Sunday, May 31, 2009

Pittsburgh, PA

Tonight was a crazy one. After the most beautiful day I've ever seen in Pittsburgh, the Pirates won & we entertained a capacity crowd at PNC Park. We were accompanied by a half a million dollar fireworks show. Can't wait to see the pictures.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Virginia Beach, VA

The past two nights have been great. Last night was opening for Keith Urban in Charleston, WV. Tonight was opening for Gary Allen in Virginia Beach, VA. Jimmy worked us out on the beach today. It was the toughest work out I've ever been a part of.
Tomorrow should be another great, busy day.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

On My Way Out

Since my last entry, we played Richmond, VA, Uncasville, CT, & Chastain Park in Atlanta. It has been that kinda schedule that keeps me from doing extra things like blogging. I've been spending that time showering, eating, & sleeping. Not much extra time lately.
I spent all of yesterday & most of last night finishing Gareth Asher's album. It feels good to finish a chapter on a book. I only have one chapter left for this book: mixing. I can't wait to tackle this in my "spare time." Thus has been the story with this album; we have averaged one day in the studio every month. It's hard to do that. I don't suggest it even thought it's been necessity for this album.
I'm leaving in a few minutes to meet the bus & head back to West Virginia. Clocking back in...

Friday, May 22, 2009

Charlotte, NC

You would've thought today would've been your average honky tonk date. I had no idea what the day held for us.
We got to go to Lowe's Motor Speedway & hang out with Carl Edwards during his practice run today. It was very eye opening. I had no idea how intricate their operations were on the road with NASCAR.
Anyway, the set was your average bar 90 minute set. The only thing different was the lack of A/C. It had to have been over 90 degrees farenheit all night. After the set I drank 3 bottles of water. All in all, it was a good day. On to Richmond...

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Morgantown, WV

Morgantown was absolutely beautiful. It was a great day. I love walking around college towns. They always have some crazy shops downtown.
We had a nice long sound check which yielded a good stage version of the new tune we recorded this week. I can't wait to put it on a record & have be part of the permanent set.
Tonight's show was tops. I thought last night was as good as it's gonna get, but tonight's was even better.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Cleveland, OH

So I'll start with the events immediately after my last blog. We went to Kid Rock's house for the evening. We ended up recording a new song in his home studio. I was extremely impressed with his recording setup. He's such a cool guy. I would've never thought that based on his stage persona.
Anyway, we ended up staying there all day & night on Monday. We played basketball on his court, we swam in his heated pool, & we drove go carts on his go cart track. He even fed us... well.
We left his house this morning for Cleveland. We played the House of Blues tonight. We also had my first photo session with the band. Zac also bought one of my favorite types of instruments today: a vintage Gibson J45 acoustic guitar. I used to have on but sold it when I needed money. I miss it. I'm glad Zac got such a great deal on it.
Anyway, the show tonight was fantastic. We were contracted for 90 minutes but played over 2 hours. Even though I appreciate all of the performance opportunites that we've had over the past week, I still prefer headlining & playing a full set.
On to West Virginia...

Detroit, MI (a.k.a. the best day ever)

Okay. I rolled out of my bunk at 11am & set up my stuff for line check. At noon, we went to Comerica Park & sang the national anthem for the Tigers game. Even though we had to leave in the 4th, they still won 11-7.
We had good reason for leaving: we got tickets to game 1 of the western conference finals between the Red Wings & the Blackhawks. Seeing a Red Wings game is quite an experince. It's easily as intense as a SEC rivalry football game or, say, Duke-UNC basketball game.
Then, shortly after that, we had a meet & greet... then dinner.
Then we played the Detroit Downtown Hoedown just before sunset. Our set before 20,000+ ended with is backing up Kid Rock for "All Summer Long." That was amazing.
Then we got to meet & watch Willie Nelson.
We're on our way to park the bus in Kid Rock's driveway & I guess have one of those memorable nights to go along with the memorable day. Sheesh!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Green Bay, WI

We had an early radio visit today. It was fun & easy. A lot of autographs. It's a good problem to have.
Anyway, I had to skip the workout today to do a few chores. I went shopping for stuff for the bus, I restrung my instruments, took a shower, & cleaned the bus. It just seemed a better use of that hour & a half.
It was business as usual on stage tonight. I got to crank my amp & it sounded fantastic. I also enjoyed being wireless with my mandolin... which is new.
Green Bay was awesome. I hooked up with some Stevens Point Root Beer today too. It's really good. You can only get it up here too.
On to Detroit... a crazy day tomorrow.

