This tour diary is mainly something for me to do to keep busy, and probably will be read only by a few friends and family, and the occasional web-searcher for Giant Sand or Thalia Zedek... Here's what's been going on for the last 6 days:
Thursday, October 7. Dresden, Germany. venue: Star-Club.
It could be my imagination, but it seems like there has been huge growth and modernization in some of the former East German cities like Dresden. (politically, East/West, the Wall...)
I've been to the Star Club 4 times since 1998, I think.
Mathias the Chef once again quietly makes us welcome and cooks fine food for all.
My big walk-around-town adventure for the day ended when an elderly woman with a cane fell down on the trolley tracks in the street in traffic. I had to pick her up and help her walk across the street where some locals could talk to her in German and make sure she was OK.
A full club for the show. Sold a few records to a biker dude... Thalia thought he looked so tough, but seemed so shy that maybe he rides a moped instead of a Harley?
Friday, October 8. Halle, Germany. venue: Objekt 5
Days go by faster when I don't look at the calendar or the map. It's almost a game to wake up in a new place the next day and not even notice getting there, thanks to the able bus-driving of Scott.
Warm, intimate club. I've been here with Willard Grant Conspiracy before. A friendly man named Ulli showed us around a bit.
The club was packed with people like sardines... too tight for people to get to the record sales table.
Right up front at the stage were a bunch of friends who screamed and danced at midnight for a birthday girl in the group.
The dreaded disco started immediately after the show... Others in the group don't hold disco in such low regard as I, and Giant Sand bass player Thoger bumps heads with the birthday girl and knocks himself out. He has been wearing a snake-skin print suit. Snakes aren't supposed to stand up and dance.
Saturday, October 9. Duisburg, Germany. venue: Hundertmeister.
I did laundry in the sink.
Another crowded show. Smokey.
Friends Anjelika and Reiner are on a music vacation, following Giant Sand (and Thalia Zedek, of course) and recording shows.
Sunday, Octber 10. Haarlem, Netherlands. venue: Patronaat. Roots of Heaven Festival.
Day off for Thalia Zedek band. We are NOT "Roots Music".
I spend the day with my friend Kim and try to figure out why duck calls don't echo.
Somebody at the festival disappeared in a canal because the algae and leaves on the water looked like dry ground, but thankfully, resurfaced and was able to take a shower in the venue.
Monday, October 11. Hamburg, Germany. venue: Fabrik
An amazing building. A former factory.
Sunny the sound technician was fun and friendly. I've met him before.
The neighborhood of the Fabrik venue has a falafel shop that is famous for its magic falafel.
During the Thalia show, I broke a viola string. usually I can change fast, but I grabbed the wrong string and had to try it twice.
Thalia's friend Moni takes pictures and wises off in German on Thalia's behalf to people buying records.
Tuesday, October 12. Darmstadt, Germany. venue: Centralstation.
Hometown of friend Frank, from Spanish band Manta Ray.
I have the dreaded "Bus Cold" which has passed through just about everybody on the tour bus. I'm temporarily hibernating in my coffin-like bunk.