Darwin had never been to Nashville, so before the show, I tried to take the band to my favorite place, Tootsies. I have always loved it there. So unique and vibrant, its walls crammed with old black and white promo photos of country singers, cowboy hat after cowboy hat, constant live bands, 2 stages at once. We showed our IDs at the door, but 45 seconds later, the bouncer approached Darwin. Tootsie’s was asking Darwin to leave because of his appearance! He wasn’t even in extreme form. Just his plain red winter jacket, winter hat, glasses, toned down Darwin. “Are you serious?” I asked the bouncer, sincerely taken aback. “Yes,” he reluctantly admitted. “It’s not my choice. The owner saw him and told me to do it.” Only in the south.
Our crowd at The End groaned when we told them that we had gone to Tootsie’s. They told us that Cafe Coco’s is the place to be. So we went there after the show and nursed our segregated selves back to good spirits with delicious vegan treats.
The band stayed with my Aunt Peggy and my two cousins. Leftover lasagna at 4 am. Plentiful cereal, muffins, coffee, and orange juice in the morning. It’s always a treat when you stay at a place on tour where the people have been anticipating having you. Where there’s an extra bed set up that you don’t need, more food set out for you than you can eat. In a humble gesture of our gratitude, Darwin and I sang songs for them on their piano.
A blizzard hit the south yesterday evening. We putted along at 30 mph to Birmingham, where the snowfall had scared the whole town into staying indoors. We played our most deserted show of tour. A Wednesday night with about five people. Two or three if you subtract the venue staff. Mother nature can shut down airports and can even shut down New York City. She certainly can shut down an indie rock show now and then. But it’s cool. Veterans of cold weather, we plowed on into the night, watching a scratchy distorted viewing of Major League on our tiny van TV screen.
Poor Friends. Sam is sick and her vocal chords are in an emergency state. They are canceling the next two dates (Tallahassee and Atlanta) so that they can take refuge at Matt’s mom’s house in Charlotte and recover. We’ll see them in Asheville, we hope.