Here we are again driving in the van a couple of days into another cross-country tour. There’s the savory aroma of fresh baked cookies wafting through the van. Actually it smells at this moment like half-eaten subway sandwiches, rotting fruit and the stale air of four sleeping beauties. Maybe one day scratch and sniff will be available on the internet so everyone in cyberspace can enjoy this moment. Last week we were in the Vancouver area playing several St. Patrick’s day shows at Ceili’s downtown, The Duke of Dublin in Abbotsford (hadn’t been to that town since the Air Show in 79. It’s grown. And so have I guess…) and the big day itself was at The Lamplighter in historic Gastown. The shows were generally pretty fun, saw lots of family and friends (including a never before met 3rd cousin) and went home to our own pillows all week! (except for the Super 8 in Abbotsford. But it was O.K. as we were spoiled by the freshly plumped pillows, turned sheets and complimentary champagne…Actually a peewee hockey team staying across from us was having fun knocking on doors, flipping do not disturb signs over and playing ball hockey in the hallway at 7 a.m….boys will be boys. The tradition continues…)
We played a couple of shows up in Park City and a club show in Salt Lake this weekend. It was a great couple of days although Harry O’s was a little slow on Thursday. I think I scared a few people off by singing a little flat on the radio earlier on in the afternoon:) Actually it was kind of fun. We played a new song “Danielle” for the first time with Rebecca on violin and Tyler on snare drum.
The Urban Lounge in S.L.C. rocked on Friday. We even had a chance to steal away before the show to do something truly rock & roll. We went to the Home Depot to replace a trailer lock and get some keys cut. I must say I was highly impressed with the service. The guy looked a little bit like a cross between a thinner Kris Kringle and Kenny Rogers and he was extremely helpful.
Salt Lake City has always been a cool town for us. I guess it’s been ten years or more already from our start at the legendary Zephyr Club. Since it closed we’ve played quite a few different places but the Urban Lounge seems to suit us well. I guess one of my easiest recalled memories in this city was having a Barenaked Lady join us onstage for a few tunes the evening we later crashed the van trying to drive through the night to Phoenix. Aw memories…
Saturday we got up at the crack of noon and played an outdoor show in Park City. We were at the same venue almost a year ago to the day with Rusted Root. A nice bunch of people from what I could tell. That was the same day we were given a case lot (134?) of granola bars by the promoter Toby that we munched on in the van for a month or two after. Last year it was freezing cold but this time the weather was unseasonably warm. A really nice all ages crowd showed up to enjoy the tunes. Lots of familiar faces including a couple of guys from a band we did a few shows with from Orlando and another promoter we know named Casey who brought his wife and baby Ty down to the concert.
We had a few hours to kill after that so we went back to the most awesomest condo to do what people like to do when they have precious downtime. It’s been our home away from home the past three days. It’s been kind of like The Waltons. Goodnight Rebecca! Goodnight Jason! Goodnight Chris! Goodnight Barack!(not sure why he was in the top bunk) It was three magical days of hearty breakfasts, cowboy coffee, and reruns of Stacy and Clinton transforming lives in their own charming way on What Not To Wear.
After a refreshing jet bath (not with the band unfortunately) it was time to head down to the show at The Star Bar on Main Street in Park City. Perfect room for us. Not too big. Not too small. Just right. Elli Perry, a singer/songwriter friend of ours we met in Atlanta is along with us for the next three weeks. She’ll be opening up some of the shows and manning (womaning?) our merchandise table for us. So stop by, pick up a CD or a T-shirt and ask her about growing up in rural Georgia. She’ll love you for it! Elli played a nice set of tunes with Lewiston Idaho’s own Tyler Thompson helping out on guitar, drums, bass, bagpipes and unicycle. We hit the stage stoked and ready to rock. Really fun crowd and we blasted through two hours of music in no time. A weekend in Utah was a great way to start the tour. Only the tiny state of Wyoming to get through today and we’ll be setting up to play the Swing Station tonight in Colorado on our way down to the deep South!