I've spent the last seven months trying to convince the rest of Youngblood that I'm really, really good at playing the piano. I'm not sure how well I've succeeded, but it at least seems like when I say things like "modulation" and "mixolydian scale" in group, they tend to believe that I a) know what I'm talking about and b) have a good reason for bringing it up, other than an aggressive need to be listened to. In reality, my piano skills aren't all that great. But they're good enough that, occasionally, I get to go places and use them.
One of the groups I use them with is a short-form musical improv company called Chicago City Limits, which as its name implies, is based in New York -- nearish EST. In addition to our New York show, we perform on the road about twice a month. And when I'm trying to delay working on my Bloodworks piece, I blog about it.
When we travel, we wind up in a whole bunch regional theaters in a whole bunch of places. Many are brand new, built mid-last decade as part of their home city's downtown rehabilitation effort. Some are beautifully restored old vaudeville houses. But almost all of them put shows on stage, and most of them put bodies in the seats way better than we do in New York.
Since we're about to start a four day swing through California and Nevada, I figured I'd try and find out what business is like at the theaters we perform in, who their audiences are and what sorts of shows they have going on when we're not around. But since I’m a shitty journalist who will probably fail to ask the right person to answer those questions for me, I'll probably fill in with details of what it was like to perform there, and whether or not they had pepperoni sticks waiting for us when we arrived.
I wish I could start on this now, but as I write this, I'm on an airplane about midway between Newark and San Francisco, eating a turkey dog in a crescent roll. "Oh, you must have bought that turkey dog at the gate," you say. Nope. They were giving them out on the plane. FOR FREE. On an airplane in 2010. That doesn't happen.
1) Two Southwest Airlines 757s just flew by going the opposite way. If you ever doubted how fast planes go, wait 'till you see one fly by you in midair. They go FAST.
2) Three and a half hours into the flight I have yet to see ground. Apparently it was a cloudy afternoon basically everywhere in America today.
3) Listening to Semisonic at 30,000 feet is about the same as listening to Semisonic at sea level. Pretty good.
Tomorrow: I try my best to describe the Clark Center in Arroyo Grande, CA.
Because I left my camera at home, I will leave you with a file photo of a jet plane.