Spear

Thanks to everyone who purchased music from our bandcamp yesterday and helped us raise $$ for the ACLU! We luv u. If you haven’t heard Spear yet, it’s available here:
https://pleistoceneband.bandcamp.com/album/speara3237656445_10

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Whadenver

Three more shows booked on our grand tour. One in Fort Collins and two in Denver. When we pulled in we were greeted by the lion that is early March and we never got any of that sweet lamb. Fort Collins could be a book in and of itself but in a nutshell, a bunch of our college friends live there now. They all work at a bar there together and it’s pretty much like college all over again only Fort Collins is just a titch nicer, i.e. the mountains…oh the mountains. We spent the day in Fort Collins, checking out the town. There are a few cool things worth noting:

Disney Land’s Main St is modeled after Fort Collins’ Main Street.

There is a movie theater that plays classic Saturday morning cartoons and serves unlimited cereal out of dispensers.

On Main St is the largest and weirdest second-hand store I’ve ever been to.

New Belgium is a brewery that buys their staff bikes after five years of employment.

Becca ended up getting a tattoo and we watched her get poked with needles until I got queasy and left to buy ginger products to settle my tumultuous innards.

Downtown Fort CollinsOur show that night was at Astoria, a high ceilinged, chandeliered place that was way nicer than anything we’re used to. The owner gave us a $100 tab and treated us and our comrades like queens. We played our set as well as some of our old songs from previous bands and a handful of never before attempted covers. That night stayed out way too late and I drifted in and out of sleep on an air mattress with a large black dog while the movie Francis Ha played in the background.

One man band and one man audience.

The rest of our time in was spent in Denver.  While Becca visited her sister with Sandy, my brother and sister-in-law took me out for beers and we spent the night shooting the shoot. I did a lot of solo wandering around the 16th Street Mall and got BOO’d at for wearing a hand-me-down Rangers shirt on the day of a Colorado Rockies baseball game.  The day flew by and I didn’t meet up with the gang until showtime at 7th Circle Music Collective. 7th Circle is an awesome punk house that’s basically just an old garage with a huge backyard that’s covered with graffiti. We played with this gem: https://wildthrone.bandcamp.com/ Here we are on the 7th Circle flier:

The next night was the Lion’s Lair show. Wedged in between two medical marijuana shops, the bar brought in a lot of local folk. People kept warning us about getting mugged around the shops because the shops can only accept cash, thus people carry a lot of money at a time on their person. Luckily, we experienced no such thievery and the night was a success, in terms of the amazingly eclectic, amazingly drunk crowd we attracted that night. The band that helped us set up the show and headlined the night were cool: https://theedangdangs.bandcamp.com/
Thee Dang Dangs
By the end, I was exhausted and finally willing to accept the inevitable crash that was creeping in throughout the trip. Somehow we pushed ourselves to the next level and ended up at an all-night diner for our last celebration meal before heading back to Rochester. We just played fourteen shows in a row and life was good.  To round it all out, Becca’s sister led us in a group guided meditation and I think I imagined I was a dog for a second. When it was all over, I felt different and to me, that’s a form of accomplishment. It was officially time to hit the dusty trail.

