pete mazich - organ, singing
raul morales - drums
watt - thud staff, spiel
thurston moore - much inspiration!
(left to right)
steve kaul - the man outside the van
thursday, october 21, 2004 - pittsburgh, pa
It's pretty rad, being from california, and getting the oppertunity to watch the seasons change, i've been on tour the last three octobers, but it's still a treat, red to orange, some of the trees almost look a bright yellow, then the leaves start falling, and the landscape starts to look real creepy, and pretty soon everything will be covered with snow. No fuckin' ways the whole way up, and i don't like it. tonight we're be playing the thirty fiest street pub, home of cutting edge music, i'll just leave that statement alone. Got to see where the ketsup comes from, and we had to cross the most rickety, rusted up bridge i've ever seen, i'm suprised it was still even open, once we made it across, the club was on the other side. We're on the outside of pittsburg, from the looks of it, about a fifteen minute drive. Not really any houses around, a couple of apt. buildings, but they look like they where abandonned years ago, seems pretty industrial around here, then again, the whole city does. While i'm walking around, and i can see a few spots, like under bridges, and weird places like that, that i'd like to get a closer look at, but i'm not in my element, and don't know the city, so i play it safe, and i stick to the streets.
Sound check isn't for a while, so let's hit up the strip, and try and find some eats, yeah, fuck that, i didn't have my jacket on, just my sweatshirt, and it started to rain, i got cold and turned around after two blocks, oh well, i didn't see anything up ahead anyway. When i got back i told the boss of my delemia, and he handed me a few diffrent menus of places that would deliver. While i'm waitin' on chow, i pony up to one of those bar video game machinens, and play a bucks worth of computer chess, while listening to some hendrix, i had to do something, this place had the juke cranked to ten playing the worst three chord punk, not the originals, imatators of the imatations, and the really bad imataters at that. Playing with a local group called, comrad, i introduce myself while they're loading their gear, pretty nice guys. After meeting comrad i decide i need a walk, and some caffine, so i head out in search for just that, wasn't to tough, found some across the street from the iron city, plus i found a phone card, so now i can call liala. It's about ten, and i'm just starting to wake up. Very cool, she home, it's was good talking to her, it's been a couple months, she tells me the boys and girls of 673 are starting a new house band, and that pedro hasn't fallen in the water yet... it's a slow process, but it's happening.
Make it back to the club just in time to see comrad, you can't judge a book by it's cover, and sounds that came outta comrad were not expected, well i didn't really expect anything, but they suprised me, straight up, who inspired rock and roll, reminded me of the rolling blackouts from lomita, a pedro sister city. Our turn, the sound was so fucking loud on stage, some harsh feed back at the beginning, i could see mike cringing, from the squeal, it was flippin' loud, but i kinda liked it, for me it's better than not being able to hear anything, but it was unusually cranked. We did a pretty good job, mike decided to bring the roky cover back into rotation, and of course i sped the shit out of it, i can say this though, i know i can do it better, but i've done it a hell of a lot worse, so there's my thoughts on that, there's always d.c. Other than that it was a good gig for me, it was hot, so i got to get nice and sweaty, nothing is worse than coming off stage dry, then you know for a fact that you didn't bring it , or that you played in an ice box, oh, and also, i lied, there are things a lot worse, but as far as playing music goes, i still stand firm on that statement. Met lots of cool folks after the show, including the guy we stayed with, thanks jason. This part of pittsburg had little narrow roads, so leaving the club, we backed into a wall, this boat's strong, not a dent, and i can't say that about the wall, that thing got smashed to bits. Back at the pad was real mellow, stayed up for only about twenty minutes, tried to read a few pages, but the words got blurry real quick, and sleep came on fast after that... good nite.
popped at bob's pad and did a quick wash up in the head then went to the laundry room where raul was busy folding his duds. I did the same to mine. the previous night when we had put the clothes in rollie had inadvertently thrown a pair of socks into the sink next to the washing machine plugging up the drain. well after about twenty minutes of this washer doing its thing the floor was covered in about an inch of water. damn! I felt really bad and apologized to bob profusely. luckily there was a drain in the floor and the shit emptied out in a few minutes. by morning everything was dry so things turned out titty. bob assured us that this was a relatively common occurence and took it in stride (gotta love that bob teagan). I went pulled the faulty hammond XK3 ballast out of the boat and gave it to chris who had graciously agreed to fedex it back to the hammond factory for me. I felt much better having this sitch handled as we wouldn't have to traipse around the US w/ some poor cat's rig anymore and the shit would get fixed soon. many apologies to whosever board it was; I hope they get it up and running for you soon. oh and I just remembered that the night before watt had been reading his emails when he had showed us a reply we had gotten from one of the bosses at nectar's in vermont regarding our telling of our whole unsavory experience with these cats in the tour diaries; basically the jist of it was that we were being selfish and only seeing one side of the story and the reason we weren't allowed to load up the front stairs was so we wouldn't disturb their customers. customer's??!! what customers? that pad was a boneyard when we asked to do the load in; the only cats there were staff as they were having a staff meeting (it was printed very clearly on a flyer on the front door). and we did the load in only after it was supposedly cool to do so and after the staff meeting was finished. what's up?, screwed up your plans of world domination? we always go out of our way to try and be cool and square w/ everyone we come in contact with; it doesn't pay to be an asshole. anyways, I won't waste anymore time or space writing about these jive asses. draw your own conclusions.
we loaded our stuff in the boat and said our goodbye's to chris and mel (bob had evidently gone golfing before our awakening). I was sad about leaving them; they're almost like familia to me. much love to chris and mel for being so cool to us and to bob for opening up his pad to us once again. I hope I'll see ya soon.
the trip to pittsburgh was about five to six hours and I was conked almost the entire way; last nite's gig had taken a lot out of me both physically and mentally and I hadn't gotten too much sueno, so my body finally said uh-uh. I felt much better when I awoke; we were still about 30 miles out of pittsburgh and I read my book on zen on the way in. we passed thru town and I noticed a couple of croatian pads; one was called "javor", what a trip! we made a little blowby and watt had to bring the boat around- we passed thru the parking lot of Heinz of all places (the company where I worked for twenty years) and right next to it Del monte! mindblow! watt took some snaps and we continued on to the pad we were playing at (the 31st street pub), which was close by. we went in and the boss of the pad, joel, let us in and we did the load in and set up the tools on stage. we were real early so we had plenty of time to blow before the knobsman showed up. I went barside to chimp (I had two days to do) and me and rollie ordered up some chow from a pad down the street. joel kept the iron city and beam' flowing and I finished up the whole shebang in about two hours. the knobsman, boz showed up and we did the check', the stage was a box basically and the organ was pumping real loud (the leslie really cranks in a small space), and the monitors sounded like a potential problem but boz was a down cat and knew his tools so I figured it would be solved by the time we got up there. I went back to the band room; there was a shower there and I needed to hose off desperately. I took a long one and let the hot water beat the ache out of my bones. rollie came in just as i was toweling off and he opted to take one too. while rollie was hosing off I read some of the graffiti in the pad; the most interesting was from a cat who had evidently spent quite a few days in the band room and had wrote quite an extensive diary on the wall documenting the experience. it was pretty trippy to say the least. rollie toweled off while I got the teapot going, then we both went back into the club to check out the opening band, comrade. I watched em' for a few tunes til' they stared the last one then I went to go start duty. great band and very intense. I went back and got the tea going and roused the chief then went to help rollie set up the machines. we went back stage to wait for watt and I did some tai-chi for warm-ups; this helps me alot and I'm way into it. watt soon ambled in and we ripped into the piece; the organ was wailing on the first three songs and it took me awhile before I could get it at a reasonable level. we played the set well and the peeps showed us much love. the encore set was a steamroll and once again everyone dug on it. I was happy, but totally drained. we packed up the gear and got it into the boat w/ the gracious help of nathan, jason, and dave (who had also offered up their pad for us to crash at). we followed the boys back to their pad and quickly settled in; I made some tea for me and watt and we burned a few nugs and rapped. the boys hit the sack and me and rollie read for awhile until the sandman started knocking. we let him in and were in suenoville right quick. spokoinoy nochi musikanti....
pop at eight and half bells, "pluckin', pedalin' and paddlin'" ring on and on in my head. it was like my skin was acting it out in my dream I just woke from. weird to have my own song going in my head but weirder was to have my skin bulging and pulsing to the beats and melody - bigger bumps for lows and pointier ones for highs. another trippy thing was where I was: strapped into a gurney, like I had to be restrained in a psych ward but I wasn't feeling insane, I was rather calm and curious to see what this was all about. the tune was ringing in my head (mostly the chorus part though) like bells peeling, as if in a round so all these reiterations of it were layering up into a thick wave. my body was a like a color organ but w/a tactile interpretation rather than one w/lights (the bumps dancing on my skin. I was lying there naked - even the straps on me were see-though plastic and that's the only thing that kind of made me nervous... that is, until I was wheeled into this lecture hall and asked by this smarmy voice - I say "smarmy" cuz it was full of contempt for me and made me feel small - this voice (coming from all sides of me, I couldn't see from who) demanded I account for my life and almost instinctually I reacted w/reciting the verses to this song - the choruses now playing out silently on my skin simultaneously. my voice was mostly trapped in my throat, I was feeling very insecure and demands were put on me constantly to repeat myself and annunciate better. I eventually got them all out and then I was told to explain what I meant - it even went further than that, assuming other bizarre theories to what was at the root of my spiel, something deceitful and corrupt. the "hall" or whatever I was in seemed like an amphitheater w/me in my gurney at the bottom on a small stage, bright lights in my eyes to keep me from seeing who was in the seats or where that fucking voice was coming from. the way I kept from breaking down (I wanted to cry much but felt my pop's hand on my shoulder each time I was going to burst into sobs, I knew was my pop's hand cuz of the way it felt and the way he gripped me was if to tell me to keep it together). I finally found relief by drowning out that asshole w/the demands w/the choruses of the song - like holding a piss by repeating something over and over to yourself so you could get your mind off of it. man, my brain felt really wore out from this, a sensation like if my mind was a washcloth balled-up in a bunch to make tons of little creases, each one tiring me out a bit at a time. fucking made me pop w/my eyes crossed! I hose off and then get into an outfit for my next three gigs, a blue flannel I have yet to wear on the is tour and some fresh levis/skivvies/socks. forget to shave though - I'll do that at the club. I can't find any coff and bob's already bailed - he said he was going to golf (that was trippy for me to hear, didn't know he did) so I boil water for tea. the england kind they use for breakfast is pretty intense as far as putting a boot on the caffeine jones so ok, I go for that. damn, can't the kettle top off so I pour bottle water bob's got (it's the kind w/bubbles even!) down the spout. this takes a little doing cuz it's been 'pert-near melted off! I get it together though and my guys start to come around, as do chris and mel (they konked here too). I eat some of the turkey breast slices w/some mustard while pete gets his organ he got from hammond (the damaged returned one he got by mistake) ready for chris to mail it back to the factory. chris has been such a help to us, he always has - a true brother. he gives me a sack of more of the red savina habaneros he grew, righteous. we do our byes/thanks/hugs w/him and mel and then shove off. adios amigos.
I take us on a route a little different than the one bob usually directs me too. I go east straight for I-94 and then take that south to I-75 through detroit's downtown. we see something scary, there's two kids on the median divide, waiting to get across the freeway (obviously, they've made half the way) - this is early morning full-on traff and why are these guys doing this? just a little way down is an overpass, I don't get it. all three of us in the boat at the same time express our fear for them... damn, I sure hope they made it. they had backpacks on, like the kind for school and appeared about twelve or something. crazy. we go south into toledo. last night I got a aquamarine stone from gig-goer carmelle who said to put it in the boat for getting rid of fear and anxiety and I had put it around my neck so as not to lose it but asked pete to get where it belongs for me, please. I'm happy to find it hanging on the boat's mirror along w/other tour totems we got there. vibes like this comfort the crazy man onboard w/the bass, thank you. anyway, there's lots of construction on I-280, the road to actually do a bypass for the ohio turnpike and a sign says to keep right so I do but somehow we get put right in downtown toledo - aaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrgggghhhhh! construction has many onramps to rectify the fuck-up closed and I put raul into a panic to get the map stuff going - I take us along the maumee river to keep some bearings and by total luck, after passing yet another closed on ramp and then looping back for a u-ee, an onramp's open this way and we're back on course. idiot's luck, totally. ok now, third time this tour on the ohio "turdpipe" - actually it's a pretty good road w/lots of it re-paved but I just like fucking w/words sometimes. what I don't like about it is what I don't like about all the turdpipes, limited access (I know I've talked about this before). anyway, we're east on it, across ohio once again - damn, I miss getting a shot of a road we pass under that's got too wild of a name: "fangboner" - I'm wondering how that's pronounced and even more thinking about what hell the cat who had to go to school w/that name got. damn. raul fixes up some herring fish bits w/the red savina habaneros and feeds it to me as we pass what's pretty familiar farmland to us now. gray skies but the rain's holding off. the "turdpipe" goes to just I-90 now (it's both I-80 and I-90 up to this point but the I-80 part goes to cleveland) and it's here where I'm glad I use both hands mostly to drive and am alert to look way down the road (I'm especially now doing this to avoid potholes for our shock-absorber weakness) cuz this semi pulling a fully-loaded car carrier blows a tire and 'pert-near the entire tread/belt comes flying off. it's in the lane starboard to us but it's a hairy scene. the trucker keeps control of his rig but it was swerving and what a blow to catch that hunk of a tire... another reason I don't "draft" the guy in front of me like I was a nascar driver (why the fuck to people do that if it's not a race and you're just trying to travel on the highway and stay alive?), instead leaving a generous cushion of space between me and the next vehicle. whew, that was a humbler, big time. a few minutes later though we do catch a tiny rock that puts a small crack in the windsheild, fuck. this is the fourth windshield I've had for the boat, guess it's inevitable. it sure would be nice if ALL trucks would tarp their loads. shit falling off and nailing you has been a constant worry I have on the road. I'm always asking my guys what's holding what on when we something looking hairy. I dearly do think the "gravity method" is over-rated. the "turdpipe" now turns to I-76, right before pennsylvania - the colors are really intense here on in to pittsburgh, whoa. into pennsy and the sign says the pennsylvania "turdpipe" is the u.s' "first superhighway" - damn. right before going south on I-79, we see a sign for "old economy village - state historical site" and I wonder what that's about... dig the name, hmm... exit 28 on I-76, one day I gotta check that out. leaves pouring their colors on us, we take the last freeway (I-279) into pittsbrugh and go to the east part, first passing by a croatian hall and then the heinz plant (or was it the other way around?). we gotta stop here a sec to take some shots (I got in the wrong lane anyway and el hombre was right behind) cuz pete knows lots about this company - both from his pop and the cat food company he spent many years w/on terminal island (trippy coincidence about that dream, huh?!!). back on pa-28, we cross the 31st street bridge (damn, is this beat! the funny thing is a sign for no pedestrians... I guess cement trucks are ok though!) and here's the gig, maybe my fourth time here at the 31st street pub in the strip district.
I bring the boat around and put her aft hatch right at the load-in door (full drive for watt, pete was up late last night - I can tell by his konkness). I like the pad's owner joel much, cool people. he has some sad news though. jeff, the guy who did my sound the times I played here just died having a heart attack while he was mowing the lawn. damn, only fortyfive. this gig's for him tonight. we load in diary and then have some good laughs reading the shit that's been written on the walls in the room a few doors down from the load-in one. band people can been creative w/this, though some more than others. these walls are better than most the ones we've been graced w/viewing. I think people have konked here and maybe they have more time cuz one cat had shit like what we chimp in these tour diaries, damn. it inspires me to chimp up yesterday so I do that in the boat 'till I hear some pounding on the hatch - it's johnny banana! I did many gigs for him w/the minutemen and fIREHOSE at the electric banana but since he's turned it into a restaurant. he wanted me to come by and chow - damn, I spaced and apologize. he says he'll be back tonight w/his wife judy - I love them both. we do a soundcheck w/soundman boz (this pad has a new and improved soundsystem) and I meet the guys in the opening band, a local one called comrade. nice folks, especially the drummer who offers us after-soundcheck-cigarettes - never had that before... grazie. I then go to the boat to konk - no dinner chow tonight but so what, sometimes I don't feel like it.
