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Rated: 18+ · Documentary · Music · #1150065
A 1st draft from my scrawled diary from a national tour. Feel free to critique it
This is an excerpt from my scrawled tour diary of my 1998 national tour, playing bass guitar for seminal midwest punk legends 10-96.

I plan on fleshing the diary out into 75-100 pages. They are to be included in a book I am putting together regarding the history of hardcore punk music in the midwest.

Any criticisms are welcome.

June 12th, 1996
Knoxville, TN

Whew... amazing past twenty four hours.... punk rock plays amazing games in the hand of fate... Went into Memphis yesterday morning and stumbled upon Beale St right away and took a quick spin up and down it observing the locals, and then made our way to GRACELAND.... twenty bucks to tour a dead guys' house- way to go Elvis. The tour was entertaining enough, they give you a walkman, headphones and a cassette and you kind of take an audio tour seemingly alone, even though you're in a group. It was kind of creepy, I think they do it because it keeps people quiet. I wish I could have seen the throne upon which the King died, I wanted to masturbate on it, but we only got to see the commons of the house. The trophy room was huge, they had a bunch of weird stuff like TV sets that Elvis would shoot for target practice inside the house and stuff. I farted in Elvis' backyard. I collected some dirt from Elvis' grave, some day I will ingest it and see what happens... I insisted that we tour the automobile museum, which was interesting for the other guys but was my favorite, being the motorhead that I am. I had a chance to steal Elvis' original Shell Credit Card but karma persuaded me not to. I wanted to purchase a pair of those wicked silver shades with the holes in the sides from the gift shop but I didn't have twenty-eight dollars. We headed back into Memphis to take a walk on Beale St. Most of the blues bars were closed, but we did have lunch in one (four beers and four Bluesburgers, please!) and we had a beer in BB KING'S. I demanded to speak to the owner, but the bartender just ignored me. We headed out for Nashville, heading down the "Music Highway," I thought the transmission was going to take a shit from all the mountain hills. There was enough road construction to receive another lesson on Moon's theory of "Orange Construction Barrels Inheriting the World." We got into town around five or so and I located the IndieNet (1707 Church Street) on a tourist map of Nashville and we found the place without too much difficulty. It's a record store in the front of a building with a big room with a stage in back, too bad we weren't playing at an actual punk show, I believe only three punx were there, but that's later on in the night. We unloaded what's left of the gear and went for a ride, me driving.

Traffic was wicked evil, we ended up driving through some sort of downtown festival, wicked stress. But I now understand the reasoning behind the band name "NASHVILLE PUSSY," there were beautiful girls every twenty feet in every direction. Everyone wanted to find this bar they went to back on the 1986 tour, the Infamous Tootsies' Bar and Grill which Dean insisted was way cool and so we drove around town trying to find it, and then Dean remembered that it was directly behind The Ryman Auditoruim, which rendered finding it much easier. Patsy Cline and Hank Williams, among others, would play at the Ryman and then hangout at Tootsies after the show, arriving through the alleyway back in the day. We finally found the place and finally found a parking spot and went inside the front door which is right on the hillbilly-tourist-strip. We crowded up to the bar and waited ten minutes watching the young-hillbilly-country cover band, before the ancient bar-hag told us that she would not serve us because we were wearing 'tank-tops' (I think it was a subtle attempt at labeling us as scum-fucks) so we left. Actually, I think it had more to doe with Moon and my huge mohawks.

We walked around back to the alley near where we had parked and decided to just settle for the first bar we came to because we were stressed out and needed a beer pronto, so we walked into first door we came to. There were four or five good ole boys sitting at a bar and they started laughing at us, "Are you all in a rock band, or somethin'?" and goofing on our hair and everything and Dean starts talking to them and we're looking around the place, and realized that we were still in Tootsies. We had entered the back room, which, like the front half, was complete with stage and full bar. The guy Dean was mainly talking to turned out to be the owner of the bar and after Dean explained what had happened out front with the barhag the owner said, "Oh. that ole wench? We been tryin' to get rid of her for years! You beys need a beer? Hey, Earl, go and fetch these fellas a beer, will ya?" We stood there talking with them for awhile, the owner must have bought us four or five rounds. He told us a lot about the history of the bar, which had pictures of ALL of the country stars, many of them autographed. It turned out that Tootsies is one of the oldest bars in Nashville, and everyone that was anyone had hung out there.

