October 1st 2008 - 2:03AM. Birmingham, AL.
After sound check I drove around town with Ryan Russell and took some photos, photos for the purpose of publicity. I appreciated getting away from the venue, seeing some parts of Birmingham that I've never seen before. The city has a certain feel to it that I can't quite put into words. It's the sum of many different parts, the type of business' that comprise the local economy, the architecture of the buildings, the local fashion trends and the landscape. As we drive around I silently cursed myself for not having a more photographic memory to take it all in better. After we finished with photos we ate dinner at The Bottletree Cafe. They have an excellent Buffalo Tofu Wrap.
October 2nd, 2008 - 4:08AM. Driving to South Carolina.
Marty was in the (Young) Pioneers, one of my all time favourite bands. He now plays bass with Ted Leo and The Pharmacists. I talked to him tonight for a second backstage. I tried not to punish him too hard. I tried to play it cool. We usually close our set with a song that references his band, which I brought up to him. He said he was aware of the fact. I felt self-conscious singing it tonight, I imagine I will for the rest of the tour.
October 3rd, 2008 - 2:04AM. Hilton Head, SC.
I watched the first half of the vice presidential debate before our set tonight, I watched the full rebroadcast after. I found myself wanting to physically fight the TV every time Sarah Palin said the word "maverick", every time she winked at the camera, every time she opened her dumb fucking mouth. I hate her face. It is her obvious lack of capacity, lack of intelligence that makes me feel like I have to stoop to throwing elementary school level insults at her.
October 5th, 2008 - 2:51AM. Gainesville, FL.
Tonight's show was somewhat lackluster, something felt off. Maybe it was the venue, the House Of Blues in "Downtown Disney". Maybe it was the fact that last night at Jannus Landing was an amazing rush. I couldn't help but measure the two in comparison while on stage.
I am an honest fan of both Future Of The Left and Ted Leo and The Pharmacists. Sometimes I worry that I don't come off to them as such. I feel like I have a hard time projecting sincerity in person. It's a little easier with Future Of The Left. Since we've toured with them before we already have a relationship. I don't know Ted, Chris, Marty, or James, but I love their band.
Everyone except Andy, Emily, and John went home to Gainesville after the show. Heather and I drove back with Jordan and Sarah. They dropped us off at the Holiday Inn. I haven't been in Gainesville since June.
October 6th, 2008 - 1:09AM. Gainesville, FL.
I met Philipe and Jannick at Leonardo's this morning. They came into town to shoot a piece on Gainesville and my EP for Current TV. We had talked about doing it back in September when I was in Montreal. Philipe's idea was that I would give a guided tour of Gainesville, pointing out areas of both personal significance and spots that are of significance to the local scene and he would mix in some of the music from "Heart Burns". We drove around town for about 2 hours. I showed them No Idea Records, Wayward Council, The Civic Media Center (all of which were closed) and the warehouse spaces on the edge of town where a good majority of Gainesville bands practice. I showed them where the Hardback used to be, where the Ark used to be. I showed them La Casita Blanca, the house where I lived under the staircase when I was 19. I showed them the curb out front that I used to sit on late into the night, watching prostitutes down the street come and go as I wrote lyrics. I showed them the plasma center on Main Street that I used to frequent a couple times a week, selling my plasma for rent and drinking money. And finally I showed them the one and only Laundry mat that I have ever played a show in. The experience was awkward for me and I'm worried that I came across negative at times in answering Philipe's questions about Gainesville.
October 7th, 2008 - 1:00AM. Driving to North Carolina.
My throat is shredded. Today was supposed to be a day off but we ended up booking a last minute show in St. Augustine at Cafe 11. The show was worth it but I could have used the day of rest for my voice. We also missed seeing Jonathan Richman play at Common Grounds in Gainesville. Our next day off is a week away. I've developed a nasty habit of slamming 2 or 3 Red Bulls before playing. It's been my one vice on this tour. It's horrible for my voice, it also wreaks havoc on my stomach, but I love the caffeine high.
I picked up my absentee ballot today.