I konk right up to gig time and pete brings me some hot tea - HOT tea, there's actually two cups cuz the first one melted up into like half its depth! I'm sorry I missed comrade, oh well - I think I heard there mom's talking about seeing them - sometimes my ma comes and sees me play - not too much but sometimes. on the way in, I see richard reilly who once lived in pedro but now writes for the paper here in pittsburgh. we start the piece and holy cow is the organ fucking loud - it's blowing my ears right out! plow on though, it's the only course, hopefuly boz will get it together (and so will pete, he's gotta be reading the stage we're on, right? to help him, I'm gesturing like a windmill!). the way the stage is, it's like we're in a little box w/side removed (that's where the people see us). it takes like until "tied a reed..." before the sound gets where I can start to recognize things, whoa. I'm only hoping it's not like this where the folks are... things can be so different on stage though and remember, we're the ones who get in for free so... we move through the piece and my guys are doing good, even my voice is coming back some - finally. I think we did pretty good and am happy w/my guys. we're called back and I give a little longer spiel than usual, not banter put an "inspirational talk" of sorts cuz I don't know, I just feel it in me to say what I do - maybe cuz of jeff's passing, maybe cuz of seeing johnny banana again and thinking about the old days - I don't know. I even feel it in me to do the roky song (which ends the encore), first time since montreal. I sling and talk w/lots of nice cats, lots of good words from them (thank you), one guy tells me about a gig he did w/fIREHOSE in anaheim many years ago and he later rode is bicycle twentysix miles to george hurley's house to get some drum tips. speaking of which, I got an email before tour inviting us to konk at a pad where I could pedal in the morning so I say something about that on the mic but no one answers that call. there's three guys I met right after soundcheck though who invite us and I take them up on it, thank you. when the slingin' is done, I talk w/johnny and judy a bit, catch up some and take a picture w/them. feels good to be w/old pittsburgh friends again. mark whitehead, who's seen me three times now this tour, says he's coming to dc tomorrow to film the piece w/three cameras, whoa, much respect to mark. I thank joel too for having us aboard. joel, the big biker man says, "always a pleasure, mike." it's a more than a pleasure to have nice folks to work w/through the years - means much to me.
the three cats who invited us for konkage: dave, jason and nathan help us load up and we follow them east along the alleghany river some to a town nearby called sharpsburg. I park the boat close up on their pad, near the door and we make camp in their living room, some mota given to raul getting fixed by him and pete brewing tea. I don't think it's easy for them to konk right away w/things all up still from playing but it's not a hard thing at all for me cuz I get tuckered hard. us and our hosts talk about movies some - I don't know a lot but I do like "living in oblivion" and "being john malkovich" cuz they point out some funny things about the jive shit we all find ourselves in - maybe just human nature really, only specified to a certain racket... movies for the former and puppeteering for the latter. what a metpahor, puppets. w/that thought, I konk.
friday, october 22, 2004 - washington dc
Drive from pittsburg was pretty smooth until about an hour out of town, the road just plugged all the sudden, turns out there was a really bad accident. From the looks of it, hugh pieces of sheet metal had flew off a truck, sailed all the way across the divider, and smashed into a car, it gave me the chills bad, i think it's one of the worst accidents i've ever seen, car was smashed to half it's size, and you could tell they had to use the jaws to get the person out, i couldn't see someone surviving something like that, with an air bag... maybe, it just sucked all the way around. Navigating through this city has potential to be a total nightmare, i've been to d.c. once before, we got seperated from the folks we were following, and spent hours driving in circles around the capital, and i defiently didn't want a repeat of that, one of two rad things that happened that day, was stopping at some random stop sign, looking to my right, and waveing hi to ian while he's eating lunch, the other was the smithsonian, how's that for priorities,. This time it wasn't bad at all, seems like in the small towns i tend to get us lost in no time, but somehow i manage to direct us through d.c. with out to much hassle, go figure. Here's a tip if you're ever driving through d.c., stay off the state streets, they run at a parallel, and are usually one way, if you stay on the number and letter streets, you'll be able to manuver, and make your lefts and rights a lot easier.
Right as we pull up to the club, one of the bosses, dante comes walking across the street, perfect timeing, he lets us know we can park in back, we're loaded out in no time. Dante used to play the drums in a couple of d.c. hard core bands, iron cross and grey matter... real nice man. After we're all loaded in, i set out to see d.c., it's three thirty, so that gives me awhile to roam, i need to find a costume, and get some meds for my back part, shit is killing me, sometimes i feel like i'm ten, other times i feel one hundred and ten. This part of d.c. sorta reminds me of oakland, in the way that you can tell it used to be hood, and sure enough right down the block it is, but it's starting to be gentrified with yuppies, and their bullshit, i guess that's the plauge of being next to a collage town, eventually it starts to spread, don't get me completely wrong though, i thought it was a beautiful place, you can just tell something shadey is on, when you see bistros opening up next door to the pawn shop. So i'm walkin' around snappin' photos, something you probably gotta be careful of in d.c. these days, and it's been atleast two hours, and i check my watch out, cool it's only three thirty, i still got a few hours... wait what the fuck, it was three thirty two flippin' hours ago, shit, my watch broke, and i'm probably late... atleast i found something for halloween. So i double time it back to the club, turns out i'm still early, so i pass the next hour playing dracula pinball, listening to herbie hancocks headhunters on the juke... good songs for a juke box... fifteen minute tunes.
Last time the boys where here they played the small room, tonight we get the big stage, and if you know me at all, you know i'd much rather play the small room, so would the rest of the guys, but whatever. The people who run this ship are real sweet, i've already met brian duss, a.k.a sneaky j, he's going beyond the call of duty to make sure we feel at home... thanks sneaky j. Also the sound guy dennis he's a bad ass, made sound check so easy, and he was the first sound guy who said i was doing his job by striking the gear, go figure, both these dudes where champs. The black cat also had a kick ass vegan kitchen connected to it... food for thought, i had my first falafel of tour,mmmmmmm, tihini. After chow, i double fist, chase down a cup of black coffee with a beer, yeah, i know, stimulant and a depressant, whatever, does me just fine. Tonight we're playing with the comas, from brooklyn, via chapel hill. nc, and a local group called nuclear. I'm down stairs doing the pinball rock, and i can hear this total whiskey drinking, shit kicking rock and roll, so i head uptop to check it out, holy fuck, it's nuclear, this shit's coming outta those long haired high school kids i just met a minute ago, dudes singin' about baby baby baby don't do me like that, and guy's like fifteen, bad ass, and their guitar player, eddie van halen protoge, god, kid must practice like twenty three hours a day. Earlier someone had mentioned them winning a battle of the bands, and they were supposed to fly to new york to play a show, and they wouldn't let em' in cuz they were too young... suck. I also thought the comas had it going on, but i couldn't get over the fact that the guy had a shirt that said, i hate seagulls, now how the fuck you gonna hate a bird, does he wear it to pick up on girls who also hate seagulls, must be a statement i totally misunderstood, our, maybe it's just a t shirt... whatever, but i know i wouldn't go around wearing a shirt that said i hate turtles, and no i don't hate turtles.
While the comas are playin' i go down stairs to the dressing room to grab a few waters for the stage, and as i'm walking out, ian makaye walks in, holy shit, how rad is that, some one who's a total positive influence on me come's in to introduce himself, of course no introduction is necassary, besides the sst guys, early d.c. hard core helped shaped the way i view certain things, and hell, to help me get to where i am today. Such a sweet man, of course we instantly start talking about tour, he tells me that amy and him, are about to go tour europe as the evens, no clubs, gallaries, cafes, said he wanted to get rid of the whole idea of a p.a., just throw rock clubs out the window, i suggested that when they do the states they should come play pedro, i could think of a few perfect places they could play, said he'd like to play 673, no flippin' way, thanks for the invitation he said, Ya know, i've been really lucky in that i get to meet, and with mike, even work with a lot of the people i've looked up to as a kid, and even as an adult, isn't life a trip sometimes. Alright, our turn, i'm totally nerveous, my heart's about to pop outta my chest, amy reassures me, c'mon, don't be scared, you do this everynight, so you know you can do it, yeah i know, but i still get real nerveous. It's good, cuz i think with the nerveousness comes the fun, but man it wears on my fingernails. I thought it was a pretty good gig, so did pete, but mike, said he had a rough one, maybe he was nerveous too. Mark whitehead from pittsburg, brought some guys along with him, and did a three camera shot, dude was up front with a camera on my face the whole time, at first it was kinda weird, some guy filming just me, but after a few songs, i got used to it. Sound was fuckin' boomin', the kit was boucing just when i would hit the kick drum, i swear there were speakers under me, i could feel em' when i played, it was almost to much, during sound check, the level of the kick was so loud that it would throw me off beat. All in all, good show, met tons of nice folks after the gig, even met a dude from pedro. After the gear is loaded up, we hit the road enroute to the dischord house, for me just sleeping there is an event in it self, so much has happened there. The directions ian gave us were funny, he made it sound like we knew exactly where to go, like we were locals, right at the second road, left at the big oak, ya know, the fuckin' roads didn't even have signs, and if they did, like the bridge we had to go over to get to virginia, i think it was called the washington, but you wouldn't know it by driving on it, cuz it shared like four other names, and none of were the one we needed, so we thought we were so lost. It's sorta funny when your lost two blocks from what your looking for, we lucked out with that though. The mail room in itself was so awesome, punk history, all the first pressings of all the early dischord stuff, first minor threat e.p, printed in five diffrent colors, all the diffrent flex your head covers, so much stuff, very cool. Pete and i shared a bed in the back of the house, sleep came on real quick... good too, cuz we gotta split early so we can make it to jersey to play an afternoon radio show... good night.
popped at the boys pad(w/ assistance from the watt of course) and did a real quick face wash in the head, rolled up the bag and we were out..much respect to dave, jason and nathan fro having us. we had a decent hellride to DC. and I conked a good way of the trip but I also read quite a bit of my zen book; it's way fascinating and right now I'm reading a chapter that deals with the "zazen" (sitting zen) and it discusses breathing techniques and posture to achieve what they call "samadhi", which is in essence a state of meditation that transcends normal consciousness; that is, you tune out bad shit and replace it w/ positive. I'm way into this as I'm fascinated by the state of the human mind and its effect on the physical and anything that would help me better understand myself can't hurt. might even learn something huh?
I wake up and I hear rollie and watt discussing the best way to navigate into the city; chaos as always but something rollie must go thru (I'm not immune to this either). we pull up in front of the black cat (the pad we're playing) and I go knock on the front door to see if anybody's home. a young lady named amanda opens the hatch and says that she'll open the back door for us; just then, dante, one of the bosses appears and says he'll open the gate so we can load in. we drive around to the back and do the load out; we stick everything in the freight elevator as the soundman won't be coming for a few hours. having done this I take a short walk w/ rollie to a pad down the street that I knew from last tour that has very kind greek chow. rollie takes off down the street to take care of some biz while i sit and chow. I wait for him to come back but he doesn't show and I decide to do a little solo hoof. I walk about five blocks up and every block there's these signs describing the history of the neighborhood; it used to be a very affluent black neighborhood during the 20's and 30's (duke ellington was a resident). I looked at all the buildings and wondered what it may have been like back then. It all made me feel a little melancholy. I walked up further and found a coffee pad; bought a large capuccino and read the local rag, then headed back to the club to see what was up. I went in and found rollie in the dressing room and we headed upstairs to do the check'. we set up the tools and knobsman dennis miked us up and we did the run thru. everything sounded really cool , so we broke things down and I went down to the band room to chimp some. I also wanted to check my email so arnold, one of the bosses, let me into the office and I went thru all stuff. much respect arnold. we ordered up some chow and I continued the chimp for awhile then went to go take a nice hose off in the shower. feeling much better, I went back down to continue the chimp. chris grier, a really nice cat showed up and we rapped for a time. chris is a real nice cat and is into building amps like me. very nice man. rollie calls me up to check out the first opening band, the nuculars; these cats are sixteen and I am blown away by their stage presence (they play like seasoned pros), and it was very inspiring to me. I walk back out in the hallway and who do I see walking up the stairs but Ian Mackaye (who we had stayed w/ last tour). It was good to see him and I was glad he had come to see us again. he introduced me to his friend amy who plays w/ him in his new project, the evens (they're gonna tour soon) Ian is very cool peeps. we rapped for awhile, then I went to go wake the chief and bring him the tea. I tell him that Ian showed up and I go to the back of the boat to get the merch box. it's not there! fuck! I ask watt if he has seen it- nope. damn!, we had probably donated it back in pittsburgh; we would have to call up boss joel and find out what's up. I scrounged up another box to throw the merch in and went back upstairs to help rollie set up the tools. having done this we went to the back of the stage to wait for watt. he soon showed up w/ Ian in tow, plugged in the baby bass and we were off once again on our musical adventure. we played strong but I could tell something was bothering watt from the beginning; I was set up a little farther from him than usual so I think this added to his anxiety, but we soldiered on thru and played a great set. I was in a very good mood and I was way into it. we came back up for the encore and played w/ equal intensity and the people showered us w/ much love. I went downstairs to get directions from Ian to his pad and he said we sounded incredible. it made me feel really good.
I went upstairs and talked to the peeps for awhile; kyle from west virginia was there as well as aron from last year who showed me some snaps of his beautiful baby daughter. last tour she hadn't even been born yet. what a trip! time flies , yes it does.
me and rollie packed up the gear while watt slung the merch', then loaded everything into the freight elevator and down into the boat. watt settled w/ the boss and we were off towards ian's; I had the directions so I was deemed the navigatore. I directed the chief according to ian's directs but the chief was getting a little nervous and we pulled over to the side to open up the ti book and check the map. we started looking for street names and discovered that we were only about a few blocks from ian's pad. cool. we pulled into the driveway, got our stuff out and settled into the pad. Ian and amy had set us up really nice and there were little notes all over the pad. (such sweet people). I made some tea and called lil the kill. we rapped for awhile but watt was yelling for me and rollie to go to sleep as we had to get going early in the morning. I ended the convo w/ lil, slipped into the bag, and I was out right quick. laku noc sviraci...
pop at seven bells to wonder a bit about this dream, a two-parter. first, it seemed I had discovered huge pieces of fruit embedded into the top of my skull. it was like a big orange or mango near my temple and hairline, flush w/the rest of my head but I could feel the texture of its skin in contrast w/my own. what was really weird was that I was able to "pluck" in from head and then reach into where it was (sort of like and eye socket), the skin in this pit or whatever the same as on the rest of me. each time I'd pluck out a piece of fruit, I'd examine the shape of the indentation it'd make - feeling all around (there was no mirror for me to look) and then taking my hand away to think about it. as I would think, yet another fruit would appear - always a different one - and I'd go through the whole routine again. I could taste each fruit in my mouth but never did chow any ever and I could smell them too. what amazed me most was the flushness the fruit would have w/the rest of my head and then the resulting shape that seemed "impressed" into me to make it so. I'd feel every nook of the indention once the I'd plucked out the fruit (which then seemed to float right out from my hand!). there actually was a "segue" part that got me into the next part - someone in my life seemed all flustered and having to run all about, being frustrated at getting to or being somewhere or other. I felt bad seeing this but not being able to help... then this second dream came, I was driving in a volkswagon beetle (I had three of them, my first three cars - I also had a vw squareback and a bus - all these models from the 60s), I was like the light blue one I had and as a passenger, I had this cat named josh w/me. now josh was a helperman for porno for pyros when I met him, he's from venice (the calit one) and I dug him much. I still see him, he likes to come to gigs when I'm playing w/peter and perk (from p.f.p.) in hellride and does the stooges "I got a right" w/us. he's the best, a dear cat, his nickname was "bagel" w/the crew. anyway, he's in the vw w/me and I'm giving him a ride and I start to wonder how far I got to go so I pull the car over and get out to look (we're at the summit of a huge highness and I can look way down the road from here). just then, josh moves over to the driver seat and takes off, leaving me at the side of the road. man, he's the sweetest guy, I can't even imagine him doing that in real life but he did this in the dream and I was kind of freaked out cuz I had to do a gig that night and now didn't know how I was going to make it there on time, aahh! I was trying my hardest to figure what this was about, the contrariness of it all... insane. I write a thank you letter to our hosts, gather my guys and board the boat - aaaahhhh! the starboard side window is half-down... fucking idiot watt (I was the last driver)!!! to top it off, the club (a lock I keep on the steering wheel when parked) was on but not locked!!! double dumbfuck watt!!! I can't believe my stupidness - many blessings for us not having everything donated. I tell my guys so they can realize how much untogether I can be, not that that's like any kind of excuse or anything. I am shamed but in a weird way, all of us can have a big laugh. maybe cuz of a sense of relief that there was no donate. I will try and learn from this.
