9/12 Day Off!
In Adair, Iowa…*sigh*
To those armchair rockers who think that going on tour is just a party on wheels, allow me to turn your amps down from “11.” While we may officially be “working” for only the forty odd minutes we find ourselves on stage any given night, getting to the stage can be a job on its own (which is to say nothing of the labor it takes to try and get potential Fie Fee Fas out to bear witness). Our mission is porous but immutable: we are as a sieve, catching attention while letting the many miles and hours pass us through.
All the more reason to enjoy a day off to shake off the rust. Of course, much like any gig or a drunken tattoo it all comes down to location, location, location. So when passing through the Midwest and you’re looking for a scenic and friendly place to kick back for a spell, be sure to drive past Adair, Iowa and keep searching.
Tucked behind the questionably named Kum and Go gas station, the local Super 8 Motel resembles a place where heroin junkies might hold a three-day convention to indulge in black tar and vanilla ice cream or perhaps your curious 70’s horror flick psycho killer might look for an intersection of gainful employment and extracurricular activities.
Still, our room had the necessary amenities, namely a television through which I could watch my beloved New England Patriot’s season opener as well as a fridge to keep some whiskey on ice for touchdowns.
And for those of you looking to still drink like you’re at a penthouse instead of a Super 8, allow me to introduce to you the Crashin’ Old Fashioned. All you really need to have on hand is a bottle of Angostura bitters (and if you don’t, than you’re already missing out on the silver bullet to hangovers).
How to make a Crashin’ Old Fashioned:
1. Fill a paper cup with ice from the motel ice machine
2. Throw three dashes of Angostura and a packet of sugar over the ice. Sugar in the Raw is best, but the cheap bastards at any motel will likely only have the non-descript white shit on hand.
3. Fill the cup ½ to 2/3 up with whiskey or bourbon. Jim Beam seems to be the perfect balance of quality and low price.
4. Squeeze a couple orange peels over cup and submerge them. Add some fresh orange juice for added citrus if desired.
5. Drink one for every touchdown.
And lo, there were touchdowns. Giselle’s jizz man and new fan-of-drunken-New-England-fans Tom Brady threw four touchdowns and lead the Pats to a 38-24 victory over the Dolphins, handing the Miami team the greatest embarrassment since they lent their brand to Ace Ventura: Pet Detective.
After the Pats finished slicing and dicing the Dolphins like a Japanese fisherman desperate to make quota and everyone else in the room was amply fed up with my whiskeyed whooping, we sat down for a listening session of one our recent recordings.
Musician’s are inevitably mother’s to their music, with their work never done. But as much as kids may tell lies to their parents, recordings never will. Timing incongruities, squirrely structures, and the overzealously busy bass lines (forgive me, Bootsy, for I have sinned!) shine through like copper warts for us to freeze off with icy consensus. By the end of the review we were humbled but ennobled with resolve to tear the Side Door off its hinges with the best show yet.
9/13 The Side Door
The sun rose innocently over the wind turbines and cornrows, but by the time it began it’s westward descent, we were on the run from the law. Unaware of the felonius behavior we’d become a part of, Aaron and I tended to some pressing business involving a large sack of dirty laundry. In the band van, blessed be the one with no nose.
As we awaited the coin-op drier to finish its contracted duty (hee hee…doody…), a sharp rapping visited our door (and no, not the sort of sharp rapping boasted by “It’s So Cold In the D”). A diminutive little man who looked remarkably like Deep Roy after a couple precious minutes on Procrustes’s rack exploded through the door, hotter and more inflamed than rancid curry. Evidently we had registered as a mere one tenant for the room instead of our five-strong force.
His vicious peppering of four letter words that’d make a Calcutta pirate blush betrayed a stumbling grasp of the English language, but the message was clear. We had to leave now, we were motherfuckers, we were to never come back as we were certainly not welcome, and he was calling the cops. Did I mention he told us to go fuck ourselves?
Having to suppress the urge to give the little potty-mouthed Oompa Loompa a big hug, we hurried out to load our luggage into Ron’s cavernous rear only to realize that our laundry was still rolling around in the dry cycle. Beneath the cover of a hummed rendition of the Mission Impossible theme (a groovy 5/4 for your odd meter junkies out there), we snuck into the basement only to find the draconian overlord of the Super 8 had locked the laundry room on us. But with a couple kind words to one of the snickering cleaning staff we managed to extricate our clean underwear and steal away to the open road before the fuzz arrived. Evidently, ducking a $20 surcharge for more than one head justifies getting Super 86-ed for life. Still, we knocked off two more squares on our Rock Tour Bingo board as we “Earned the ire of a hotel staff” and “Ran from the cops” in one quick stop.
We found the Old Market neighborhood of Omaha just a quick jaunt down the highway and it was there we beached Ron Burgundy to peruse the local thrift shops and pubs. George showed great restraint from pillaging a local shop for all of its collectible Star Wars toys while I decided the impending heat of the south would be unkind to any vinyl I might hope to bring home.
We rolled up to the leafy-walled lunch box of the Side Door on the other side of town for load in. The joint was green (figuratively and literally) but warm, the walls plastered with curious fluorescent paintings of racecars and sexy-ugly-ugly bar flies.
Nevertheless, our fine-toothed scrutiny of our live set from the night before paid off in spades, even if the gig didn’t pay at all. We delivered a 1-2 punch four times over as our set now eight songs strong clicked on all four musical cylinders. But the night had yet to shine hope on George, as he had yet to spot an “albino fire breather in Omaha” in order to win enough money to support himself for the rest of the tour.