Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Burgers and Boppers

In ‘N Out Burger is so good! I’m slowly narrowing down to the perfect meal, but I haven’t even begun to test the secret menu yet…

Last night was Anaheim, our first California date spent in perfectly cool weather, except we were inside. There was a delicious catered meal, something we haven’t had in a while, and sat out back with maybe a fifth of the Polyphonic Spree enjoying it. Yes it included a brownie. Ricky the harpist brought over this Tetris box with a bunch of strange pieces that somehow fit together into a cube. Apparently there are 9,000 something solutions, and everyone out of all the bands has yet to find one. It was decided that if you spend more than an hour on it you’ve earned yourself a PhD in Stupid.

October 30, 2007
Anaheim, CA

There were lots of kids there for The Redwalls! Plenty of them came up to me and told me they were here solely for them, and several had even driven a few hours to get there. Two in particular, Kari and Kendra, hung out and talked to me while they waited for the show to begin. I was stuck in the lobby again, so I would have been lonely otherwise. The only other person there was Jackie the stand in merch girl, she was cool too, but the Rooney fans kept her busy.

It was a typical night as far as signatures go until… one little girl asked them to sign her leather jacket! They said it was too nice a nice jacket, but she insisted, and the guys obliged. Now she’ll have a pretty awesome keepsake, and it’s even more rad cause it’s on leather.

After the show the place cleared out quickly, and we packed up and headed home. I think we’re all excited for Halloween in San Francisco!

Burgers! And well done fries.

Loading in.

The outside...

The inside.

"We can't sign that for you little girl!"

Rob finally gives in...

The final product.

A job well done!

Charging, I'm A Robot.

A few days off does us all good. Especially when it involves soft beds, palm trees, pools and home cooked meals. We spent the last day and a half relaxing in the humble abode of Rono’s predecessors. They’re more than generous, and it’s hard not to feel bad sometimes because they’re just such nice people that provide us with more than we can ask for.

Last night we decided to break the cycle of laziness and check out a movie at the local theatre. Settling on “30 Days of Night”, I think we all expected a fairly decent horror flick. I bought my ticket along with a small (but still giant!) soda and muddy bears. I thought that was pretty funny. Gummy bears covered in chocolate!

Anyway the movie came on, and an annoying scratch on the lens or something hung out at the bottom of the screen the whole time. That was annoying. As far as the quality of the flick, none of us were impressed. Too many holes in the plot, and Josh Hartnett is a terrible actor. At least the vampires were scary looking.

Now I’m at the Grove of Anaheim listening to The Redwalls play their songs… more on that later. For now, I’ll remain thoroughly bored and fairly chilled… like Siberian surfing.

Scenic drives define our lives. Ha!

Comfy couches.

Sleepin' with the fishes. FSHHHHHH.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Anybody Remember Hey! Arnold?

Eugene is boring. I don’t want to put across the wrong impression though. I’m a big city kind of guy. This place is quaint and nice, very pretty too, but not my kind of place. Thankfully we didn’t spend much time there!

October 28, 2007
Eugene, OR

And it’s back to the nice big theatres with lobbies for me to sit in. I don’t mind swapping back and forth between lobby and actual room where the music is. It helps me remain underwhelmed by similar sets all the time. I haven’t gotten sick of the show yet though, and I strongly recommend going if you can.

A cool girl named Sarah Jane, a recently acquired Redwalls fan and acquaintance that I shared an easygoing and fun conversation with via Portland, showed up to this show as well. It was a surprise visit and very nice to see her a second time before I disappeared into the mash of time that a tour creates. Eugene was a quick stay overall, and I packed up merch right after the set and we headed out for a late night six hour drive down to Redding, CA.

Outside the McDonald Theatre.

Shot from the balcony... this place was spacious!

Dance Baby!

Whoever this kid is, he's awesome. I wish I could let loose like him. He provided me with ample entertainment during Rooney's set in Portland. Here he is actually fake running to their cover of "Runaway".


Since we were wrong about the thing yesterday, we went and did the in-store today. It actually turned out to be really cool. It wasn’t very glamorous by any means, but remained simple and fun. The people browsing through the store were in for a treat, and definitely bought into the music. CD’s were sold. Hands were shaken. And as quickly as we showed up it was time to move on to Eugene. Except I hadn’t bought what I wanted yet and the cashier was moving very slowly. I found these really good snacks too, they taste like sunflower seeds. Someone told me that, I didn’t really eat them. Honest. Maybe I'll put a pic of them up tomorrow...