we had east along the allegheny on pa-28 and damn if I don't blow by the penn turnpike though I can't deny these people who put the offramp here had only "exit 11" there and the turnpike sign a mile before. luckily, there's a way to loop back and correct the fuckup, partly cuz I did this a bunch of tours ago and ended up way northeast of where we had to be - it all just came to me at the instant of the blow-by. east on the penn turnpike now... gray weather but still pretty - around here was where "the deer hunter" was filmed. through the allegheny tunnel and then a few miles before we're to turn south on I-70 we hit a giant plug and are stopped up for like an hour. it's an accident and when we pass the scene (though I don't dig being a lookie-lou at these things so I don't slow down to gawk but the plug's making things all crawl), it appears maybe a truck on the other side going the other way lost a roll of sheet metal from its flatbed trailer and it came across and hit a car on our side - it's way pounded to bits, horrible. I'm always having the fear of shit flying off of vehicles - wrote about it yesterday. man. we cross into maryland and stop for gas - raul gets me a tuna from the subway but it's some kind of tour bus oasis and it takes him like forty minutes! it's ok, one reason we left early besides trying to beat the traffic we know dc can have. I spike the sandwich w/chris' red savina habaneros - whoa! we pass under appalachian pass - man, that's a tour route! into dc land and "inside the beltway" - raul does good w/the navigating 'till we hit one of those state streets and accidently get on that (they're at thirtythree degree angles - the letter and number ones are on the right-angle grid... it's all masonic, you know) but after some in-the-wrong-direction, we get it together and improvise a bravo to get us to the black cat, where we're playing tonight. just so happens that dante (the boss here, not the italian poet!) is showing up at the same time so we can put the boat in the back where it can be safe. great to see dante again. there's a man named brian here to run the stage and he's putting together a compilation to help hurt kids in gaza and those parts. I tell him sure, I'll get something together for him when tour's done. we do a soundcheck w/soundman dennis and then I meet the two opening bands, locals called nuklear who are quite young (dante tells me they actually won little steven's underground garage battle-of-the-bands contest but were denied cuz one member was only sixteen - man, that's lame) and then the comas, who are from brooklyn but have cats from chapel hill, nc - one of them actually live w/ed fROMOHIO for two years! that's a trip... always love hearing about edward (by the way, he's playing guitar w/southern culture on the skids now after doing some years w/him as a roadie). I then go to the boat to konk.
man, it's a long deep konk and I'm surprised to see someone w/pete when he gets me for the gig - it's chris grier, a cat who's been threatening to write me a bio for many years now. actually, I solicited him about this ever since he wrote an article on me in the paper from the town I was born in (portsmouth, va) and I dug they way he did that and thought maybe he could help me out that way if he had the time. "no wine before its time" I remind myself. I go to get my bass in the dressing room and ian mackaye there to say hi before we go on. I feel weird about my hair and tell him about the color I have in it. we both laugh - time to start the piece though... I don't know, something about the sound on the stage makes me feel isolated and not w/my guys so much. I'm kind of far from pete too, the way we got raul set up and that bums me out. at the heart of it though is a lack of confidence thing I get every so many gigs, aahh. I fucking hate this - I can't blame it really on the sound, or our placement, the stage, the lights... what I ate, whatever the fuck. I'm just laming out some. I don't let all the way fall apart and it's not as bad as montreal or even cleveland heights (both not the best efforts from watt but montreal definitely the worst performance this tour - yet again I apologize to the folks of that town and promise to try harder for next time) but it's putting some lousy taste in my mouth. shit, I wanted to do good for ian, for dante, for everyone. this is echoing some spiel already chimped (I know) but feel compelled to once again put it down. I admit tonight I'm surprised to get and encore - although pete and raul did pretty good... "damn watt, get it together!" I keep thinking to myself. I even changed the battery in my bass! (now I'm really getting ridiculous) we do the encores (no roky this time though) and then I sling, much generosity I feel for the slack I feel cut in my behalf. there's a cat here from pedro, here for work - this is a guy who found me on the talkbass.com forum and invited me to see the movie that recently came out on the funk brothers (the cats who were musicians behind the motown recordings) at his pad and damn if it didn't turn out to be on the former street d. boon lived on! he had recently come to pedro and the streets have been renamed and track homes built there (he lived in one) but it blew my mind for this to have happened to me. I was really happy to tell him that then. it was neat seeing a film that told some about james jamerson cuz that cat had immense influence (and still does) on my way w/bass. there's aaron w/a shot of his little girl kira for the boat, thank you! I feel better just talking w/people and not having yet to deal w/the internal recriminations I know I'll have for myself later. kyle bowels, the inter-gender champion wrestler from richmond is here - wow, this brings me much joy - love him much. gotta play richmond again... hell, gotta play virginia again! next tour. there's a lot good people giving me niceness, thank you all so much. you know I'm trying harder to rally back tomorrow for sure. same for when I play this town next tour. whoa, two of the cats w/stayed w/last night are here too, much respect. same for mark whitehead and his two buddies that filmed the piece - their laptop that was doing the sound crashed and what a "performance" to capture (for watt anyway) but that sure is nice of them to put such energy out for us. must be mark's third take this tour - I bow deeply your way, brother.
in the office, some talk w/bernie (he cut his hair!) and dante about "star trek" - they're both huge fans. I admit I only like the original series but it's always what I use on my message machine (recordings from the tv). dante's got a new little one (a year old) and he's getting the program going w/the trek familiarization! we load up the boat and say our byes and thank yous. ian's letting us konk at the discord house in arlington - much respect. we roll south out of town - ok, we discovered another "donate" - the slingables are somewhere, maybe the last gig in pittsbrugh. aaarrrgggghhhh, these things happen and I ain't pissed - there wasn't as much in the box anyway and what the fuck, right? so much worse can happen on tour... like getting lost at three in the morning! we kind of think we do, but miraculously (it would seem) we're at where we supposed to be and there's the pad. whoa. out on the couch in the front room, I holler to my guys to konk cuz we got early popping to do cuz of a radio thing in new jersey tomorrow. I think raul made me tea but sueno took me before I even at the chance to down it.
saturday, october 23, 2004 - brooklyn, ny
Before doing the south paw gig in brooklyn tonight, we're gonna go play wfmu, in jersey city. Three songs from the album, and a cover tune. This station is hugh, four floors. We loaded the gear out on to the street, which wasn't to much, i only had to bring a stand, and some cymbals, they had a new kit already there, donated by clem burke, sounded nice. usually i'm not the best at radio, it's such a forgien atmosphere, i've done it a bunch of times, but compared to the amount of gigs i've played, it dosn't compare, it's for sure not something you can get use to, you gotta play pretty quite, so you can get a decent mix, and usually it's difficult to hear any thing but yourself. This was definantly a good expierience with the radio, even had some folks filming for a documentarry about the station. I can't remember the name of the show, but the d.j that had us on was named terry, sweet lady, had a good spread for us too, a bunch of diffrent kinds of bagels, and tons of stuff to put in between em'. I macked two big bagle sandwiches... so good. Traffic here is nightmarish, i don't really understand why people would make the choice to drive if they lived in new york city, just dosen't make sense, and the holland tunnel, didn't they think of advancement, or increased population, shoving all these cars in a two lane tunnel, shitty thinking. once your through the tunnel, it's a whole new set of problems, and we took a wrong turn, took about forty minutes to flip it around, and set our selves straight, and once over the bridge in brooklyn, it's a straight shot to the south paw. When we get there, ofcourse there's zero parking. Mike convinced a lady parked in front of the paw to take a spot across the street, she did like a twenty point parrallel park, she still couldn't make it, she had mike do it for her, the gas was super sensitive, and mikes jerking around, got friendly with the car in front, and she starts knockin' on the hood, kinda freaking out, shit was hilarious. We were kinda late, but still had time for a sound check, after sound check, i step out for a walk, and some coffee. Damn, brooklyn is pretty big, i walked down fifth ave. for what seemed like miles, then thought i'd better turn around, i'm gonna have to be back sooner than later, plus matt army minght show soon. I'm kinda diggin' on the clubs with showers thing, usually when i'm on tour, we play the house we're staying, or we play near by, but on this tour, we're out pretty early, and we go straight to the club, so sometimes it's the only way. Today it comes in handy, cuz i'm stinkin' it up proper like. So after delousing, i find a phone so i can get matts number, shit, i thought i was the only one at home that didn't answer the phone, who knows maybe no ones home, it is saturday night, but unless my roomates changed in the past month, going out on a saturday to us is hangin' in the back by the fire pit. Well it dosn't matter anyway, two thirds of the eergs just showed up, a really good band from new jersey, met them when killer dreamer played brooklyn last year, and they where just in pedro two months ago. Where's your bass player eergs, mikey said something about explosive diarrhea... i dropped the subject. I notice someone checking out the van, dude turns around, and it's my friend yens from pedro, totally flippin' random, he's on tour, and laid over in brooklyn for a minute. He's there to see the opening band, he didn't even know i was in town... it's a wacky world. I have a good feelin' about this one.
Show time, i've been outside most the night, so i'm totally suprised when i walk in the club, place is packed, but for some reason this fact doesn't make me nerveous, it just makes me more excited. Good fuckin' gig, energy was there, really positive crowd, jeff and mikey errg made me so happy, dancin' and singin' along, mikey was even doin' the drum parts along with me, everyone just seemed to be in a great mood, this one was for sure one of my faves of the tour. So many nice folks come to watt shows, very diverse, but i've noticed they all seem to be very open minded, besides playing the show, my favorite thing is meeting new people, and talking with the fans after the show, i've meet alot of folks this past month, shit it's been hard to even remember everybody, it's a definite mind exercise.
After we get all loaded up, i watch the boat drive off, watts going back to the city, and i'm gonna stay in brooklyn with matt army and the errgs, hung out way past the wee hour, but i had to, it's not everyday i'm on the other side of the continent. I woke feelin' pretty beat, only got a couple hours sleep. Woke matt as soon as i got up, he promised we'd go peddlin' in the mourning. It was awesome, i've never gotten to bike around brooklyn before, we went all around park slope, and through a park that was bigger than central, and that's big, i remember, killer dreamer skated through it last halloween... damn i wish i can remember the name of that park, anyways the bike ride ruled, after that we held down a random corner, and had a couple ice teas... thanks matt, perfect way to start a day... pizza and bikes.
popped at ian's pad, did a quick face wash to get myself going, rolled up the bag and we were out. we had to be in jersey by 1:30-2:00 to do a live broadcaston WFMU; we were playing one song each from each section of the piece plus the dylan tune and we had to get going to make it thru traffic. much love to Ian and amy for making our short stay a pleasant one, maybe we would get a chance to hang out more next tour. and good luck and safe seas on your own upcoming tour.
I conked for awhile on the bench seat and we made a pit stop in maryland. I went into the mini-store to get some green tea, then went back to the boat to wait for the chief. my back teeth were floating and I didn't really feel like doing the piss-bottle rock while we were still in close proximity to a regular head so I decide to exit the boat and take care of business while the chief is still waiting in the store. right as I'm getting out of the boat I see a cat beat me to it; he's wearing a black beret tilted off to the side and he looks strangely familiar (and I almost never forget a face). I'm waiting and waiting but this cat still doesn't materialize. damn! I had to go but I didn't want to keep the boss waiting as I knew we were tight on time. I go back to the boat and tell him I'm still waiting for this cat to come out. he nods in agreement and I finally see the dude coming out. I get a close look at his face and damned if it isn't leo nocintelli, the former guitarist of the meters! a few years ago I was playing in a JGB cover band, and we had opened up for him at an LA show. what a trip!(and now he was causing me bladder discomfort). I was sure it was him because I recognized another cat that was in his band and his driver had on a funky meters' t-shirt (I'd also read in a DC music rag that he was doing a show in baltimore) I didn't go up to talk to him cause' I would've felt stupid, but I reflected on how trippy it is the way you cross paths w/ folks throughout your life. even if you don't know them too well.
we got on our way again and I settled into the bench seat and drifted off into a pleasant sueno mode. I awoke right as we were pulling in front of the station; raul went in to find out where we could load in and park the boat but for some reason she wanted watt to come up so she could tell him. watt didn't want to leave the boat so he tells me to go up and say I'm him and get the info. I go up and the lady's running around as she's right in the middle of a radio show but she outlines the sitch to me (I couldn't understand why she was unable to relay this info to rollie). I went own and told the chief what was up and we loaded the gear into the front and straight up the elevator to the fourth floor studio; it was a nice little pad w/ high ceilings, so I figured the sound would be good. Terri, the lady whose show we were playing on shows up w/ a bunch of chow for us and we set up and strap on the feedbag for a few minutes. there are also some peeps there filming a documentary on WFMU, and they want to film us too. we're way into it and they get us to sign some release forms which we do. I'm excited, but a little nervous as I'm worried that I won't be able to build up a good enough head of steam to keep the machine running; I talk this over w/ watt and he builds up my confidence. I'm damn fortunate to be in this engine room w/ this chief. I promise myself that I'll do good for him and rollie.
diane the tech lady, mikes us up and we do a quick line check; we have about fifteen minutes before we go on so we rap w/ each other about some past tour sound nightmares that we've had and all the while the film cats are recording us; I try really hard not to feel self-conscious and try to avoid looking directly into the camera. after a time , terri gives us the two-minute warning and I mentally prepare myself. I had to turn the leslie volume way down as watt didn't want us to play too loud as it would majorly bogart the vocals. it was a little hard to hear myself even w/ the leslie pointed right at me but I figured I would have to deal. work the room, like watt says. terri gives us the cue and goes into a little spiel, then cues us again to start. I hit the "bursted man" intro and it is a little hard to hear myself but I still manage to get a good boil going. we clam up a little but soldier on thru the other songs w/ much intensity I start out the dylan a little soft but watt goads me into a rolling boil; I thought I pulled it off pretty well save for the hoarseness in my voice. I was pretty happy w/ the short gig and was glad we had pulled it off. me and rollie packed up the tools quickly and got everything downstairs while watt was doing the spiel; I pulled the boat around and we loaded up. watt came out just as we were finished and we hopped into the boat for our journey to brooklyn. much respect to terri for letting us play and feeding us, and to diane for making it sound good. kudos also to the film crew, andy and emily for documenting the experience.
we make our way towards the holland tunnel and there's a huge plug; we finally make it in and get to the NY side but it's a major traffic snarl there too; I've never seen so many people, what a cluster fuck of humanity! there was foot hombre all over directing traffic, it was all like a huge insane ballet. I was in the navigatore position so I tried to lead us in but we had to loop to get to canal street as there was construction going on. I get my bearings and we cross the manhattan bridge and soon we are right in front of the club (we even scored a kind parking spot right in front). we load in and the sound lady erica, helps us out. we set up everything on the stage, she mikes us up and we rip thru "the red and the black" it sounds pretty decent save for a lack of bottom end on my voc mike. I point this out to her and she says she'll take care of it. we break down and I go downstairs to chimp while rollie hoses off in the shower. staten island john shows up and buys me a drink; it's his fourth time seeing us! we rap a little while I do the chimp and then he heads upstairs. one of the opening bands is called coma', and they're guitar player had done sound for us at the north-six on the first tour. the first opening band's bass player, kenny had done sound for us last tour at maxwell's in hoboken and he had given me a cd of the show. nice cats, both of them. I continue to chimp but there is just a mass of people milling around and I start to get weirded out for some reason. I keep trying to calm myself down but it's not happening and the whole sitch is starting to wear me down. I finish up the chimp and walk around a little to clear my head but I can feel the old self-doubt creep in. I was determined to do a good show tho', I couldn't let the guys or the peeps down.
