Austin to Ohio

So from Dallas to Austin – first night in Austin we spent at a Motel6, seriously low-rent place, but we weren’t actually in it for long… Went down town, found a coffee shop, and then drove out to find dinner, to the Kerbey St. Cafe, for some fine veggie food.

The next day was the first of the Austin gigs, at a place called Cafe Caffeine – a cute lil’ coffee shop, but it was an afternoon show, and not a place where we had any draw, so just a handful of people there. Still, it’s always nice to play, and Brady Muckelroy who organised the shows for us in Austin, played a lovely set, and it was nice to get to hang out with him.

Then the adventure started… just before we played I got a call from Tay – she and the utterly lovely Vicki Genfan were in the Austin area too, and Vic was guesting with Patty Larkin that night at a local studio concert. So I call the venue to try and get tickets, but no-one answers. i leave a message, but we decide to head out there anyway.

The lovely Brady shows us the way, and we get to the gorgeous studio where the gig is being hosted, but it’s sold out. Tay and Vicki come out for a chat, and it becomes clear that a few people who’d reserved tickets might not show, so we stick around and get in just before the show starts! Hurrah! Patty is, as expected, amazing – I’ve got 5 or 6 of her albums, and this is the first time I’ve seen her live. She’s great. Vicki sits in on the last number ( a crazy prog-acoustic thing in all kinds of time signatures), and much love is shared.

We then head back to Austin to the Bananie love-palace – I hadn’t seen Bananie for about 3 years, so ’twas a delight all round. The lovely Schmelen proves to be just as lovely as expected, and the menagerie is full of gorgeous mutant dogs ‘n’ cats. It’s 12.30 but we’s all peckish, so a trip to Magnolia is in order – late night fun ‘n’ games in the Santa Cruz of the South.

Following day, we sleep late, then have breakfast together, before heading out into the sticks to see Vicki and Tay again for an hour or so, before driving to San Marcos for the second of the Austin-area gigs. It’s another coffee shop gig, in Brady’s home town, and he’s clearly got a cool thing going on there, as the coffee shop is full of his friends, fans and family. He plays another beautiful set, followed by Lisa and I. The driving of the last few days, late nights and not enough sleep is starting to catch up and I don’t play particularly well, but it’s a fun gig nonetheless, and there’s a particularly enjoyable duet between Brady and I. L is as fab as always.

The next morning, we’re up at 5, load the car and head out for the longest single day’s driving of my life – 850-something miles from Austin to Nashville. (as a comparison Land’s End to John O’ Groats is 830-something miles).

Back at Nashville and it’s all round the the utterly lovely Trevor and Jenna’s house, where there’s a party in full swing, featuring the equally lovely Marky over from NI (that’s Northern Ireland, not New Internationalist).

L and I are utterly baked after the journey but find some energy to chat to lots of delightful friends old, new and previously-cyber-only, before crashing out early.

Sunday am, off to Downtown Pres. – one of the few churches I’ve been to in the US that I’d consider going to more than once. Followed by lunch back at the Dark’s, with more socialising and fun with the lovelies of Nashville. Eventually we leave from T and J’s at about 4pm, heading out on yes another mammoth drive (515 miles this time) back to L’s brother’s place in Northern Ohio.

And here we are, helping L’s family to move house, hanging out, and trying to regain the energy that was zapped by the tour thus far… we have got two more gigs, one in St Louis Missouri and one in Wisner Nebraska – see the gig dates page for more info.

Thanks SO much to everyone who’s been out to the gigs so far – it’s been really lovely to meet so many great people. Particular thanks to everyone who helped organise the shows – Ralston, Steve in Toledo, Ric Hordinski, Jay and |Crystal, Kevin Ford, Darren and Cindy, Sarah ‘n’ Dave ‘n’ TOGH, Trip and Sarun, Brian, Brady… good peeps one and all.

Go to my Flickr page for some photos from the tour…

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