Tuesday, October 21, 2014

behind the scenes from the road and beyond

I'm back from my mini tour with the wonderful Amos Lee and co., and a week with my family in PA.  Here's what went down!  (and a few side stories)

I met Amos Lee and a few members from his band waaaay way long ago, before I moved to L.A., before I made any albums or EPs.  I was 18 and somehow wandered into a recording studio outside of Philly where Amos was recording his EP for Blue Note Records.  I was hired by the Producer to intern for the project, running to get snacks and energy drinks for everyone.  I was in Heaven!  Years later, Amos and his band handed off my debut EP to Blue Note, who I eventually signed with to begin my professional career as a singer-songwriter!  

Amos has always been a big brother figure to me... I have a lot to thank him for.  And I couldn't think of a better way to spend 2 weeks, than touring with him and his wonderful crew again! 

Here I am doing a fun radio interview with DJ Scott Register from Birmingham Mountain Radio.  His station is awesome!
I met him waaaaaaay back in the day, when I was in Joshua Radin's band -- whaa??

Up until now, I'd been on Amos' very nice tour bus.  But towards the end of the run, I was doing a few shows of my own, and needed my own transportation.  So here I am in a compact rental car that had a slightly funny smell, with best buddy Wendy Wang.
We quickly realized how tough it was for us gals to drive miles and miles, lugging gear, loading and unloading, setting up, playing a show, selling merch, packing everything up again, wrapping up paperwork (Yes! Paperwork!!), and then loading up into the car, driving to a hotel, unloading again, finding street parking, and trying to fall asleep in time to get a few good hours of zz's before we had to hit the road again.  Not to mention I managed to spill something on me almost every day for some reason!

Trying to fix the pickup in my guitar before my show in Birmingham, with no luck.  :(  I was my own guitar tech too!

Wendy and I drove about 15 miles out of our way looking for a Thai restaurant in the middle of nowhere, that ended up being closed!  We were both starving, and I was starting to come down with a cold.  We pulled into a tiny, local Mexican restaurant instead.  We just wanted a quick snack, because we were cutting it close on time for the next show which was about another 3 hours away.  Out came a huge, steaming platter of fajitas, and right around then, the ceiling fan next to me started raining sparks onto the floor!  It was our own mini fiesta!

One of my favorite people on the planet -- Freddie Berman, left-handed drummer extraordinaire.

Last night on the Amos tour singing "Black River" together.  One of my faves.

Spent my last days on tour in Atlanta, GA with an old school friend who became a chiropractor.  I had to cancel my show in Nashville because I ended up getting a real cold, and was so extremely exhausted from traveling as a duo and not getting enough sleep.  >.<  (so sorry Nashvillians!!)

The show in Decatur, GA ended up being sooooo much fun!  The best way to end my tour!  But by the end of the night I had a splitting headache from fighting my cold, and just being tired after the show and doing a very long -- and wonderful -- meet & greet afterwards.  My school friend offered to adjust my neck to help with my headache.  I would do anything to feel better!  About 1 hour after he adjusted me, my headache was gone... and so was my cold!!!!  I had no idea chiropractics could help in this way!  I'm sold!!

Then, to Pennsylvania I flew!

On Sunday, my family and I went to my old high school to play some tennis.  The place was empty, so we had the whole court to ourselves!  But then... a black truck arrived and parked next to our car.  Their engine was idling for a while, and we were starting to wonder what they were doing.  Their windows were tinted, so we couldn't see who was inside.  It was quite mysterious.  Finally they turned their engine off, and lo and behold, an Amish-Mennonite family emerged!  They were coming to play tennis too!  About 4 more black vehicles pulled up, and soon we were sharing the courts with about 30 Amish-Mennonites!  Young girls running around barefoot and climbing fences in their long flower dresses and braided hair, teenage boys playing tennis in flannel shirts and jeans, and the elder men all in black with their white beards, and women in bonnets.  And then there was us.  It was a pretty amazing sight to see, as I've never really been in close proximity with Amish-Mennonites in public, even though they live in the area where I grew up!  About an hour later, they all packed up and left, and we looked at each other and were like, "What just happened??"

The Fall weather back home was cool, but not too cold, so we had a few campfires in the yard with hot apple cider and korean sweet potatoes from the garden.

By the end of my trip, the leaves were really starting to turn.  The drive to the Philly airport was breathtaking!  And luckily, I returned to a much cooler L.A., where I'll start dusting off my soup cookbooks and start writing new songs again.

Happy Autumn!