Places we've been in the past few days- Cincy, Columbus, Urbana, IL and Ames, IA. We're in the final stretch of gigs, and I'm looking forward to getting home.
Minneapolis tonight- First Avenue, which is your classic "rock club" type venue. We played here a long time ago, when we were touring all of the time- just as I remeber it from 10 years ago for sure. We're directly across the street from the Target Center, where Justin Bieber is playing tonight. There are hordes of teenage girls waiting on the street to catch a glimpse of Ol' Biebs. The folks at the Target Center keep getting them all fired up and screaming, which is pretty damn funny to watch. As we were driving around to get to our load in, foks were snapping pictures of our bus and screaming, thinking we were Beiber's bus- I mean, Vince Herman is almost just like Bieber, right?
Urbana was a step back into the past for me, that's where I did my undergraduate college stuff, and quite frankly, learned how to play music! I was kind of "taken in" by the community of local musicians that was around at that time, and I was able to play way over my head with lots of great jazz (Doc Scott, Jeff Helgesen, Tom Wirtel), blues, and rock musicians (Mighty Pranksters, Organic Advisor, Blues Impalas). A drummer friend of mine, Danny Deckard, turned me on to Doc Watson, Norman Blake, Bill Monroe, and Tim O'Brien while I was in school there.
House in the picture above is where I used to live, and it looks exactly the same as when I left. Bruce's VW is still in the driveway (I don't know how many times we had to roll that damn thing out of the driveway when it was blocking one of our cars). We shared our house with a bunch of squirrels, who would steal our bread and fruit when we were at class, and they liked to hide buckeyes all over the house. Also had a racoon, a possum, and lots of mice. But it was super cheap ($175/mo), I had a huge room and I was able to practice at all hours of the day and night.