coma' finishes up their set and I make some tea and go upstairs to wake up the chief, I muster a smile and tell him the crowd is great. I go inside and me and rollie put up the machines and wait for the boss. as if on cue he comes in and we go into the piece. I try to build up some steam, but it is just not happening for me; it was especially frustrating because I could tell that watt was in a really great mood and I didn't want to bring him down. he can read my body language cause' as we're playing he comes up and tries to shake me out of it; I try really hard but it's like beating a dead horse. another fucked thing is that the monitors are not on at all; me and watt keep pointing to them to try and get erica's attention but when we look up she's not at the desk at all; what the fuck?! we make it thru the piece but I'm really feeling down on myself. we go backstage and the crowd is screaming for us; watt is sympathetic to my feelings as he had the same problem the night before in DC (thank god this shit doesn't come down on all of us at the same time), so it made me feel a little bit better. I would try for a comeback on the encore. we go out and rip into the encore tunes; I was feeling a little better and getting into it a little more but there was still a little of the self-doubt lingering ( I thought the I did pretty decent considering the circumstances). we finished up and the crowd gave us much love god bless em'. me and rollie packed up the tools while watt slung the merch' and I mulled over my self-apparent shitiness; erica came up and watt asks her where she was, she said she was listening to us! (I have to say tho' that when I talked to her, about the gig she was very sweet, saying that I was great and it gave me much confidence back). I packed up my gear and signed a few posters; one cat told me jokingly "yeah, yeah just sign it" as I was drawing out my usual keyboard picture for him. I told him "yeah well with me you get your fucking money's worth" and then practically threw the poster back at him. I could tell he was a little incredulous at this comment and he probably thought I was being a princess. I feel very sorry about this as it was mean and un-called for. it wasn't this cat's fault that I was in a shitty mood. I apologize. I'm honored that he would even ask me to sign. gotta watch my temper sometimes. rollie was on the side signing posters for some other peeps and I guess he mentioned to them that I'd had a hard time; they called me over and were so kind and supportive that I felt immediately humbled and guilty that I had felt the way that I did. rich muller and crystal love were their names; rich is a musician and tattoo artist and offered to do some ink for me. crystal showed me some of his work on her leg- it was fucking incredible! flowing lines and awesome detail; the cat is truly a talent. he gave me his number and I told them to come to the gig in hoboken the next day and I would put them on the guest list. they assured me they would be there. I continued packing up the tools and as I carried the gear to the backstage area watt stops me. he says "g, this cat gave me this shirt right now, it's a minutemen shirt from about twenty years ago and d. boon signed it, he wanted it to come full circle and I want you to have it because you play like he did". I just stopped and felt this overwhelming tide of emotion well up inside; it's hard for me to put into words exactly how I felt at that moment- I didn't know what to say- I just thanked him and hugged him. I'll say this tho'- when I'm play there are always two people watching me, my grandfather pete and d. boon. they're at every gig.
we loaded up the boat and were ready to get outta dodge; we were staying at tina's once again but rollie was staying w/ his buddy matt in brooklyn. watt told me that I could hang w/ rollie if I wanted; I opted to go this route as I needed to blow off some steam. we watched watt and tina take off towards manhattan and then hoofed it down to a local watering hole w/ a whole crew of cats that were at the show (one of matty's roomates tended bar at the pad). we settled into this dive and took it over; g, we tied one up really tight, matty bought me several shots of powers', a smooth irish whiskey and after a little while we were both tonguing the blarney stone. a rip-roaring time was had by all. we closed the pad then hoofed it back to matty's where we crashed out right quick. me vale madre!...
pop at eight bells and get my stuff gathered up quick cuz we gotta get on to make it to a live radio segment on wfmu in new jersey. I had a dream where I was stretched out straight and my legs slowly extending 'till they burst right out of the konk sack and kept going. I had trouble seeing them some cuz I couldn't really lift my head but could feel it as they grew... I then really had no way cuz they went though the wall of the discord house and out across the road. I knew this cuz I could feel motherfucking cars and trucks running over them as they went across the road and in through buildings and houses - each time there'd be a pause as they came up to a wall and then they'd pop through. I'd wait for the pain but that only happened when they were run over and then just a brief sharp one. it was bizarre. I could feel them curving to match the surface of the earth even, weird. it made me really hungry in a way, like my gut was emptying into this ever-lengthening hose-like tube-legs. I felt them go through water - rivers maybe or lakes or the ocean for that matter. fish were nipping on them now. they seem to be getting thinner too... that re-occurring pasta dream I've gotten since I was a boy (they one where I feel like I'm a piece of spaghetti getting stretched through a fork, it usually comes when I have high fever) seem to have some reverberations but I am not feeling sick in the least bit, I'm in good health (and quite happy to say that too!). it was a weird dream, damn. I find a note from ian and a cd he the note says is for me: "magic alphabet" by daniel higgs. wow, thank you much. no time to shower even (didn't do that yesterday either, oh boy), I go to roust my guys - hmm... a bunch of doors at the top of the stairs here. I open one and it looks like raul maybe cuz of the complexion and longish black hair but w/my flash light (I've got a little one that goes on my keys but it's pretty bright - the lense is about as big as a quarter and it runs on two batteries) shining in the eyes, I realize when they open that they're not raul, in fact they're a woman's! she says her name is bashiar (is that the right spelling?) and her band played late last night so she unexpected came to konk here. aahh, I'm so embarrassed - good thing I did give the ol' stand-on-head-like-it-was-a-bowling-ball routine for a wake-up like I'm always fixing to do but instead settle for rib-kicks. this was the first time I tried the flashlight and it was nice of this lady not to wig out or think I was a fucking asshole cuz really, I was just trying to get my guys - I had no idea she was in the pad. I find both pete and raul in the room across from this one and convey we have to move now. I get coff and ian tugs on my leash (my endearment for the walkie-talkie phone), he gives me a tip on getting out of town easier and also we talk some about hair. he says it's more happening if I stick w/my natural gray and I'm w/him on that. I like the idea of younger people seeing you can wail wild punk (as a state of mind and not a "style" or whatever of music) and still get up into the years. it's confusing maybe I know but maybe that's good. I think when confusion comes into play that it sometimes forces on some thinking and that's way happening. ian makes good sense about this and I take it to heart - no offense to my sister melinda, of course.
we take ian's directs and get the baltimore-washington parkway w/out hardly any traffic plug which for dc is pretty amazing. the sun's out for us bright too, great. this road's got the "cryptography museum" at the nsa off-ramp (we passed the one for the cia in langley coming into town yesterday) but as usual, it's never open and in fact, the off-ramp is closed. north into baltiomore and then under through the harbor tunnel, we continue through maryland on I-95. I stop to refuel the boat and get a salami and cheese sandwich - fuck shit that's already made, even if it's not a shrinkwrap job cuz this piece of cerrote is as bad as that chicken wrap I had outside of oberlin in ohio. it takes many mouthfuls of chips to choke this crap down and wash out the horrid aftertaste, even w/a couple of red savina habaneros in it. yech or like the name of the company that made the chips, utz! we go into delaware and across the double suspension bridges. sort of like two of our own (san pedro's) vicent thomas bridge except blue instead of green. now onto the new jersey turnpike (yet another "turdpipe") up through new jersey. the station we're playing at used to be at a college in orange but that school went bankrupt so now it's easier to get to cuz it's right by the holland tunnel, which leads to manhattan. we get in at 1:30 pm like we're supposed to but the lady at the station won't tell raul where we can park, saying she has to tell me. I tell pete to go and say he's me cuz I can't leave the boat where it is and the lady tells pete w/out asking if he's me - what's that about, why couldn't she just tell raul? weird. we were just talking the other day about how appearances can by a strange thing - when I grow a beard, I don't trim them and man, you wouldn't believe the different treatment I get. raul says he gets followed around in stores likewise, his skin is dark cuz of his latin blood. whatever, it's probably nothing but pete says he never gets shit (he trims his beard - oh by the way, he just cut it and now only has a mustache and I think that gets whacked at the end of the tour due to a deal he's made w/wife ljil). I don't write this here to make any judgements but rather to wonder about judgements that get made through maybe some kind of conditioning and maybe not even consciously. I must admit I've done it w/squarejohns. the people here at the station are very nice so please don't get any of what I just wrote wrong. the lady who's show we're playing on is named terre and she's brought a lot of good chow for us to shovel. the engineer is a lady named diane and she sets us up in a little room that's not too small though I only brought half my amp and ask pete to play kind of low. raul didn't have to bring his drums cuz clem burke has donated a set here and he's using those, some happening premiers (keith moon played premier and it was the last set george hurley bought for himself). he sounds really good on them. the kit of his he's got on this tour are kind of beaters and I we both look at each other like "whoa, how about having one of these kits?" raul plays hard and has a good spirit - he deserves one and I know one day he'll have one. I in fact want to make a record w/both him and pete - I like this new secondmen, no disrespect to jer. there's some folks here shooting a documentary on wfmu and they want to capture our thing for it. no prob. I chow one of the trippiest bagels I've ever seen - it's blue cuz of blueberries in it and kind of smushed up. tastes good though. we're doing one song from each of the "worlds" of the piece, "burstedman" (from inferno), "tied a reed 'round my waist (from purgatorio) and "pluckin', pedalin' and paddlin'" (from paradiso). we also do the dylan cover, "it's all right, ma (I'm only bleeding) and then I do like a twenty minute spiel w/terre. she asks me good stuff and it's such an honor to be on such a righteous station like this. much respect to the folks here who made that happen.
we load what we took out of the boat and head through the holland tunnel and onto manhattan - damn, is it packed! I lose my bearings a little and it takes a few more turns than I had to so we're on canal street - we pass jimbo's old pad between west broadway and wooster, so many many MANY memories there... damn, 'pert-near like ten years worth cuz this is where I'd stay when I come or play new york city. much love to jimbo. anyway, the road is plugged, both my guys amazed at how crazy people exist in this madness. we're pedro folks, you know and even though that's part of l.a., it's the harbor part and on a much smaller scale. we finally make it to the manhattan bridge and cross over into brooklyn, getting to the park slope part just a little late for load in but totally lucky that this lady parked in front of the club will move across the street in an open spot there for us. thank you. she asks me to help park but her ride is a brand new suv and damn, a tiny tap on the pedal makes it go - much different than the boat's dynamics! this club is called south paw and is owned by todd, he also has maxwell's in hoboken (where we're playing tomorrow). we do a soundcheck w/soundlady erica and she says cheetah chrome has been playing w/texas terri, who sometimes sings w/me, perk and peter in our hellride wail. she's good peeps. I've never been to this part of brooklyn, in fact it's only my third gig here in recent years and the other two were in williamsburg (a neat pad called northsix - great cats working there). I did play brooklyn one other time but it was almost twentytwo years ago (minutemen and black flag). man, that was a trippy gig... I tell the cats from the opening acts about it, two locals called bust and coma (whoa, we palyed w/the comas last night too!). nice cats. I then go to the boat and konk. sorry to have missed their sets but I there's only so much current I can store and its gotta get recharged somehow. konk's the best way.
I konked hard (watt was tired) and pete brings me hot tea when it's our time. I kind of have to shake my head out a few times to get awake, I'm kind of dazed. I'm ready to go though - I'm very inspired tonight - not just to make up for not doing so hot last night but cuz I got a good spirit in me, big time. this is a GREAT THING to have, I wish I could just summon it on command but it seems I'm lucky to have it visited on me when it does. I do not take it for granted. we start the piece. damn, if my voice has come back lots - yeah, I can dig that! I feel on fire and maybe this is my best gig of the tour yet. I try every gig, really I do, but tonight it just seems to be pouring out of my heart. I can tell it's a hard one for pete though and even go over to him before "pissbags..." to let it wail out and get into it. funny how it's hard for us all to have it all the way happening for each of us at a single show. that might be good in a way cuz it means maybe all three of us won't be off at the same time either though I know it's really lame when the idiot bass player who wrote the fucking thing is blowing it. anyway, I don't know what's up w/pete but he's not terrible, just not that lit up he can be sometimes and so my heart is out for him. I try twice as hard. there are no monitors working to speak of - I look up at the mixing desk and erica's nowhere to be found, hmm... no matter, I'm burnin' up w/a passion for this go, I really wanna drive the piece home, I am intent to. what has gotten it to you, watt? I remember back to the days w/d. boon... just being able to look over at him, working up his thing and letting it fly - loved it. that was inspiring, pure and simple. now I get thoughts, they grab hold of me and shake me up. when they do it like that way I take it as such a blessing. I got abandon it one way and a complete focus in another - it's righteous. I surely wish I could conjure it, truly. to let the lightning strike w/me as a conducting rod, whoa. I'm not trying to be sentimental, I dearly am trying to be in moment. it's just those times made such an impression on me. is it this town putting such a current through me, this "motherless brooklyn" (a jonathan letham book title, by the way - a great read... getting ecstatic through tourette's - what a trip)? so I get visited on by a presence, something from someone not here - hell, I know I'd be self-conscious and all balled-up if there were a set of actual eyes I know I could never hold in it's gaze, not in that realness. but the thought of it... wow, can it grab me so. I love it. I am in love, I know it... there is a part of it that makes me feel better and then another that's wholly w/out be able to grasp it but that's ok... really, especially if the love is true. it is what I've come to realize as the closet I can know of a muse, a wing down on me to be bourne upward, onward... a special to be so awake for, even if like the twilight of a dream and what seems in that instant, possible. a silly man w/his bass - two true compadres at each oar, trippy trinity. that realization born. we do every song we know tonight and for the sake of me, I do not know I am not scared... so I let go of trying to figure it out. it's been good to let this wind out of me, let it so far out of me that it's only natural I would have to breathe in back so deep. I know all it once who I am. once. instant. flood.
I talk to the folks now - this cat's has a baseball shirt, can you believe it... a team called the minutemen? even more intense is that d. boon signed it! whoa! damn, such a kind man to give it to me, he said he had to. much respect to him. I feel the same as he - even though he had it for like twenty years and me for 'pert-near twenty seconds - I just gotta give it to pete and let him know he's ok - he's feeling bad about his playing... gigs can go weird but you're w/d. boon's bass player and it's ok cuz he'll back you up, the same as d. boon did w/me. I never even had to think twice, it's alright and so I give it to him cuz it'll fit him well. we're links in a chain, trippy how that works. before the encores, I talked about that first ever gig in brooklyn I ever did and there's a cat here that was there, whoa (again). pete c from the wattlist is here to get listmonitor ryan a shirt, much respect to both of them. many shakes of the hands and sharing of the words - a good gig for the folks as well as watt, alright.
as we load out, the fire marshalls come in - gig time's done though so what they could do is moot (whew). back to manhattan and tina's - my guys w/matt army in brooklyn, I get a liverwurst sandwich hoofing back from the parking pad where the boat can dock safe. of course things must be tempered in a watt world and for every loft of the spirit (so much gratitude I got for a righteous gig!) must be a disappointment in body, a defeat in the flesh. man, the boundaries between the two, boundaries period (the gulf, the chasm)! ok, suffer that mostly in private and don't hold hostage a public display - my ma would call that "being professional" and of course I would then try to qualify it - sort of... I'd finally admit (not after too much interrogation) I understand what she really means. I am a slow learner. sorry, ma. sorry, everyone.
sunday, october 24, 2004 - hoboken, nj
After a bitchin' bike ride through brooklyn , the crew, mikey and jeff errg, matt army, and pete and i all hop on the train headed for hoboken n.j, i was so flippin' tired, the kinda tired where it's impossible to hold a sensible conversation, i spent the ride with my face stuck to the glass... i was looking for the ever elusive mole man, without any luck. Once we got to ground level i started to wake up a bit, walking in the cold air helped. I've never been to Maxwells, and i've never been to hoboken, so this is a first for me. Hoboken is nothing like i expected, i'd never heard, or asked anything about it, so i was left to imagine it in my minds eye, for some reason it was dark, and kinda desolate, well from what i hear, that sounds more like newark, but hoboken seemed like a pretty neat place, it wasn't dark or desolate at all, infact it seemed the exact oppisite, boy was i wrong. Like my friend jack says, when you assume, you make an ass outta you and uma thurman... whatever that means. Mike beat us there by an hour, and was parked across the street, and since parking sucked, we loaded the gear across the bussiest street in hoboken, we had the crew, so it was done in no time.
I didn't really have the energy to walk around to much, but matt and i went on a mini mission, and ended up grabbing some mexican chow at a yuppie burritto place, well auctually i ate at maxwells, so i just had some chips, see what i mean, in my minds eye hoboken would of only had rusted up hot dog stands, not fancy burrito bars. The day lasted forever, time was just standing still, i thought the show would never start, and we'd never play... just waitin'. I gotta make sure i'm well rested, not being fucked up my whole day, i felt like walking dead. Finially the show starts, playing with little brazil from omaha, i wonder if they call themselves little brazil, cuz they sound a little bit like jets to brazil. I watch them play for a bit then go back to the restaurant, rich and crystal are there, a couple that i met at the south paw the night before, very cool people, spend some time hangin' with them. Finally it's time to go on, the moment i thought would never come is here. It felt so good to start moving, my energy level started to pick up as soon as i start setting up my drums, with purpose i'm becoming human again. The gig was pretty decent, i was nerveous that i wouldn't be able to give it all i had, well fuck i didn't have much so i guess i was nerveous that my reserve tank wouldn't be full, i was all right, adreniline kicked in double. It's odd on tour sometimes, you spend all your time awake anticipating this one thing, the gig, so it's gonna be alot of down time, and i think that in it self is kinda draining, sittting around waiting to play.
