I was in a band, (well, several, but one serious one) and I DJed for college radio but did a couple live gigs. Tinnitus 4 lyf.
One metal band I was in we would just borrow all the amps we could from friends and even other bands we played with, split each instruments signal twice so we could get up to 4 amps each and play ridiculous heavy riffs while our singer screamed (this wasn't my "serious" band). Can't really hear whispers into my right ear any more (I can hear it, but not distinctly to make out works if it's really soft) and I can hear it over the TV and moderately loud music if I de-focus my attention from the music or TV. I'm glad I wasn't really in any other metal bands after this.
No ear plugs = big mistake, but it's hard to tell if your instrument's in tune if you got em in.
I'm sorry for everyone else that has this condition. It really, really, really, really blows.