The Rockula Update- Post Apocalypse Tour

V Mercy from Apocalypse Theater posted that he needed someone to drive a second vehicle for their tour and I had nothing else to do so I volunteered
V asked me if I would do video and I thought that would be a great idea
So, I packed up the video rig and headed to Kansas City Mo
The first show was at Davys Uptown Ramblers club and featured Apocalypse Theatre, Mercury mad and a burlesque performance by The Bustle Review
I had my screen off to the side and that was cool because I was just figuring out what I was going to do for the show
Here’s a playlist of the burlesque performances

and individual APOX and Merc shows

Next was Topeka Ks and a club called the Boobie Trap
Some of the burlesque performers came along for this show too
This was a smaller gig and had less going on, so I could work on trying different background video for bands
playlist of burlesque performances

I have not been able to post the footage I shot in Witchita Ks and St Louis Mo
they were good shows and i was getting more feel of what worked video-wise
It was around this time that I noticed my engine running a bit rough
The worst it could be was motor mounts but I figured it was just badly in need of a tune up and timing
Plus, it was starting to die when idling
St Louis was cool because we got to stay in a church

The effects of the tour were starting to settle in
Sleeping on floors or couches (if you’re lucky), sweating, eating groceries out of cans, getting a stiff back and joints from driving long distances
None of those things mattered because I was having fun and seeing new things
I enjoyed the company of the people in the various bands and didn’t have any difficulties with any of them
Already, I am appreciating the one thing I have been craving since I quit Autonomy back in 2004

Next was Joplin Mo
This was a DIY basement venue
Now more than ever, I utilized my cool invention- A spray bottle full of alcahol for the toilet seat
The people of the venue were really cool but I was starting to get a bit on the uneasy side
I am not sure if it was because I had broken down and eaten a couple of hot dogs at the truck stop or if it was the place but my gut was starting to rumble
To make things worse, I was getting itchy
Especially the palms of my hands
They were itching so bad that I was rubbing them on tree bark and clapping my hands together until it hurt
Mercury Mad gave me an allergy pill and I took a quick nap in the back of the van
About 20 minutes later, I was feeling a lot better
I had no idea what happened but I was a bit skittish to touch or lean on anything in that place after that
I had heard about the recent tornado situation in Joplin and didn’t really pay attention on my way in (mostly because it is hard to follow V in the van at this time) but I noticed on the way out that entire sections of the city were completely wiped bare
Even more bizarre was that there was a house here and there in the middle of what used to be a neighborhood
It seemed like people had stubbornly rebuilt directly on the spot where their old home used to stand
On the way out, I saw a billboard for a realtor that said “Rebuilding Joplin together”

A quick stayover in Tulsa (a coupla hours away from Joplin) and then Dallas and my apartment

The trip down had been pretty smooth and the van was doing OK (although still running rough)
Even the traffic in Denton was unexpectedly light
Then we hit the intersection of 36 and 635
And stayed there for a good 20 minutes
As soon as we got past it, the traffic suddenly cleared up
I was very happy to see my studio, take a shower in my own bathroom and sleep in my own bed
The next day was the show at the Fallout Lounge and we were in a decent mood
More than half way through the tour and no major incidents
The Dallas show was sparsely attended but the owner really liked the show and decided to get everyone drunk since he didn’t really make enough to pay them
I decided to be one of the sober drivers
My allergies were kicking my ass and I needed to make sure I didn’t catch a cold/flu etc…
Besides, I was still having a real cool time and getting drunk wasn’t really necessary
Someone else recorded the show and I will post it when I get a copy
I decided to relax and just Video/DJ
Another great night’s sleep and then we headed to San Antonio

The van was running rougher and then I smelled radiator fluid pulling into the truck stop in Waco
I opened the hood to see a tiny leak of steam coming out of the radiator hose and felt extremely lucky to have caught it at such an early stage
An hour later, I had replaced the hose with minimal tools and only a few curse words
Back on the road, through Austin traffic and on to San Antonio

After the poorest excuse for a salad bar I have ever seen at a Pizza Hut, we hung out with the owner if NiteRocker’s Live and I gave him a Kum N Go Lighter
The Opening act was called Saakred and was probably the highlight of my tour
Here’s why

We spent a ton of time talking about equipment
It felt really flattering that she picked my brain and I gave her insight on the Digitec Vocal 300
I have a new artist to investgate now and hope to bring her up to Dallas
Basement Angel also played and they let us stay at their house
They were cool as hell

I have not been able to post the APOX vid from SA yet

Next was Austin but not until we saw one of the worst accidents I had ever seen and a traffic jam behind it that stretched on for at least 5 to 7 miles
We were thankful to be headed in the other direction
Austin was so close that it only too 90 minutes to get there which left us with a lot of time on our hands
I could sit in the bar with the band and spend money but I opted to go to the van and read a book
The gig was at Headunter’s and was probably one of the most energetic of the tour
Plus, I thought I really nailed the video
We stayed with Lori Barbero, the drummer from Babes In Toyland and she was cool
I wished that I had more card space on my camera but I had forgotten to transfer the SA shows to my computer (plus I thought I lost one of the cards) so I only got the first part of the Austin show
I really wish I had gotten video of The Bipolar Gentlemen
The female singer was bald and I projected video of The Great Hugo behind her all night

Tulsa was next but I was thinking it was time for me to plan for work on Sunday
I drove the band up to the club and dropped their equipment off
Merc’s girlfriend drove down from KC to get him and his equipment
APOX would drive back to Mpls and deliver Ken the drummer back to the airport to get home to Chicago
4 hours later, I was in Dallas under a hot shower and sleeping in my bed again
The next day, I drove a 10 hour shift at work

I came home with a sense of relief that things had gone so smoothly
I had toured again like I was in high school with Scum Of The Earth in 1989 and it was great
All of the discomfort and lack of sleep and weating and starving etc… may sound like a horrible experience to most but I can’t think of a better time
This is what I craved so much when I quit Autonomy and have been striving to get back to it for too long
APOX liked the way I handled myself on tour and want to include me in future tours
Perhaps even as a drummer and including some of my songs in the show
There is a complete blank slate in front of me and I have several avenues to pursue
A great sense of pressure has been released from me and it is making me optimistic for the future

I just went to Roy’s garage to see what was wrong with my engine
Turns out I have been touring with 2 broken motor mounts as well as 1 trans mount
It appears that the radiator hose was the least of my worries
I feel very lucky to only get out of this with a few hundered dollar’s worth of repairs
Besides, it’s just gona make the van stronger for the future
Here’s hoping that I get more chances to use it


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