Before we got to DC we had spent the night in Charlottesville, Virginia, where Nikki's sister, Kelli, lives. We showed up at 4 AM and there was some hilarious shit goin down. I'll spare Kelli here and not go into great detail... she was sleeping so we woke her up, along with our good friend Che... Che was in great spirits, Kelli was pissed we weren't there earlier. I can understand. So in the meantime there is this guy, who upon first greetings immediately blurts "Im not Mexican, Im Native American." Obviously someone who feels the need to say shit like that when you meet them has some problems. So as the night continues and the party ensues, he just keeps drinking and standing around listening to people's conversations and half talking to us, half talking to himself. He was rambling a lot and I couldn't begin to tell you about what... except I remember these few lines...
(him) "Do you speak wind?"
(him) "I knew it"
"You better get away from me before you get pregnant!"
We woke up the next morning and he was still awake, and had been drinking all night long. Kelli tried to force him to leave and he just kept calling her "Ding Dong"... "Listen Ding Dong, Im not leaving my friend here because he's my brother and i stidslfkldsjfgkldsjgdkljgsdlkgj"
She finally took him home, and we went and ate. Then off to DC.
We met Dan and crew at the 9:30 club... Dan said "Wow, you guys look just like you do in the pictures!" We said "So do you!!!!"
We met Jaime, Rene, Abe, and Dante of Hacienda, who played 2nd on the tour and also were dan's backing band... along with their last minute fill in for drums Patrick of My Morning Jacket.
All very sweet guys.
The place was so packed, the biggest venue we've ever played. I think 1100 people? The people all cheered when we walked out on stage, and I just laughed because I knew most of them didn't even know who we were. and because it was kind of a nerve-racking situation. We played as good as we wanted to, and it all just felt good. We had a great time... one of our favorite crowds ever.
Later we went to the friend's house we were staying at and... again no details but we awoke to the sound of rain, oh wait that's a drunk guy peeing on the coffee table 5 feet from where we are sleeping!!! We got the heck out of dodge and he even helped us carry our things. Gross.
Day 2 Boston, Massachusetts... The Paradise (March 1st)
We awoke about 3 hours later to start our 10 hour drive to Boston. I dont remember anything about the drive, maybe I was sleeping. I remember the show was OK... The crowd was the exact opposite of DC. They just looked at us like they were scared to death. and they were very quiet. But we didn't hold it against them.
Our tour manager, Captain Byron, pictured below, hooked us up with a place to stay at some house run by a church for college kids or something.
It was kinda weird but the best sleep everrrrrrr 'cause it was so quiet, especially after our first two nights of the trip. We were so worn out by the time we got there. Maybe we didn't sleep on the way?
It blizzarded while we were playing too! Here's what we awoke too...
Someone also hit our car in the back alley behind the paradise, but nothing was hurt except for our mirror. here it is plus a random car that was sideways for some reason. (there was alotta snow on the way to NYC)
We stopped and got coffee on the way...
Brooklyn, NY The Music Hall of Williamsburg (March 2nd)
It's always great to go back to NY. After spending almost half of last year up there recording our album, it's like our second home. Which is kind of funny for girls who grew up in the middle of nowhere to say. There was a little bit of a pissy situation with one of the stagehands who was being a jerk... and then I got shocked from the microphone, so I was in a pretty bad mood. But I got cheered up enough before we played, the Sheriff and girls were goofin off back stage.
(dont i look mad??)
there now i feel better...
Manhattan NY NY The Bowery Ballroom (March 3rd)
The next day we went to visit our producer at his house (and his wonderful roommates). Below are pictures from their next door neighbor's yard (recently deceased). We always have loved this yard but never got around to taking pictures of it before the Sherriff took these.
We went to eat sushi with our friend Teddy (better known as Tardy) who is working on our first music video (its going to be good but thats all i can say!!). Here he is with Kelley Darlin herself.
We didn't take anymore pictures that day... I guess the show went well but without pictures I can't really remember it specifically... oh well!
Oh yeah and our friend Jon Spencer (Bosshog, Jon Spencer Blues Explosion) called us and asked us to sing on his band Heavy Trash's next album, so thats what we did the next day... the studio was really cool, small but lots of great gear! We all three gathered around the same mic and sang on two songs.