I ended up leaving with Dig! It’s a great documentary about sister bands/rivals The Dandy Warhols and the Brian Jonestown Massacre. Worth checking out!

The Redwalls don't normally play this early, but sounded great anyway.


What is there to say about Portland other than it’s incredible. That’s with all sincerity, and though I’ve only been there twice, it’s had the same effect on me both times. It’s the kind of feeling that you hope doesn’t wear off the next time you go there or experience something. If you haven’t felt that before, or if you haven’t felt it reinforced by a secondary exposure, go to Portland. Twice.

This is the only place on Da Bears’ summer tour that I suddenly was very fond of, before we even broke the boundary of trees surrounding the city. It was on the I-5 North, and mere minutes before we could see the skyline I said I can tell I like this city already. Corny? POP! In your face! It was delightful to come back, I must say.

Anyway, we finally left those trees behind and shot up onto one of the many bridges surrounding Portland, this one being my favorite entrance so far. The sun glistened off of the river running alongside the picture-perfect buildings that seemed unblemished surrounded by such perfection. I faintly remember someone murmuring something about Steve Malkmus in the background. Oh wait, it was Ryan (DB), and he wouldn’t stop talking about Steve. Pavement fans… what are you going to do with them? Mr. Malkmus lives there. Who wouldn’t want to? And like the river mirrored the tall buildings gracing its edge, so did my second time there mirror the first. Things that stand out… Good people, good weather, good street sizes (though bad construction), good food, good music and in general just a place I would like to live in. Wow, I really like Portland.

So we got in early in order to get set up for the in-store at Music Millennium, one of the better established record stores in the area. Turns out when we got there, they were like “Hey! So are you guys ready for your set tomorrow?” Tomorrow? That’s right folks, we showed up a whole day early. Waking up in the early AM to leave Seattle and get to Portland only to discover our schedule was whacked. Oh well, more time in the city for me! We went to the hotel, and settled in a bit before Rob, Andrew and I decided to head out for some food.

We came across this place called Oliver’s, and they managed to lure us all into the same entrĂ©e… a stuffed steak burger. So good, and actually the best thing any one of us had eaten in the past however long. After that it was back to the hotel, a little wasted time, and then on to the venue.

October 27, 2007
Portland, OR

I liked this place. A running problem we’ve been having with venues though is the parking. No one has parking for us! This makes it difficult sometimes. Ah, but we figure it out. Everyone that worked at this venue was very nice, from the restaurant downstairs to the loader dudes out back, the attitudes were all positive. I set up the merch while the guys sorted out equipment and Rono set up guitar world (the guitar tech stand) and sat around.

People really dug the guys here, and they got a very positive reaction both during and after the set. People dancing, screaming I love you and what not. All of these things make for a fun time.

At one point in the night I found someone’s digital camera being kicked around the floor. Being the wonderful person I am, I grabbed it and put up signs to come talk to me if you lost a camera. Eventually a kid did, and I interrogated him before I handed it over. You can never be too sure!

Many times throughout the night, one of The Redwalls will walk over and check on the progress of what’s happening on my end. Whether it’s Andrew calling “Big Mike!” Rob leaning down on the table or Logan appearing out of nowhere, they’re sure to show up sooner or later… Justin just kind of meanders over in his Justinly way.

After the show, we all headed over to Rooney’s hotel, a really cool place, and hung out at the bar, conversed, looked at a Waldo book and generally had a good time before it was last call and they kicked us out. Even Wonder Woman was there! As much as I hate working late as a busboy, I still tend to abuse the open hours of bars sometimes (so does everyone else!). Remember, bartenders have families, dogs/cats/fish, homework and lives too! My tip to you is to tip well with a tip o’ the cap. That’s “Tip” with a captiptal “T”!

I crack myself up.

Portland... Portland. Portland, Portland. Ah... Portland.


Stage at the Roseland. Zappa Plays Zappa is playing there soon too!

Live and alive.

The work of MAD Dragon Records. I wondered who wrote this, because I'd know who they are!


I finally fixed this computer, there was a problem with my logs. One of them was 27GB large. A freaking document! Thanks to good old Rono I pinpointed that troublemaker. But what does all this mean?

