The Van Smells – The Coke Dares Pt. 6

Milk bath for three.

The Coke Dares are an American rock and roll band.  They recently wrapped up a tour of part of America.  They were kind enough to document their journey for Postcard Elba.  Just as time outside of time to rock has no meaning on tour, the diary entries are starting to come in out of order.  Embrace the chaos and lose yourself with the Coke Dares.

The Coke Dares Tour Diary Day 5:  July 11, 2010.  Washington, DC by Skye Myles
Woke up at my brother’s place in Asheville, NC at 8:30. I turned the coffee maker on and took a shower.  We had crashed out about 4. Kim made biscuits for us and we drank coffee thinking about the bleak 8 hour drive ahead.  Not much sleep.  Coffee fix me, all right?  Out west this would be a short one. But this is maybe the longest drive of this tour so boo-hoo but it’s still a haul. I hadn’t slept on a drive yet but considered it today.  Doctor History drove for a while and I switched over mid-way.  Sometimes I think about driving as just time in the van. One hour, ten hours—you just do your time. You drive, you read, sleep, work on stuff; but it’s all the same time.  The more you stop the longer the trip takes.  Leave early and minimize stops and long drives are better.  We left almost at our planned departure of 9:30.
Shitty radio. Three interstates. The van stinks. Sticking to the prescribed above-the-speed-limit speed.  We figure a few over is safe, depending on traffic, etc. Listened to a podcast called Comedy and Everything Else. It’s one of my favorites and I really like the personalities on the show. I listen to this all the time at work and it makes my contracting work immeasurably more tolerable.  Comedian Jimmy Dore is the leader, and with his partner Stef, and formerly, with Todd Glass, he discusses comedy and conducts interviews.  This episode was mostly Jimmy one-on-one the whole time with comedian Bill Burr, discussing stand-up experiences and society.  It got me to check out Burr’s Monday Morning Podcast which I like, but it wasn’t a typical show with various bits and sections.

The voice inside Skye Miles head - Jimmy Dore

We listened to ZZ Top’s First Album which I had first seen and heard on vinyl at Will Fist’s place on a previous Thousand Arrows tour.  We weren’t able to play it in Knoxville this time because the stereo was screwed up. I was impatient so I bought it from itunes. Good album but it didn’t sound very good. Remastered in the 80’s? or for itunes? Dunno but it failed to improve it in my opinion. Popped in the Tres Hombres tape again to win it back. Worked. Kept driving. Cruise control is standard for a reason.  Saves so much annoyance.  Think we hit a semi-clean Subway at a gas station. It’s garbage but there are vegetables available at least.
I was getting grumpy from lack of sleep mostly and being in the van all day on top of it.  Traffic gets worse as you get closer to DC, even on a Sunday.  Standard amount of hassle getting into town and loaded & sound checked pretty quickly. Went to a mussels-place down the street with our friends but it was too crowded to get a drink before show time (we were first) so we went back to the venue, Rock N Roll Hotel.  The upstairs bar was OK—few decent tap beers. Had some video games and pinball machines.  We wrote out set lists and played at 8:30. Good set. Big room, not many people. I fucked up my voice in Asheville ’cause the PA was so crappy so I was yelling the whole time. So I was rasping out a lot.  Loud room & PA. Too loud for the amount of people in the room. I think a lotta times using the band’s stage volume with the PA just for vocals and adjustments is better.
Lightfoot from DC were next.  They were playing a good set. I ran down the street to meet my friends who were eating at the mussels place, Tour is sometimes the only time you’re gonna see friends and you want to but you’re also obligated to the show.  I’ve always felt that it’s important to prioritize the music/show—that’s the reason you drove all damn day. I don’t always want to watch a bunch of bands but it’s nice when other bands watch my set so I try to as well. Especially when the room is not very full so I felt a little bad skipping out after a few songs.  Anyway, got a real good sour vinegar-tasting cider and shared some delicious mussels at the place.  Hung out a bit and back to the club.

There's a tribute band to me? Weird.

Archivists from DC next.  It was there CD release show. I had played some shows with them on a solo tour in April so it was great to see them again. Definitely DC flavored rock here built around the song writing. I liked hearing them on a big stage and they played a good set.  One of the guitarists, Chris, is from Bloomington and played bass in Turn Pale after I left the band.  Small world of rock and roll.
This club uses the audience-poll method of paying bands.  There wasn’t much money left after the $500 club expenses to begin with. They divided it according to a tally sheet of who each audience member came to see. As if people only come to see one band! This is why punk exists—to say FUCK YOU to bullshit outdated dehumanizing systems like this. The other bands did what all seasoned musicians do and shared their cuts with the touring band.  Thank you DIY DC.

Sometimes when looking for a funny image we find one that sums up the situation perfectly.

The night was not over for us despite a grueling day. A non-musical performance was about to take place…an eating contest!  Dr. History and our friend Goldberg have a long standing plan/suicide pact to eat 75 Taco Bell soft shell tacos together. The last couple times we’ve been through the area there hasn’t been time or willingness to follow through. Tonight wasn’t the night yet but a preview eat-off was arranged.  Who could eat ten soft shell tacos the fastest. We drove 10 minutes to meet Goldberg at a T Bell. He and Doctor each purchased 10 tacos at the drive through.  We posted up in the parking lot and started filming with a laptop and digital camera.  It was a fierce competition.  One man bested the other by one minute.  Both finished! A salt-lick’s worth of grade F meat ingested! To find out who won – see below.
Back in the van. The van smells. Drove to a hotel and slept!

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