A Quick Spin Through the Midwest, Then Unplugged at Home
Last weekend was maybe a little different from our usual routing, as we began north of Chicago, then hit Indianapolis, headed north again to a private party in Lafayette, Indiana, and then flew home to play an Unplugged show at Venkman's in Atlanta. As for me, it was sleep on the plane, sleep in the van, sleep in the hotel room.
Thursday: Where in the hell is Palatine, Illinois? North of Chicago--north of Evanston, too. We played a St. Patrick's Day kickoff on Thursday night at Durty Nellie's.
Kind of a strange gig--the stage sounded good, the crowd (maybe 200?) was solid and enthusiastic, but I think the Thursday night/unfamiliar town thing got to me. I guess I could never shake the "Wait-what day is it and where are we?" feeling. From what I recall, we played pretty well--no disasters.
Friday: I-65 between Chicago and Indianapolis. Mellencamp to the max. Rain on the scarecrow, blood on the plow, little pink houses--all that shit.
Back at The Vogue for another packed show. This one had been sold out for months. We are folk heroes in Indianapolis.
Pretty great show for our people, I would say. It sounded good, felt good, and the vibes were excellent in the room.
I shared the hotel room with Monkeyboy, and we slept like we were dead after this one. Neither of us moved until 12:30 PM.
Saturday: I'd been to Lafayette, Indiana on other time in my life, probably twenty-five years ago to see a jazz concert with Craig Handy, Lee Konitz, and Joe Lovano. I remember Craig Handy was so out of tune that he had to stop in the middle of a solo and crank his mouthpiece. Not relative to this blog, really, but that's all I remember. Also, Lovano was really cool at that moment.
The room we were in was an event space in a nearly abandoned (looking) strip shopping center. The stage sounded good, but I don't even now how to describe the building. Sad, like a midwestern winter day? We ate at Arni's (an Indiana restaurant chain) on the other side of the shopping center, and it took about an hour for our food to come out--somebody at Perdue U. had ordered twenty pizzas.
Anyway, this was somebody's birthday party. Especially after the high of last night, this one was a much more low energy gig. We could've/should've watched The Empire Strikes Back to pass the time. Also, we faked our way through I Will Survive. Big fun.
Sunday: We trudged back home, regrouping at Venkman's to play an Unplugged show on our spare gear (our main stuff was on the way home from Indiana). I enjoyed the vibe of this one, relaxed and silly at times, and the off center approaches to some of the songs kept us on our toes. It was nice to relax at the end of this weekend's run.