Cleveland, Ohio Beachland Ballroom (March 5)
After a day off spent recording, driving, and then visiting the coolest thrift store in Akron, OH (Dan's home town) we headed to Cleveland to play. The Beachland Ballroom was cool but I really remember the vintage store that was attached downstairs best... I bought some sweet bloomers. The one thing I'll say about the Ohio days, we left with way more than we came with, and in a van as small as the one we were in, it was TIGHT.
No pictures at the show, but here's a video of us performing DUI or DIE.
We stayed with a good friend Stacey who was by far one of the best hosts of the entire tour. She was so wonderful to have us stay at her place and even hooked us up with the best breakfast every complete with vegan, vegetarian and meat options. Then sent us off with a 12 pack of beer. What a sweetheart!
(Waking up at staceys... it was hard)
although we did acquire van graffitti at this show... "I love to suck dicks"
THANKS whoever that was in CLEVELAND!!
Chicago, Illinois The Metro (March 6)
GOOD NEWS! There was a warm front going through Illinois and it was 60 degrees in Chicago!! This was a saving grace, considering last time we were there it was January and very very cold.
The crowd was seemingly as warm as the weather... Our manager met us there and it was so good to see him again, so that added an extra air of excitement. It was also his birthday!! so we played him a birthday song.
Thats us with our Manager JT on the left and David Macias from Thirty Tigers, who is helping us put out our full length.
And theres the birthday boy!!
(across the street)
Rene from Hacienda
The Sheriff and the Captain just had to get a picture of this...
Minneapolis, Minnesota 1st Ave. (March 7th)
So turns out it was an early show but we were unaware, which we found out en route to Minneapolis... we started high-tailin' it there and showed up in the nick of time. We had to use Hacienda's equipment because we didn't have time to set ours up. The sound guys were GREAAATTTTT though and even though we didnt get to do a check it sounded better than some of the venues where we spent a full 45 minutes doin a check. and they were so nice. Kelley made the mistake of saying "We didn't know Minneapolis existed before we got here!" Which resulted in immediate booing from the audience. But it really wasn't an insult, she just meant we never think anywhere exists before we go there for the first time. But it was a hilarious way to start of the set. I think we won them back over. (Did we, Minneapolis?)
just look at the cute lil face... how could you keep hatin on that? (Ps notice the packing to the ceiling haha)
Long Drive from Minneapolis to Seattle, about 30 hours of driving (March 8th and 9th)
Well, frankly this was hell. We had 2 days off for this. I guess we got about 7 or 8 the first day, and slept in Montana.
We did get to stop at the Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota (our friend Shane recommended it) BUT it was Sunday so it was closed! :( We never really figured out what it is/what its for... all we know is that it is made out of corn. Mitchell seems like a very funny place... very touristy.
We acquired this little sexy mama for the van window.
Things were all flat and boring till this stuff started happening...
(Thats ice on the water)
it was so boring that i just started poppin pimples
then it started snowing.......
until eventually we had to stop driving because it was too dark and started getting really mountainous. We stopped at a Wal+Mart to get some new windshield wipers because ours were not working. They had just closed due to some night construction, and the lady wouldnt let us in. Until we said "on tour" and she said wait, are ya'll musicians? HEY GUYS COME OUT HERE WE GOT SOME ROCKNROLLERS!! and she let us in to buy the wipers!!! and then some other guy came to the door while we were in there, trying to buy wipers too, and she wouldnt let him in! haha. sorry dude.
so the next day it wasnt snowing as bad but it looked like this:
and then our van wheels looked like this:
I think van life was getting to the Captain...
So we stopped again. and the next day we were in Idaho. First things first we wanted to eat, and there was this tiny little town called Wallace that we stopped at... and found this awesome restaurant The Red Light Garage. And having a song called red light love, it was an obvious fit.
oh and the mountains were just beeeeeeyooutoutiful in idaho:
(the quintessential rocky mountain picture haha)
When we finally made it to Seattle, we were feeling pretty fuckin insane...
I smell it!!
