A Post Entitled Tour Update #2
Dear lovely people of the world-wide-web, friends and strangers alike,
Steph here, direct from my laptop, rolling swiftly along the 403 highway, somewhere between Hamilton, and London, Ontario. We have just three days left in this province, (London tonight, Waterloo tomorrow, and Utopia on Sunday) and I find myself harboring mixed feelings.
I believe I have developed a serious case of road-lust.
Ontario is beautiful and inviting.
I have a crush on Toronto, despite expecting it to be too daunting a place for me to take a liking to.
I think I could live there.
As soon as I get back to the west coast, I may change my mind.
I’ll just have to get rich and have homes everywhere.
Kingston is where I left you after my last post, correct?
Kingston was the gong show of this tour so far, I suppose; at least, as gong-ridden and evening as an acoustic-folk tour can produce. We played a really neat venue called The Mansion. It’s a two-level pub-style layout. However, the two levels are separated by a staircase that spirals upward inside a neighboring grain-bin. We learned that liquor can not pass from bottom-to-top of The Mansion, due to liquor laws that require a separate license for the staircase itself. This, I suppose is because the staircase is inside a separate “building” structure. Weird. A liquor license for a staircase. We shared the stage with Doug Hoyer and Michael Reault (from Edmonton), and The Pralines and The Plants (local Kingston-ians).
Attendance was slow-to-start, but picked up within the first hour, or so. We met a (very nice) woman boasting the title of “Ex-wife of The Tragically Hip’s bass player”, and stayed at the same Super 8 Motel as Three Inches of Blood, who also played Kingston that night. We invited them to chill in our room, and they accepted, but never showed. I, for one, feel cheated. Kidding. That’s okay, guys. Next time.
After Kingston, we drove through to Toronto. Our dear friend Jay Obyrne had to leave us just before the Kingston show, in order to have his freshly car-injured knee inspected by a specialist. Said specialist advised that Jay not continue on tour, but Jay is a rock star, and refused to say never. We met up with Jay in Toronto. We also met another very talented photographer by the name of Jess Baumung. He was kind enough to let us stay with him for a couple of nights, and give us a little intro to the Tdot.
The Drake show went well, and Ida Maidstone (of the O’Darling), joined us at the show, and Ashley Ball (from Hey Ocean) just happened to be there as well! It was great to see them and catch up briefly. Jess’ girlfriend, Vanessa (beautiful and talented to boot), and friends of mine from Highschool (Jessica Page, and Yan Lee), also attended. It was like a reunion, partially random, and partially orchestrated.
My least favourite part of Toronto was spending $170 on a new Macbook battery, but it allows me to pre-script blogs, while driving from town-to-town. (a.k.a. now)
After the big city, we headed to Guelph, and the GTA. Zach and I played a cafe called The Red Brick Cafe, with a band from Waterloo, The Great Chicago Fire. The cafe was charming, and the staff was lovely. The Great Chicago Fire was also excellent. We will be rejoining them in Waterloo tomorrow night for a show at The Branches, as part of a monthly college arts event called The View From Here.
We stayed with my friend Lauren Porter, and her partner Mike. They are absolutely wonderful people, and I wish we had more time to spend with them. If you live in Guelph, you should definitely be their friends.
Last night, we met up with Jenna Lane, a friend of Zach’s in Hamilton. She fed us, and gave us a warm welcome and a place to sleep, hung out and was just generally rad.
We played a show that Zach booked just a week ago at the Freeway Cafe in Hamilton, ON. We decided to stream the show online at ustream.com, a really neat site that allows you to set up a profile that users and guests can log-in to and view as you broadcast your live feed. It was both bizarre and fun and at one point we had about 90 visitors on the stream.
Well, we’re pulling in to London, Ontario now, and I should stop staring at my computer screen and help navigate, or something.
More on Hamilton, etc. later!
I will be seeing your lovely faces soon, I dare hope.
Take care until then!
A Post Entitled Tour Update 2.
So here we are. Driving around, drinking ridiculous amounts of coffee, singing our souls out… sleeping a little. I tell ya, this touring thing involves A LOT of sitting. In a car, mostly. Siting and waiting. Waiting to arrive. Waiting for a gas station to save your bladder from the five cups of coffee and 2L of water you just consumed. Waiting to get to the next town/city. Waiting to play. But the playing. Oh, the playing. This is the why of it…
We started out our tour in Saskatoon. Zach’s hometown. We played to about 80 people in the basement of the Mendel Art Gallery, and it was wonderful. SUCH an attentive audience. Actually, we seem to have had a fair amount of luck with that. Everyone smiling and listening.
