Saturday, October 18, 2008
Bobby's Place, Moose Jaw, SK, Canada
If it's Saturday it must be Moose Jaw. And it is Saturday, so it is Moose Jaw. But not yet. It's maybe 8:00 in the morning and the Yorkton Howard Johnson is being renovated with hammers and saws. Go figure. Today we planned on sleeping late and relaxing in our rooms until noon. They are bashing the wall next to my head, and they are spilling buckets of paint (yes, really, big big mess) outside Michael's room. Some quick internet checking and we are out of here! Is there a decent cafe in Yorkton for breakfast? Not a chain, but a mom and pop? Let me know, would ya? Be nice to get fed in town. We head back to Slow Helen's, in Melville, SK, for a sandwich. Michael mandolins as we drive. Today it's "96 Tears" that gets me going.
The flatlands are an adventure for us, and we soak in in as we drive. Stopping for gas and a snack along the way.
Bobby's Place is off High Street and Main, near the bus station. Next to the bus station, actually. Not that we need a bus tour. This place is jumpin' in late afternoon when we roll in. Manager/owner Kevin welcomes us and directs us to our hotel, after a quick tour of the stage and sound gear. We're staying at Al Capone's Hideaway Motel, just a block from the club. I've stayed here before (see last year's Big Road Blues Tour blog for Moose Jaw!) and I'm familiar with this place! Sure enough, we draw Room 10, the SAME room I had last year! We open the door and find it is HOT, HOT, HOT. We leave the door open to let in some of the crisp, prairie air. I explain to Michael how last year the heat in this room would not shut off, so I had to turn the air conditioner on full blast— letting the two machines fight it out all night between hot and cold. Surely they would of fixed the thermostat by now? A quick check shows it falling off the wall. They must be spending a fortune on hydro keeping this room at the temperature it is! We'll be ventilating this room tonight.
Back to the club for sound check and a meal. It's a Peavy system. Not my favourite PA gear to begin with, and clearly not to be fun tonight, either. Michael's the designated sound guy on this trip, and he works hard to get this puppy up and running. We bring in our own mics and a couple of boom stands. We can't seem to get the EQ right on this stuff. It's a very noisy house, and we can't get it up any louder, and we can't get the monitors to behave. Eventually we pretty much turn them off. Show time sees us start and be totally ignored by the crowded house. Oh, this is going to be an interesting night, for sure. We're starting at 9:00 PM for three sets, to end by midnight. There's a bunch of football players in the crowd, and they're loud, maybe louder than us, I don't know. By the end of the night there are a few people sitting up front listening to us. We wander through the crowd and sell (surprisingly, to me) a bunch of CDs. People are telling us how much they are enjoying the show! At the end the staff tell us they thought we were great. We get paid, load out, and back to our hotel. Big work. This is the grinder of the Tour so far, no doubt.
In front of our much too hot room we have a drink, a smoke, and watch the town go by. This town is going crazy this Saturday night. There are pick-up trucks squealing their tires at the lights, groups of people stumbling by, bottles breaking, sirens running, girls squeaking over the night noise. It's still loud at 3:AM when we close the door on this night.
Posted by Doc MacLean at 11:12 AM