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2000 Tour Reports Index


DDD Tour- March-May

Mar 14-18- SXSW-Austin:
pools of water reflect the sky like mirrors

Mar 18-23 The Southeast:
kiss the ground in Baton Rouge

Mar 23-31 The East Coast:
"just tell me, is this still part of the game?"

April Week 1 - NorthEast Coast:
what can make a towel smell like bacon?

April Week 2 Midwest Datest:
crying to the music of the Doors

April Week 3 - Go West:
It's so exciting when people beat the crap out of each other!

April Week 4- West:
That West-Coast, I-5 feel

May Week 1 - End:
"I'm a Man and I Have Needs"


Part 7: That West-Coast, I-5 feel

Wednesday, April 26, 2000 - Boise, ID

Not bad, Boise.

I have come to expect nothing from Boise except a really nice town and a couple of nice people, and mostly apathetic crowds. So I was terribly impressed with the good-sized crowd of people who showed up to watch today, on a Wednesday. The tiny club looked pretty full, from the stage; definitely more people than I've ever seen here, and more enthusiastic, too. The opening band was an actual life-sized Heavy Metal band from Washington DC, they had postcards with their pictures and tour dates all over the tables in Neurolux (the club). Their pictures were totally dressed up; they totally looked like a cliche - but it wasn't a joke! The drummer walked around the club with leather pants on and his shirt undone to the navel, and a mustache. The lead singer wore a "Nashville Pussy" Rebel Flag Belt Buckle. They were really, really nice, although I didn't get their music at all, and I'm positive they didn't get ours. I guess the Metal was kind of refreshing in a way, but I felt bad for them to have to play in front of our audience. And in Boise!

Jim and Howie both said, "I love Boise" at the same time. It's definitely got a lot of charm. And maybe after all the times we've come here, maybe we're actually starting to get a following here. It's such a nice little town; little coffee-shops and nice stores all over the center of town. And it's totally in the middle of nowhere. It takes at least 8 hours to get here from anywhere.

Now, we have to prepare for tomorrow and the next day. Because we already have a following in Seattle and Portland, and the people are going to expect an amazing rock show from us, and they're going to be great audiences. I feel like we are going to have to top whatever expectations they have from us!

Thursday, April 27, 2000 - Portland, OR

Email from "a fan"

"I just wanted to say you are one of the most energetic people I have ever seen on stage Also best looking just kidding. Beside the music, you energy got me into the band..."

We went to Powell's huge city-sized bookstore, our Portland tradition. I have to say that I noticed the new BUST magazine is out, it's all about Women Who Travel. I was interviewed for it, at least I thought I was interviewed for it. I looked in it and noticed that my interview wasn't printed in it, but there was one from another token female musician, my friend Laura from Superchunk. Oh well. And all the way in the back, too; I guess travelling musicians are not as important as whoever is up in the front of the zine, in color. Then I walked around the area a bit and found a bunch of "Punk Grrl" magazines, all about women in rock, and I saw all my other friends, Sarge, Kim from Jawbox, all interviewed with pictures everywhere. I am nowhere to be seen. I think maybe I felt a little bad about this.At least I tried to. But when Rick saw me feeling bad, he would have none of it. He said, "But you've never wanted to be a woman in a rock band. You've worked all this time to be a PERSON in a rock band. And we're a cohesive unit, not a band with a woman in it." After he said that, I just couldn't feel bad, no matter how hard I tried.

Against Mudhoney

135 people watched us in Satyricon club, tonight, as we played against Mudhoney's new band, across town. The promoter's assistant, who was really nice until not enough audience showed up, seemed kind of unprofessional to me. He told me they lost tons of money on us, and that he had to beg one of the opening bands to take less money so they didn't lose so much. When you multiply out the door price times the amount of people, they made at least a couple hundred dollars over our guarantee, (and this isn't including bar sales) but he figures in the amount of space our name takes up in the advertisement in the newspaper, and then tells me they lost a shitload of money on the show. I'm pretty sure this is the same promotion company that is doing the Mudhoney show across town, too. Their ad has tons of names in it. I think that The Fleshtones, even though their name is the same size as ours in the ad, will get more mileage out of that ad, because they have more name recognition. I think it's a crummy way to calculate costs. I suppose that if they hadn't put our name in the paper, and instead had put a couple of fliers up in the record stores, they wouldn't have lost so much money on us. And on top of it, perhaps all the people who came up to me and told me that they'd only found out about the show today, might have known about the show earlier.

I don't know what to say. We have had promoters actually NOT make our guarantee through the door sales. We've had shows where no one comes. I'm looking forward to Albuquerque because that will most likely be one of those shows. So over a hundred people in Portland, on a freezing rain Thursday night against Mudhoney's new band didn't seem like such a terrible occurrence to me. I couldn't believe the weird attitude I was getting from this guy, and then on top of it, I asked him if he saw the show (because I think that sometimes, even when people don't show up, the promoters are still impressed by our live show, so maybe that stops them from being mean; I don't know) -- and he says, "You know, I missed your entire show." Kind of proudly. Maybe he doesn't even know I'm in the band. But I still don't think it's nice of him to say this kind of shit to me, and I was seethingly mad for hours after the show. The only thing that stopped me from complaining is we stayed at Jim's great friend Paul's house, and the guys were giggling and watching the DVD for Apocalypse Now, in French. You can't ever be in a bad mood when Apocalypse Now is on.

