I've been sort of delinquent about writing my blogs, but I'm pretty excited about a recent show we played in downtown Chicago. I went with my other acoustic guitarist, Bill Adams, my electric guitarist, Rob Lampe, and my harmonica player, Matt Griffin to play a Tuesday night shared show at the Beat Kitchen in downtown Chicago. It was an unusual venue, but we split the stage with two other bands, everyone got an hour. It was a great time, and beneficial to us because we met some great musicians who we are hoping to keep in contact with in order to share shows in other cities at future dates.
Seeing how the other two bands travel and perform was interesting. While we were told it was to be an "acoustic show" there was one band that had full drum kit, bass, guitar, keyboard, two vocalists, everything! We were thinking maybe next time we will bring everyone regardless of what the venue tells us. But just as those thoughts were running through my head, I was approached by the two female vocalists from the band Michelle Anthony and Stick Pony, who said they were thrilled to see an acoustic show like ours, and that we gave them the courage to say they could do an acoustic show like that in the future too. It's extremely difficult to travel with a full band, ONLY because you often lose money rather than make it. It's not an easy life, but it's such a rush! There's value to presenting your biggest sound to new listeners, then there's value to stripping the sound down and tyring to make the most of what you've got. It's all a learning experience.
Luckily, even though it was one of our first shows in Chicago, we pulled in nearly 40% of the overall crowd because our percussionist, Michael Bielski, (who wasn't able to make this gig) knows plenty of Chicago-ans. I'm really looking forward to the Elbo Room...I've heard it's a beautiful venue, very well established and well known.
I'll let you know how it goes...
One thing I regret about our trip is we didn't make it to McDonald's to buy a Happy Meal. We've decided the best way to commemorate our road trips is to buy a Happy Meal, keep the toy, and write the date of the gig on each respective toy. Presently there's a boggle-head moose sitting on my dashboard from Bloomington. I think we will run out of room within the next few months on the dashboard. It's not really a space-saving way to memorialize the trip, but it's sure fun.