rest assured, there are no monsters waiting out there today.

Instead, the monsters have moved on over to the recording industry. Which really isn’t all that astounding once you think about it.