Friday, April 28, 2000 - Seattle, WA

"No one ever has a bad show in Seattle." - a fan

And he's right. About 200 lovely people of Seattle ignored Beck's call (Beck played against us tonight at US$25 a ticket) tonight and came to see us and 3 other punk bands play at club Graceland, on a comfortable stage with nice employees and a great (but possibly slightly deaf) soundguy. I guess I wasn't aware of this, but there are a huge number of people from Champaign who moved out here, and for our encore, they pound on the stage and scream,"CHAMPAIGN! CHAMPAIGN! CHAMPAIGN!" There were men dressed as women at the show too, fabulous-looking. They screamed out compliments to my hair. And even though the show didn't sell out, this promoter seemed quite happy with the turnout and with the entire show.

Today I only lost about $50 on books at Powell's, we went before we left for Seattle. I got a couple more Buddhism books and a magazine entitled "Wallpaper*" which is completely about consumerism. Can the two things be more opposite? I am completely about contradictions, aren't I? Does this negate me?

Our motel room tonight has a phone hookup to the internet and we have a local connection here in Tacoma, and I feel like I'm sucking on my mom's teat or like I've plugged my umbilical cord back into the internet for nourishment. That's really the only tough thing about touring. I envy the bands who will be touring in 10 years with wireless internet radiating into their vans.

Saturday, April 29, 2000 - Eugene, OR

Begin travelling on I-5

I-5 goes up and down the west coast, 6-lanes wide between Portland and Eugene. Light green deciduous trees, dark green pine trees, lakes, food shacks, nuclear power plants, lots of green grass and gas stations.

Howie says that he already has that "West Coast, I-5 feel." Rick says "the guy behind me at the Taco Bell tried to give me a West Coast I-5 feel." Jim went to Subway and said the guy behind him got a mayonnaise sandwich. Howie and I bought $1 Chinese Food - probably the last meal we'll ever eat, but MAN, was it cheap!

Tonight we are not playing against Beck. Rick thinks that maybe if we drive fast enough down the coast, we can shake him off our trail. I will go for that. Eugene, Oregon, Hippie-town USA would be a really bad place to play against Beck.

We ate dinner at a place called Govinda's tonight, a place run by Hare-krisnas. I love this place, you get Halvah, a bowl of vegan food, and the greatest thing in the world - a salad with corn, beets, and tofu-dill dressing. Oh, it was SO GOOD!

Sunday, April 30, 2000 - off-travel

Drove to Reno today along the highways.

Monday, May 1, 2000 - Reno, NV

Reno's so wonderful. Cheap, cheap food, and characters roaming the streets, their lives destroyed by liquor and gambling. Every sad soul on the street looks like they have an incredible story to tell.

We drove about a half-hour up to Lake Tahoe today where I'd been before, with my family, but I never noticed how absolutely gorgeous it was. Sometimes you need to be alone in a place to see how lovely it is. We drove up to 8900 feet above sea level, over this mountain pass, then down again over to the lake. No one was around the lake today, at least in the little state park that we went to. We paid US$6 to park in a little construction zone and then went and sat by the lake. Since the lake is all melted snow, it's freezing, and almost completely clear. The most amazing thing about the lake are these huge rocks all around, and you can see down to the bottom most everywhere. (Although local pollution is starting to cause algae to grow and make the lake less clear.) Also, the sand in the lake is like these spherical, little multicolored pebbles, and it makes a great sound when you crunch your feet into it.

Tuesday, May 2, 2000 - Poster Children Tonight in San Francisco, CA

For the people who missed the WIRE reunion show tonight in San Francisco, opting to go see Beck's show instead, they can rest assured because WIRE is also playing SF tomorrow night too. The rest of the people came to see us play at the Bottom of the Hill club. Some showed up after the two concerts and sang praises to us for being "real" - others had just stopped by for a beer and were "astounded" at how good we were, and bought CDs. Lately I've noticed a trend; many people who work at clubs are new, and have never seen or heard us, and the people who know nothing about us, when they see us, usually come up to me and prostrate themselves before me after the show. It's very flattering, and I feel like we're winning over the world one person at a time. Like it's a war we're fighting. We'll gain one or two new fans each show we play because someone finally succeeded in dragging their roomate to come see us. Rick and I sometimes feel like we have some kind of non-image to people, like they don't know they're supposed to like us. People assume we suck, or that they won't like us, until they're forced to see us. I don't know why that is. We get this feeling from a review we read years and years ago, someone called us "the band you're too embarrassed to let other people know you like." The review was very flattering, and said great things about our music and band, but I never, never understood why it said that thing about being ashamed to like us. And it has affected my ego about the band for so long.

Tonight we are given a present that stops my pain from being snubbed by every grrrl magazine on the planet. It's proof that an interview we did is going to actually happen. We'll be written about in print, in a magazine that cares not what sex we are, and has nothing to do with record label payments. I'm very proud and so thankful to our new friends who made this possible, and readers of our website can find out about it on May 15th. (I won't give any more clues until after the zine appears in my mailbox.) Just suffice it to say it's the best fucking magazine in the world, and I am not sure where we go from here!