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Thursday, July 16, 2009

Whiskey Daredevils Tour Diary

Posted By on Thu, Jul 16, 2009 at 10:00 AM


The Whiskey Daredevils just returned from a road trip in Europe. Frontman Greg Miller fills us in on what happened.

Day 12: Barcelona, Spain

We have clearly overstayed our welcome. Brigitte and Pitch speak in the kitchen in quick bursts of harsh tones. Christoph has hit some sort of wall, and is the last one to get up. The shower process is very slow, and these people want us GONE. Gary and Christoph, somehow, have not picked up on this and move at a glacial pace. I don’t know how this is possible as there is almost a visible angry purple fog in the room.

I had showered first, and offer weak smiles to our hosts as inactivity surrounds them at all angles. Leo is slowly enjoying a coffee. Ken flips through a magazine. Christoph may be taking a bubble bath, he’s been in there so long. Heh heh heh…so…thanks again for the hospitality…ah….

Finally we exit, and despite the warning of Pitch of a “very complicated” route if we proceed in the direction the van is pointed, we head that way anyway. It turns out all we have to do is turnaround at the bottom of the hill at a very civilized intersection. Meanwhile he had wanted us to try to make a three point turn in heavy traffic on a two lane road. Maybe it was payback because we wouldn’t leave, I don’t know.

We drive from France to Spain with the feeling of an impending “boondoggle”. When you have been doing this as long as we have, you know when something doesn’t feel right. And this doesn’t feel right.

Carmen didn’t provide the one sheet of show information until we had arrived in Belgium. This is unusual, as she is very buttoned up with all the details clearly outlined. This particular one sheet has a few, shall we say, irregularities. For example, the accommodations aren’t the standard “private” or “hotel”, but instead described as “your choice”. I like the use of “your choice” as opposed to “none provided”. It’s more “glass half full”, you know? Hence, the “your choice” section of the tour has begun.

We get into Barcelona and find the club. It is located in an industrial section of town devoid of the usual Spanish cervezarias, and tapas bars. In fact, across the street is construction, a metallurgy business, and a fucking widget factory. The club must be what they refer to in the trade as a “destination point”.

We arrive to find none of the standard band snack or pre show meal, so we set out in a random direction in quest of any open place. Christoph is totally crashed out in the van loft, a broken shell of the man that just days ago couldn’t get inside the unlocked hotel door of Darmstadt. We find an open bar, and I order tapas of jamon, olives, almonds with pork cracklins, and little fish with a spicy sauce. It’s all really good.

We return to the club to find twelve (12) people in the bar. At 12 Euros each, which we get 90%, we’ll end up with 125 Euros, slightly less than the two hotel rooms we have arranged at the one star Hotel Sofia by the bus station. This is hardly the triumphant return to Spain we had expected, but then again, we haven’t been here in a decade. Of course, an even bigger factor was that we didn’t see even one show flier or poster in the 15 block radius we had explored during the down time today. I’d say this show was a bit “underground”.

I vow to play my ass off for these people. Hey, this isn’t ideal, but if they made the effort to see us, we should definitely give them what they came for. We play well, and four of the twelve people snap photos like crazy while we play, flashes illuminating the cement tomb of a club. I think every single person in the place buys something after the show, so we make the best of a bad situation. We play the “Hey Mon! Let me take your picture” game again, and have some fun.

We load out onto the entirely devoid of life street, which is strange in a late town like Barcelona. The party usually doesn’t even start until 2 am here. If I didn’t know any better, I would think we were standing in downtown Erie. This club location really blows. That’s when we find out the deal isn’t exactly like we had expected. The local promoter has deducted 24 euros for “poster placement” 7 euros for “poster details” and 30 euros for “press and shipment”. So we get clipped for 61 euros (about $90) for these guys to have allegedly hung the provided posters despite the fact that no posters were hung anywhere we could see. Fucking bullshit. We leave with 80 Euros plus merch on a Thursday night.

We head to the “your choice” hotel, anxious for our one day off tomorrow.

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