Tuesday, June 3, 2014

AATS 6000 Mile Tour Day 2: Tucson AZ

Friday May 17, 2014

We rose early for an even longer drive to Tucson AZ to play District Tavern. Crossing the deserts of West Texas, New Mexico and Arizona. 536 miles. Fuck.

But still a beautiful drive, as I do find deserts beautiful. Wouldn't want to live there, but nice to visit.

The Chihuanhuan Desert of West Texas has a kind of silence to it that I haven't experienced anywhere else. It's not country-quit, it's more void-quiet. Hard to describe.

Anyway, we had a 9-10 hour drive of this:

US/Mexico Border, El Paso TX with Ciudad Juarez in the background

Fun Fact: El Paso TX is closer to Los Angeles than to Bridge City TX at the TX/LA border.

New Mexico! (finally)

Bought this at the above weird store full of cool stuff:


Pretty much drove straight to the venue and began unloading in the alley behind District Tavern. First band (we were middle slot) arrived about the same time and began setting up onstage after we got our PA set up (we provided, and knew that ahead of time heh). Left our gear in the alley as no room in the smallish venue.

District Tavern was a cool place run by cool people. The kind of place I'd hang out at if I lived in Tucson. Dive bar with band stickers and posters everywhere featuring lots of familiar names and friends. Good friends BugGirl were playing there in a few weeks, as they are on a similar routing going the opposite direction.

And good people like Mike Mihina from Love Mound, who came out. Haven't seen him in years. Killer guitar player/singer fronting his own band. And a real class act to boot. First met him in 2003 in Tucson on tour with Southern Gun Culture, with Love Mound and Solid Donkey on the bill as well. Stayed in touch with both bands ever since.

Talked about some upcoming recording projects. Yes. I would love to play on his records!

After catching up with him, Armando and I walked over to Hotel Congress (another place I've played with the Truckers in 2008) for a beer and to meet a mutual friend. We both agreed that Adrian should play the stage there. Awesome place. And the adjoining hotel is haunted as fuck, which is also awesome.

Our set was a brief barn-burner compared to the previous night's all-nighter. And went over very well! If the music didn't get people moving, Adrian jumping offstage and rocking out in front of people/rolling on the floor/climbing onto the bar/laying down and having a shot poured in her mouth -- all while playing -- usually did the trick.

By now she was using long cables taped to her tuner and delay pedals to reach the crowd (and bar). Which presented it's own set of unique problems; coming unplugged, cords being tangled, tripping people, etc, which we dealt with and worked into the show. If I didn't go over there and untangle her shit mid-song, usually a helpful audience member did. Crowd participation \m/,

Fun set!

Caught up with Mike more after the show, which he loved, and an old friend from the Mother Truckers days as well. Good to see good people. The band after us (name escapes me now, will dig it up) was fun, and we wound up staying at the drummer's house.

The first in a succession of very gracious hosts be they old friends, or in this case, new ones. Adrian took a late night dip in the pool and we all had drinks, conversation and laughter.

Good times with good people.

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