Monday, July 31, 2006

JULY 22 - Portland, OR

In Portland we played at Berbatis Pan and we were glad to see that the alternate defenition of PA wasn't just an Oregon thing and the sound here was really good. Before the show we wandered the streets of Portland hoping to run into The Dandy Warhols. We never saw them but the club promoter told us some good stories about them. Ironically however, a couple days later we drove back down to LA to meet with a video director and that night in LA we actually saw Courtney Taylor-Taylor from the Dandy Warhols out at a club.

JULY 21 - Bend, OR

We headed north to Oregon which was a really nice, scenic drive. We saw our first glimpse of snow topped mountains which we certainly weren't used to seeing in the middle of the summer.

When we finally made it to Bend, OR we arrived at the venue to load in and realized we had a different definition of PA from the club staff. I guess they thought PA was short for "Power Outlets"...???... They did have power outlets, so that was a start, but we still needed to find a PA and mics within 2 hours and all in a little ski town where we didn't know anyone. We went and ate thinking the show most likely wasn't going to happen, but after dinner we saw a couple guys who were playing songs for tourists in the town square for tips... and they had a PA! So we listened to a couple songs and during their break explained to them our situation. We ended up buying the guys dinner in exchange for letting us borrow their PA. So we headed back to the venue with the PA and plugged it into the venues PA (power outlets) and the show was saved!

Just for future clarification here is a picture of what a "PA" in Bend, OR looks like...

Sunday, July 23, 2006

JULY 17 - Sn Francisco, CA

We made our way up the coast from LA to San Francisco for our show at the Elbo Room. The venue was really nice, definitely one of the most organzied clubs we've ever played. After the show and after pulling off one of the most amazing parking jobs known to man (backing a 15 passenger van with trailer up a steep SF street and into a garage that is only about an inch wider than the trailer itself) we had a free place to stay at friends place and were able to spend a few days and really see the city. First off, the weather is amazing...sunny, but not hot and at night cool but not cold... it's perfect. We went to the beach, golden gate park, haight & ashbury and even saw the house from everyone's favorite sitcom "FULL HOUSE"!

We also were educated on the ways of the bike, which in SF the bike is not just an easy method for getting around town but a very important indicator of your social status. Despite the fact the city is all hills, you must have a bike that has only 1 gear and 0 brakes and go ahead and cover any logos with tape just for good measure.

JULY 15 - Back to LA

We headed back to LA for one more show there, this time at the ECHO (near echo park) and it was for the "Hang the DJ" club night. Before the show Aaron was outside sitting alone in our van when he noticed a guy hiding between our van and trailer. It was dark and the van has tinted windows so obviously the guy didnt see that Aaron was in the van. The mystery man kept peeking around the corner and looking in the van. He was either about to break into our van or he was being chased by someone. Finally Aaron turned on the light inside the van but the guy didnt even notice, so Aaron got out and walked up to him and the guy just ran off....weird. Judging by the dance moves the crowd was pulling while we were playing, the show went really well.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

JULY 13 - Las Vegas, NV

We made our way from LA back thru the desert to get to Las Vegas. At one point we drove by the worlds largest thermometer which read 119 degrees. We had to turn the AC off to avoid overheating the van... unfortnatly this guy didn't stop to keep his car from overheating. Opps. We avoided blowing up and made it to our hotel (which was the size of a small city) and actually got lost inside the hotel. After browsing the Barry Manilow store for awhile and losing money in the casino we finally found our room and headed over to the venue where we played at another Beauty Bar. The show went great and we headed back to the hotel and won back "some" of the money we had lost.

Friday, July 14, 2006

JULY 10, 11 + 12 - Los Angeles, CA

Los Angeles was a bit crazy so we are just now finding the time to catch up on the tour journal. We played 3 shows in the 3 days days we were in LA and spent each afternoon being carted around (6 deep) in a our managers rental car to meetings with various industry folks including a visit to INDIE 103 where we played a couple acoustic songs for them. We were hoping to meet Steve Jones (Sex Pistols, Jonsies Jukebox) but no such luck.

The first show was at Spaceland and went off ok despite there being quite a bit of feedback and sound problems. The next 2 shows were definitely "the" shows to be at in LA on those particular nights and were both with London band Scanners. The Cine-space show was great and an amazing venue that is used mainly for film premiers and film festivals. In fact, Just before we took the stage they premiered about 20 minutes of the "Scanner Darkly" film (no relation to the band Scanners). The show was packed with all of Hollywood's most tragically hip and there was a line around the block the entire night to get in. If you ever wondered where all those crazy, candid, party photos of kids who are definitely too cool for school come from... this is the place... take a look CLICK HERE

The Boarders show was on a Club Moscow night which meant that Hollywoods hipsters made even a stronger appearance and apparently the Cine-Space show was just a warm up for them. Having had our fill of eccentric LA we were ready to move on to somewhere a little more normal... like Las Vegas.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

