Had a fantastic show at the wonderful Artbar in Santa Cruz at the wonderful Artbar on Aug 6. Nick and I were joined by Blind Uncle Harry’ers Alex(andria of Egypt) Burgan and Ned (Can I Play) Joyner. With Ned on bass and Alex and him both singing we ramped up the energy physically emotionally kinetically and every which way. Me and Nick had had a good response to the new songs, but with the four of us singing the choruses to My Baby Likes to Smoke a Bong (While I Go Down on Her Putong), It’s All Fucked, Pretty Girl, and Ain’t No Grave it was hella hoppin’. Nick on dobro, