Wednesday, September 21, 2005

I'm such a fan boy...

Last night was much better than the night before. For starters dinner was one of the best meals I have ever had. We ate at Fogo de Chao, a Brazilian churrascaria. I finally got to try the "Gaucho-style" I spoke of yesterday. Fantastic doesn't quite cover it. Everything was amazing and I just kept coming, more and more. Before I could finish one thing there would be someone offering me something else. It was excellent. Fogo is expensive but worth every penny.

After dinner I retired to hotel for about an hour and began the difficult task of digesting the massive meal I had just consumed. After an hour Barry picked me up and then we headed off to the real event of the evening, Mike Doughty at the Variety Playhouse in Atlanta, GA.

In all fairness I must say that I am a huge fan of Mike Doughty. I think he is one of the best artists touring right now and I have seen him multiple times. For three year after Soul Coughing broke up Doughty would just tour the country with a guitar and his van and play where ever he could for small audiences. Over that time he has built up quite a reputation and released 3 self produced albums. Recently this year he signed with ATO records, release a new album, Haughty Melodic, and began touring with a full backing band. This brings us up to now.

Last nights show, in typical Mike Doughty fashion, was incredible. Not only are all of his songs full of energy, but you can never tell what he's going to do next. Last night, along with a plethora of his own great songs he also covered Duran Duran's "Hungry Like the Wolf", Guns 'N Roses' "Paradise City", and Kenny Rodger's "The Gambler". He also did a special new remix of "Fire Truck" and "It's Raining Men".

After the show Barry and I hung around for a bit and finished our beers and then I went to the Merch table and bought a shirt. Mike was signing things at the table so I had him sign my ticket and told him that I thought he was one of the best acts on the road and to keep it up. He said thanks a lot, I'll see you soon. I'm such a fucking fan boy. Oh well, I'll see him again in Indy. B

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Kidnapped By Pirates

Last night was very much like being in a movie. After finishing up at work, my co-worker and I went back to the hotel for Happy Hour. We had planned on having a couple of free drinks at the hotel bar and then heading to a Brazilian Steak House for a "Gaucho-style" dinner. This was a good plan, it, however, is not what happened.

During happy hour me met Ivan, a private pilot for a group staying at the hotel. My co-worker and him swapped war stories from being in the service and we become friends, or a least drinking companions. After happy hour we decide to try this steak house. I had looked it up on Google Maps and had a pretty good idea of where we were going. I was wrong. The streets in Atlanta do not like to cooperate and we got terribly lost. We stopped at a gas station and got directions from a cabby who told us where to go, but also recommended a restaurant that had just opened down the street.

I still wanted some "Gaucho-style" action, but I was outvoted. We ended up at a place called "Nostalgia" that had just opened. And I do mean just. We were the only customers. We had some drinks and a couple of appetizers and then the guys decided that they wanted to go to this bar down the way that the cute bartender had told them about.

So, sure enough, we're off to the bar. The word seedy doesn't quite cover this place, but we stay none the less. Ivan and my co-worker continue to trade war stories and we watch the game and have a pretty decent time. Before we leave and pretty much causing us to leave, a woman, who was apparently "working" propositioned Ivan. We decide this is not a good place to be anymore and promptly head back to the hotel. Having to work the next day it seemed like a good idea anyway.

On the way back to the hotel, we once again get lost. We finally find the hotel and as we are turning onto the street that the hotel is on, we are stopped at a red left turn light, we wait there for a minute, in our rented red Mustang convertible, and then he just decides to go through it. Right in front of a Georgia State Trooper. As I see this happening, my only thought is "We're all going to Jail". Luckily the cop decides not to pull us over, but follows us into the parking lot and then drives off. All in all quite an evening.

Tonight I am hoping to actually hit the Brazilian place and the I'm going with Barry to see Mike Doughty in concert. Expect a full review of both tomorrow. For now I'm just happy to still me in one piece and sane. Expect more tomorrow. B

Monday, September 19, 2005

Klosterman, North Carolina, and Cracker Barrel

With my new job I find myself traveling almost every week to a different city. Last week I was in Winston- Salem, North Carolina, home of The Salem witch trials and Big Tobacco. There is not much to do in Winston aside from a couple of good restaurants and a decent local Brewery, so I find myself with a lot of free time. Last week I was able to finish "Cash", Johnny Cash's autobiography and I went to the bookstore and picked up Chuck Klosterman's latest, "Killing Yourself to Live, 85% of a True Story". I finished it in two days.

Klosterman was up to par with what I have come to expect. His self deprecating wit,and unbridled rock snobbery were just what I was looking for. Half analysis of his life long loves and half on location rock history research, it made for a wonderful read. I was very interested in his trip though North Carolina being as that was my current location. There is a great anecdote where he stops at a Cracker Barrel in NC and runs into bespeckeled Kafka reading waitress that frankly, shocks him. Being on the road myself in this great state, on my way home (aka the Airport) I stopped in the first Cracker Barrel I came across. Not only was I craving some Chicken Fired Chicken with Sawmill Gravy and Dumplins, but I was also secretly hoping to run across this erudite waitress. Although my meal was good, I left with my quest unfulfilled, no waitress met his description.

On a lighter note, my favorite band that you've never heard of, Forget Cassettes, has reunited. If you have not heard of them I suggest checking them out immediately. You'll thank me later. This week I find myself in historic HOTlanta, GA. Stay tuned for more updates from the Peach State. b

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Out of Retirement

Many great people have some out of retirement, Hulk Hogan, Michael Jordan, KISS, and now me. After the burning wreckage that was the end of "In The Congo", I needed some time off. I said what I needed to say for the time and was kinda out of ideas. I am now back a better than ever. Stay tuned for the latest info on my travels across the country as well as the usual pop culture reviews. Glad to be back... b