Tuesday, September 2, 2008

What's a Doug Fir?

The show at Doug Fir Lounge, the reason for our return to the band's home base, was on Saturday, August 30. They played a perfect set with the non-bike-touring members of the band, Dave (Trumpet, Keys,) Joel (pedal steel,) Ian (vibraphone,) Shawn and Kristine (violins,) although sans Kati, as she was in a wedding that weekend in Bellingham, to a sold out and captivated crowd. To do so at a place that was very recently too high profile to return their calls was an amazing thing to witness. Israel and Luke encored with " Rock Salt and Nails", a beautiful old song by Bruce "Utah" Phillips that Kati had taught them while in Gearhart. It was the perfect compliment to the high energy set of the full band and a reminder that Kati was with them in spirit.

It felt odd to be back in PDX so soon, and for so long, but we got to stay with Luke and his wonderfully welcoming housemates, Melissa, Adan, and Max, in SE Portland. The neighborhood was as different as you could find from the Pearl District in which Ryan's gallery, where we stayed with Ryan before the tour, sits fishbowl-like. The house was lovely, with a big porch, a yard, and lots of really nice people to sit, drink coffee, and talk with. The downtime was a welcome distraction, but always felt undeserved so early in the tour. The band felt restless, itching to get back on the road, but needed the time to tie up yet more loose ends. In the greenroom of the Doug Fir, Luke remarked that they where excited to be playing for such a large group of people, and with such good sound, but the consensus was that they all wanted to be back on the road. "Back in that tent. I miss the smell of all of us after a day of biking," Ryan quipped. To which Israel reflected, "I miss the smell too. It's the smell of freedom."

No comments: