As L Ro has reminded me, I have not blogged and updated my loyal readers about how our swing through New York, Delaware, and Pennsylvania went last week. My apologies. Things have been most unruly since we returned, but I assure you, I have not forgotten about you. Let's take it a day at a time.Thursday, Kingston, N.Y.
This night will be remembered more for the accommodations than for the show itself. The show, at a bar called The Basement, was fairly unmemorable -- we played poorly, and I blew up at Scott a bit about it the next day. In actuality, it didn't matter since no one was really there, but considering that the point of these shows is to play better and learn the new songs, it was a failure. Anyhow, that isn't to say there were lots of "let's just let this happen" memories on this date. I tried to sleep in the van for the first time before the show, since I was tired and definitely sending bad vibes to the rest of the band that way (Matt later drunkenly yelled at me about this, before forgetting pretty much everything for the remainder of the trip. My memory, on the other hand, was better than ever for some odd reason. A total role reversal). The feeling around The Basement was a lot like a worse-off version of The Oasis in New London -- a group of friends running the bar and being cool to us. But this didn't bring in the locals like New London does, and I wasn't drinking (as I am scaling back a bit), so there weren't many Oasis-type moments. Anyhow, the accommodations I mentioned were this: we stayed in the house of the dudes who worked at the bar, in which one of them didn't have a room. After we showed up from a late stop at a diner, he was asleep on the couch. We fended for ourselves and found spots on the floor to curl up. I slept halfway under a pool table with a leather jacket for a pillow. Halfway through the night, I woke up shivering to find that they were missing a door, and in place of it had a screendoor with no screen, providing direct contact with the sub-40 degree air outside. I switched my jacket to blanket duty and used my bag as a pillow. Mike slept next to two fighting dragon lizards, and said he was warmed by their heating lamp. Matt had the best deal, finding a foam mat to sleep on, promptly falling asleep and snoring his ass off.
SET LIST: Carolyn, Don't Leave Like This / Madeline / Don't Get Me Wrong / Lights On / Golden Fleece / On the Lam / Cedar / Shotgun Wedding / Shine a LightFriday, New York, N.Y.
If Kingston will be remembered for the accommodations, then this Manhattan show will definitely be remembered for the post-show spiderweb I drove into. At least by me. The show at the Mean Fiddler went ok -- well, pretty good, but not great. Par for the course, really. We got the "judge" on our side (didn't really matter), played an OK show through subpar equipment (we had to use their stage setup), and saw Holly, Joe Bug, Steve, some old friends, including my childhood friend, Dan. Twas good. What wasn't good was this... After the show, I went to get the van to load out our stuff... the club is on a street directly adjacent to Times Square, so Matt, Erin, and I are driving through the Square with bumper-to-bumper weekend/Times Square traffic. We're not moving for five minutes so I pick up the phone to call Mike and tell him we're running late, but only have to go one block... Before the phone EVEN connects, a cop WALKS up to my window and says, "Is there any reason you're on your cell phone?" I didn't even think about it. "Do you know its against new york state law to use a cell phone while operating a motor vehicle. Pull over to the side of the road." He stops 4 lanes of traffic, makes me pull over and sit there for 15 minutes, then slaps me with a $120 ticket! Then to top it all off, he shows back up and says "Hey, is your last name really Yoder?" Laughs and says, "It's a standard issue ticket." I grumbled something about not trying to be my friend after this and how there should be a warning for out-of-state plates for first time cell phone offenses. Give me a break. Of course, he didn't. But he did successfully ruin my night. After we finally loaded up, Matt went off with Erin, and the three other Cassavettes went to Mike's relatives place in Queens. I slept on a leather chair after losing a coin toss to Scott for the air mattress. It was a good sleep, though.
SET LIST: Lights On / Don't Get Me Wrong / Carolyn, Don't Leave Like This / Madeline / Cedar / Shotgun Wedding / Shine a Light
Saturday, Dewey Beach, DE
It seems we can't replicate our fun from the first time we went to Dewey Beach -- one year ago, to be exact. Since then, we've gone back three other times (this visit included), with nowhere near the same reaction. It's been a combination of bad luck (hurricanes, early time slots at some shows) and really bad luck (getting a great time slot on the outdoor stage finally, only to be hit with a cold snap). Either way, we had a lot of fun at this show, playing to folks who were there for music. They got up and danced. You can always say that about Delaware folk. They love music. It's a rarity these days. This show also had musicians who love music, some of which we partied with after the show. Turns out, some guys were staying a couple rooms over from us in the hotel and wanted to do big campfire-type singalongs with mandolin and acoustic guitars. Not really my thing normally, but it was fun. We had Shiner, too, which was cool. Again, I didn't sleep much, but I was able to take my first shower of the tour (actually, I took two!), so that was a bonus.
SET LIST: Don't Get Me Wrong / Carolyn, Don't Leave Like This / Madeline / Lights On / On the Lam / Cedar / I Come From the Water / Shotgun Wedding / Shine a LightSunday, Philadelphia, PA
The day the Sox season ended. That was a bigger deal than this show at The Fire (and I'm not much of a baseball fan), which had the poorest attendance and least fun of any night of the tour. On the plus side, we were right down the street from Johnny Brenda's where we played with Superdrag last time we were in Philly, so we went there for drinks before the show. It's a cool bar. In fact, Philly has A LOT of cool bars (we went to a little bars section after the gig), many of which I wish were in Boston. We also got cheesesteaks earlier in the day, which was another perk of playing Philly. So, see, all hope wasn't lost. The true accomplishment of the day came when I managed to fix my car (with some telephone Googling by my parents) after it went haywire and refused to lock. When we finally alleviated the problem after a tense 15 minutes, my mother cheered loudly over the phone and likened it to coaching someone through giving birth to a baby or landing an airplane. I just felt good. We stayed with Matt's sister in King of Prussia and then headed for Boston the next morning.
SET LIST (to the best of my recollection): There's a Reason / Golden Fleece / Madeline / St. Anthony / The Devil's Arms (w/ an extended jam) / Someday Darling / Cedar / Shotgun Wedding
I've got a big show Friday at Toad, playing solo with a band for the first time (yes, an oxymoron, but it makes sense, I promise). Show starts at 10 p.m. See you there?
Labels: cassavettes, dewey beach americana festival, kingston, new york city, philadelphia