Friday, September 12, 2008

Back to back

Two days in the Big City. That is to say, two days in the Big City during a very somber time. Last night, on our way to dinner, we were walking straight toward the beams of light commemorating the Twin Towers' fall seven years ago. It's a bit humbling, to say the least. It is also makes for a strange time to be in NYC.

Two straight days is a bit much for a band who still can't carry a night in New York. We didn't actually set this up -- we had a short-lived booking agent who set up a mid-week jaunt, for some reason -- and it showed. Our first show, at the Parkside Lounge in the Lower East Side, was a bit of a bust. Not only did the aforementioned agent not confirm the show, but she told us the wrong time. We got there at 8, when the club thought we were playing. Luckily for us, the staff was about as nice as can be and for some reason let us go on last, at 11. This meant a few more people trickled in that we knew, but still it was a strange and quiet kind of night. We didn't make a setlist, and that little deed of unprofessionalism really compounded into a couple other problems. We stopped and started on a song (my fault, wrong capo) and we meandered through talking points. All in all, it didn't feel like a whole lot of progress at that show. We did get a couple new fans, though, I think, which is always a huge plus in a tough market. And NYC may be the toughest market. We also saw a mischievous child lick a trashcan on the street before the show after his mother told him not to. That may have been the highlight of the day.

SET LIST (to the best of my recollection): Carolyn, Don't Leave Like This / Madeline / The Devil's Arms / There's A Reason (debut) / Ordinary Girls / On the Lam / Lights On / Someday Darling / Shotgun Wedding / Shine A Light

The next night, after a good sleep at L Ro's, we played a really great club that was really, really small: Pete's Candy Store in Brooklyn. That's a good thing when you're not playing to a whole bunch of people. I actually thought we'd pack the place since most people deferred to Thursday as the night they'd see us, but we only did OK. Either way, I had a lot of fun the second night. After aborting plans for an Italian dinner, I didn't eat a whole lot, and I was running on empty from walking around all day (speaking of, there's a really evil petshop downtown where they put really adorable, sleeping puppies in the window. I know I've already got one, but it made me want to go in there and grab another -- like when a woman with a bunch of kids plays with a baby and then says to the husband, "Let's have another one." For shame, you temptress pet store). I tried to eat a ciabatta turkey sandwich, but Joe Bug (the only one to attend both shows!) snatched some of it up and then complained that he was hungry. We played OK, again, but not great. Both shows were sort of unsteady, it seemed, possibly because we couldn't "rock" that hard at either one -- due to the size of the room/stage. Scott got kind of sick onstage and we rushed through the end of the set, though Matt did pull off a cool move of following my hand on the level of the drums, bringing it down LOW. There's a highlight.
SET LIST: Lights On / Madeline / Carolyn, Don't Leave Like This / Golden Fleece / Cedar / The Nadir / On the Lam / Debts / Don't Get Me Wrong / Someday Darling / Shotgun Wedding / Shine A Light

Anyhow, after the show, we just hung around with our buds, caught up a bit, and then headed back to Boston. I was disappointed that we did not accomplish our goal of watching both Ace Venturas (and the animated series) back to back, but that's how it went. Ah well.

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