It means that now you shouldn't have to wait for pictures that go along with the blogs I write. As long as I don't have crappy internet, the shots should be up at the same time as the written part. Who wants to read anyway? I know you all just look at the pictures. People that don't read this eat saran wrap... and chew on tin foil. Huh? Got you.

Lost In Space (Needle)

Ah, wonderful Seattle. City of fish. Seriously, there are signs for fish everywhere. If you’ve never been, I suggest making it out there at some point in your lifetime. It’s easily one of the coolest cities in the country culturally (music especially), historically and architecturally. The city is a city on top of a city! City!

The one lame thing that transpired was us showing up at the venue and not having parking for another half hour, which resulted in us driving around the Pioneer Square area for a while. There’s this totem pole there that has some interesting history attached to it. There’s also a gift shop with puzzles. Would you like some capitalism sauce on that, Sir?

The venue was located fairly close to the famous farmers’ market and the Puget Sound that was looking pretty gorgeous as the sun ticked the last tock on the clock of direct daylight. Finally it was a glowing six o’ clock and time to load in. Simple. And… done. I was left with meager room to set up merch in the area they had normally designated for it, so I ended up stuck 25 feet from the front door. It remained open almost the whole night, so it was very, very cold. I hope that doesn’t happen again.

October 26, 2007
Seattle, WA

Another night filled with hanging men, put downs, love games and contemporary dieting. All things that add up to a good show. I also got my third taste of The Redwalls dedicated fan base. Very dedicated!

Marci and Justin were all time fans. They had complete collections of all The Redwalls’ merchandise, and some glossy prints they had the guys sign, as well. I finally got new silver sharpies too, so they could sign the color of nothingness if they so desired, which isn’t actually a color because if it’s nothingness then it’s a lack of color. Oh, technicalities.

I like being in my sunken position behind the merch table sometimes. The guys are all representatives of the band, and sometimes get ambushed! I just sit back and watch them try and sort through the queue of people that inevitably form once they show after the set. Pictures, t-shirts, CD’s, posters and concert tickets are all worthy of John Hancocks’, but the one thing I haven’t quite grasped yet is the hugging. Sometimes girls insist on hugging each one of the guys. Not just quick little one-armers either… I’m talking an embrace that lasts for several seconds. Why? Not quite sure myself.

I just remembered this now, not exactly sure when this took place, but kind of comical nonetheless. At one point on a highway somewhere, Justin asked me to pour out his large cup of soda being as I always sit in the front passenger seat. I did, and I guess we were going too fast because the sugary stuff sprayed all over the side of the van. As an ancillary point, we’re all fairly convinced that Logan dropped BBQ sauce out the window at some point, and the combination of it’s trajectory and gravity was perfect enough to land it right inside the outside door handle. As a result, Justin got it all over his hand trying to open it up.

Rono gazing into the sunset of a thousand yesterdays...

Space needle whilst facing inland.

The famous farmers' market.

The Showbox itself where I let a very nice two people borrow my cell phone to try and contact a ride. I received two hugs out of it.

Logan clearly surprised by what Marci had to say while Justin entertains other fans, including Justin.


Some pictures have been added to the previous blogs I've done. Please take a gander!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Boy, see!

Due to my previous experiences in Boise, I wasn’t expecting much more. But surprisingly, I really enjoyed the place! I’d like to discuss a few Boisian landmarks…

The Pie Hole
This is a pizza place on 8th Street one block past Main St. Da Bears and I spent time here while we were touring this past summer. What happened was one of us asked for a water cup, and chose to fill it with Sprite instead. I guess when the culprit went to go pick up his slice(s) the woman at the counter noticed the bubbly carbonation that wouldn’t be existent in water… she called him on it! Then some verbs, nouns, adjectives and more importantly punctuation marks were thrown around resulting in him being kicked out. I eventually forgot what this place was called, but when a pizza place was suggested to me for my buyout I was desperately hoping it was the same place. Eh, I guess you had to be there.

The Deformed Muscle Man
Painted on a wall at one of the entrances to the city, not too far from either The Big Easy, Neurolux or The Pie Hole, lives the Muscle Man. I don’t know if he’s graffiti (most unlikely), an inspiration to Boisians (? [see “Anchorman”]), or some sort of Cerberus protecting the gates of the city. After seeing that thing I was sure a bit cautious of entering… I’ll try and find a picture, but if anyone has one feel free to post it.