Chicago, IL

Not much to report from today. Besides playing for a sold out arena crowd, the highlight was 6 games of 2 on 2 basketball. It was a great work out. I think I might take the day off from working out. Three days in a row of intense work out might be my threshold.
On to Green Bay...

Thursday, May 14, 2009

St. Paul, MN

Today was crazy. First of all, we were supposed to load in at 10am. Due to unforseen circumstances, we didn't get there until 12:15. There was a van waiting for us. We barely made our 1pm radio performance. It went well though.
We came back to the venue & were informed that Keith Urban's crew was running 4 hours late... so we worked. We made the best of the situation I guess.
We didn't get a sound check. That being said, I was still surprised when Zac's microphone didn't work at the top of the show. That was a little uncomfortable but we carried on until it was fixed.
I don't think I mentioned that I cut my beard off Tuesday night. I've been rockin' the 'stache for the past couple of days. After the show tonight, I parted ways with all facial hair. She starts growing back tomorrow. Just a nice change for a minute.

St. Louis

Tonight was our first night back on stage in a couple weeks. This was a fantastic night at The Pageant in St. Louis. The crowd was amazing. It was a good show; 90 minute sets are a blessing. A lesson I'll realize all too well over the next few days as we open up for Keith Urban. It's a living.
On to St. Paul...

Monday, May 11, 2009

Hawks Game

Saturday was the "Toes" video shoot. I'm not allowed to divulge any particulars, but I bet you'll like it. The band is but a side bar in the video storyline. It' still fantastic.
Anyway, Sunday belonged to Michelle. We didn't do much - which was alright with me.
Today consisted of a couple of things. We went to see "The Soloist." I didn't hate it, but I considered it a poor man's "Shine." After that, we got some groceries & had just enough time to change clothes & make our way to Philips Arena. We rocked the 'Star Spangled Banner.' The game was amazing. The only thing that could've made it better was a win. Cleveland is just flat out a better team. No way around that in a best of 7. Maybe next year. Maybe we'll get us a real 3 in free agency, re-sign Bibby, & everyone can stay healthy next year. That might ensure us to the Eastern Finals depending on the seating. One can only hope.
We watched the game from one of the boxes. It was great to see a game in such luxurious setting. Despite all the fanciness, I still dined on $4 hot dog. You can't go to a sporting event & not have a hot dog.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Star Trek Y'all

I strung 4 instruments last night before I passed out.
Michelle & I escaped Atlanta & headed for Suwanee & The Mall of Georgia. It was our shopping grounds for many an early year. The reason for such a journey was the IMAX theater nestled ever so deeply in the mall.
However, we didn't think that the 4pm would be sold out. Oops! It was.
We still saw the movie. It was fantastically portrayed by the creator of TV's "Lost." I highly suggest it.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Casey Driessen & The Colorfools

Alright! Here we go. I think I've found a new way to blog: I got a blogger app for my iPhone. Let's see if it holds up. Since the last time I blogged I've been on national late night TV twice & I've been to Hawaii. We did Leno last Wednesday & yesterday we were on Craig Ferguson (pre-taped).
I've been home from Hawaii for a couple days recouperrating. It's been wonderful sleeping in my own bed. It's also been great spending a few days alone with my wife.
We went on a pseudo-date tonight. We caught Casey Driessen & The Colorfools at Eddie's Attic tonight. It was an inspiring show. Casey's new compositions are great but the heart of the performance was the improvisation. Bassist Matt Mangano was tearing it up tonight. He is one of my closest chums. It was great to see him tonight. Casey, Matt, & I were all at Berklee together in '97. Just fantastic!