The gig was pretty good, lot's of smiles from the crowd, it was also pretty rad to play maxwells, lots of history. It's fucked, every time i over come a problem i have with the piece, a new one pops up, much like life, so it's not that i'm suprised, just a bit irratated. This particular problem is in piss bags, i keep jumping the gun, anticipating this one part, so of course in my anticipation, i come in a nano second to early, it sucks cuz i know mike wants us to play together, it it's not to together if i'm coming in early, i'll get it... eventually, but other than that i was pretty happy. Right after the set, the clock hit twelve, and it was petes birthday. Pretty rad, some friends brought us some cake with little blue candles in it, that wouldn't stay lit, and we all sang him the birthday song, that's a kinda embarassing sometimes, but he had a hugh smile on his face, so i think he was into it, timmy from philly bought pete, matt, and i all a round of shots, and we all twisted our arms around each others, and toasted to the years ahead, i think my sleve got most my drink... happy birthday pete.
After we got the gear in the boat, we headed back to tinas place in manhatten. Sleep came on pretty quick, like i said, i only about two hours the night before, i don't know if it was well deserved, cuz i got what i deserved, by staying up the night before, but it was much needed, plus parking lot guy says we gotta be out by eight, and it was already well past three, so i should get in as much as i can.
popped at matty's and man, it felt like somebody had taken a shit in my mouth; I went to do a wash and shave and felt a little better, but my head was still balloon size. I turned on the ti book and caught a weak wi-fi signal from somewhere; it kept cutting out but it was enough for me to finish my email. the other cats peeled themselves off the floor and matty made some coff' and scored us some donuts. we all laid around for awhile nursing our throbbing skulls then it was decided that we would go score some chow. we hoofed it down to a local pad and I scored a very kind chicken calzone which I washed down w/ a beer (I felt so much better after). we went back to matty's pad and I chimped some diary and we watched a flick about new york graffiti artists. around 3:00 we pulled up roots and got on the subway to hoboken; we made it there in about 45 minutes and hoofed it the last five or six blocks to maxwell's, the pad we were playing at. I love playing in hoboken, the peeps are really cool and I feel strangely at home there (when my gramps first came to america he lived there for a time before he settled in pedro- my grandma's sister also lived there with her family). I went into maxwell's and called watt; left him a message that we were there safe and sound). he showed up after about a half hour; he had to park about a block away cause' the parking sitch in hoboken is really lame but w/ the help of matty and his crew we unloaded the boat and rolled the gear down to maxwell's. brian the soundman was already there and got us all miked up right quick. we went thru the check' and the sound was impeccable as always. I was looking forward to playing the gig as I wanted to make up my last mess of a performance. we ordered up some chow and ate, then I pulled up to a table and went into chimp mode.
I was deep in chimp mode when brian comes up and introduces me to a cat from the opening band (little brazil); seems his amp head had blown a fuse and he wanted to know if we had any spares. I went and snagged an unused one from the B3 but it was about double the value of the one he needed. I warned him that an amp blowing fuses is trying to tell you something and that putting in a bigger fuse is a no-no (if it blows it could take out something else along w/ it), but he assured me that his amp tech had gone thru it thoroughly and that it was ok. I hadn't seen his amp so I figured I'd give his tech thye benefit of the doubt. sure enough he came back about five minutes later and he had blown the fuse that I had given him. he apologized for blowing the fuse but I assured him that one fuse wouldn't break me and I wished that I could help him out more (i knew exactly what he felt like). I chimped a while longer and rich and crystal showed up from the night before- I was glad they came, they're such cool peeps. staten island john also showed up again w/ a friend of his. that cat is the best(he had given me a cd of some snaps he took at our albany gig the night before along w/ some snaps of a camper van beethoven gig). very nice man. tim, a cat we had met last tour also came up to say hey. such sweet people. I finished up my chimp and went to join rollie at a table where he was sitting w/ rich and crystal; rich gave me his number and invited us to a que' at his pad when we came back in town for the mercury lounge gig on thursday; he also said he would do and ink job on me if I was so inclined. dave and karen from albany also showed up to see the show, it was great to see them again. it made me feel really good that we were surrounded by friends; it would make the gig for me all that much better.
little brazil finished up their set and I got to work; made the tea, roused the chief and came back to help rollie w/ the tools. we set everything up and waited for the man, he showed up and we were off! we plowed thru the piece and I dug into it w/ extreme prejudice; I totally went off and we all played very well. the peeps showered us w/ much love and we came out and did the encore w/ equal fervor. I had such a good time. me and rollie broke down the tools as watt did the merch rock and I rapped w/ rich on the side of the stage. I glanced at my watch and it was 11:59; I told rich that me and the B3 would be 40 in another minute. we counted down and he gave me a birthday hug. the real surprise came when I was finishing the pack-up on yhe gear and karen comes in w/ a slice of chocolate cake w/ two candles in it and starts singing me happy birthday (along w/ everyone else in the pad). I was very humbled and touched by the gesture and it made me so happy. one of the girls in the little brazil crew bought me a shot and this cat dave brought me a copy of a solczenitsyn book and signed. much respect. it made for a very memorable birthday; much love to all of you.
we loaded the gear into the boat and were off towards tina's pad w/ matty riding shotgun; made it there in about a half-hour as traffic was light at that hour. matty bid us goodbye as he had to make his way back to brooklyn; much respect to him for helping me blow off some major steam and for letting us crash at his pad.
we got to tina's pad, she had given us a key and we went in; she was asleep on the couch and we woke her up as we ambled in. she immediately wished me a happy birthday and gave me a big hug, but it didn't end there; for a present she had given me a little yellow rubber ducky w/ devil's horns and a great snap of a cow. what an absolutely sweet gesture! on top of that she brought out three little birthday cheesecakes for us to chow on! I was just totally overwhelmed; much love and thank you tina. I won't forget my fortieth for a long time.
I hopped in the shower to hose off and felt much more relaxed; we burned a little midnite nug and I was in the sandman's arms right quick. much respect to everyone for making my birthday the coolest. laku noc prijatelji...
pop - hosed off last night but do it this morning again. I had a dream of knife cuts, sword fighters - maybe samurai ones even - cutting each other deep but mostly clean and not as blood as you might think but limbs in piles. almost a before/after valhalla scene but not so virtuous though w/as much if not more hacking. really weird was feeling each cut myself, like empathy pain cuz I never did see myself once get sliced up but was there only as an observer. in wake-up life I'm like this if I'm forced to see video of knee surgery cuz maybe I've one on each knee myself - I can't handle it... too much identifying w/it personally - aahh! there was no sequence of events in this dream, just over and over cut-cut mayhem. weird. I usually don't have out and out violent dreams so this was disturbing... must be very upset on some level. the blankies were all tangled about me when I popped so I know I was twisting and the mask was pulled up and on backwards - the strap instead over my eyes. there we sock-like things I had over my knees (tina's idea for hurting - she dances ballet and they do that) but they were yanked down... I'm glad the couch had a back (one reason I like them on tour) cuz they kind of serve as a "sea wall" for my waves of stress to crash up on and that tries and keep me more stable than otherwise. I was upset. well, I know I am on a conscious level and have to voice that. I have oatmeal for the first time made w/blueberries that tina fixes up, kind of like that bagel I had yesterday but... more like oatmeal. expressing thoughts like these would make writing about lots of this day like that so I think this isn't gonna be the most packed of entries for this tour spiel - maybe the shortest. I did finally get to put week five of our chimped-in spiels up on the hoot page. some days are measured in baby steps, even in middle years. I did get another day chimped in too even though that meant not being very good w/conversation.
just to get to hoboken via the lincoln tunnel from midtown takes 'pert-near an hour and what's that, a couple of miles? holy moses. even worse is the no parking situation at maxwell's (where we're playing tonight) so it takes another hour of circling before a spot opens up and that's 'pert-near a block a way but at least it's something. I get a pizza slice from tudino's - this is good peetz, really... I don't where I've ever had it better. I wish my pedro friends could chow this and hear what they think. I read the "I, elizabeth" book 'till raul comes up and opens the boat's hatch - him and pete are here w/matt army and mikey erg - the drummer for the ergs who's gonna interview me. great to have all these cats w/us (one more guy is a friend of mikey's) so we can making loading in not so bad cuz of the distance. before spieling w/mikey, I do a phoner one w/a cat in charleston, sc. good spiel w/both cats - they're both so much younger but intense about hearing from me, from where I've been and where I'm at. much respect to them. I chowed some veg chili the club made for me and then did soundcheck w/my guys and soundman brian. off to the boat for some intense konk, definitely a debt to be paid there by the intenseness of it.
pete gets me w/some hot tea - gig time. the piece goes good - it's not last night but it ain't a pants-shitter either. I sling and talk after - one man says like I get stage fear, he has "watt fear" and wants to get over that (he even says he's a wattlister). no prob, very kind of him to take time to talk w/me. I would surely hope I don't consciously spread any kind of fear, even the watt kind. I should be more aware of my behavior though so let me apologize for being so stupid and oblivious. a fellow-basser gives me a john coltrane book that seems to be about "a love supreme" but thumbing through it later shows it be a general kind of bio. I realize I've been given this book before and so pass it on to pete, happy birthday to him. tonight we played w/a band from omaha opening called little brazil and though I missed them cuz of being konked to high heaven, I did get each one talking to me and felt very honored by how enthused they were - I told them each that d. boon's pop was from nebraska and they dug that, a little bit of their home is in the minutemen. karen and david - we stayed at their pad in albany - are here and karen said she could actually hear what we were trying to do this time (the sound was not happening for her at the other gig plus my voice was way weak and much better now - I just think we came together much more as a band cuz the idiot on the bass had it better w/his performance too) - it was dave's first time seeing it. they've both always been so nice to me, much love to them. we finished the gig right around midnight and that means it's into the day where pete was born forty years ago so we all sing to him "happy birthday" and someone has cake we chow on (it's the gigboss todd's wife's b-day too).
we pack up both the gear and matt army w/us too and head back across the hudson via the lincoln tunnel - surprisingly, the traffics a little lighter at one in the morning on a sunday! we drop matt army off and thank him much for everything, then get to the same parking pad I've used twice now and the man there says there's no room - what?! I do a tiny plea and he says ok... thank you much, sir. what a trip, saying thank you for the privilege of paying fortyone dollars to dock the boat for seven hours (we gotta be out by eight am) but at least it'll be safe - we just found out camper van beethoven had a bunch of stuff stolen on tour. man, that's so fucking lame. we hoof up to tina's - she's got cheescake for pete so they celebrate. I drink my tea and then konk. happy forty, pete - oh, I tell him what I did when I was forty and was in nyc: me and juan rosenfelder took the long island railroad from penn station to pinelawn, the graveyard is right near where the train lets you off and I went and visited john coltrane's grave which is there in the "garden of sanctuary" part. he died when he was forty. love to you, pete - a love supreme.
monday, october 25, 2004 - northampton, ma
Woke up on the floor at tinas, i swear it must of been a hundred degrees in that apartment, i couldn't even swollow, and it felt like someone poured elmers glue on my eyeballs, they did not wanna open, mike sugested a shower, good thinkin'. After getting the stank off, i had some oatmeal, gave tina a hug, and we hit the road. Driving up to northampton today, it shouldn't take to long, it's not far at all, but leaving this city is always a plug. On the way way up, mike asked me to cut up some red savina habaneros for the sammy he had, no problem chief, oh boy was i wrong, big problem. See the savina is a hybrid habenero, and sometimes they can be twice as hot, and i found this out the hard way. The first one i ate on tour made me shit fire, that was because i chowed the thing in one bite, so i've been cautious of my intake, only eating little bits for flavor, and not eating the seeds. This one, the savina i didn't even mack, i just cut it up and put in the sammy, damn i should've wiped my hands after, that shit got everywhere, i first noticed it after i was pulling on my ear, just something i do, i don't know. The back of my ear burned so bad, then i rubbed my eyes, shitty thinking, i couldn't even open em', even my wrist where on fire all day, yeah my wrist, whats that about, glad i didn't take a piss.
Showed up in northampton super early, i did a bit of chimpin' in the boat, then me and pete went to get some grub at a place that he'd found last year, no frills dining, i think they had the cheapest food i've seen all tour, i had a sandwhich that only cost a buck seventy five, most restaurants that won't even get you a cup of coffee, here i think they paid you to drink it. While we ate i did some diary, after that i paid the bill, it was kinda funny, pete didn't notice me do it, so i'm sittin' there chimpin' away, and he keeps stareing at the waitress, you know, with the check please look, i just get up and start walking out, i've never seen a man looked so confused, he thought i was gonna walk past everyone, and just bail out. No man it's okay, i got the bill, it's your birthday, my treat. After that he looked even more confused, cuz he never saw the waitress bring the check, i gave him a pat on the back and reassured him that it's okay, and we can go... i don't know i thought it was pretty funny. We had so much time to kill it was disgusting, i don't even wanna go into details about that. Let's just say i roamed from place to place in an altered state, the tow stores were fun though cuz i was feeling about three, i made some funny videos on the camera of me lipcyning over the mr.t voice box, i pity the fool who don't eat my cereal, what movie is that from? Also hung out in the park, drank some coffee, and tried to catch up on my diary. These short drives fuck up my schedule, and i can't find the time, so i fall behind, you know, the guy you see at the coffee shop with his face buried in his laptop, well i hate that guy, so i also hate it when i am that guy... it's a wacky world.
Playing with a band called the bears, they're from northampton, and they're all really nice dudes. They invite me to out to dinner with them after sound check, i gotta decline, i think the club is gonna get us some grub, sure enough they did, super good vegi burritos, with some chips and salsa, one of my faves. The burritos had black beans and corn in em', some people call that hippie burritos, all call that good eatin'. I was still feeling pretty fucked from brooklyn, i did the easy addition, six hours in three days, so i needed to rest a bit for the gig, i closed my eyes for about five minutes, and in comes bruce. Bruce does a watt web page, what makes a man start fires, really sweet guy, after talking for a bit, we go up stairs to watch the bears. When i walk up, i head straight for the stage, this is sorta odd i think to myself, no ones here, so i turn around, and they're there, they're all just sitting at their tables. Hope it's not like this when we play, knock on wood. The bears are pretty bad ass, they've got this amazing jazz drummer who just can't be stopped, their guitar player told me they all live together in a farm house, and just play constantly. Mike introduced introduced me to j. macsis right before we played, that was a trip, totally nice guy, used to be a hard core drummer before he went over to the guitar, it was a treat to meet him. Gig was pretty bizzare, remember earlier when i was talking about everyone sitting watching the bands, well, the same thing happened when we played, everyone sittin' down. We were trying to break the barrier, but the crowd wasn't having it, we were flat out asking em' to come a little closer, not happining. I don't know if they were afraid of each other, afraid of us, or just tired, i mean it had to be something right. The fact that the folks were so far away didn't bother me though, for me that situation could be a possible disaster, i can get real nerveous real quick. I thought we played real well, lots of comunication on stage, i think i fazed the people completely out, which isn't the best thing, but tonight it worked for me, it was just the three of us, and i think the togetherness on stage is what pulled me through. To tell you the truth, it was a pretty good show, and i was real happy with it.