Sorry Lovers and the Living Lake

Salt Lake City was an impromptu decision after leaving Reno and realizing how far Denver was. Our San Francisco friend and SLC native, Cassie went to work looking for venues for us to play while Becca got in touch with her friend Mark to plead for us to stay with him. We got there without having a show set up but not without trying. I talked to someone on the phone at a venue called the State Room who told me that they would’ve helped us set up a show if they didn’t already have something big set up for the following night. When we arrived, we parked across the street from the venue which read “Dale Earnhart Jr Jr” on the marque. Still behind us by just a day, this band had now been tracing our steps for a week. Two of Becca’s friends met us there and since we couldn’t play music, we did the next best thing. We went to “beervana,” which essentially was a Cajun restaurant across the street from the State Room. Afterwards we went to Marks house and hung out at Mark’s house. He and his roommate are snow board videographers and we got to stay in his roommate’s gigantic apartment, who was in Alaska, and apparently is there most of the year filming. My favorite part about the apartment was this weird tape player/astronaut helmet thing. I’m pretty sure I fell asleep sitting up while everyone else hung around talking. We tried to leave as early as possible the next morning but ended up getting distracted by juice. We went to BlueStar juice where I purchased some sort of lemon/ginger vegetable drink and ended up petting the shop dog while the girls talked about bikes. Did I mention it was a bike repair shop too? As if not off to a late start already we all decided that we need to see that actual Salt Lake before we left, which turned into a whole lost excursion in and of itself. Somehow we never did find that giant mass of water, just an industrial construction zone and a man-made pond that we posed in front of, pretending that it was Salt Lake. The last minutes in Salt Lake City before we SERIOUSLYHADTOBEONOURWAY we’re spent at a gas station, simultaneously fist pumping in unison while the local gas attendant boy looked on at us with disgust. I think I heard him whimper a little. Good bye Utah!

Photo cred - Dashboard
Photo cred – Dashboard

Circus Circus

Disregard the amount of time it’s been since I last wrote. Let’s jump from Sonoma to the next night in Reno, one of the most unexpected nights of the trip. Somehow we decided on our way there that it would be a good idea to buy a Groupon for a hotel there, one with a Casino but then again, they all have Casinos. We ended up picking the cheapest one that didn’t have a murder-y vibe from the pictures and reserved a room as we were approaching Lake Tahoe.

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The terrain went from green sunny hills to snow and rocky roads. It’s hard to believe that only a few days ago I was wearing shorts and rolling down hot mounds of sand. We we’re back in the land of coniferous surroundings, the terrain that I’m used to, only more majestic than I’ve ever seen. By the time we were passing through the mountains surrounding Lake Tahoe, the snow was pelting our car and visibility was bad. But was good enough see the sign that said that we we’re in Donner Party territory. When we finally made it to Lake Tahoe it was late afternoon and we we’re lucky to sit and ogle at the mountains before sunset.  To get an idea of what it was like being there that day, here’s a video we made after our ogling was done and our noses were all runny from being in the cold.

As serene as that moment was, it was only an hour or so later that we were launched into the bizarre world of Reno. Since we didn’t have a show booked and we weren’t sure what people like us did in Reno, (or if there even were people like us in Reno?) so we went gambling. Here is a picture of us at the hotel buffet with the “ouija chicken,” trying to predict our prospects for the night.


Word of advice when booking a hotel in Reno: Only stay at ‘Circus Circus’ (hotel) if you have kids and want to misplace them for 4 hours at a time. We weren’t the average clientel but we took advantage of the amenities with the best of em’. The kids arcade took up an entire floor of the hotel and in order to get to the real casino, you had to ride a monorail that wrapped around the outer wall of the building and then tough it through the kid’s floor. It felt like what Lord of the Flies would be like if combined with the constant hell sound of slot machines and screaming babies. We bravely forged our way through the crowd in matching trucker hats that we picked up in Sonoma. Becca and Sandy went to pick up some VIP passes while I wandered with a whiskey that was placed in my hand by a waitress. The free whiskeys kept flowing (I guess New Yorkers are good tippers) and I watched the twenty bucks I won in the first hour or so slowly get eaten by the ever so thrilling and interactive ‘Back to the Future’ game. Worth the money, I say!

Meanwhile, Becca was killing it over on the ‘Sun and Moon’ game and before we knew it there was a crowd gathered around her as her winnings climbed by the hundreds. In true generous Becca fashion, she shared her money with Sandy and I, which after the fact we’d end up using on taking turns treating each other to meals, attractions and gifts on our winding way home. That night we slept like kings in our queen sized beds.