Saturday, January 9, 2010

One of The Best Times of My Life (as a roadie/merch guy)....

Winter of 2006. Great White North V. The Nain Rouge, And The Sky Went Red, If He Dies He Dies, Today I Wait, and Day of The Robot (DOTR is a Buckethead tribute which featured ATSWR's bassist, Jordan Pries - they are fucking amazing!)

November 10th - Houghton Lake High School (Houghton Lake, MI)
Novemver 11th - Level II Skatepark (Houghton, MI)
November 12th - 231 House of Muses...RIP (Marquette, MI)

Three days doesn't look like much of a tour to those lucky enough to have been out for 90+ days. I tell you what though, having spent three days which such amazing bands/amazing dudes...three days seemed like a month (in a good way, of course.) That last night was a bummer cause some of us didn't want to go home. First night of the mini-tour was great cause it was at a high school but not so great cause half way through the show, a snow storm hit the area we were in with a vegence. The drive to Houghton, from Houghton Lake, is nothing short of 8-FUCKING-HOURS, so rather than chance it with 20 people in several vans...we stopped and some motel and got to rooms that were connected. Within the first 20 minutes of being in the rooms, at least 9 people had fucked up the toilets (typical of touring bands to take massive shits). After a few 30 packs, 5ths, and some joints, we all laid down (about 4 hours before we had to get up and be on our way to the next show).

The drive to Level II Skatepark was long but it was one of my favorites...Michigan pines are the best trees, I have decided....

I didn't have the pleasure of riding with any of the other bands but I do know, for a fact, that The Nain Rouge van was constantly filled with pot/cigarette smoke...that and music. One record that makes me think of the wilderness of Michigan is Isis' record 'In The Absence of Truth'. We met up with the "Iffy" dudes at Level II (they only played two shows with the tour). The booking agent for Level II, at the time, was a kid who was about to graduate and had figured out a way to "borrow" money from the school to pay for hotel rooms, case of beer, and 5ths for ALL of the bands. We pre-partied at the hotel and whatever we didn't finish...went right in the merch boxes. Being that this was my first time in Houghton, I wasn't sure what to expect. About an hour after doors, there was about 60 kids walking around and it seriously took me 10 minutes to notice that every kid there had already got two or three And The Sky Went Red shirts (they were known for having a 25-shirt selection and novelty items like beer coozees and a dress (some of which was only $5!). By the time Day of The Robot went on, it seemed like there was about 150 kids. The order of the show was as follows:
  • Day of The Robot
  • If He Dies He Dies
  • Today I Wait
  • The Nain Rouge
  • And The Sky Went Red
 At least 300 kids were there by the time Today I Wait was done. It was madness. Afetr the show, we went to a house party across the street and partied hard (so hard, just about all of the bands were in front of the house smashing bottles.) I crashed out around 6am and woke up around 10pm to people packing up their stuff. Apparently, one of the bands had pulled the fire alarm and almost emptied out the whole hotel. We were asked to leave by the manager and by Houghton PD. It was great.

The following show was pretty much the same: we drank a case and a 5th, smoked weed, and pretended like we were real fucking rock stars. What made the 231 House of Muses show great was an accident the singer of ATSWR, Austin, had during their 3rd or 4th song: he tried and fell into a cymbal. His nose split open and blood was all over his face (there is video of this incident, btw). We all had too much fun just "bro-ing down with our friends". Sometimes, that's all you need.

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