In Part One, I went to Europe, tried to sell people my TWO NEW RECORDS, and played a bunch of shows. Well, in Part Two, you won’t believe what happens next! In Part Two, I try to sell people my two records, while playing yet more shows!
More photos, video, and rambling descriptions after the jump!
We played the Bonn Stomp in Bonn, Germany, and not only had a great show but also got the awesome poster above.
In Bern, Switzerland, I finally get to visit the Voodoo Rhythm Hardware store! Deep beneath the city, Beat Man has assembled some of the best records and coolest Voodoo Rhythm merchandise, all in one bunker! Beat has all the releases from the Voodoo Rhythm catalog (note the prominent display of John Schooley albums):And he’s also got other records to ruin any party. Check out this score! French rocker version of Duane Eddy and Lee Hazlewood’s Dance With The Guitar Man! Nice suit, too:And check out this sweet embroidered Voodoo Rhythm jacket. I would have bought one, but it would never get cold enough in Texas to wear it:After Bern, I play an in-store in Winterthur, at Ventilator Records:Great store! They buy some copies of Dead Mall Blues, and I buy a bunch of Euro picture sleeve 45s, like this Equals single: On to Zürich, Urban Junior’s hometown. We play El Lokal, a beautiful club with a giant skeleton sculpture hanging from the rafters:The club has lots of interesting decorative touches: A view from the rafters: A friend of Urban’s took some cool photos during our sets: That’s Voodoo Rhythm artiste Becky Lee at the side of the stage: I have the day off in Zürich the next day, and I’m staying with Rock, the dj at our show. Rock was playing all rock n’ roll at my show, but he usually djs for Gogol Bordello playing Gypsy and Eastern European stuff. Wild! In addition to being a dj, he was a friend and employee of renowned Swiss artist H.R. Giger, and now he works for the Giger estate. He says he has to get up early in the morning to go to the Giger museum to drop off some prints. Would I like to come? Yes, yes I would. This is sitting on the table in Rock’s flat:We stop by Giger’s house in Zurich to pick up some prints to take to the museum. Rock tells me that nobody gets to go to Giger’s house, the family is very private, so this is a rare privilege. I get to see Giger’s back yard – I like to imagine him grilling a hot dog on the Weber and then eating it while sitting on this crazy goblin throne:This is Rock with Giger’s cat:Then, on to the museum in Gruyère. There is a Giger-designed bar: And the town itself is quite beautiful, providing an interesting contrast to Giger’s artwork, which is full of alien penises n’ such:There is also a Tibetan museum in Gruyère, so you can see lots of exquisite brass Buddhas, in addition to lots of cheese. And this skeleton pair. According to the guidebook, these are the “glorious lords of the charnel ground of the funeral pile”:We then eat fondue in Geiger’s favorite fondue restaurant, because, hey, we’re in Switzerland.
I can’t help but take a selfie in Rock’s flat with an ORIGINAL FACEHUGGER FROM THE MOVIE ALIEN:The next day, we’re back on the road. We drive south to Lugano, Switzerland, which is close to the Italian border. To get there, we have to take the Gotthard Tunnel, which means a loooooong time spent looking at this. Not for the claustrophobic. In Lugano, we play in a weird squat-like repurposed building with a makeshift stage, filled with thrift store furniture and inexplicable video installations:No pics of my set, but the lovely Radiana (great name!) sketched me as I played:During Urban Junior’s set, I noticed this guy passed out in a chair in the back of the room: His friends noticed, too, and decided to have a little fun: They carried this dude, passed out in the chair, to the front of the stage!Then they proceeded to rock out, with chair dude on their shoulders. I think he eventually came to:Then, we sleep in a decaying mansion. It is kinda like having a mattress on the floor of the Grey Gardens estate: Not often that I stay somewhere and think, “Check out those valances!” Back in Germany, this is a thing that exists: In Leipzig, I see Austin’s own Spray Paint will be following us soon on their own Euro tour. Austin, represent!Onstage in Leipzig: Lars, our driver for the second leg of the tour, plays foosball with Urban: In Darmstadt, I play the same club that Scott Biram played the week before. It’s a great show, and possibly my best, musically. Me and Urban Junior jam on Hound Dog Taylor’s Let’s Get Funky at the end, me playing guitar and drums while Urban plays drums and keyboard. It is the closest to Hound Dog Taylor combined with Suicide that I’ve gotten – my vision, realized! In Utrecht, MORE ONE MAN BANDS: Urban Junior sells a t-shirt! Still life with van, to reinforce how exciting every aspect of touring is for you homebodies who are envious: On to the last show of the tour: Rotterdam, with Jack Oblivian and the Sheiks again, on a giant stage!It’s a festival with me, Urban Junior, Jack O, the Sheiks, the Anomalys, and more: Backstage before the show, Robert, Urban Junior, and I settle up. Robert takes his cut for booking the tour, leaving five Euro for Urban and I to split. We decide to go 50/50 on that, and I look forward to getting a nice cup of coffee at the airport tomorrow morning: A view from the rafters for Urban Junior’s set: Urban Junior says my set is my best of the tour! Whoo! Then, time for Jack O and the Sheiks, killin’ it yet again. They’ve been out for two months at this point, so they are tight as hell. It’s the last show of the tour for them, too:Now, I have to take everything apart to fit in the suitcase for the flight back. The flight is early, and we have to drive back to the airport in Amsterdam, so why sleep? The Anomalys still have to play! We don’t leave the club ’til practically time to start drivin’!
And that’s it – back in the van, back on a plane, back home, and then back to work the very next day. Damn.
Thanks to everybody who came to the shows and especially those who bought copies of my records. Thanks to Urban Junior for putting up with me, Robert for booking it, Marcel and Lars for driving us, and to all the kind folks who set up the shows, fed us, and gave us places to sleep.
I played a show at Hotel Vegas when I got back to Austin, and the “band” was still tight, so here’s a video of me back home. Some ladies were even dancing: Hope to do it all (well, most of it) again soon!