Here we are, folks….September. We're nearly 3/4s of the way through 2013, and I can't seem to recall; without actually going back through my calendar and putting the pieces together, just exactly how we got this far into the year without losing a band member(quick, somebody knock on wood). We might have set some kind of record with this stretch. In addition, we've actually probably played more shows this year(27 at this writing) than we've played in quite a while, which might go a long way towards explaining why the band is starting to sound slightly seasoned on occasion. We started the year off with the release of '4', and while we're still out pimping that collection here, there, and anywhere that will have us, songs are starting to come together for what will most likely NOT be called '5', but what will in fact be the 5th proper release from The Great Affairs. It might be another EP, or we could go the distance on this one, and spring a full LP on the unsuspecting masses. It really just depends on what we cook up. Personally, I feel like the bar is set kinda high, and I'd really rather not deliver anything that doesn't outdo our previous work, so please be patient if those restrictions prove a hindrance where timely delivery is concerned. Like a fine wine, ya know?
But enough selling you what's (supposedly)next, here's what's actually happened lately.
Newport, KY, just over the river from Cincinnati, OH…The Southgate House…we took over the lounge for the evening. I'm not gonna lie and say we packed the place this time, but we did give it everything we had, throwing down 40 songs spread over two sets, for those that did come out. We played a few things we had never played before, and brought back a handful of tunes that had not seen the light of stage in years. In spite of the questionable attendance, I thought this was one of our better shows, and while doing 3.5 hours essentially straight through(we took a 10 minute break at the midway point) can play hell on the voice, we didn't give an inch, and stood tall for the full 40 on the list. To those of you that stuck it out with us, we are grateful…especially to the kind soul who brought us that goody bag full of coffee and brownies. You may well have saved our lives on the drive home with that caffeine. Bless you, ma'am.
Marathon sets behind us for a bit, Henry headed in for his sinus surgery, emerging a masked man for our show in Nashville at The End, refusing to be stopped by a mere broken nose and nostrils full of gauze and saline solution.
The next day, we had an outdoor show in Clarksville, celebrating the grand opening of our friends Jason & Patty Yates' Wicked Good Sandwiches. Henry ditched the mask for this one, seeing as breathing and singing in 90º heat was gonna be next to impossible with his MJ look happening. He did however wrap Patrick in a blanket and dangle him from a balcony later, after they'd both had a few drinks.
The Nugget made an appearance. He's kinda famous, so I got his autograph.
Brando didn't care…he slept under the trailer for most of the show.
I spent the next couple of days tracking some new tunes here at Pastry Park, before taking a 4-day sabbatical in Las Vegas. I lost a bunch of money but gained some much needed peace of mind. While I was there, my ex-TGA bandmate Lee "El Borracho" Coram contacted me about doing some writing, so we'll be exploring that possibility this week. Lee & I have completely different approaches to crafting a tune, but they always seem to align well, so I have high hopes for this round of collaboration. Where the product of this union might land is anyone's guess.
On the horizon, show-wise…wait, let me crack this beer…….aaahh, O'Fallon's Pumpkin Ale….smooth……here's what we have coming up:
Friday, September 6th The Crowded House in Madisonville, KY 7:30-9:30(we're doing two hours of full-band acoustic stuff….this place is badass, and the food is great…plus, you never know where these acoustic things might take us…last time we surprised ourselves. Oh yeah, and it's free.)
Wednesday, September 18th Twin Kegs in Nashville, TN 8:30-Midnight (Woodbine Rocks: 9 bands doing 3 songs each. Not sure what slot we'll have yet..just confirmed this today. Stay tuned for details.)
Friday, September 27th John Brown's On The Square in Marion, IL 9PM(3 sets at one of the coolest little rock clubs we've encountered in a while. We're looking to rip the roof off this time, and we've been tweaking the set a bit to facilitate such structural modifications. Southern Illinois, you have been warned. Also FREE.)
Saturday, September 28th ????still working on this…possibly St. Louis, MO or another Illinois date…we're still open, if anyone has a suggestion. Hit us up.
October will have us in Memphis, Louisville, and back to Madisonville, with a few gaps to fill between now and then.
As always, here are the pertinent links to keep up with me/us elsewhere:
My Times Newspaper Blog (I rant on various subjects.)
The Great Affairs on FaceBook
The Great Affairs "official" site
p.s. I posted a snippet of a new solo tune "Dirty On The Stereo" in the audio player. Click on that to hear a preview of the stuff I've been working on.