After awhile the conversation turns onto the fact that we're a punk band, and the owner seems interested in us and and asks us if we could play a song for him. We weren't really up for it, as we still had to be at the IndieNet, and the guy was like, "You mean I just bought you boys all them beers and you won't play a little ole song for us?" in this threatening tone, it was directly like right out of Deliverance. So we agreed and he told Earl to go and get the band out front off of the stage so that we could play. He told us that we could use all of their gear, and after a few minutes he had us introduced and we walked out front and proceeded to the stage. The look on the old bar-hags face was worth a million bucks; her jaw dropped and her eyes bulged out when she saw us saunter down the stairs and across the bar to the stage, which is placed in the front windows of the bar, directly inside the front door. The other band that was playing handed us their instruments and I felt sort of sorry for them as we decided to play "Folsom Prison Blues," 10-96 style. The crowd of mostly tourists were speechless as we stood there and started. Dean dedicated the song to Patsy and Johnny, and Joe had a really clean guitar sound which made us sound more like a hellbilly band than a hardcore band. The looks on everyone's faces were astonishing: you could see fear and even horror on some, morphing into relief and fun on the rest. A sizable crowd had formed on the sidewalk, watching us through the window, pointing and laughing at the funny punk rockers playing country. We finished to a more than polite applause and decided to quit while we were ahead so we left the stage and returned to the backroom. The owner was as pleased as anyone and was laughing and having a 'good ol' time.' He paid a roving tourist photographer to take our picture and said he will hang it in the bar on the wall with the rest of the pictures and told us that we should come back sometime when we could play a whole set.

We found our way back to the IndieNet to discover that we were on in fifteen minutes, so we set up what was left of the gear. We played with HIPSTER DADDIOS THE HAND GRENADES, DIMPLES MALONE and one other band that also wasn't punk HIPSTER was a full-piece swing band, the new wave of neo-swing/jazz. When we got up and played, everyone left to go stand out front, except for like three fourteen-year old punk kids. I never understood clubs that insist on no-smoking policies The sound was horrible, but we knocked out a decent set and I just found out from the flier that the show was broadcast on the web, live. They wouldn't let us drink beer, so we took a bunch of the swing bands' bottled water to help fight the heat from the stage lights, which were way too bright We finished the set to some sarcastic remarks and sincere disgust. Sometimes it's more fun to play to a crowd that hates you than it is to a crowd that likes you. Thanks to the three kids who danced and generally helped piss everyone off even more.

After the set we went to the bar next door, which turned out to be a queer bar. Dean freaked out as I openly used the word "queer" as if I was offending folks, he couldn't understand that queer people know they're queer. As long as you hold respect for them, they generally don't mind if you refer to their queerness. We drank a bit and loaded up and decided to head back downtown to Tootsies. We walked in and ordered some beers, once again much to the dismay of the bar-wench. The owner had left but his brother was still there and he bought us a few rounds. Dean tried to convince the bar-wench into trading a Tootsie's shirt for a 10-96 shirt, but she wasn't going for it. We ended up going to the bar next door, drinking with some local girls and letting the brother buy our drinks. There was a band playing there, also, with a female singer who was sexy as all hell. She drank with us for a bit, between sets. We ended up getting loaded and decided to move on out, and we drove through the city to a motel on the outskirts of town. I don't remember actually driving to the motel and checking in, but that's where we woke up this morning before driving here to Knoxville. Now I am sitting outside this club writing this. The show isn't for a few hours.
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