We shared the night at The Lovin' Cup in Rochester last night with a beer tasting shindig and it wasn't a good co-bill. It was obvious that the Lovin' Cup management's first priority was to keep a crowd of ignorant, beer-swilling morons in the place for as long as possible in order to maximise beer sales, at the expense of our concert. After the beer tasting they should have turned the house but they didn't. The woman who was hosting the boring and thoroughly pointless event suggested over a microphone that the beer tasters might like to stick around to check out the music and if they liked it they could make a donation if they felt so inclined.
Wow! Thanks a lot!
It's like saying - if you haven't got a ticket that's OK, just stick around, drink up and fuck up the concert for the people who have bought tickets with your incessant and moronic chatter. One ticket holder who remonstrated with a gaggle of loud beer people got on the wrong side of the manager and was actually thrown out. We saw the commotion from the stage and assumed it was the people who were disrupting our show who were being made to leave. If I'd known what was really happening I would have been inclined to stop the show which wouldn't have been fair on the ticket holders, but they were already getting a raw deal. At times it was almost impossible to play, what with the noise and the fact that we hadn't had a soundcheck due to the beer event.and the late arrival of the soundman.
I don't ever want to play at The Lovin' Cup in Rochester again though I don't somehow think we'll be asked - they didn't like me telling their patrons to either shut the fuck up or fuck off. The manager sort of made that clear in a passive aggressive, jokey kind of way when he told us to pack up our equipment and get out.
I hope Rochester isn't an indication of how this tour is going to go. We've already had a minor catastrophe - as we were checking in to a hotel in Toledo, Ohio, this evening on our way to Chicago, Amy's electric guitar fell off a luggage cart and the head broke off. It's the second time it's happened. We're retiring the guitar and buying a cheap Danelectro. We're sort of wishing we could retire ourselves at this point but perhaps tomorrow night's show at Schuba's in Chicago will convince us otherwise. I hope so.
The people who had actually come to hear us play last night were wonderful - they stuck with us til the end and gave us a standing ovation which I think we deserved if only for not abandoning the show. Highlights for me included bouncing a marker pen off the soundman's head to get his attention, Amy's fabulously manic piano playing in the middle of Teflon Wok, and sweetly smiling at a table of office girls (who had already taken offence) as I said 'It's alright, I don't like you either'. I think I called someone a cunt too but I can't be sure. It does you good to misbehave once in a while.
I'll try to stay within the bounds of niceness at Schuba's but I'm not promising anything.