tour diary :: Distant Correspondent > Entry #6
Columbus by MARGARET DARLING
Hello again, it’s Margaret. I woke up in Chicago the morning following our Galerie F performance in a bean bag chair in a condo on the 18th floor of a really tall building with a super nice doorman in the Loop. My brother Jesse, who had traveled into town to catch the show, and I were hosted by a seriously welcoming friend of a friend. Once up, Jesse had no trouble talking me into searching for a good brunch spot. We found, quickly into our stroll, that there isn’t much for two vegans in Chicago’s business district on a Sunday morning—which turned out to be just as well, as David put up the bat signal to return as quickly as possible to the van with the mangled piece of the luggage topper key I’d been holding onto since it broke the night before. When we finally got on the road, pointed toward Columbus, it was clear we would be rolling up slightly on the later side of things.
Stress over schedules and the most basic of responsibilities touring musicians assume can be a real joy-kill, but fortunately I wasn’t freaking out about anything because I was behind the wheel which meant I wasn’t Tetrised into the back of the van getting car sick while my lower body goes so far to sleep I might have to have something amputated.
When we arrived, we were greeted by Kyle Sowash, a fixture in the Columbus music scene and super awesome guy, and Roseanne (our bartender) who was in one of my favorite Columbus bands from days of yore, Wing and Tusk. I hadn’t been to Tree Bar since it was Andyman’s Treehouse and there was that amazing, giant tree growing right up from the floor through the ceiling, obstructing 70% of the room’s view of the band performing. I knew the tree had come down, but seeing it was such a shock. It’s a good change for enjoying live music in that room. The relaunched Tree Bar has some additional updates (not the least of which is a working light in the back room where we’d always stored our gear, making it much easier for bands to keep from losing gear and personal belongings to the unforgiving abyss).
Miraculously, despite arriving behind schedule, music hadn’t yet begun, and even though this meant it would be a ridiculously late night for us, it also meant we weren’t missing any of the action. Milan Karcik opened up, and while he played, I couldn’t help but scan the back wall for any evidence of the The Seedy Seeds stickers our first drummer most assuredly put there. Whether they’ve been since covered by bands who’ve been through more recently, or whether I’m just that bad at “Where’s Waldo?,” I didn’t find one. What I did find, however, was Jason Lewis—a friend I made through The Seedy Seeds and with whom I’ve spent many hours at that very venue. Seeing friends and family on the road is probably my favorite aspect of the #tourlife.
Mr. Karcik’s merch display consisted of some home-grown peppers, and I was happy to try a serrano he’d let ripen to red. I wouldn’t say it went very well with my bourbon, but it was definitely awesome nevertheless and I have zero regrets in “slamming” it.
Next up were a charismatic band doing their best to improve upon The Strokes’ catalog. I gave them a 5.8 but that fucking judge from Russia only offered a 4.5.
It was definitely late by the time we were ready to start our set, but fortunately everyone at Tree Bar was in it to win it. With each show we play I’m feeling more and more confident with Distant Correspondent’s material and live show, and I had a super-fun time.
I would ordinarily argue that having a four-band bill on a Sunday night is excessive, and that having that four-band bill that starts late is like some sort of sadomasochistic torture experiment endured by musicians, fans, and venue staff alike, Ipps singlehandedly make that four-band, impossibly late bill more like eating birthday cake with the Care Bears at a spa. If seeing them close out the night was not enough, we at least got to go home with two of them (thank you again, Emily and Bo for letting us take over your house. Especially thank you for letting us do laundry!).
It was fun to be back in Ohio for a minute, just as it was fun to immediately depart for Nashville the following day. We’ll be back in Ohio soon enough and I’m excited to show Distant Correspondent exactly how Cincinnati is such a great city to play.
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