Madison, WI / Chicago, IL Day Off

Today is the big day. The band has rented out a theatre in Chicago for a special screening of "Star Wars: Episode 3 - Revenge of the Sith". It's not even being released for another 11 days. Woo Hoo!!!

Up early to ride my bike around downtown Madison. Up to the room for a shower then head out again on my bike for lunch at a killer Stir Fry place called Chin's Asia Fresh.

Board the buses at 12:30pm for our 2.5 hr drive to Chicago. Watch "The Empire Strikes Back" (episode 5) on the way there to get us in the mood. Arrive in Chicago, as we pull up to the theatre I see our tour manager wrangling some boxes out of a van. We go over and help him get them into the theater. Seems the band has rented costumes for us to wear. I'm C3PO, but even funnier is our production manager as Queen Amidala. Various band and crew dress as Stormtroopers, Jedis, Wookies, etc.

Movie was great, better than the first two episodes of late, but the cast just doesn't measure up to the original (episodes 4-6). I won't divulge any details, so as not to ruin it for everybody.

Back on the buses for the trip to Madison. We watch "Pirates of the Caribbean" with Johnny Depp. Good times...

Grand Rapids - Show Day

Ride my bike in the a.m. Nice little downtown section kinda like Glenwood South in Raleigh. Find a killer furniture store called EQ3, and find out they have one in Charlotte too. Cool.

Dave from GHS strings comes down to see soundcheck, but mostly he gets to see the band/crew play wiffle ball on the floor of the venue. I think the game lasted longer than soundcheck.

After soundcheck get in a van to go check out a local guitar shop, but find out it's closed and we end up at Guitar Center (yuk). Look around a bit then head back to the gig.

Cleveland - Show Day

Decide to clean up my rig a bit today and make a new snake as well as fitting my Brian May amp into my rack. Work non-stop most of the day.

Cinco de Mayo, Columbus, OH - Show Day

Beautiful day in Columbus. I take my bike out for a ride around the OSU campus, find a bike trail and ride for an hour or more. Get back in time for load in.

My good friend Joe from the band Watershed, his wife and their nephew come down for soundcheck. We hang out a bit and Joe has to leave for his own gig, wish I could go see his band tonight :) I walk his wife and nephew into the gig, find out they have nosebleed seats and I get my tour manager to upgrade them to the floor. Thanks Doug.

Jered from DK bikes also comes down with his wife and 7 year old daughter. He brings me some cool shirts, thanks Jered. We take a quick backstage tour and get some pics of his daughter behind the drumkit, as she's an aspiring drummer.

Great show, crowd is killer. Maybe the best drummer pulled from the crowd tonight too.

Aftershow we have a BBQ out by the buses. Burgers, Chicken and Carne Asada on tortillas. Delicious, and I end up staying till the end (about 2:30am) which is rare for me as I usually go to bed early and read. Lots of laughs with my guitar player and the singer. Miss seeing Joe Perry on Conan, as my bus doesn't get NBC on the satellite. Oh well, I'm sure Tivo got it at home...

London, Ontario - Show Day

Bus call is at 10:15am, as we have a two hour drive from Toronto to London. Doug our tour manager hitches a ride on our bus. I think everyone falls asleep on the way there... More later...

Quebec City / Toronto Days Off

Had 2 days off over the last 3 days, but now we're beginning a 4 in a row...

Quebec City, Quebec - Arrive at the hotel, no bus parking, must wake everyone up to get off the bus. It is freezing here and raining. Check-in to room, TV is all in French, decide to read for awhile, and fall sleep, as it is a dreary day. Go out late for takeout Thai/Chinese. Not bad, not good either, but I was starving.

Toronto, Ontario - Still freezing cold and rainy. After check-in, venture out for lunch, eat at a Thai place I have a cookbook from, cool!! Walk 10-12 blocks looking for a BMX store I read about, find it, but don't buy anything. Do buy a new book at the bookstore, as I'm almost finished with what I'm reading. Pass the Much Music studios (Mtv of Canada) and there's a huge crowd outside. Who are they waiting for? Paris Hilton, that's who!! Go out for dinner (Chinese) with Pyro Kevin (who's from around here), great place in Chinatown. It is freezing as we walk back in the dark though.

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    I got tired of writing the same email to everybody asking about life on the road. So here it is, day by day...
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