2017-03-20 Flagstaff, AZ (cont.)
I'm still at Starbucks in Flagstaff, figure I should just keep writing for awhile.
Last Wednesday we had a gig at Independent Distillery in Tucson, such a sweet bunch of folks there, and right downtown. A pretty typical 3 hour gig for us, we drive up as close as we can get, unload the gear, set up, order dinner, park, dress up in an amazing pastel outfit of wonder, rock for two sets for approximately 20 people, drink some whiskey, tear down, get some rave reviews from the bar owner, load everything back in the van, drive to a place to sleep. Repeat.
Independent Distillery had a super cool vibe, lamps made out of a violin and a saxophone, the top of a grand piano previously owner by Frank Lloyd Wright preserved in a glass case, bottles of home made gin, and a soaring wall of shelves that looked like the library book shelves in Beauty and the Beast, with a rolling ladder to climb to the top shelves, only these shelves were all filled with whiskey. The streets were completely under construction, parking was a challenge, but it was a fun night, a grass fed burger, tater tots, a hummus plate, and local smoked bourbon.
As I mentioned in the previous post, we'd spent the previous few days in western Arizona and Mexico exploring the Sonoran desert, and we stopped at the Kitt Peak Observatory on our way back to Tucson from Organ Pipe National Monument. Some great views from up there, and gorgeous post cards made from photos snapped through the telescopes. On Monday we drove across the border at Sonoyta MX to take a day trip to Rocky Point to see the Gulf, you know, just to say we'd done it. We drove into Puerto Peñasco but went straight to the Sandy Beach resort area first, which we realized later was a huge mistake, it was spring break, and the place was crawling with college kids drinking body shots and Corona. We ordered 2 for 1 margarita's at a beach side resort bar from a bartender who was about 23 and talked like he'd been smoking Pineapple Express since the alarm clock went off that morning. He'd walked to the end of the bar to pour Jose Cuervo and Squirt into plastic cups filled with ice, holy crap, the worst margarita I have ever had, the full Mexican resort spring break experience.
We drove out of the resort parking lot and turned left down a gravel and dust road looking for something a little less touristy and found Cholla Bay, which as far as I could tell was basically a walled and gated community of ex-pats, but at least there weren't any college kids. We ordered fish tacos from a retired lesbian ex-pat and she told us how to get to the secret staircase by the painting of the dancing Snoopy that would get us down to the beach at the end of the peninsula. Three hours of baking sun and salt water therapy later we felt much better. A shot of Hornitos and a Tecate later and we were ready for sex on a deserted beach outside of town.
We drove back into Puerto Peñasco at dusk to look for dinner but failed miserably, found a super trendy part of town down by the water, but finally just gave up and drove back to the campground at Organ Pipe to sleep. The border crossings were both uneventful and quick. Sarah kvetched about not being able to speak Spanish well enough.
We played in Silver City NM the Friday before, a second appearance at Little Toad Creek Brewery. Another stellar night there, filled with fun and phenomenal tips for such a tiny town, I think we walked out with $140 in the tip jar alone. We drove into Tucson early in the morning in hopes of getting the Genz Benz amps cleaned out by a registered Genz Benz repair shop but the guys there talked too much and we left. Gut vibe thing. Oh well. They probably would've been great techs for us, but oy.
Wednesday and Thursday we had gigs in Albuquerque. The Wednesday night one was at Burt's Tiki Lounge and through a series of comical errors they didn't know we were playing, in fact they thought we were booked for Friday. They checked the emails and discovered their error. That was a bit rough, but they plied us with whiskey until they could get the sound man to come down. We played for the two bartenders. For me it was an oddly wonderful show, because somehow I imagined us playing this huge room to a packed crowd, people shoulder-to-shoulder swaying and singing along, it was like I was playing in the future Sugar Still. I can't explain it, but I could feel it happening, I could see it in my my head like it was real, like it was already happening. Sarah saw no such thing however and couldn't wait to get off stage. There was something magical about the vision for me, like I somehow had seen something that had already happened. Sort of like Harry Potter seeing himself summoning his own patronus before he actually had to call it forth. We'll see if it was true.
Thursday was a little better, we played a restaurant bar that had our posters up at least, and a group of people came to the show who had seen us play in Taos the week before which was super fun and warm-hearted. They danced and everything, applauded and hooted after every song, the perfect audience really.
Okay, running out of steam, need to go eat and take a hike in the woods. Back soon.