Road Rules

RULES OF THE ROAD:

“I saw the show when we were out in LA filming Scrubs and got a feel for the environment surrounding him and his camp. I want EVERYONE to remember it is HIS show. We get soundchecks based upon when he is done. Some days we may not get any. Once we get in the groove we may just do line checks since we only get an hour to an hour and a half tops for the most part. Also remember they have been on the road for 13 or 18 month and they are in the ZONE. We don’t want to come in and disrupt their bubble they have created. Use your common sense. There will be NO watching his show from the side of the stage. We will watch from out in the crowd. There is too many of us. Do not take what is not yours. We get stuff in our dressing room...

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Spree Show in NY

We played at the Angel Orensanz Center in the Lower East Side. That place is beautiful. It looks like an old abandoned church. We ruled that night. Jim came and sang on the encore with us. Lots of fedoras work there.

After we went to Parkside Lounge where I went to hang out with Ty, Magic Brian and Kittenpants. It was my “birthday” again. Pete, the bartender, gave me free shots all night. The Spree showed up later. I gushed all over Tim and Julie with my gratitudes. I toasted to everyone that was in shot distance. It was a beautiful night. I am very fortunate.

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Fuse Lady is pretty

We did Fuse the other day. That host is hot. Like a 10 hot. I played accordion with them that day. It was fun. It was pretty quick overall. I saw Dan from Knarrefest (a backyard bbq I played in Teaneck, NJ with Jim Shearer who came to the show later that night). I also saw two friends from the band, Mackin. I hadn’t seen either one of them in a long, long time.

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Wasting on Halo

We got 2 buses. More space and an Xbox. Me and Lamonica and Ryan and Mark and Logan play Halo a lot. Logan’s no fun because he’s so good. Me and Ryan fought together today instead of against each other. I’m good at wasting time and I’m trying to be bad at it.

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Nashville

I played Nashville last night at a bar called Springwater. There was a Santa Claus at the bar with me named Vern. He’s a nice fellow. We visited.

Then, I played pool with Flash, this 50-year old guy who’s Christian name was Douglas. He looked like Michael Jeter. He made me go to pool school cause my bridge was unconfident. I knocked a few in and he knocked ‘em all in. I bought him a Bud and he got cut off not soon after. He taught me how to play pool drunk by using the lights.

The sound went in and out during the set so I unplugged and finished out the show in style. I’m working on my Liberace flourish.

I shouldn’ta ate spaghetti before the show. It made me sleepy.

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Goin’ to the store in Toronto

I walked up and down Bloor street and got a lot of stares. I think I look funny or something.

Rocket Johnny picked me up and I hung oot with him and Paul and Tom Comet and Beks. We went to check oot Hollynorth, the film prop store. Rocket was in the Bindlestiff’s with me and left to do his own thing: www.daredeviloperacompany.com. Paul does his music. Tom Comet has a record juggling chainsaws. Beks swallows fire and other things.

I learned some cool shit:

You can by fake blood by the gallon.

You can adjust fake, falling snow by the thickness and the speed.

You can get a fogger that fits in the palm of your hand.

You can buy non-toxic slime for $80 dollars.

I got a pen for free.

Tom Comet built a board that has a nkob that when you move it side to side, 25 different explosions occur ...

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Denton

Playing Denton was magic. That’s my town I lived in the longest in my life. That’s the town I tried to leave but couldn’t. That’s the town I started Corn Mo in.

It was perfect to play with Paul Slavens and Hand of Onan. Paul Slavens is the new Victor Borge. NO lie. He and Jeffrey Barnes of Brave Combo played together and he ruled that stage.

Hand of Onan is Wally from Cornhole and Hotlink Records and Ted from Brutal Juice and The Banes and a really good drummer.

All my rowdy friends came out and some got shitfaced and some soberly gave testament to tears that were shed during my show. Man, I missed Denton at that bar. It was a golden night. After, I hung out with the Angel of 2001 and Amber of 2003 and Cody and Melissa and Jason Asphalt...

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Austin City Limits

I got so fucking stressed getting to the Austin City Limits show. We couldn’t find the parking lot and had 30 minutes to get to the stage. I jumped out of the van and walked. A guy in a cart saw me and goes,

“I should give you a ride . . . but I won’t.”

Then, I remembered the festival told me I was supposed to get a cart ride.

“Hey, man, can you give me a ride to the stage? I go on in twenty minutes.”

“We can’t do that. We got a lot of work to do. Your stage is only 100 feet away.”

