What most people don’t know is that touring musician is really a synonym for trucker. The vast majority of time on tour with a band is spent in a vehicle … Quite often a minivan, and quite often a very smelly one. Life becomes a series of whizzing dashboard scenes and you become more intimate than you ever thought was humanly possible with gas stations, CBC radio, side of the road pee stops, and creative methods for amusing yourself and staying awake on long-haul drives.
I realized the other day that despite the hundreds of hours I’ve spent in a moving vehicular unit over the past couple years I have hardly bothered to take my camera out … And have decided to make more of an effort to do so. With that said, here is what the open Alberta road looks like from various seats of a minivan.
Highway 2 pre prairie storm.
Highway 2 during aforementioned prairie storm.
Highway 2 post prairie storm.
Inside the Mama Dragon somewhere along a lonely Alberta prairie road.
Waiting at a train crossing in Mirror, AB.
Reflections of Ponto, Mama Dragon, and Virgin Ruby
Coffee mugs enjoying the Trans-Canada Highway.
Rolling into Canmore.
On tour it’s rare for me to find moments for photos that aren’t centered around music or related shenanigans. This weekend we found ourselves in the rural farming hamlet of Mirror, AB for a summer kick-off party at the wee and lovely Lake Bend Hall. As the show started I went out to Virgin Ruby to retrieve my camera and noticed the evening storm had broken into a magnificent post-rain glow and I couldn’t help but abandon show ship and head out into the light. Big thanks to Glenda & Terry for hosting us and for the ghosties that surely live in the walls of the Lake Bend Hall for deciding not to join the slumber party we had there.
Miss Quincy’s ass kicking girl band arriving in Mirror.
The Lake Bend Hall.
I’m not going to lie, I was worried about touring with an all-girl band.
However, it turns out I’m traveling with perhaps the most low maintenance group of ovaries ever to assemble into band formation … And it’s a kick-ass band at that.
Let’s take a closer look …
Pre-Show: The 10 Minute Transformation
The Show (at Tracks Pub in Olds, AB)
The Money Shot
(Disclaimer: Don’t go getting any ideas in your head that we end every night in hotel rooms, hair soaked with all-night dance party sweat, and money bursting right out the cleavage … Only in Alberta boys and girls.)
Turns out we’re good for more than making music and photos … We’re also lean, mean bird rescuing machines.
We found this little fellow on the sidewalk outside our pal Michael Dunn‘s house suffering from a severe case of head-on-window-collision induced shock. In this photo series you’ll see Nurse Peck administering a dose of Rescue Remedy while Nurse Layhe stands by. I’m happy to report our nursing efforts were successful and little featherpants was on his way from half-dead to flying in no time.
This summer we’re living large … Meet Virgin Ruby.
Ruby is a 1974 Trillium trailer and she’s a virgin because she has yet to be deflowered by her forthcoming union with a can of ruby red paint.
Stopping at the summit of the Salmo-Creston pass to let the Mama Dragon’s Virgin Ruby dragging ass cool down.
Welcome to Camp Virgin Ruby.
Creeping through Virgin Ruby’s Cozy Diner curtains.
Miss Q getting her domestic cleaning streak on in Virgin Ruby.
The 4 gals that reside within the 13 feet that is Virgin Ruby.
JP, JP, and special friends.
The ever-badass Shari Rae & Hannah Layhe.
Rehearsing outside Virgin Ruby.
Once upon the longest day of the year, Miss Quincy hijacked the unplugged SOULstice gathering (in Winlaw, BC) by cleverly commandeering an inverter & chain of 4 car batteries and getting an impromptu all electric dance party on in front of her trailer.
Last night Miss Quincy performed a house concert at one of my favorite houses in the galaxy. That favoritism could be due to the fact of up until a couple weeks ago Miss Q and I both lived upstairs. Thanks to Michael Graham and the new roommates for letting us back into the house.
Backstage (aka: Michael’s bedroom).
Joined on stage by ye olde left hand man Tyler Toews.
As a touring band, some days residual Tetris skills from your youth are much more important than your musical chops. For example, we have somehow managed to pack 5 stringed instruments (including an upright bass), a drum kit, 2 amps, a full PA, a merch set-up worthy of a farmers’ market, luggage for 6 weeks, 10 hats, and 4 ladies into this minivan. (Photos from Miss Quincy’s 2011 Summer Tourcation).
Today I was thrust out of my bubble of cabin solitude by the arrival of a minivan full of ladies who have come to retrieve me and rehearse for a couple days before Miss Quincy’s Summer Tourcation commences. As I’ve mentioned previously, this summer Miss Q is touring as a smokin’ hot all girl trio … Here are a couple casual cabin rehearsal shots, and a sneak peak of what the foxy trio in question looks like.
Click on the panorama to view it larger.