Seattle, Washington Showbox (March 10th)
I want to say it was great but I think we were a little bit too frazzled from our trip to enjoy our short stay there. And we got pulled over twice that night, within 60 seconds of each other. One for running a red light, and the other for our van being too dirty! (well, he couldnt read the license plate... but we were like man... we just drove across the entire country, give us a break)
We did stay with an awesome guy known as Garth Brooks (but not the real one). He had a fully stocked bar in his house. need i continue?
Portland, Oregan The Wonder Ballroom (March 11th)
Much better than Seattle. The weather was a tad warmer too. Nikki Darlin used to live in Olympia so we got to see a lot of her friends who now live in Portland.
The show was all ages and it's weird how they seperate the crowds up there.
We all went to go eat Ethiopian food before our sound check, and just as the lady brought it all out Hacienda called us, and apparently we were supposed to be sound checking just then, so we left Byron to pack the food up in to go boxes and ran back down tothe venue. When he showed up with the food, it was all mushed together into 3 to go containers. i mean, just complete mush.
Above is Kelley with Francoise Hardy at the Wonder Ballroom.
Later we went to go hang with Hacienda at this really cool hotel... it had a venue and a restaurant in it. very amazing architecture and design. All the doors were painted with Chalkboard paint and in each room you get a jar of chalk... so naturally I went around drawing dicks and naked women on all the doors.
This highschool's mascot was the Democrats hahahaha
San Francisco, California Bimbo's (March 13)
We also decided to take hwy 101 (i think?) for the scenic route, but then it got dark and it was total bullshit... we could even see any of the good stuff, and it was a curvy windy ass dark road.
Byron almost went crazy trying to man handle those curves.
We did see the bottoms of the trunks in the redwood forrest... and a baby bear.
We finally made it to our friend Antler's house in San Fransisco.
He collects giant gongs and giant bowls.
Thats our friends dog. His name is Dank.
Below is our manager JT with his compooter.San Fransisco was so beautiful. We just had a great time all around.
I got yelled at for writing poop on Dan's tour bus with chalk.
there's alotta fruit farms in California! its amazing.
we had good sushi too
Turns out me and Jaime (from Hacienda) are actually long lost brother and sister!! I bet you didn't know I was half mustache!!
Los Angeles, California El Rey Theatre (March 14th)
So Sheryl Crow has a song about LA something like...
"this ain't no disco, this ain't no country club either... this is LA!"
which basically tells you nothing about LA... and is the dumbest thing to quote in context to what im about to say but I just thought of it and it's the only thing referring to LA i can think of right now.
LA is so much crappier than i thought it would be, haha. I mean not the people necessarily (i didnt really meet anyone, actually) but the town is just blah. What is Paris Hilton thinking???
but the show was still fun. I was wornnnn out and fell asleep immediately afterwards.
thats what dan looks like from backstage!
Here's what you look like from backstage, audience!
We went and ate at Mel's diner the next day, that was the best part about it all.
but only cuz it had a giant DINOSAUR!!
SXSW (March 17,18,19,20)
7 shows in four days...It was great and i ain't gonna tell you shit about it cuz at this point i was exhausted and dont remember much.
Us at the taproom for My Old Kentucky Blog
Us at Club DeVille for Brooklyn Vegan
Fort Worth, Texas Lola's Saloon (March 21st)
We were headed back from SXSW at this point...Above was the hotel we stayed at in New Boston, Texas. It was a really shitty hotel. but i liked the sign. Funny thing is we were standing outside the van (see the red astro parked there) and a U-HAUL truck pulled up and yelled "THOSE DARLINS!" After some investigation it turned out to be auer good friends Vern and Mike, the merch and lighting guys for Dan! They were going to McDonalds so we followed them over there, where there was a giant mural of all the Ronald crew out in the wild wild west... needless to say we took a picture.
(From Left to Right: Sherriff Lin, Nikki Darlin, Jessi Darlin, Captain Byron, Merch Vern, Kelley Darlin, and Lights Mike.)
We were sad to be playing a show on our own again, we missed Dan and Hacienda. But Ft. Worth showed us some love and we felt good again... they also were intent on not letting us leave and buying us LOTS of drinks...except these big ole redneck assholes who yelled at Captain Byron as he was loading the van "How's that V neck treatin ya, ya queer?" Byron took immediate action and got the fuck out of there.
this guys was pretty hilarious...