It was real close. I saw a few people waiting by the stage which was the crowd I was expecting. After I started playing it got bigger. Some guys had signs that requested songs, Corby and Dave Lane from The Ticket showed up, a girl from high school came, and a bunch of other folks showed up.

It’s hard ...

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Dallas

Dallas was bad ass. Whenever I play Dallas now I get teary-eyed. Your friends who rooted for you in Dallas show up real proud. I curse a lot during the show because I’m a little nervous and I’m not good at not cursing, yet. Some dads gave their kids earmuffs when I started, “You guys are gonna make me fuckin’ cry.” And then my dirty-word, dirty-word spewed even more. After shows like that I feel like I’ve run 5 miles. It feels real good. And seeing the Spree in Dallas was the same feeling. Everyone is proud of them, too. After seeing Tripping Daisy all those years and then seeing this new creation that’s blowing up made all of them proud.

Oh, I got this email from my friend, Halee that sums this entry up:

Jon…don’t know how often you actually get to check e-mail but I had to writ...

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Asheville, NC

I’m in Asheville right now. Since Denton the Polyphonic tour has been on hold until the 30th in Toronto. There was a death in the family. God bless them.

We pulled in last night at a Walmart and used their facilities and slept in the van in their parking lot. We were in Chattanooga where I played an instore at Chad’s.

There were five people in that store and I rocked as best I could. This is the kind of tour I love-the kind that turns into adventure. We had spent the first day after the Denton show in New Orleans where we were going to work on getting last minute shows but ended up drinking at Lafitte’s. Which was fine because surrender is good sometimes. Then we did a lot of “touristy” stuff- like drinking more and going into the places that tourists go in and out of.

The second d...

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Denton

I’m in Denton. I ate a breakfast taco this morning and it was good. We left from Nashville yesterday. A butterfly flew in the van from the highway and hit Luke in the chest. I was playing Playstation and stopped playing to get that shit on video. It lived to the gas station and he set it in some weeds. I don’t know if insects regenerate fluid. I saw a rooster at the gas station walking around.

We pulled into Denton about 1:30 last night and went to the bar and got a tall one and caught up with folks. Me and Chris Flemmons hung out late at his house and then he went to Whataburger and I fell asleep.

There’s pretty girls on campus.

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Starting Tour

I’m in Nashville getting ready to leave for tour. Luke and Kathy just pulled up in their van and have started napping. They just bought this van that has a tv/vcr/playstation 2 and a bed. Janet’s getting her shit together right now. I’m excited about van party. This is going to be a fucking cool adventure.

Speaking of cool, I visited my brother on his birthday yesterday and went to the mall with my family for lunch. I rode the carousel with my niece, Maddie, who is 3. She cried earlier because I wasn’t watching the Tigger Movie with her even though I was in the room checking email. She rode my shoulders in the mall and my neck felt wet and played hide and seek in the Electronic Boutique where I was looking for a playstation present for Luke.

Now I’m ready to rock the stage and make ...

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Glastonbury Truck Break

We’re getting towed.

The clutch went out . Nina’s cafe phone won’t allow the incoming calls we need to keep in touch with AA (the European AAA). We hung out in Nina’s, drinking coffee and then buying some breakfast.

Nina: “This is the hottest it’s been since ’81. We’re definitely having a heat wave.”

Clarke: “Yeah, a heat wave where you have to wear a sweater at night.”

Good show, old chap.

I hung out with some kids on the lot yesterday. Real sweet kids: Caylin, 7 and Amber, 4, I think. Very smart and very nice kids.

Amber to me: “You’re very, very, very, very cheeky.”

Caylin to me: “You don’t know English very well, do you?”

“Amber, do you want this peach or not?”

“I don’t want it.”

“Shall I eat it?”

“Yes.”

Just like those over-polite chipmunks.

Caylin ran off and came back with ...

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Glastonbury Campfire Talk

I haven’t seen a good campfire in a while. It’s nice to look at.

Yesterday, I did a good show and Toby and Andrew came running back stage to hug me and then I played for them. Sylvia and Clarke came, too.

After, I saw the coolest dance I’d ever seen. It was a Russian Group called “Black Sky White”. Fuckin’ amazing. It was like Brothers Quay, stop-motion animation (like the Tool video), except live.

Around the campfire, someone came by to tell us they had just seen The Madagascar Institute (some friends of mine from Brooklyn) who had a fort made from metal scraps with fire cannons mounted at the top. When he mentioned they had a game of tug-of-war

a lady who had fallen asleep by the fire suddenly awoke and said in my direction, “Winning wars is like winning an earthquake.”

What did I ...