The Big Easy
October 24, 2007
Boise, ID

Now to the show! How do you think it went? The Redwalls always play a good set. Do I have to remind you? Overall it was a slow night, most likely due to it being a Wednesday and it being Boise, ID. Not much really going on there. I don’t think the guys have played Boise before, so it was their first real exposure in the city. Not bad, eh?!

By the end of our stay there, my opinion of the place had definitely changed. I actually like it now!

Stay tuned for the Seattle update. I’m here now, and I’ll try and make it a good long one with pictures too!

En route to Boise I spotted a sign with my cat's name on it!

Some of the equipment waiting to be carted up the elevator.

The boys playing.

Reaching the Coast

I could swear I’ve been on this road before, but at the same time I doubt myself. All these curves in and out of the mountains form one long road in my head with entirely interchangeable parts so it can fit where I happen to be at the time nostalgia strikes. Honestly though, I could swear I’ve been here…

Northern America and the Rockies are absolutely beautiful. It’s funny how no matter how many times you go and see the mountains or the Grand Canyon your jaw still drops. Our minds shrink memories to fit our perspective, as if these things are too massive to behold. The selfish tendencies of the human race give reason to the diminishing, we try and make it our own… to conquer it. That’ll never happen. Nature is just too BIG.

“I wish the world was flat like the old days, and I could travel just by folding the map…” - Ben Gibbard

Ah yes, the old days, in which sailing too far in any direction would eventually send you plummeting into the oblivion of space-time over some massive Atlantic waterfall. Or maybe there was no waterfall… just nothingness.

Anyway, we’re on our way to Boise right now, and I thought I’d give you a little/big update on what’s happened since I last wrote. Kansas is down below, Englewood above it.

October 22, 2007
Englewood, CO

From where I was sitting, about 20 feet from the front door, which stayed open way too long that night, I could read the signatures from all the bands that had previously been behind the merch booth which included Saosin, Hot Snakes, etc. If you were to look upwards, the ceiling was carved out in a curvy dome shape and painted like the roof to a perfect summer day, cumulonimbus and all, but it was illuminated in red, and introduced an atmosphere suitable for the theatre’s title. I worked with this cool girl who is the head editor of FM Magazine. It’s a pretty sweet lifestyle magazine, so go check it out!

Once again I was outside of the actual venue part, so I couldn’t visually enjoy the show, but my auditory senses (yes, I have more than one) were more than satisfied! This was the first night I strongly experienced The Redwalls influence on new fans. The standard Redwalls fans were present, but the wave of customers didn’t come until after The Redwalls’ set, mostly raving about how good they were and wondering where they were from.

After the show we went back to the awesome hotel, and were pleasantly surprised to find champagne and chocolate covered strawberries waiting for the guys. Don’t forget, the album release date was October 23rd! It was time to celebrate their accomplishment!

The next day was a not so early start, being that we were on no time constraints. Breakfast was a sit down meal at McDonald's, who's definitely hooked me into Monopoly this time. I normally steer clear of those little sticky game pieces, but this time... uh uh. I've almost won $1,000,000. I only need one more piece!

While we were there, Logan had ordered a tasty looking vanilla ice cream cone. But in the time it took him to devour the cheeseburger he also ordered, the ice cream had spent too much time in the warmth of indoor heating. It just started sinking over the sides of the cone, until he eventually salvaged the almost mess. He must of eaten it lopsidedly, because thirty seconds later the cone tipped itself over the edge of the table, and met it's end in a fist sized melty gob of ice cream on the floor.

Another day off in Wyoming, and then it's on to Boise (which I'm doing right now, if you had paid attention... Pay attention!)

Celebrating in our Denver hotel room.

The inverse hotel.

Dorothy, WAKE UP!

October 20, 2007
Lawrence, KS

I actually liked this little town, besides all the drunken frat boys running around a few hours past the sun breaching the horizon. It was a quaint strip of stores (something like 30% were yarn shops) that seemed to all run like family businesses. The only names I recognized were Urban Outfitters and Jimmy John’s, which by the way, is a million freaking times better than Subway. I loathe that place more than words can describe. Jared, just get out of my head!

The theatre was very cool, consisting of ramps down to the general admission area and platforms stepping up to the back wall. I was finally able to set up merch in the actual theatre again so I could watch the show. The Redwalls definitely had some sway at this venue, and you could tell plenty of people were there for them. Two fans actually drove up from St. Louis to catch the show, similar to another back at the Vic in Chicago. St. Louis? Talk about dedication! The band played “Build A Bridge” in their set, and it was awesome. I really like that song (See the commercial!).