Stayed a few blocks away at thurstons pad, rad flippin' house, used to be the old presidents of smith collage, the all girl school a few blocks away. Thurston was telling me how a lot of the radical sixties femenism started there. Stayed up for a while talkin', the first band he ever saw was suicide, thats crazy, i couldn't even imagine, that would scar, maybe it did, cuz sonic youth is pretty wild. He and mike were telling me about all kinds of crazy seventies bands, like non, it was one dude, who had a speaker box with two switches on it, just two high pitched intense sounds going back and forth, mike had the best impression of this dude, veins all popping out of his neck, it was hilarous, man these guys got stories for days. I'm super tired, so is everyone else, so thurston shows use where we're gonna sleep, we got the whole third floor to ourselves, and each have beds, this is good, i'm sure we could all use a good sleep, i know i could.
popped at tina's and she was cooking us up some chow; oatmeals w/ blueberries for me! I thanked her again for being so nice, it truly means alot to me. we rolled up the gear and hoofed it down to the boat as we had to try and beat the morning traffic snarl. we would see tina again in another couple of days when we got back in town for the mercury gig.
we made it thru manhattan w/o too much hassle and were on the road to massachusetts in about an hour. I spent the time conking and reading my zen book in the back and when I awoke we were in northampton. we had several hour before sound check so me and rollie hoofed it down to a little pad called jake's to grab some chow (rollie's treat). we then spent most of the day walking around the center of town window shopping and drinking coff'. gorgeous little town northampton is even if the center is a little touristy, but that is the way things are sometimes (not even pedro is exempt from this). we went into the local CVS and I got some stuff for halloween; my plan was to be a zombie so I got some greasepaint and fake blood so I could do myself up right. we then went to a local pub and raul bought me a birthday drinky (he's a true bro). six-o'clock was rolling up quick so we hoofed it back to the iron horse (where we were playing). jim the soundman soon showed up and we unloaded the gear, set it up, and ran thru the check' quickly. it sounded really good, the monitors were excellent and I was looking forward to a great b-day gig. watt gave me a copy of a book about the making of coltrane's "a love supreme", thank's g! the opening band "the bears" showed up and ran thru their check' (they had opened for us last tour and were very nice cats). me and rollie went downstairs and had some chow that the pad had cooked up for us; big veggie burritos, very kind. I then went to shave; took the stache' off in one fell swoop- a rebirth at forty! didn't look as bad as I thought (it shaved off some years too). I then laid my head down for a short sueno; rollie woke me up right as the bears' were finishing their set and I ran up to take care of my duty. got the tea and went to go rouse the man; j mascis was outside and I said hey to him; haven't seen him and luisa since we opened up for evan dando almost a year ago, it was good to see him. I grabbed the merch' box and went inside to help rollie set up the machines and then we waited for mike to show. he ambled in and soon we were off again. the sound was great and we were on fire... the piece sounded really good. the peeps in the pad were polite and clapped but they didn't seem to be really getting into it and didn't come to the front of the stage; most stayed seated and some even got up and left!(it was like playing a piano recital fer chrissakes). we went into the encore tunes w/ much fervor but got the same reaction; on the dylan tune I hear somebody laugh and I say on the mike "you're laughing now but you won't be laughing later". I then sang a pertinent stanza of lyrics at them. I felt bad about doing this, but I didn't mean it in the context that I said it. I apologized over the mike when we were finished and attemped to explain what I meant; the lyrics to the dylan tune are very timely to our sitch in the US now and the particular stanza I was singing wasn't meant to elicit laughter - that is to say, they can laugh about it now and do nothing, but they won't be laughing about it later if the shit really hits the fan. I didn't want to seem an asshole princess, but it very well could've been construed that way, so I figured an explanation was in order (you could hear a fucking pin drop in that place after we finished that tune and watt very wisely went into the next song without pause). we finished up the show and several peeps came up to us w/ nice comments but this gig was a definite character builder. I still had a blast tho'. thurston, from sonic youth even showed up for the last three songs of the piece and the encore.
we loaded the gear up into the boat, then headed over to thurston's pad where we were staying. we settled in and rapped w/ him over a few glasses of wine; he told some quite funny stories. we were all feeling the effects of the adrenalin wearing off so we went upstairs and rolled out the bags (we each had our own room and bed-most welcome) conk came very quickly. buona notte musicanti....
there was weird dreams again, some hurts but maybe not to the degree of last night's. for the reason, I found myself driven to dig a hole in the earth (seemed like earth but in a way it seemed like glass ground up really, really fine) to put myself into from the chin down so my hands couldn't get at my face cuz I felt compelled to pick on myself, squeezing on carbuncles. seems the carbuncles were like bottle caps to be popped of as if w/a screwdriver, sick. around each blackheaded capper, my skin felt so, so very tender - it was bizarre. I felt compelled to touch around them at this sensitive part and the only way to stop myself was to bury me up this way. all covered, I felt a warmness seeping in me, like I was being cooked and these carbuncles were welling up w/the heat. there was a realization in me that if I can just let go of these compulsions then I could find some piece and so I fought hard w/myself to push these ideas out the pores in my head, in between each hair follicle. I was amazed to see it was kind of working but then freaked out to see hammers - their wielders hidden so as it appeared the hammers were 'pert-near swinging in mid-air - pounding these thoughts back into my head. I heard myself cry out w/hurts, slow moaning building into full-blown holler 'till I screamed myself hoarse. I had to resign myself to these thoughts, having them pounded in even deeper cuz it seemed these hammers didn't have just a flat surface to the pounding par but like a nail in which to drive each thought in deeper. what accurate blows, I thought, to make each eat land just so, especially seeing how these thoughts were like the diameter of a hair. it was really weird. popped at seven bells and hosed off, definitely sweaty on the forehead and in the hair from those thoughts. anyway, we gotta get the boat out of the lot quick so no time to dwell - this shit just seems to happen, maybe tour stress or maybe I'm just out of my fucking head... whatever. more oatmeal w/blueberries - different from the way I make it even w/out the blueberries cuz I do it much more thicker but still twice in a row, seeing the only other time I had it home-cooked this tour was w/annie in lincoln - thank you, tina.
we hoof out to the parking pad - I get a liverwurst sandwich again (these sure are trippy) on the way and we take the boat north and east over to fdr/east river drive. my guys haven't really seen this part of manhattan. the traffic's pretty intense but still flowing, it'll get much worse later for sure so it's a good thing in a way we're getting out now. I tell my guys that one day they gotta take the circle line cruise and see how much island manhattan really is - kind of hard to see just walking around some of its streets. on another foray w/juan rosenfelder, he took me on that, a few weeks before the illness (yep, that illness) on new years day, 2000. it was a blast even if it w/the coldness. all the bridges, especially on the east side. there's signs now on the bridges saying "no photography" but I wonder if that's just for bridges, makes you scared to have a camera. pete said he read something about people getting in trouble after the fact, not knowing until they get the hand put on them. shit, I just want tour memories, not any trouble - I'm not out to make trouble w/my little digicamera. we take I-87 through the bronx and past yankee stadium - the red sox put the yanks out the other night and took the pennant, maybe an end to the "bambino curse" or what? not such a big deal to me though I gotta say I'm prone to pull for the underdog (see mingus' autobiography), seems natural to me. up into yonkers and north on I-287, rural starts becoming more and more as cement gets less and less 'till were in country side and heading to connecticut on I-684. some plug for construction but not real bad. I-84 to hartford and then on more jog, into northampton in western mass on I-91. trippy a town like the way it is now was the home of calvin coolidge. we get in around noon and I park in front of the police station. not on purpose but that's the only space open near where we're gonna play, the iron horse. I'm not there for long though cuz a hood gets put over the meter saying I'll be towed if parked there - what's that about? luckily, a spot opens up closer to where we need to be anyway. crimony.
I go get a piece of pizza called "salad" at a pad called pinnochio's - this ain't no tudino's (I actually don't chow much peetz but two days in a row is a trip) but the topping's are like artichokes, peppers, olives - all whole pieces and that's what I dig. I get back to find my guys gone but wattlister johnny fubar there w/his friend dave to take pictures of the boat. I don't know how but talk gets to political stuff. I talk a little about some ideas of mine but more important is the point I try to make to them about some people wanting me to make a forum out of some display cuz it'll mean something cuz I got some kind of public whatever identity (of some sort). for example, someone giving me a shirt to wear or a making a statement I don't feel comfortable about and when I say it's ok if they do that where they are in their life, they say it doesn't mean as much as if it was me doing it somehow. I don't even think it's a question of getting behind some cause but more like they don't have confidence in making their own forum, maybe cuz of fucked up values being culturally perpetrated - I can't even say consciously really except to slant it kind of cynical (not hard to do though I must admit). I have a weird sense that what it really comes down to is this bizarre faith in the cult of celebrity which makes others feel small cuz they think they might be lacking there. to think about it, if I known for anything, it's for bass cuz that's what I do and even then I'm only as worthy of that attention as I'm working it in that moment. I don't feel much comfortable otherwise but even w/that sometimes! I will talk about other things, sure - but like d. boon used to say, "as a citizen" (he was hilarious that way cuz he was so earnest - I loved it). man, raymond wouldn't even go that far and look what an amazing artist he is. I admire such a grounding, even the shyness though yeah, they aren't afraid to talk about things. it's the high and mighty shit that fouls up the air and to think someone would want to try and cash in on that is 'pert-near as crazy as the spouter their springboarding on. I don't know, just my thoughts about it. the inferiority stuff breeds a kind of back-handed enabling of some silly shit, that's all I'm saying. we are a strange species, us humans. bob faye (straight to video, sebadoh) comes by w/his wife and new baby to say hi - he just moved here from l.a. a year ago, great to see him again.
I do some tour spiel chimping in the diary 'till load-in time and then we soundcheck w/soundman jim. about to konk in the boat, I get a pumpkin pie baked by andy and laura and they're her w/laura's son jamie (his first watt gig) - great folks... many many thanks, truly. I love pumpkin, just love it - have wore pumpkins (cut like a jack-o-lantern but w/the bottom cut out instead of the since it's my noggin taking the place of the candle) on my head for gigs on three different halloweens... speaking of which, I've asked raul to find something for me to wear on this year's, it'll be in chapel hill, nc. I use all three blankies on me and the yellow coat all zipped up cuz though it was sunny all day (a righteous new england fall day w/the colors their trees bright and incredible), it's cold for the night.
I miss the opening act, locals called the bears that played w/me last time - met them earlier and they were nice cats. pete comes and shakes me awake. who's at the open hatch, behind him? j mascis! alright. have to shake myself awake some and we get to talk a little before I go in. he says too bad I don't have the little fold-up bike cuz there's a bike path made of recycled glass that goes from here in northampton to his town (amherst) made of recycled glass that pops your tires! good to see j again. I go into the venue and get ready, everyone's sitting back at tables, hmm... we start the piece - pete's first gig as a forty-year-old. the situation's got me a little self-conscious and it's hard to keep my eyes open... I'm trying though. I can feel my guys feeling a little weirded out too but it's gotta be kind of a test on us, in a way to see if we're for real (or at least more real than a figment of our own imagination or a setup that's being spoonfed). come the "pissbags..." tune and some folks bail, first two and then five or six more. it's not a lot and I fucking be even paying attention to it but in a way, it helps me rally and get it more together rather than let it accelerate a cave-in. I'm into that (mostly I never can tell where an inner-strength to allow me such a backbone comes from). it's a tough gig, it's a strange gig but it's not a lame gig - I think we did pretty ok but I do show my in security by saying it felt like a "college gig" or whatever. in fact, a couple of dozen people did come and stand in front of the stage - that's what's lame about closing your eyes or keeping them on guys can keep you from noticing! I think another thing that helped was a sense of humor I let run through me... not to make me feel silly but keeping my keel in the water. we do the encores and in pete's take on the dylan cover, there's some giggling in a quiet part and he hollers, "you can laugh now, but..." it sounds pissed off but after the song he explains he was referring to the lyrics and not trying to be defensive, I think he's sorry about what happened in toronto w/the nice cat randy and doesn't want to give the wrong impression again - much respect to pete. gig done, folks come up to talk - "watt, when are you going to play connecticut again?" gotta do that again, sorry... it has been a long time. thank you guys for making the hellride. wattlister bruce is here and gives me a john fogerty "centerfield" pin. a little big but I wear it anyway - thank you, bruce. thurston comes up to talk - alright! he had a gig in cali for neil young's "the bridge" benefit and drove right from the airport and caught the piece from the beginning of the paradise part on. he says it was inspiring which is kind of hard for me to write here cuz it makes me full of myself but I'm leaving it here cuz he's given me so much inspiration over the years that I want to show how giving he's always been w/me. he's got a buddy helping him w/his ecstatic peace label (by the way, byron coley brought my "spiels..." book sent from chapu earlier but couldn't stay for the gig - I thought of him tonight, an old friend) and I can't remember exactly a gig he brings up where he played w/me a trinity college in hartford, ct but what I do remember is some shutters on a window, old metal ones that have imprinted a gallows scene. he has trouble understanding what I'm saying cuz I guess I wasn't being clear, I feel like an idiot. even more, thurston points out that there was hardly any college people at the gig - it was more just dudes. he was right and I feel like an even bigger idiot. that's what can come out of insecurity.
we pack up and though j said we could konk his pad, thurst goes up to him and says his pad is closer so let us come there (like a quarter mile verses twelve miles). I say bye to j and he says he liked me using the pedals - j's alway been into effects on his guitars. he wants me to flow info on the bike seat I use, the one w/no middle part and just two pads to hold you on your ass. we follow thurst over to his house, it's all done now (I've seen it in lots of its beginning phases) and is righteous, I love it. thurst makes me tea and talks to me about the upcoming election. he's very aware and keeping up on everything, a real kind of "family values," I think - he considers it being responsible. he talks about the gigs he's just done too - that neil one, a mexico city one and a new orleans one. I like hearing about these things cuz he doesn't dwell on it all being about him or his group but rather insightful things that came down his way. thurst is a living resource, a treasure for me. he likes the new dylan autobiography, saying he likes the writing, it reads like a song. he brings me to the room where coco plays, it's full of dolls and toys and that's where I'm konk which I do. thanks, thurst.
tuesday, october 26, 2004 - providence, ri
Woke up feeling a hundred percent, got to sleep in, and woke up when my body said it was time, i had a trippy dream about the beastie boys, george hurly was there, but it wasn't him in the face, and were all hangin out on an almost vertical roof of this hugh victorian house thats inside a giant hole, just the tips sticking out, and we're all circled around a giant ghetto blaster break dancing, all kinds of weirdness happened, and i have no idea what any of it meant, it was scary, i remember having to climb to the tip of the house and jump a giant gorge to get to ground level. This house we're staying in is a trip, there's all kinds of diffrent stair cases leading everywhere, there's art and books all over the place, real high ceilings, and every thing is this dark brown stained wood, very beautiful old house. I jumped outta bed all smiles, found my way down stairs, grabbed a bananna, and went outside to check all the fall colors in the back yard. Got all hippie, and took a ton of pictures of flowers, and these trippy looking mushrooms. Our drive to providence wasn't a long one, so we had time to take a walk down to campus and grab some chow, black bean burger toped with portobello mushrooms with some red beans and rice, washed down with a super protien drink, total energy food.
The drive down to providence was mellow, we got thrown of the path by a detour, and had to take some back roads back to the main highway, beautiful country, no signs anywhere so we just kept sailing south with our fingers crossed, finally made it back to our original course. I swear there was one detour sign, and that was the last we heard of it. Some detours once we got off the interstate too, but i worked around em' and navigated us to the club without delay. Ofcourse, like every other club there's no parking, so we park a few blocks away and hoof it to the place, boss is there, and tells us we can park across the street after six, that's in a few hours, so pete and i go check out providence. We find a place to get some coffee, and then a corner to hold down. Most of the converstion revolves around joe depasquale, the town council man of providence, i've never met him, but i've heard nothing but hilarious things about him, and some crazy stuff too, the newest story is about him loseing his finger while building a boat, some how his finger got stuck between something, and his body weight pulled it off... his ring wouldn't come off. Six rolls around, and we do i quick soundcheck, after that i take off again, and do some roaming around providence.
Today is the third game off the series, so who know what's gonna happen, and we're at the heart of it. I had a vision of angry mob filippin' the boat over, in total joy that they're team won, or maybe they'll just light it on fire, so we could still drive it, it'd just be all crispy. I heard the other day, that a police officer, shot a pepper spray gun into a crowd of people, and it hit a girl right in the eye, and killed her. That's so fucked up, why do towns go nuts just because a sports team wins? It's so dumb, it validates, well at least in their mind, the police to fuck with the citizens, and it somehow validates people knocking over their nieghbors car, it's like the three hundreth and sixty sixth day of the year that every one trys to to forget about right after it happens, just clean up the mess,and mark it off the calander. It dosn't make any sense to me, fuck, it dosn't make sense at all. It's this supposed happy time, so people turn around, and take a dump right in there bed... whatever.
