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Date: Sun 21 Oct, 2001 at 00:00
Headline: Bizarro Week

Greetings and Salutations!

It was a surprise, to be sure...but a welcome one.

I had been dreading the Spanish Fork gig, for a number of reasons. It was out of town, and no one in the band had ever heard of the club. It was the first time we have done our own sound since John quit the band. It was meant to be a 4 hour night and we only had about 2 dozen songs. And we were all running EXTREMELY late that day.

OK, technically points 3 and 4 somewhat cancel each other out, but still...I was riddled with anxiety.

However, it turned out being one of our more enjoyable gigs. The audience, which seemed to increase in size as the evening wore on (not the usual way these things go), was very enthusiastic and also helped fill the gaps in our setlist with their numerous requests. Some we were able to grant, some not-so-much, but it was fun trying. From the hard looking biker who wanted "anything rockin' and free" (we tried Skynyrd...he said "not free enough" but still tipped us) to the trenchcoat mafia-esque guy who wanted Ozzy and we obliged by butchering both "Crazy Train" and "Paraniod", to the group of girls who who were delighted to hear Barenaked Ladies' "One Week" (even though we had planned on playing it anyway), we gave it all a shot.

My favorite part of the evening came when we took the stage while the jukebox was still playing Shaggy's "Angel" and, noticing its very stock chord progression, jammed with it while going through renditions of nearly a half-dozen other pop tunes, including our own "In Between". It proved to be a great segueway into the last set and kept everybody dancing.

It was also gratifying that our PA, cobbled together from various bits of John and Tim's gear and never assembled before that night, was extreely low maintenance and ran without a hitch. Plus, and this is an especially rare occurence for an ostensibly "originals" band in Utah...we got paid a decent wage. Everyone was in high spirits, both during and afterwards.

Earlier in the week, we played to a largely invisible crowd at The Urban Lounge...which also ran counter to our expectations after the last show we did there. I think two people stopped by to play pool sometime while we were playing, but otherwise our audience consisted of the opening band, the bar staff, and chirping insects. Still, the playing was fun.

On a non-musical note, I spent yesterday enjoying a Ultimate Male Rite Of Passage that I'm told I should have already indulged in many years ago...namely, watching all three Godfather movies for the first time. Long story short: I liked the original the best, I didn't see why everyone kvetched about Sofia Coppolla in the 3rd one, and the whole experience was extremely cool with the exception of my cousin Travis being given a massive head wound by a falling piece of statuary which had been pushed off of a ledge by one of our friend's cats...then again, I suppose there is a certain relevance to that occurence as well...

Preparations for the Red Cross Benefit are now in full manic swing. More on that as it develops. If anyone wants advance tickets to the event, feel free to contact us by clicking on my name below. Also, we are going to be playing Halloween after all, at a place called Club Expose. More on that later as well.

Until next time...

your humble correspondent
Thom Bowers