After Kansas we had a wonderful day off spent on the road up to Denver, CO. The hotel we stayed in was awesome, very classy. There was a statue of a buck with one hoof in the air right in the center of the main area beyond the lobby. If deer howled, that’s what it would be doing. There was also a grand piano, which Justin was about to play when a suited employee materialized out of thin air and told him to stop. Whoa.

The next day was spent doing laundry, drinking Starbucks coffee, and going to the venue. I don’t know if it was the high altitudes (about a mile above sea level) or what, but that grande white chocolate mocha did something funny to me. I was disoriented and couldn’t think straight… man was it horrible. Finally it wore of once we hit the venue and I was able to get the merch set up. The Gothic Theatre was an interesting place, and I wish it were located closer to where I live. I’d probably go a lot.

The wonderful Granada Theatre.

Monday, October 22, 2007

More Bars... More Redwalls! (Plus Important News)

The Redwalls new self-titled album is set for release TOMORROW (October 23rd)! If you haven't preordered it already, you definitely need to pick it up.

Keep an eye out for the new music video, it should be done shortly and it's for the track "Modern Diet" off of the new album.

Guys check out this AT+T (why can't I include an ampersand?) commercial spot The Redwalls nailed down featuring "Build A Bridge". The average American household has 2.4 TV's in it somewhere, you should be seeing it sooner or later...

Or for the impatient, check it out right now!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Footage From The Vic (Chicago)

Here's a few little clips of The Redwalls playing new songs at the Vic from backstage. Enjoy!

Saturday, October 20, 2007


Check out my introduction way down at the bottom if you want to know more about me. Otherwise skip it and just read the other ones.

Frederick Pabst Owns Milwaukee

It’s rainy and grey beyond the van windows, just an unexcitable day overall. It is only nine in the morning though; there are still plenty of hours remaining. We’re already on the road to Minneapolis, which happens to be one of the longer-average drives we have, maybe around six or seven hours? I’ll tell you once we’re done. Thank goodness I have all this car time to do the little things I can never seem to dig up the seconds for back home… I’ve been reading (House of Leaves, Alice In Wonderland + Critical Essays, etc.), thinking and writing (this blog specifically, without this time I doubt you’d be hearing much from me!).

I’ve become pretty attached to my sleeping bag, and it’s one of the few things where the basics suffice. I like gadgets with capabilities, and I’d prefer to do everything from one little machine, but I’ve decided I don’t need a sleeping bag with a heater and flat screen in each of the separate rooms and even a self-rolling feature. Well not yet, at least.

My favorite part of being on the road is the exposure your brain gets to all kinds of people and music and ideas. Not to mention the professional input I can get anytime I want from any of these guys. It’s really interesting to catch bits and pieces of potential licensing deals, what kind of sponsorships exist, and tons of top secret uber-classified intelligence that I can’t release to you because The Redwalls are actually spies working for the Czech Republic. Oops!

As a side note, Ricky Gervais is hilarious.

October 18, 2007
Milwaukee, WI

This show was one of my favorites so far. The crowd topped out at around 650, and The Redwalls killed it in merch. I also received my all-access pass for the tour, which is pretty awesome. There were constantly people bouncing around the merch area, swaying to and fro between Rooney and myself, trying to decide what they wanted to buy. So I flash ‘em a magnetic smile (no I do not have braces) and draw them in to buy things! Oh wait… it was just the band standing beside me signing CD’s that did it. Still, I like to think I’m helping the matter!

The show was sat in by one of The Redwalls old drummers (circa Universal Blues era), Jordan. He was a great player, knew the songs by heart, and you could tell he was excited as early as the night before when he and I stood side stage during the set and he was humming lyrics/guitars and slapping his legs in the same fashion he would a kit. When we walked through the load in door it led straight to the stage, and whilst looking out over the 1300-seat venue I wondered if I would ever get the chance to perform in a place like that.

After the show we returned to the hotel, and I got a quick catnap before Rob showed up from Chicago with his drums ready to be loaded into the trailer. It was late, so as soon as we finished it was back to bed with me.

Andrew and Logan outside of the Pabst.

That place was massive!


Thursday, October 18, 2007

Going Home to Home...

I got that feelin' again...
- Nick Onorato

Great song, you should hear it.

