Tour Diary, Saturday, Feb 26, 2022

After a good sleep and some toast and tea I drive over to Pacifica from Berkeley. My friend Suzi is coming to the show today so she rides with me and we have a great chat about music and stuffs on the ride.  

Suzi has friends Jason, Liz and their cute little boy Levi staying in her driveway right now. They are traveling nurses and have outfitted an old bus and live in it and go from city to city. They are fantastic people. Suzi met Jason when they were both illegally arrested for protesting one of Arizona’s inhumane law, he as a nurse and her as press. It’s a long story and makes you thankful that there are people like them out in the world looking after other people that fall through the cracks.  

Over in Pacifica, Winters Tavern is a great spot, I get the punk rock vibe coming from every inch of this place. It’s a nice enough day out so I’m playing outside. Erin, the bartender directs me to the speaker that is my PA.  

This is going to be a little technical but not too much.  There is one powered speaker for me to use as a PA. It’s a 15” JBL and is typically used as “part” of a PA system but here, outside it is all that is provided. It has one xlr input and two 1/4” inputs. No eq, no reverb, just volume. Fortunately I brought my little Bose S1 Pro. I haven’t talked a lot about this little powered speaker but it is a lifesaver and really a Swiss Army knife for live stuff. It can be a main speaker, a monitor, it runs off battery if there’s no power - and today it is also my mixer. I plug my microphone and my acoustic guitar into it, dial it in with the eq and reverb and then take the 1/4” output and send that to the big 15” JBL speaker and it sounded pretty great. I’m so glad I brought this little Bose with me. It also came with a backpack type of bag to keep it in. Bonus!   

I pretty much just launch into it today. It’s a punk rock bar, I’m not going to be too loud or whatever here and there’s a freedom in that. I mean, I’m not obnoxiously loud or abrasive anyway but knowing that the amount of noise and/or abrasiveness is beyond what I can make is a bit freeing. There’s a group of folks to my right that are just tuned in and enjoying all of it, there’s a couple that have set up wood fired pizza (Gabba Gabba Pizza!) and they’re digging it. Suzi’s in front with her friend Rob and more folks just scattered throughout the patio area.  

I’m having fun.  

Suzi requested some Roxy Music so I give “Virginia Plain” a good kicking. I can see the punks making pizza were really not expecting to hear that song from a solo acoustic dude.  

And then the motorcycles started doing burnouts.  

Right next to this patio area is an old gas station/garage thing that a group of guys have seemingly taken over to hang out and do burnouts on their motorcycles. I pause a couple times because I’m just being drowned out. They are only about 50 feet away. Folks went over and politely said to them, look - there’s a guy performing here, do you have to do that? And it seemed to make them do it more, louder and for longer periods of time. And for no other reason then to be dickheads.  

Finally it got so bad Suzi got up, went to the back fence, climbed up on a bench and yelled “HEY ASSHOLES, SHUT UP!” And gave all these bikers a full double bird. I so wish I had a picture of that moment. It was probably the nicest thing anyone has ever done on behalf of me while performing.  

And it shut them up for a little bit. But assholes gonna asshole. It was a great show that was slightly overshadowed by a bunch of dickheads. 

I got a great singalong going for Wolf during APB, folks were digging the stories, sold cds, we talked about the connection between The Grateful Dead and The Clash and a guy came up and gave me a Grateful Dead sticker which I put right on my guitar. We ate Gabba Gabba pizza (which was absolutely top notch pizza) and all had a great time despite the assholes. Hell I even sold 2 usb sticks today!  

Then we came back to Berkeley and had fantastic stuffed peppers, wine and conversation in Jason  and Liz’s bus/home. Now I’m beat. Tomorrow I head north to Oregon. I tried to order new pants online to be shipped to me in Oregon but they won’t get there in time so I ordered patches for jeans and i will patch the hole. Next best thing, right?  

Ok, goodnight.

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