And so we hope the luck of our tourmates changes sometimes in the near future, or else we’re gonna have to add a funeral or five onto the end of this tour.
Why they had a skill saw, I’ll never know, but no one can deny that it definitely came in handy for this particular situation — so to whoever gave it to him on that fateful Christmas 2007, that rockin’ band from Arkansas owes you for your eccentric gift-giving taste.
As if all of that wasn’t bad enough, they were loading out after the show on what I’m sure was already the longest day of their lives as a band, and when they were locking up their trailer where they store their band gear, their key snapped off in the trailer door’s lock. So the next thing we know, there’s a crowd of about two dozen people standing around and watching Trevor from The Wedding trying to use a hacksaw to cut through the steel hinge on their trailer door so they can get it off and the guys from Abandon Kansas can get to their gear. And somehow he’s got this crazy like, coal-miners forehead light strapped on while he’s doing all this. For about 20 minutes all anyone did was stand around and take pics and video of him hacksawing at their trailer hinge, occasionally making sarcastic comments and twittering about the situation. When out of nowhere, Matt (lead singer from this tour’s main-support band, the Wedding), strides over, surveys the situation and declares, “You know, I’ve got a skill saw in the back of our van, if you wanna plug that in and powersaw through it.” At first, this is taken as a joke by onlookers, but quickly went from ridiculous fodder to the best plan anyone had come up with yet. One extension cord and several wary head-shakes later, it’s just after midnight and Trevor is now hunched over the trailer’s lock, miner’s light headband on, powersawing away through the steel hinge with aviator sunglasses on to “protect his eyes.” At this point, even the previously-jocular peanut gallery had the good sense to stand about 15 feet away from the scene, lest some chunk of shrapnel fly off and lodge itself in someone’s sternum. Sure enough though, after a few more minutes, the hinge came right off and the Abandon Kansas guys could get to their gear and live on to play a show another day.
So now, in addition to Brian’s misstep (pun intended) and being an hour and a half late for the show, they were out almost $700 dollars in auto-repair costs because their radiator blew out just a few miles away from the venue. So now there’s a mad scramble to make sure AK gets loaded in ok — and as they opening band, they had the least amount of time to prepare from the outset.
If you took one look at Abandon Kansas’ tour van (an early-90’s looking fullsize van in various shades of brown, the sort of vehicle that could’ve just as easily been purchased from someone’s yard or a police auction), you’d think that they’d seen some rough things in their day — but you’d have no idea how much crazier it was destined to become. Within the first three days of tour, the half-Kansas/half-Arkansas (or Pirate-Kansas as I call that state) based band had already experienced a pretty out-of-the-ordinary accident as their drummer, Brian, managed to break his foot…while stepping off of a curb. Not jumping from a hotel window into the pool, not kicking a roadie, not stage-diving into a weak-armed crowd — walking off of a curb. Ridiculous. The day after that, their merch guy, Jared, manages to contract some hybrid combination of swine flu and the bubonic plague — keep in mind, this is the guy who interacts with every single one of their fans who come to the merch table, handles all their money, and touches everything that the band signs. Not a good guy to have contract the most incurable disease since disco fever. So naturally, when we were playing a show about five days into the tour and Abandon Kansas didn’t show up for load-in time, we started to get worried. At the rate these guys were going, we were afraid they’d driven off of a cliff or something by accident. Our fears were slightly assuaged once we’d finally been able to make phone contact with them, only to find out that they were at an auto-repair shop in the same town as the venue we were scheduled to play later that night.
I don’t really put any stock in “bad luck” or “curses” or any of that nonsense, but after spending the first week of our tour on the road with our opening band, I’m starting to think that THEY do.
As they say, it’s a hard rock life.
As an homage to the skilled — albeit eccentric — directorial style of Mr. Quentin Tarantino, I will be presenting today’s blog in reverse order.
Hey guys, welcome back to Blogville, USA. Population: people with too much free time on their hands.