Day 53: Interstate Tour 2018

 The Walmart Resort: Lansing, Michigan.  With free, awesome, functional wi-fi!

The Walmart Resort: Lansing, Michigan.  With free, awesome, functional wi-fi!

I slept in.

You bet your hindquarters I slept in.

Woke up, made breakfast, started prepping for departure, went into the vendor barn and began breaking down the display. I get to see many of these folks all over the country and it's always interesting to see how our paths converge and diverge over time.  That and it's fun to see where people are heading next, and that's usually a big topic of conversation amongst the perpetually itinerant.

Sharese, David, Rey and Leisl Mom stopped by as I was packing up and we reflected a little bit on the Friday night show.  Sharese, the actual mom of the Moms, is a violin teacher and she's homeschooled her children, which means they got a healthy, heaping dose of music through all stages of their lives. They are incredible musicians at such a young age and their skills will open doors for them for the rest of their careers.  I reiterated what I said last year to them, that they were exceptionally fine players and it was an honor to share the stage with them.  Then, I proposed that they record parts for my next album, which led to a conversation about producing a CD for them.  I produced an EP and full-length album for Wendy Songe free-of-charge, just to help her get the music out there.  The Moms don't have a CD and I believe they need one to help them gain traction in their field.  I figure, we could trade - they could perform on my record and I'd produce one for them in return.  I also want The Kaiser Family on the record - I've really come to appreciate not only their musicianship but also their commitment to music education and progression.  I'll do whatever I can to help.

Speaking of that: after the Saturday night concert, this kid gets on the piano and just sets it on fire.  I was blown away by his repertoire and skill set, and his cajones, he was clearly showing off. His name is David Wayne Smith and he has a YouTube Channel.  He's 15 years old and very much a prodigy. Check out some of what he was laying down on Saturday night:

Iknowrite?

As usual, I had lots of energetic, emotive, expressive thoughts upon leaving Evart. I was busier this year, though I taught fewer workshops.  Part of that was production work and part of that was just visiting with people.  I didn't get around to everyone, there are acquaintances that I saw from afar, but we never exchanged words. I can sometimes be kind of a moving target at these events anyway. My intentions of riding on the bike trail each year never happens because I'm deeply engaged at the fest.  I didn't even make it to Mishler's this year (and partly because maybe I really don't need a butterscotch malted and hamburger. Wanted it though - tough to say 'no', but also good.)

I drove two hours to Lansing, had dinner at Cancun Mexican Grill, then drove around the Walmart parking lot until I found good wi-fi signal, parked, went inside and topped off groceries, then came back to catch up on all that I've been missing this past week. Wi-fi at the fairgrounds was practically non-existent due to all of the people using it.  Vendors had to walk outside of the barn to ring up card-swiper sales and the only time it worked was in the middle of the night.  Though I've got AT&T Unlimited Data, they still throttle your usage over a certain threshold and I had passed it, so the personal hotspot on my Apple devices were pretty much useless.  

But, I'm catching up now and I've got a date with Marshall RV in the morning. Mechanically, Imua is in tip-top shape.  But her coach has a few small issues; plumbing leak, coach door out of alignment, crack in the gray water tank, rips in the slide-out awning, light fixtures that have stopped working, you know, a lot of minor stuff, nothing crazy.  They worked on Rita back in the day and I trust them, so I want to get as much done as possible, plus, I bought a backup camera system and fiberglas patching kit, hoping that they would supply the labor, install the camera system and patch the hole in the back of the rig. I've got seven days till my next show (with definite plans to use my Cedar Fair Platinum Pass and spend stupid amounts of time at Kings Island this weekend) and plenty of time to get these things taken care of.

While they're working on her, I'll continue to catch up with my admin and production slate.  Just praying that they've got good wi-fi.

Day 54

 

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