After spending my day exploring Chicago all by my lonesome (my blog), it was time to head back to home base and head in for load in.

October 17, 2007
Chicago, IL

The Vic Theatre is this really cool place with a classic marquis out front and a mezzanine inside. It looked like a converted playhouse, and besides the floors and walls being painted black, it remained classy with red and gold carpets, curtains and everything else. Last night was the biggest show yet, somewhere around 750 or more showed up to revel in the music. Unfortunately the crowd didn’t peak until TPS hit the stage. Once again The Redwalls put on a show, and I should have videos up of them soon.

The coolest part of this date by far is that it’s the first chance I had to hang out backstage. The venue had an assigned merch guy, so I was pretty much left with nothing to do but check on the stock every once in a while. In the mean time, I sat downstairs in the hallway amongst the various offices and green rooms on my computer, or upstairs taking pictures from far stage right. I still haven’t met everyone, there are so many people running around constantly it doesn’t leave much time for conversation. But it is only the fourth day in or so, I have plenty of time left.

The Vic at night.

Day Off

I walked around Chicago by myself, and it's now my new favorite city!

Pictures and Experience

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Day. Number. Two.

We slept in this time, just a bit though. It was only a four-hour drive to Cincinnati and the guys didn’t require much time in the hotel before we moved on to Bogarts. Cincinnati is a strange city that seems to have a lot of Philly influence, but I’ve noticed that in multiple cities across the country. We hit the hotel an hour earlier than expected, and while the guys went up into the room I kept an eye on the van for Rono while he negotiated with the parking lot people. This woman approached me and asked if we were a touring band, and then proceeded to start massaging my arms. She was… interesting. After she was done, she went on her merry way, and my arms did feel a lot better.

October 15, 2007

We eventually left for Bogarts, and found the load in area easily thanks to TPS’s two giant tour buses. The band loaded in through the elevator and I went to work on merch. My job over the past two days was to organize everything and get a total count in, as well as selling the stuff to any willing customer. I rolled and taped a total of I don’t know how many t-shirts, but damn it would be hard to get lost in those bins now. I was starving at that point, and luckily we got a buyout, so I ran across the street to this great place called Martino’s. The sandwich was amazing. Go there.

The show went well overall, the tickets sold were somewhere around 260, definitely low for a club with a capacity somewhere around 1200. The place was still bustling though, and fans were enthusiastic. The Redwalls dealt with another short sound check, which seems to be the trend of the tour, but still successfully played another great set. It’s always entertaining hearing Justin yell, “Maestro!”

By the end of the night there were plenty of signatures floating around, and a few fans crowding The Redwalls’ merch table. A couple even came back for more!

After tonight, I’m seeing much more potential for this experience than I saw before. Next on the itinerary… a day off in which I plan to explore Chicago a bit, and then the Chicago show at the Vic Theatre and an after party at the Kinetic Playground. The next two days should be awesome!

Outside the venue.

Rob and Logan waiting to load in.

Loading out! (w/ Andrew)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

On the... "Job"?

After arriving in Chicago, and lightly exploring the city nightlife through a cab window, I met Rono face to face. He kindly offered me his place to stay for the night. As far as him being a tour manager, he definitely knows what he’s doing. I was introduced to a few tools of the trade, and assigned my first duty… inputting the venues and hotels as favorites into the GPS device so we could figure out where we were going, even more easily than having a GPS makes it already. It also sports a very aesthetically pleasing and persuasive British voice (her name is Emily). She makes you want to turn left. The night I arrived was over quickly due to the scheduled departure time of 7AM the next day. I figured I should get some sleep since I didn’t really know what to expect.

We woke up and headed out to pick up the guys one by one in the brand new van and trailer. First Rob and Logan, then Justin, and Andrew met us at the rehearsal space. Their spot is housed within this really big steel wire factory/warehouse type building. It was complete with a case of PBR and red bull as well as all the equipment and merch you might need for a tour. I sorted the merch into bins while the guys and Rono loaded the trailer. I found out later I didn’t do a very good job at first… but for the sake of argument, American Apparel has really, really tiny print on their shirt tags.

Driving isn’t as bad as you might think. Spending hours at a time in a vehicle just becomes a regular thing, and I don’t know if you really even wake up until you get to where you’re going. I do like the lifestyle, and though you can’t really call me a night owl because my head doesn’t spin 180 degrees or more, I’m content with being a night person.

