Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Friday & Chad VanGaalen - IHOP French Crepes

Friday was Richard Swift's Birthday.
I gave him two drink tickets at the No Depression party and fought the urge to give him a birthday hug. Or maybe I did give him a birthday hug. I can't remember. I just know that I was glad to see him and even happier when I ran into him at the Clem Snide show later that night. Okay, by that point, it could have been in part from the during dinner drinks....but as we talked of the growing music scene in Birmingham, the changes in my life since we first met and his own transitions over this last year...I guess I knew then that Friday night would be an incredible night. I broke away from him as Eef Barzelay dreamed up another chorus. I broke away smiling with my hands clutching the strap of my black bag. I squeezed my way through the crowd to Travis's
side. Travis turned to me, grinning, and motioned to his left side. Adam Fitz, a friend of mine from Chicago, the guitarist for Ralph "Soul" Jackson's bands, stood gazing at the stage. He moved his eyes, glassy and heartful in my direction and returned my joyful expression. We three stood motionless in a bustling crowd and just listened.



Beautiful half of a set. So moving that the soundman standing beside me asked if he was doing this performer justice. I told him yes. He asked me, sheepishly, for a suggestion of which album to start on, because he had never heard of him before. I wrote on the back of my card "Adem - Homesongs", turned, and fled out into the night.... to catch a rickshaw with Crazy Victor.

"Are you ready for a wild ride?" said the seat of his rickshaw.

We weaved through traffic, in and out, between the crossing crowds, around cars, through intersections.

I made it to Lambert's for the Flemish Eye Showcase alive. But barely.


Beautiful. Sad. Awesome.

Amber agrees.

never made it cross the border.
So he sent a 5 minute video of himself, playing two songs in his kitchen.

The venue projected it on the bare white wall by the stage. It was awesome to see the crowd chuckling to themselves, hiding their smiles in their hands as he wailed through each song. The sound was actually pretty great.


They took Chad VanGaalen's place. Friends of White Whale and Flemish Eye and fellow Canadians. -
(Mint Records)


"I'm sorry I stuck my finger in your orange juice." Ian blurted out sheepishly, wiping his hand with his napkin. We were at IHOP, a latenight ramble with the boys from the Cape May and their label wrangler. I searched my satchel for my checkcard and pulled out t-shirts, a hat, a pair of drumsticks, twenty five thousand cds, and twice as many fliers, some for the Bucket, most handed to me on the street that day. I handed Clinton the SoCo hat I'd received at the Fader party. He yelled something that I'm sure was obligatory and shoved the cap on his head.

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