Played a good gig, not a ton of people at the gig, but that makes no diffrence to me, hell i'm use to shows for ten people, it makes it all the better for the ones who do come. I finally got to meet joe d., and sure enough, the first thing he does, even before saying a word, he lifts his hand, shows off the spot where the finger used to and smiles, i swear there wasn't even a nub, it was gone straight down to the palm. Some how he fished the ring outta the water, so if he's got the ring, he's got the finger, he wanted to wear it around his neck, but his wife won't let him, and think that'd be rad, the town council man, with his missing finger around his neck. He got the whole show on video, so let me watch that, then i'll give ya a play by play of all the fuck ups. After the gig, pete and i went over to one of joes buddies place, kyle, real good guy, it's neat when you can just click with someone, and get along real easy. Hung with the reputation for a while, then called it a night, and passed out on a easy chair, pete kept dangleing his rank socks over my nose, so i had to sleep with a jacket over my face... real funny pete.
popped at thurston's pad and felt great; I'd had a wonderful conk and I was feeling way rested. I still had to do the hyde-to-jekyll tho' and I stretched out as far as I could grabbing the invisible handles. I finally rolled out of the bag and went to do a nuch needed hose off in the shower. I stood and soaked for quite a while as all the bad floated away then got my things together and went downstairs. watt was doing the email rock while thurston was rapping w/ a friend of his and watt's named bob. we decided we would hoof it down the street for breakfast so that's what we did; we went into the smith college cafeteria and I scored some kind spinach salad which I chowed down w/ extreme prejudice. smith college is an all-women's college; very old and the campus is absolutely gorgeous (thurston in fact lives in the old pad of the president of the school). we hoofed it back to thurston's and watt introduces me to his wife Kim, who I also immediately must say goodbye to as we have to get a move on. the drive to providence is fairly short and I read my zen book to pass the time. I also get a little sueno in and when I wake up we're in providence, tho' mike has to park about three blocks from the pad we're playing in as there is no parking in front and there won't be for several hours. me and rollie decide to hoof it into town to buy some smokes and get some coff'. we walk around for awhile when I spot a pub called "finnegan's wake", so naturally I have to go in. I order a double shot of jameson's and pour it into my coff' and after a few minutes we head back to the boat to let the chief know of the parking sitch (we had gone into the club before and the boss man billy, had told us what was up. after giving this info to watt rollie went off on his own and I went back to the club (the call), to chimp some diary. I chimped for a few hours until rollie and watt showed up , then we went to do the load out. we set everything up and Ian the soundman got us going for the check'. we ripped thru that and it sounded very good (the PA and ian were stellar), then went back to my chimping. The bartender, naomi cooked me up a grilled chix sammy and I munched out while I wrote. the opening band, reputation' showed up and it was good to see them again (they had last opened up for us in toronto). the red sox were on the tv and talking to a few peeps it seemed like everybody would be home watching the game. I wanted to do a good show anyway. rollie motioned for me to come over from across the bar and two cats that I had met last tour, mark and sean were there and we rapped w/ them for awhile. mark had brought us some savina peppers and I could already visualize the fire shooting out of our asses as a result of their consumption. nice cats mark and sean; they're watt fans from way back and come to all the shows.
the reputation started their set and there were not a lot of peeps in the pad (and the ones that were had there eyes glued to the game). this did not phase the reputation' cats and they pumped out an intense set. mark (slick), shows up w/ his lady and I give him a big hug- very good to see him again. I rap w/ him for a few minutes until I hear the reputation' rap up their set and I go to get the tea and rouse the chief. as I'm walking out towards the boat a familiar voice yells out "hey"; I turn around and it's none other than Joe de pasquale w/ a camera in tow. we decide that we should document the awakening of the chief. I open the hatch on the boat while joe d. turns the spot on the chief and starts rapping w/ him. I leave them to rap and I grab the merch box and go back into the club to help rollie set up the tools. I look around and the attendance is sparse but there's many friends there and this makes me feel better. I always love to play for the providence cats, they're very cool peeps. watt ambles in and we launch into the piece- we are all pretty on and we pull it off very well; a few clams but we soldier on thru as always. the peeps in the crowd had great spirit and showed us much love (and Joe d. filmed the entire proceedings for posterity). we launched into the encore set w/ much intensity and again the crowd was way into it. (and the red sox won). me and rollie got all the gear packed up and into the boat w/ the help of joe d., kyle, and slick; me and rollie decided to stay the night at kyle's pad as the reputation was crashing there also and we wanted to hang a little. we hopped into kyle's ride and were off towards his pad. we made it in good time and settled in quickly. the reputation' had brought some beers w/ them and we all sat around, rapped and sauced. a good time was had by all. I did some email work on kyle's puter' and called up my daughter cindy. she was sleepy and pretty much out of it but it was good to hear her voice nonetheless. I felt the sueno creep up on me as did everyone else and I conked quickly on the deck. laku noc sviravi...
pop at six bells even though I was out at three. I had a strange dream I was kind of glad to get out of even though it didn't end w/the nightmare dilemma such things usually do... in this dream I was in a big house w/lots of different rooms (thurst's pad's like this - lots of unique rooms but in this dream and it was nothing like this - it was more like a gigantic trackhousing pad, a million miles away from what kind his and kim's is which is an old new england style one-of-a-kind). there were all these people there, coming up to me to get me to do something. they were kind of like zombies but not hideous or that anything like that kind of stereotype but more like squarejohns, each though w/a different persona, a different background - all kinds of details about them I seemed able to perceive and in fact felt compelled to find out... not by asking but by somehow "absorbing" or whatever. what was really frustrating that after I "found out" all this, I would instantly forget and then my mind felt compelled to try and remember and put everything in it's place about them which by that time, they'd almost be right on me (it was usually a one-on-one situation) and I'd snap out of it just in time to get away until the next encounter. it was truly maddening on me, aahh... they'd look me right in the eye, as if to get my trust and then all these "things" about them somehow would be become "known" to me and every time, I just couldn't buy it though almost and then... I'd forget what I was trying to decipher about what seemed the most facade about it and that's when I'd try delving back into what I had just "learned" of them to make me so - aaaaaarrrrrrrrggggghhhhh... it was making me crazy. finally, a few of them did get together and "convinced" me enough or whatever to see what was it they wanted me to do. they showed me the back of a bus, where the engine was and there was a compartment right behind the engine they wanted me to crawl into via an even smaller crawlspace. this made me feel really claustrophobic and I knew there was no way I could do it so I bolted faster than I had ever did previously and further. I made it outside and onto the street and that's where I saw d. boon rolling down the street on a what seemed like a door layed sideways w/roller wheels on it, like a really wide skateboard but the wheels were more like those kind on shopping carts that twirl around as well as roll. he stopped a few yards from me and got off, standing there in the street. I ran up to it, stood on, pushed away and then sat down it as it started down this hill. however, there were cement barriers almost completely across the road and instead of going around the one little part that was open, I hit it square and got knocked off. d. boon ran up and put me on it and then stood next to me, pushing us of w/his foot, around the barriers and down the hill. I looked up at him and could see his face so relaxed. it was righteous seeing d. boon again - what a neat surprise, I kept telling myself. he was stoic and made me think him heroic. I felt like there was sun on my face but it was if dusk was coming on and the sky graying. I wanted to ask him a million things but I knew it would be such a bogart and kept still out of respect for him. I thought it was so righteous he came to visit me. I felt my eyes well up some, tears coming - I knew I didn't deserve this, even had no right. I wanted to put my arms around his ankles but knew I had not right so I just layed there still. I felt curled. I could hear the wheels on the asphalt, it was the smoothest but we weren't bouncing on bumps either. it was more a sound and a slight vibration rather than getting jarred. somehow I knew d. boon knew where he was going so I just stayed still.
I didn't put on my glasses when I popped and made my way to the head to piss but stepped on some dolls, plastic ones and I almost tumbled. idiot watt. they got a tube and though there's shower curtains, I pull them around so I can soak - third one of the tour. the tub's deceptive in its looks though and I cannot stretch out my legs. I soak 'till pruned-up anyway, feels good. I go downstairs and find kim who's got up. she's hurrying coco up for school. I talk to coco some, I think it's the first time I've ever had a conversation w/her - she's ten now. I talk some about when I was ten, coming to california from virginia. I'm an idiot though, I shouldn't be distracting what really has to get going, her to school - kim's making that clear to her. she looks at lot like thurst, damn. it's a trip to see what will come... she's got righteous parents. this young lady living here to help while she goes to college named jessica brings coco to school and I talk about my family some to her and she tells me about her's - grand parents and stuff like that. her people were early ones in cali, some w/clothes too (sewing patterns). I tell her about my little brother too, he's thirty years younger and named justin - different mas but same pop. we've been doing emails but I haven't seen him since he was a little one, maybe not even two - just before my pop died in 1991. trippy, me having a little brother - I love him. then kim makes me oatmeal and sitting at the table, she puts on tv news and gives me the ny times. she says she's obsessed by the election. so now a talk w/a kim w/my ideas about politics concerning this and I learn from her as likewise I did from thurst last night. different perspectives though, they are not clones and make true stereo on my thinking... not such a polarity w/each other but more like a chord, maybe one-five? I don't know, I think they learn a lot from each other, not so mega-competitive. non-clingy too. I wish I would've shaved... I know I wreak - third day w/the outfit/whatever but damn, numbers numbers numbers??? I have to admit I'm incoherent. when I say I wish elections were more like civic lessons maybe it's like I'm trying to find out what I'm trying to mean to. I think I can bamboozle people w/a pseudo-sense of structure, ok - coherence. it's not on purpose as much as a "character development" my lunatic-boat life has "crafted" for the stage (life's stage - I'm thinking of shakespeare, the guy I just read gene simmons said sounded "like a faggot" - what's that about anyway?). I have an idea why d. boon might've been in my dreams last night, there is strong love in these parts, walking these decks. all the years, I've learned so much and have seen so much light from them... since d. boon having to leave, no one save raymond (watt, you should admit one other) has had such an impact on me. I can barely relate the profoundness of it on me really w/my clumsy way w/words but still I feel the need to try or at least acknowledge. so much of my time in these days (especially at home but tour too) is spent alone and that's ok, kind of natural, the way I see it but I do need others to learn me things, to inspire me - to shake me up in my world or I would truly lost at sea... a sea of me! my spiel can get intense - it's not supposed to be a fucking gig! kim has to go back and konk but directs me for a walk and so I hoof. righteous weather, clear and sunny like where I live in pedro but w/a crispness we don't usually have, it brings on a sensibility that makes for a different alertness and so I think much and deeply as I hoof. this is good for me. I do this pedaling and paddling and I've had to surrender that for a bit (a bit?!) cuz of tour. it's like I'm missing exercising a weird part (which weird part?) of my head. of course I end up crying like I do at home but it's not from a sadness kind, rather it's a "wrung out from the thinkin' hard" kind. man, do I love these colors of the trees, kim and thurst have a huge orange one in front of their pad - orange like an inside-fire of the head, righteous. getting back to their pad, I find thurst getting his tea on. a look on the internet and I feel john peel has died of a heart attack, damn. thurst is shocked too. shit. john peel once talked w/me in the studio while I was doing a session thing for j mascis + the fog. he was very nice to me. I asked him about the time he read a poem for the tyrannosaurus rex album called "unicorn" and he told me about it, whoa - such a mindblow for me (t-rex was the first concert I went to and marc bolan was my first "rock hero" or whatever, the first guy to have a poster on my bedroom wall though I never had that many after). he then told me a sad story about him and marc, how he was very friendly w/him and then as he got more famous, he (bolan) wouldn't take his calls anymore. I could feel in his voice the hurt - not to blame any person as much as the whole "system" of celebrity or whatever that contributes to that shit. I went to the tree where marc bolan was killed in a car wreck when I was on tour once in england. it had things tacked up on it, tributes. I dearly hope john and marc are talking now. like raymond drew once; "for a classless society" (under a drawing of a graveyard). bob lawton comes by and we chow at the smith college cafeteria, bob springboards for a mediterranean salad and a portabello mushrom veggie burger for me, very kind of him - thank you, bob. he's a good spieler and together w/thurst, they can bookend a spiel pretty well. wish I could've seen byron this visit too, oh well. to get hour-plus spiels (I know, I'm using that word a lot right here) w/both thurst and kim in their town is lucky enough for me, damn. I will not complain but miss byron cuz he has an intensity to his spiels all his own. my friends so much spin fabric w/their thoughts for me to learn from.
it's off in the boat w/my guys for providence. south on I-91, past the old soldiers' home. east on the mass pike (what I've always called "the richie blackmoore road" cuz of the pilgrim hat they use for its symbol - I saw him wear one of those in the 70s) 'till almost wooster and then south on ma-146 but there's a detour and we get put on a tiny-ass road that takes us through a few massachusetts "villages" (very tiny old towns) that's a little frustrating (raul working the map stuff the best he can but is lost) but I have to admit, pretty. we find our way back (losing no miles really cuz we were virtually paralleling the route we wanted) and into rhode island on I-95 into providence's downtown where we're playing tonight, a pad I've never done called the call (booked by kaul, the man-outside-the-van steve!). we're here early (even w/the wandering) so I park a few blocks away and stay w/the boat and chimp diary as my guys wander 'till soundcheck time when some parking will open up across the road from the pad. souncheck w/soundman who's very cool peeps, he's a sax player too - digs the coltrane we have play. I go to the boat to konk but chow some 'dines right before, bundled up like chief joseph w/the blankies cuz though it's clear ('pert-near full moon), it's cold.
pete comes to get me and there's a light behind his head. I'm shaken awake to find joe d behind it and a camera, whoa! so great to see him. I missed the reputation, the band from chicago that played w/us in toronto, they are such nice, nice folks. it was canadian thanksgiving then and tonight is the red sox going for the third game of the world series and breaking an eightysix year curse so I'm kind of sad for having a pad for them like that though this way-more cave that at the horseshoe, a true character-builder! we play good though, pretty much so - I love my guys and enjoy so much being w/them, trying to work this stuff for folks who are also so very happening to be doing it for. it makes what I'm doing life make so much sense w/the doubts to rush and overwhelm me. I get a huge sack of habaneros - grown right in this area - from a cat named dennis, much gratitude for him. the bass cat in the reputation has me sign his bass - damn, he had to do the gig direct w/out an amp - I would've let him use my amp no prob if I would've known (if I would've been awake! what a strong sailor he is, much respect. my guys go w/them (the reputation folks) to a friend of mark's named kyle to drink beer and konk w/them while the same mark (called by his buds "slick" a dear bro who's been going to my gigs here for years - also a bud of joe d, a man like him I respect much - my two favorite cats of warren, ri) rides w/me to his pad where I will konk. I get to say hi and thank you to frank wilson, who both helped us load the boat and had mark garza make me that yellow banana plower II bass - thank you much, frank.
good spiel at mark's for about an hour w/him - lots of spiel today for watt! it's ok, when it rains, it pours and I can dig it. I'm doing it soft enough to where it's not hurting the talkbox, easier to do the gig tonight, so grateful for it coming back for me. mark's got a new cat that is quite a bundle, whoa. much different than my man cat but still, it makes me think of him. noches.
wednesday, october 27, 2004 - cambridge, ma
For sleeping in a chair, i woke up feeling pretty good, i was up atleast an hour, before everybody else, so stepped out for a walk. When i got back, kyle was just wakeing up, both of us were pretty hungry, so we headed over to the grocery store to pick up some food for breakfast. Made a decent meal for the crew, and chowed down, said our goodbyes, and made our way to cambridge, also the van got it shocks fixed, mike took it in early in the mourning to get the left shocked done up proper. I spent the ride down to cambridge in the back, trying to catch up on my diary, i've been falling way behind, and thats not good, especially when the end of the week is coming up. Shit, tonight's the fourth game, and it's a full moon, and there's gonna be a lunar eclipse, man that's kinda scary, if boston wins, there's gonna be a riot in the streets. I thought we were gonna catch the full moon in manhatten, and that sorta freaked me out, but i think tonight's it's gonna be alot weirder.
