We feel like new men this morning. It’s amazing what a difference a night off can do to a weary bunch of touring musicians. Not only did we have a night off but we also had the luxury of our own rooms in our new favourite city, Chicago – home of the Chicago Music Exchange, Smoking Woody’s BBQ and friendly policemen who let you wear their hats! Chicago has had a powerful magnetic force over us the past few weeks. Whenever we’ve driven away from it, we are invariably drawn back as though attached by an unseen bungee cord. The reason for our return yesterday was to do a live performance for Radio WXRT Chicago – an important station for us to make friends with as they wield considerable power and influence. Hopefully, we achieved this. The performance was broadcast live on the internet from a room containing a low stage and chairs for a small audience. These kind of things can sometimes feel somewhat sterile and vibe-less. It can be hard for a band to whip up the necessary mojo needed to create the same atmosphere you’d find at a real gig but then not all bands have a Phil Campbell! We closed our 5 song set with “Ain’t No Telling” and Phil took the outro as an opportunity to jump off the stage for a lap of honour around the room, stopping to shake his tambourine at surprised members of the crowd like a frenzied witch doctor. Brilliant! Thanks Kelly and Norm for inviting us to perform at your station. We hope to see you again soon.
So, sandwiched between Louisville (the subject of Damon’s diary entry) and Chicago was a visit to Fort Wayne. For those who’ve expressed a desire to be at a small, intimate TTM gig. This might have been the one to be at as you would have been amongst only eight or nine people. It felt a bit “Twin Peaks” being in a fairly large room with just a handful of silhouetted figures dotted around and one couple on a sofa at the far end in front of the mirrored back wall. There’s no reason why anyone in Fort Wayne should know or care who we are and nine people is better than no people so we got on the stage, gave it some and then went to bed. Job done!
As we say goodbye to Chicago for probably the last time on this trip, we say another hello to Indianapolis. This should be called the Déjà Vu tour. We were here just the other day with Blackberry Smoke but return for our own St Patricks day gig. We’ve already made plans to revisit the same burger joint we ate at last time and I’ll be raising a glass of Guinness to celebrate St Patty’s (yes, that’s what they call it here) day. Cheers!