so right now i'm sitting outside of the national coffee shop in milwaukee wisconsin. it's closed, at 8 pm, which leads me to believe that after 5 it's beer drinking time in this city. or maybe it's always time. regardless, their wireless still works, so i'm happy.
the last few days have been fairly momentous. i'll be honest, i was mildly skeptical about this tour for a variety of reasons, but they have all washed away. i was being silly and am terribly happy i was wrong. it's the best feeling to have a negative outlook turned around. my ghosting bros, drummer jared, singer matt and bassist tyler are great dudes and we're having a blast. this is their first tour, so they're so posi and excited by everything, which is of course makes life more fun and touring easier. i'm a jaded old man who's toured all over the country countless times so occasionally i laugh to myself seeing how stoked they are on everything. it's cute and reminds me of when i was young. i can definitely appreciate that.
two nights ago we played at the creephole in michigan city, indiana. all the bands were good, all the people were nice and while it was a fairly heavy show (as i imagine most will be on this tour, seeing as ghosting is a screamy band) i was welcomed with open arms. for 20 minutes a day i get to play my songs and feel great, and when people respond positively, it's the best feeling in the world. so we hung out, sang songs, i did well with my first ghosting set (i'm playing guitar for them as well) and everyone enjoyed the evening. i'd say we won. after lots of hugs and goodbyes we shot the breeze with some of the housemates and hit the hay. speaking of which, everyone had a bed. so sweet. so rare. so good.
in the morning we headed out for grand rapids, michigan, and when we got there were given a warm welcome from kelly, the girl whose house we were to play. after meeting kelly i went next door to her house and got coffee at a nice little shop with jared. we relaxed and talked for an hour or so, which was nice. jared is young and enthusiastic, and a huge supporter of what i do. it's a great feeling to have people believe in me, regardless of how pessimistic i can be at times about my "music career." afterwards those dudes and kelly went to buy records and i worked on songs in kelly's room. it's really nice when i'm able to sit and write/practice on tour. it's fairly rare, but that's one of the beautiful things about just being me and an acoustic guitar, is that i can pretty much work anywhere. when they got back we went to eat dinner with kelly and caitlin (her roommate) at a pizza/veg restuarant just a few doors down. i got a veggie buffalo chicken sandwich that was pretty banging (save for it was a bit salty, even for my tastes) that came with a spaghetti salad (it was cold like a pasta salad, but not with mayo, more with broccoli and maybe some olive oil? oh, and about a billion cloves of garlic. yowza.) also, the waiter and i had a variety of exchanges that were terribly confusing. either he or i was being mildly retarded at that time. luckily it seemed to pass by.
we then headed back to kelly's place and she told me i'd be opening and then maybe closing the show, which didn't really sit super well with me. i guess since i'm just an acoustic guy, people feel like i'm almost not valid, as if they can always just make me open, even though when bands tour together they often let them play together and at the prime spot. furthermore, making me open a show when i'm 1500 miles away from home kind of sucks. but kelly knew what she was doing so i shouldn't have questioned it at all. by the time i was to play there were a ton of kids there and i played to a packed living room, sang my heart out and was welcomed with clap alongs, sing alongs, stomping and general awesomeness. after my set i got hugs from everyone and sold a bunch of merch. amazing. the show kept going with great bands and lots of compliments, sweet people, beers, etc. it ruled. ghosting played last and while it seemed like the place was clearing out, we actually ended up playing to a packed room and we did really well. people loved it and kept laying on the positive vibe. a little after we packed up i was asked to play a second acoustic set and did so happily. it's such an amazing feeling to have so many people care so much about what i'm doing, to sit quietly during the soft songs and be boisterous when the time is right. so many hugs, laughs, loves. it was an incredible feeling i'm not sure i could properly describe. suffice it to say, i was in awe with the beauty of life and with my general luck. after tons more hugs, a few more cds, lots of kind words people started filtering out. salad, the dude trying to feed me whiskey all night, demanded i follow him to the bar down the street and split a pitcher with him. who am i to turn down such a generous offer. so i went and there met some more nice people and decided that i wanted to head back up for a week in the fall, play various living rooms and make grilled cheese for people. it's a weird thought, but it made me realize that'd be a great idea for a tour. so, hopefully in the fall i can book a few weeks where i go to towns for a few days, make lots of friends, sing songs and grill cheese. i'll call it the "grill cheese with the peej tour" i know, i'm ridiculous. if you want it, i'll come to your town. my grilled cheese is incredible, just so you know.
this morning we relaxed with kelly and her roommates and then headed out to go towards milwaukee. we were originally going to take a ferry straight across the lake, but it turns out that's about 400 bucks, so we just drove around the edge of it and got stuck in construction traffic outside chicago. at least on the way we were able to stop at a sweet gas station convienence store that was the most whole food/vegetarian friendly road side stop i've ever seen. i was even able to get kambucha tea and a nectarine. wildness. well done indiana.
so now i'm going to head back to the venue and hang out, then apparently i'm opening the show again tonight. let's hope it has the same value as last night. hope you're great.