I’ve met so many lovely people that it makes me wonder how anyone could possibly be bitter about the world for any prolonged period of time. Just go talk to someone! …erm… someone that looks nice. I’m not completely starry-eyed.
In hopes of saving ourselves a dime or two in the long run, we picked up an outlet adapter for the car, as well as a marvelous little invention called a “Multipot”. This contraption is a cross between a kettle and a pot. With this, we can create culinary masterpieces such as ‘soup’, and ‘oatmeal’, and I’m not sure about this one yet, but possibly ‘steamed vegetables’. We can also make tea/coffee: an absolute staple of tour.
After an 8 hour haul to Dauphin, MA, we picked up a young man named Jay Obyrne (see photo attached) www.jayobyrne.com (wonderful photographer/human being). His passions include photography and google. He enjoys long walks on the beach, and napping in cars… kidding. Kind of.
Jay will be with us for the eastern portion of tour, up until Regina, where we bid farewell, drop him off/trade him in for fellow musician Andy Shauf (www.myspace.com/andyshauf).
We will miss you, Jay.
We are happy to have you with us, Andy.
One of the best parts of touring (despite the obvious… music) is getting to reconnect, however briefly, with people I don’t get to see often… some I haven’t seen in years. Also, realizing that you, Canada, are quite lovely, and that I am so very lucky to call you home.
Take care, friends!
P.S. Dear Music, thank you.
A Post Entitled On Tour Kick-Off, and Identity Theft
After 26 hours on a bus (about 20 of which were spent napping), I arrived in Saskatoon on Wednesday evening. Zachary Lucky (friend and fellow touring musician) picked me up at the Greyhound Station.
I coerced him into going to Amigos to watch Library Voices http://www.myspace.com/thelibraryvoices and In Flight Safety http://www.myspace.com/inflightsafety command the stage. Wicked show.
Last night it was our turn!
Zach and I played our tour kickoff show last night, at the Mendel Art Gallery in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. It was an evening full of lovely people and beautiful music. Not much more you can ask for, really.
Check out the local Saskatoon musicians that shared the bill with us last night: http://www.myspace.com/lyzannefothmusic and http://www.myspace.com/funkderek
We headed to Amigos (again) shortly after the show, to watch our friends play a fabulous set of music. http://www.myspace.com/slowdownmolasses
There is a damn decent music scene in this town.
On another note.
I had my identity stolen by a girl in Florida. She ripped my songs from myspace/bandcamp/youtube, and was trying to pass them off as her own.
She had also stolen music from Jay B. and Amy K’s project “Names”, and was posing as them under the alias “Honeybooks”, which you may recognize as the title of one of the tracks of Aidan Knight and Julia Wakal’s “Awktober”.
Intricate web. SO bizarre.
Makes you wonder who the root obsession was.
This situation is mostly dealt with, thanks to the help of friends and the cooperation of the websites.
Thank you to those of you who sent e-mails asking that the content be removed. I love you all.
I almost wish those of you who didn’t see it, could have, because it was just THAT CRAZY to find.
She had even ripped the audio directly from my youtube songs, and made her own videos, lip syncing to me and my playing.
I don’t know how I’m going to top this post, so I’m going to step away from my computer now, and try to find some other drama to involve myself in.
We must entertain!
:) Hope you are all well.
uh, I mean, Steph
I love that man.
This makes no sense.
Working a full time job to support a full time ambition. It seems completely impossible most of the time. (full time?)
If it weren’t for the fact that it makes me smile, and laugh, and cry, and ache in every good and bad way at the same time, I would say I don’t know why I do it.
But I know why I do it.
Music is the only thing.
This one perfect, frivolous, horrible, beautiful, joyous, universe expanding entity that I, honestly, don’t know how NOT to do.
Why can’t I be passionate about dog walking?
I like dogs.
A Post Entitled In the beginning…
I don’t blog often.
I’m told it’s something I should do more of.
The “industry” (hate that word) today, at grassroots level, at least, is a very person-to-person experience.
You make friends… or try to.
They tell friends… hopefully. (Thus, you make more friends.)
You try to keep in contact and update everyone as to your every move.
I guess blogging is the only realistic way of doing that, right?
I wish I could talk to and spend time with everyone I have ever met that has ever supported me in this impossible feat. There are simply not enough hours in a day.
So, I suppose, here we go…
Let’s find out, together, where that (“here”) is, exactly.
About this site and its Author
I sing music.
I play it for people.
I hope you like it.
I'll be okay if you don't.