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Glastonbury, Thursday 12:20

We’re rearranging the truck. Actually, I’m reading. Someone is playing shit on the PA that’s worse than magician music-a cross between the Ferris Bueller “Oh Yeah”, Spyrogyra, and Jan Hammer on one shitty loop.

We parked on the road last night because they weren’t letting even performers in to set up camp. I woke to engines starting so I woke the others and we drove through at least 2-3 more checkpoints (we’d already been through 3-4 the night before).

We drove through the festival to the performers’ camp:

-outdoor shower,

like in M*A*S*H, almost

-outdoor shitters

-not a PortaJohn, with a shit pitfall of 10 feet from the toilet seat.

-each stall has a poster titled: “SHIT” with a plea to wash your hands to prevent disease and not throw rubbish in.

We got a decent spot and then deci...

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Corn Mo’s Beer Shower

Me and Clarke and Sylvia got into Waltrop about 6. Nobody that worked at the hotel spoke English but it’s our fault for not knowing German. It was a family run business and the Dad was a good ol’ jolly German but the Mom looked at us with some sort of judgement.

We took our stuff to the room and came back down to the hotel’s restaurant because we were too tired to fuckaround with looking for some other place.

I can’t read German good so I got the special hoping it would be so.

It was excellent. Always get the special. It was some sort of pork with potatoes and kraut salad. I don’t mean to toot my horn or jinx myself but sometimes I can pick the right thing off a menu.

Clark and Sylvia didn’t have the foresight I did although Clark is one of the best cooks I’ve ever met...

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A Plate of Bark

Canker Jo-Jo Elf was sittin’ pretty in Kansas City when
Delicious Sword-Sword Cleric swathered up and said,
“Tuesday’s the day, Jo-Jo.”
“For what?”
“For letting down my guard and allowing myself to sit and try
pork bbq for the first time. Then, I’m gonna pour a glass of
celebration and tilt my head back to good times.”
“Do I know you?”
“You will Tuesday,” he chuckled. “And how.”
Jo-Jo’s pretty sittin’ wasn’t settin’ well.

Tuesday came and went and he never saw Sword-Sword.
Wednesday morning came and a note made of dove wings hovered above
like a message from a dragonfly:
“Dear Jo-Jo,
I was afraid and didn’t celebrate myself. I feel awful
about not knowing you and not eating bbq. I looked at a
wolf’s eye through the window and it instilled new fear about
trying new things...

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Greenville, NC: no score

On our way to Winston-Salem. We had fixed our trailer-a ball bearing was burning a groove in the axle. Last night, we played at Peasant’s Cafe in Greenville, NC. I was a little tired. this wa the town Magic Brian almost went home with the hot lady, Laura, back in April. She came to this show. She was the volunteer for a Magic Brian card trick and Brian kissed her hand as she left the stage.

The kids screamed for me again-it ALWAYS feels good.

During the straightjacket routine, one smart ass volunteer, who kept looking behind the back curtain, was trying to be clever on his hometown. The other guy was drunk and chained up Magic Brian’s and Keith’s necks.

Afterwards, I signed a few autographs, including one to a girl who wanted me to take a picture of her with the circus...

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Raleigh

Last night we played in Raleigh and met up with Gary and Ian who are doing the article for Nerve Magazine. We played at a club called Kings. Everyone was real nice. Chris, the sound guy, was real good. They had a good jukebox- Bowie, Deep Purple, Prince, Brian Eno, Van Halen’s Fair Warning album . . . and cool video games though the Tempest machine was broken and so was the sit-down Star Wars game (the vectrix version).

I got a good response in lieu of an atmosphere of dead spirits. It was hard to get the audience excited. I don’t know if they were uptight or tired or hot.

Right now I want to jump out of the van and run through this traffic just up the dotted line on I-40 W. I don’t think I’m exciting enough for Gary, the writer for Nerve. Or hang out the door...

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Winston-Salem, NC

Last night, we played in Winston-Salem at the warehouse-The Wherehouse. I think it’s some kind of collective. I played real good. I felt on and played off the other performers well.

We pied Brian cause it was his birthday. I messed up during Una’s second act because I was trying to tell Keith about a videographer.

There is a building in Winston-Salem that was designed by the man who designed the Empire State Building. It’s a mini version of it.

Today, I ate at Snook’s BBQ near Keith’s parents’ house.

I had:

Pork bbq

3 deviled eggs

Turnip greens (with pepper-vinegar sauce)

Cabbage (with cornbread)

Sweet tea

and 2 yam sticks with cinnamon.

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