October 14, 2007

This place wasn’t what I expected. Though it was a 1000 capacity venue, it didn’t feel like a classic rock and roll place to be. Maybe it was the glossy wood floors. Maybe it was the what-looked-like-iron-railed balcony circling the perimeter of square-ish main room, or even the wall of glass windows behind the bar that provided a view to the street both in and out. Overall, the show went well regardless of atmosphere. Keep in mind that The Redwalls’ sound check is meager at best next to the Polyphonic’s massive one (25 on-stage members) and Rooney’s meticulous tweakage, and yet the guys still manage with the benefit of experience and put on a great show. As for their set, they jumped right in with Hangman and completed mostly new songs to the delight of the present audience, which numbered around 80 or more on the immediate floor by the end of their set. I couldn’t see very far up onto the balcony, but I’m sure there were loiterers up there. What’s my personal favorite? Game of Love… always. Modern Diet sounds nice and fat too, definitely worthy of “singledom”, and the cowbell makes the song for me. Just kidding, it’s the harmonies that really are dead on all the time.

Before the band even started the merch table was active, and plenty of people are excited about the new release, especially when they discover they can purchase it before the release date. I’ve had a few kids come up and buy it even though they’ve already ordered it online. There was one fan that stuck out, a forty-something year old man convinced that Logan was channeling Lennon and that the guys were the best band out there today. It was actually really refreshing and a bit surprising to meet a fan like that. I guess it was my introduction into the band’s dedicated fan base.

After the show we loaded out and hung out with a couple members of the Polyphonic Spree very briefly, and then it was back to the hotel. I took another opportunity for a night of rest, and that was that.

Oh, and yes, Jason Schwartzman was there!

Flying over Chicago.

The van of the band... the band van.

Rob yawning in the wee hours of departure outside of the rehearsal space.

The Crofoot gettin' built w/ Andrew and Rono to the far left and Logan admiring the stage.

Saturday, October 13, 2007


If any of you are wondering what it’s really like to be out here and doing this… it’s quickly climbing the list of my favorite things on this Earth. I haven’t exactly decided on what about it that really gets me… the travel is amazing, I see new places constantly, meet new people, drink new drinks, eat new eats and I can’t remember the last time I used the same bathroom consecutively. Too much info? Sorry, just trying to convey the experience. I’m a bit of an anti-pilgrim myself, not really looking to settle in one spot yet. Columbus in a van… minus the raping and pillaging. Well, I pillage the catering every once in a while. Free beer? Come on! Even my bedroom is strewn with clothes and papers and memories from the last time I was out not all that long ago. You might ask, “Well don’t you get homesick? Don’t you miss your friends?” Well, yes of course! The months off did me good, but I already felt antsy to move again once I settled back into the routine of classes. Grades are not a pleasant thing to worry about. You learn things about yourself when you’re out and off for so long. And I still haven’t deterred the idea of disappearing for half a year to do nothing but explore the territories I can’t call home because I’ve never been there, or floating down the Mississippi with a best friend in a raft painting and writing and busking wherever we decided to stop, which will probably be determined by a blind, instinctual yearning. I don’t think I plan on deterring it either…

I’d like for this writing to help you get to know me a little bit beyond words on your screen, even if we’ve never met or will never meet. I think the writing will help me get to know myself a bit better as well, so even if I don’t reach anyone, I’m still working to get something out of this. I appreciate comments, emails, letters, constructive criticism and suggestions.

Most importantly I’m going to be documenting my journey with the guys you know as The Redwalls (The Pages for you long-timers). Pictures, videos and maybe some playful quotes will all be included. If you want to see something added or have a question for the guys just ask, I’ll try and work with you to find you an answer.

Now for the technical info: My name is Mike Giuliana, I live in Philadelphia and I am a student at Drexel University, home of MAD Dragon Records, who are now supporting The Redwalls new release. When I’m not on the road I work as a busboy at one of the most prestigious restaurants in Center City. I enjoy music thoroughly, have a side project of my own called living/breathing/singing/screaming and recently came home from my first and entirely DIY multi-national tour with a San Diego based indie surf rock band called Da Bears. My friends are all awesome. I have curly hair.

And that about wraps it up! I’ll probably modify this as time goes on, or add similar posts every once in a while. Most of all I hope you enjoy reading this and hearing about the band from where I am in this whole thing.