When we got to the club we lucked out and found a spot right in front, it was highly illegal to be parked there, it was a loading zone, and an hour before six, but mike was gonna stay with the boat to make sure it's okay and it dosen't get towed. I've got a mask, now i need to find one for mike, after about a half hour of searching arround various places, i score on this sorta blue, kinda green egor/ mongoloid mask, it's the funniest looking thing, and real cheap, i also pick up another one for myself, ya know choices, if i don't wanna be a an old bag lady, i can be a brain eating walking dead, or i can even have two mask, and change it for the encore, i can't wait. When i go back to van mike's holding the rear view mirror in his hands, that;s weird i think to my self, the mother fucker fell off he says, oh shit, drivin' through two crazy ass cities today and tomorrow, and we're not gonna have a mirrror, not happening, at least it didn't happen on the highway, we all say in unison. The club is open, so we can get the gear in a little early, and get the sound check done sooner than later, i haven't eaten all day, and the caffine is tearing up my stomach. During sound check the other bands start showing, well one of the other bands, the garage dogs, friends of mikes, the other group, well, they loaded all their gear in the wrong club... doh!. Garage dogs are some bad ass dudes, real cool, they moved out to l.a. from boston, and decided to go back, said it was the worst mistake ever. I'm super hungry, so pete and i hit up a sechzuan place around the corner, so good. After dinner, i take a walk and hit up a local record store. Picked up a mixed disc of old hip hop, has schooly d, ultra magnetic mcs, and a bunch of other real good stuff, after that i throw on the head phones, and take a walk around cambridge. I make it back in time for the dogs, they started a bit late, the patrons wanted them to wait till the inning was over. The dogs were pretty funny, very animated, drummer looked like animal when he played, busted about five sticks. In relation to other bands before, they were a mix between the dead milk men, and the jabbers. After them were the count me outs, pretty good group, and the singer gets extra points for having a flipper tattoo.
Our turn to go up, the boss had us wait awhile, she's thinking that if we wait, more of a crowd will show up after the game ends, fuck that, let's just play, so we do. There's a good crowd, and they wanna be there, not at home with their eyes glued to the boob. Right before we went on a couple recognized me from the paper, and started up a conversation, they said they made a hell ride to get there, so i make them my guests, which is so cool, cuz it's the ladies birthday, so happy birtday
popped at kyle's pad and immediately went to go hose off; the other cats were still in sueno-ville and I took a shot of gran marnier to deflate the head, then hopped in the shower. feeling much better, I went to read my email. rollie and kyle had gone out to buy some groceries so we could whip up some breakfast. they returned shortly and rollie began to whip up some eggs, rice , beans and chorico (a very kind italian sausage unique to providence). it tasted very good and I felt very good after. watt had also shown up w/ slick and he showed me the work they had done on the boat. Joe D, hooked him up w/ a cat who welded the boat up right, so we were good to go on that front. it was a relief to know that the boat was in good shape (she's a home and a feeder).
we packed up our stuff and snapped some pics w/ the reputation and a big "depasquale for town council" banner (joe d's up for reelection and I just know he's a shoe in again). we said our goodbye's to everyone and hopped in the boat w/ slick as we were going back to his pad for awhile. much respect to kyle for having us and to the reputation cats for being true bro's.
we got to slick's and watt did some email work while I glanced thru a cool picture book on the early days of punk. I was way into it. slick had me sign a poster from our first tour and I played w/ his cats for awhile until the boss called time and we were off again. much respect to mark (slick), for being real cool to us.
the drive to cambridge was short and we scored a parking spot right in front of the club (tt the bear's) which was very shit luck on our part. me and rollie went for a little walk up the street to feed our coff' jones, then found a cool little thrift store where I scored an awesome flannel. we headed back to the club and the boss was there (miles was his name), and we loaded the equipment in and set it up (we also helped him move a huge tv set to the side of the curb). the soundman, ellio showed up and got us miked up and we ripped thru the check'; everything sounded great. hilken, one of the punk rock aerobics ladies showed up and we rapped for awhile. she was actually playing in one of the opening bands (the count-me outs), along w/ her boyfriend and I was excited to check them out.
me and rollie hoofed it down to a little szechuan pad and strapped on the feedbag- it was a very welcome meal and the burn did me good. after the great chow we sat outside and smoked cigarettes and who do I see walk up but me and lil the kill's friend Zorana, who showed up to see the show. she was w/ a friend of hers, jamie, and we rapped for a little until it was time to go back towards the club. jamie and zorana went on to go eat while I went inside tt's to chimp. I listened to the opening band, the garage dog's' as I chimped and I dug on em' much. very intense. The count me outs' were way cool also; hilken has much stage presence and the tunes are quirky and cool. I was glad that both had opened for us. I went outside to smoke a cigarette and suddenly remembered that there was a lunar eclipse going on; I looked up in the sky and there it was- I watched as the moon was completely obscured. what a trip!(first one I've ever seen completely).I went back into the club and the count me outs' were just finishing their set, so I got the tea made and kicked back for awhile. everybody in the pad had their eyes glued to the tv watching the red sox game; they were winning and it looked liked the curse would be broken after 86 years (I'm not much of a sports fan but even I was kind of caught up in the emotion of the whole thing). I went to go rouse the boss and I told him to take his time as the sox' game was just about over. I lugged the merch box in and then helped rolli get the machines in place. then we waited. the chief soon ambled in and we started the rumble; the sound was great to me (ellio is an organ player too so he appreciates the nuances), and it helped my playing much. we made a few fumbles as I lost some focus for a minute, but we soldiered it thru. The encore set came off very well and the peeps were very kind to us. much respect to them. as we packed up the gear, lots of folks came up and gave us many compliments. It made me feel really good and is what makes the whole tour worthwhile for me. ray, who we've stayed w/ for the last few times in boston showed up and helped us get the stuff in the boat and we were soon off towards his pad. The streets were absolutely packed w/ folks celebrating the sox' winning the world series and there was also hoards of hombre milling about. I was happy they had won, they really deserved it.
we got to ray's pad, settled in and rapped over some great red wine until the sandman came a creepin'- I conked very happily. buona notte musicanti...
pop at seven bells cuz joe d is supposed to come and help me get this shock strut mounting hole for the port side of the boat fixed. I don't need an alarm clock cuz of all the touring - somehow I know and just pop. I dreamed I had like amber plastic rods coming through me and holding me suspended in the air. I was like four feet up. the rods came up from the earth. I could very much smell it was earth and not deck. the extended up through me and into the sky, like when you shine a flashlight up at the stars. I could feel myself ascending up along these rods and it causing sensations along my bones and flesh, like the rods were smooth to a point but kind of porous and catching on me a little bit. this started bothering me to no end and causing me much to dwell on it. I'd slide up and down these rods, a little further up and a little further down each time until I was literally getting pounded into the earth, first causing an outline to my form, then an indentation and finally a pit - like made w/a cookie cutter, deeper and deeper. I get mashed in so quick and deep that not much dirt would fall in but some would and I could smell it, all earthy. when I'd go up, I'd feel more and more lighter, weightless-like. likewise, I'd feel heavier, like more gravity was pulling on me as I was pounder further w/each swing of my "orbit" or whatever (it wasn't really elliptical though, more just up and down). there was light running down these tubes, making them amber and I could feel the light fill into me. weird. I wanted so bad to wiggle around! I felt some itches and was so frustrated I couldn't get to them cuz I was frozen stiff (but not cold). I felt scratchy in my throat. I felt bumps inside me mouth, inside my eyelids and on the bottoms of my feet, inside my socks (I was fully in my usual outfit - flannel, levis and chuck taylors). I got totally absorbed by this, attending to every detail of this insane happening - from w/in, from w/out. as the scrutiny I was embarked grew almost unbearable, I felt a pop and then all focus was on an expanding of a void inside my head, a tiny speck of nothing growing 'till in cleared my mind of nothing and then went beyond it, an emptiness that was somehow like blindness, absorbing all and everything. it was like I was turned inside-out but the inside was 'pert-near black hole in it's being and swallowed all light, me not be able to see me from the outside (I could before) or sense from the inside. I was dumbfounded and that's how I popped.
I went to piss and found the morning bright and righteous, coming right into the window. whew, that really was only a dream! mark wakes soon and gets coff. the eight bell shove-off has now been pushed back to nine and a half cuz joe got held up from konking right by his new son dominic. I hear babies don't konk regular. joe comes by w/his older boy sonny (he's five) and we all three go to his school in bristol, next door to warren. it's an arts magnet school and anthony quinn (the actor) put money into it. first though, joe gets me a churico and peppers calzone at a little pad called the bristol bakery run by a lady from rostov, russia. it's very good eats. on to school, I meet sonny's teacher and she's into me maybe coming next time, like as a show-and-tell "item" or whatever. I tell joe d about being asked by a pedro friend of mine who teaches second grade and had me talk to the class. they amazed me by how smart they were, damn! I'm not around little ones much and tried to guess what they might be like by thinking about what I remember about being eight and I could only think of myself as a fucking idiot. these kids really wowwed me. three of the girls had even started a band - eight years old! being from pedro (lots of pedro people - young and old), they hadn't traveled much so they were all into me pulling down the map of the u.s. and showing them what a tour is like and the different parts of our land. I hope I got them hankering to actually visit these parts when they get a chance to. I brought my bass too and let them all hold it, one at a time. they knew about guitars and drums but bass was mysterious to them (righteous!). they then had like a thousand questions - I loved it! later, I got all these thank you letters from them that were beautiful. I was so glad to have the opportunity to do that. across the street, joe shows me a fountain that used to be used for horses to drink from that his pop jumped into to get money he dropped in there accidently. he said it was intensely gross w/slime and all kinds of shit but now it's filled w/cement. the spout on the side to feed the trough is trippy, a wild man face w/goat features. his pop probably still has nightmares from that. we go back to mark's so he can follow us to his friend wayne's farm. it's here we're gonna fix the boat. wayne built a fiftyseven foot boat out of steel - he used to work at the yard w/they built nuclear subs but sick of what they were made for and quit. joe's boat, the "maggie d" is here and 'pert-near done. he did a great job, wow - everything re-done and much different from when I saw it, just when joe acquired it. it's from this boat that he fell from while working on it - well, he didn't exactly fall cuz he caught his wedding ring and it tore the finger it was on off. ouch. joe gets the port wheel off and then wayne welds a washer to where the wear on the chassis was - great job... grazie mille, fratello. joe shows me a one-cylinder john deer tractor from 1939 that still runs - you spin the flywheel to get it started! the only draw-back is that I was supposed to be in boston at a radio thing but we need the boat right to really go anywhere so unfortunately priorities prevailed. I call them though and say we can do a phone one later on. I hate doing that but what can I do? joe rides w/me to kyle's pad so I can gather my guys. he gives me his mason coffee cup, thank you. he also signed the boat over the wheel he worked on - really, wayne did the essential welding but joe got the wheel on/off as well as the shock, both cats are very much brothers and they have all my gratitude. the folks who will help you when you're out w/the sally forth, what treasures to come into your life. I've been really lucky that way and people still ask why I play the way the do, why I put everything into it. I feel I owe it cuz the gig-goers are righteous.
at kyles, chow's been fixed up: eggs, toast, churico and I shovel some small part of it. we talk some w/the reputation folks, I wish them very well on the rest of their gigs and safe seas - good cats. bye to joe and mark - big hugs from watt. we're on to cambridge via I-95, the main road in warren takes us right there. actually, the mass pike takes us where we want so we hop on that for the last few miles and get to where we're playing tonight, a pad I've had many many gigs at, 'pert-near all in these parts in the last bunch of years: tt the bears, in cambridge. we're braced for whatever cuz the red sox could win the world series tonight in saint louis so who's gonna be at the game? there was violence here after a sox win when a young woman was killed after getting hit w/a pepper ball from the police, fucking tragic. our problems are much smaller though still frustrating - the police have changed the parking situation - nothing now is available in front of the club except for loading after six. shit. I hold the fort and chimp diary w/the boat in front 'till the club opens and we can load out - I chow some 'dines for nourishment when I get a little hungry. this parking thing is so fucking agro on the nerves - even more intense than worrying now about a gig is wondering where the fuck am I going to put the boat! damn, makes me crazy out of my fucking mind! to make matters more insane (for today, anyway), there's scaffolding around the pad cuz of some work being done that catches the fucking starboard mirror of the boat and snaps it off, god almighty! that definitely has gotta get fixed in the morning. gotta laugh and catch the lessons that are getting taught - wake up, watt... randi,the gigboss, arrives and let's us load in - first we help move a giant tv though. a tiny dolly to do it but as a team, we get it done - just like working this opera, I love my guys. matt and his brothers have a band called garage dogs that are opening tonight - matt's a buddy of raymond's too and just moved here from cali though he's a mobile original. he's cool people, much. also opening is hilken (from punk rock aerobics) and her boyfriend's band, the count-me-outs. so good to have buds w/us here though I have the STRONGEST feeling it's gonna be a character-builder. nonetheless, work the room - no cowering. we soundcheck w/soundman elliot and I am beat - randi let me put the boat in front of where she puts her car - thank you so much, randi. she's really changed w/big weight loss, much resepct to her - changing to get healthy is what I did losing weight too. I also had the sickness that "helped" in a way but I definitely would not recommend that program. better w/the chow changes, pedalin' and paddlin'. stopping the constant whisky-drowns contributed much too. I go to the boat and konk fast.
pete gets me for gig time, so sorry I missed my buddies play but I had tiredness beat me down so. a walk through the hatch is 'pert-near a walk down lonely street, probably my smallest tt's crowd ever. nothing like last night but still... whatever, I'm not complaining and will play my heart out. eighty-whatever years for these sox to make histroy, watt can take a hit at a gig, ok? the town's been very good to me and you know I'm going to be back. we start the piece and my guys are all over the place, I stop us at the bridge of the first tune and turn my mic to look directly at them and say, "guys, we gotta focus." shit, I might've fucked up and played only two rounds in the chorus instead of three so I gotta get it together as well. when I ask my guys to do stuff, lots of times it's like having them to ask me to do stuff too. they help me help me much. it's out of respect I reach out for them, truly. I just have some bad habits at communicating it in the short time when things seem acute, aahh - I hate that and really am trying to overcome it. we settle in together though and do the piece pretty good though the sound is so bad (this room needs it packed to get good acoustics) and the monitors sound not like skivvies on them but skivvies w/two miles of country road as well, crimony. the sox win their ring right at the end of "burstedman" - much respect to them. at the end of the gig, I say something about reading in that "guerilla radio" book about arkan starting his death squad gang out of soccer hooligans and so goes the double-edged sword of sports (like anything else human) but there's some kind of justice in a big-money team that did some low-class shit to the sox (I'm not talking about the cardinals) going down and them busting up a curse. sports are weird, I was so involved w/them as a boy but I can see the allegorical sense w/people can get so wrapped up. I still have passions about hoop, just watching it w/raymond. I love the game though and really, really try hard and not get provincial or worse, idiotic about it. the love of the game - they do call it a "game," right? and it does get "played," right? it's not my place to preach on such matters but I do air out some of these thoughts. I don't feel the most comfortable on stage doing this cuz it's kind of like coming on like some cop but this is what falls out of my wordhole tonight. that and all the thanks I truly mean towards our crowd tonight. I also say the show was for two people that have just passed - the girl victoria (killed w/the pepperball) and john peel. love to them. nice folks, some came from northampton and one of them's a teacher for kim and thurston's coco, whoa! I relate the d. boon I had in her dollroom. good vibes and spiel w/lots of the kind-hearted towards us, thank you! look who's here too - mister david thomas (pere ubu), wow! he asks if I'm into doing that music w/poetman dan from toledo cuz he's into it to if I am. I say I way am and shake his hand much! thank you, david. mollie, the lady from the station I was supposed to be at is here and I apologize much for the boat taking precedence on our spiel but she says she understands. she's very nice people - all the radio people I've met cannot get these same words from me cuz the whoredom of that racket but what folks should realize is that there's very happening cats - just like anything where there's a choice "to be" (not trying to sound even partly like an army commercial).
we load out and there's sirens going off, hopefully it's not too weird w/crazy shit. good buddy ray has invited us for konkage and we follow him through a wild maze of turns (this town has it's roads laid out on cowpaths and that mean some loopy shit!), seeing lots of police and having to dodge some people in the street but no one grabs the boat, trying to tip and burn it. thank you. I got raul w/his head out the window cuz of no mirror on his - now that's some really scary shit, damn. we make it safe to ray's pad and for once in this town, no prob w/parking cuz there's a church lot - blessed be. I lay out my sack right quick on entry and do some spiel w/ray, who is a great cat and deserves hours from me but I'm too tapped to hold out much. sorry, brother. him and his pop went to sox games when he was young and though he's not here to see what happened tonight, ray's a happy man for him. so ends week six of our tour, 'pert-near soon as I can get the mask down and the snores started.
read week 5 of the tour diary
read week 7 of the tour diary
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