JULY 9 - day off San Diego, CA

We had the day off today so after watching the final match of the World Cup (who headbutts someone in the chest??) we spent the rest of the afternoon at the beach getting sunburned and attempting to surf. We tried fitting in with the locals but being the only pale guys constantly falling off our surfboards kinda gave us away. The weather here is unreal... - RYAN

JULY 8 - San Diego, CA

Today we finished up the drive to San Diego making our way thru the toughest strech of desert and mountains yet. At one point there were signs saying to turn off your AC for the next 10 miles to avoid overheating. Every hundred yards there were people pulled over whose cars had overheated. We stopped for few minutes to let it cool down but the "rainmaker" made it thru just fine.

The San Diego show was a lot of fun and at the Beauty Bar which is basically a beauty salon and rock venue all in one. You can get your nails done and watch a concert all at once. Banner had her nails done and apparently Timmy got a perm...???...

Friday, July 07, 2006

JULY 7 - Drive Day (Texas to California)

It's quite a drive all the way across the desert and two time zones from San Antonio to San Diego. We got a headstart after the San Antonio show driving late into the night. Passing hundereds of deer along the interstate, we pondered how bad the van would be damaged if we were to hit one. We stopped at what i believe was the only town and hotel in west texas and after just a few hours of sleep we were back on the road for a very full day of driving. We found the choice of words on several caution signs in Arizona very interesting stating that "DUST STORMS MAY EXIST"... may exist??...we soon found out that yes they do's official. After seeing not an ounce of color for hours we were able to drive right into one of the most amazing sunsets we've ever seen. -Ryan

JULY 6 - San Antonio, TX

After enjoying the attractions along the Riverwalk, we grabbed some ice cream by the Alamo to kill some time. It seems an all day Emo Fest had descended upon The Sanctuary, complete with 14 year old girls adorned with trucker hats. The all ages event left us in a state of complete confusion. We killed as much time as possible before loading in and taking rank along side these tortured, emphatic juivenilles. -Aaron

JULY 5 -Austin, TX

Grateful for the short 3hr drive to Austin, we pile back into the van eager to start the second and more lengthy portion of the tour. Emo's boasts the most disgusting men's room in Austin, but lucky for us a few brave souls dare the stench to catch our set. I was feeling gross after taking a dose of "Emergen C" earlier that afternoon. My body, so unaccustom to vitamins, rejected the nutrients and made me queasy. I've learned my lesson, and hereby swear off any further attempts at wellness. On to San Antonio and the last stop before sunny California. -Aaron

People in Austin make thier own bumper stickers... -Ryan

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

JULY 3 - Dallas, TX

It was good to be back home in Dallas even if it was just for a day. Thanks so much to all our hometown fans for coming was great seeing you all. We forgot to take any pictures while in Dallas so hopefully the photo below will do. -Ryan

JULY 2 - Houston, TX

We got word from the venue in Houston that their air conditioner had gone out and suggested that "we dress cool because it is Houston". We were a little confused by this because we always dress "cool". When we finally arrived they luckily had the AC back up and running. We had a great dinner at a mexican restaurant by the venue where we had margaritas and a heated debate about the quality of English literature taught in public schools. This was our first time to play Houston and the show and crowd were great. We also got news from Timmy that he would not be joining us in the "rainmaker" for the drive back to Dallas and would instead be flying home. -Ryan

Monday, July 03, 2006

JUNE 30 - Ft Myers, FL

We went into Ft. Myers with rather low expectations, but were pleased to discover a stylish, newly refurnished venue with a helpful and accomodating staff. After sound check we dined on free pizza, courtesy of Brick Bar's management. I caught Adam in the bathroom stuffing folded slices into his pockets...

The crowd was very responsive and appreciative. Unfortunately, we faced a long night of driving and had to pack up quickly after our set to make good time. At 12 am we left for Houston with enthusiasm. Tens minutes later I lost my way at a gas station, but quickly reestablished course and pushed on. Finally, three drivers and thirteen hours later, we stopped in Lafayette to rest up before the final leg. -Aaron

JUNE 29 - Miami, FL

Miami loves thier dance clubs... everywhere we went we were handed flyers and VIP passes for late night clubs. Even our hotel had dance music blasting in the lobby as we were checking in. After being rained on for the entire tour the sun finally came out and we spent the afternoon at the beach (we were by far the palest ones there). We arrived at the club, loaded in, did our soundcheck and waited for the doors to open. We waited and waited and nobody was showing up... we had forgot how much Miami loves thier dance clubs... even their indie rock shows were indie rock/dance nights. While we were used to shows ending around 12 or 1 this one didnt start until 1. The club went from empty at midnight to completely packed with everyone dancing at 1am. We finally went on stage at about 2:30...when we left the club at 4am and it was still going strong.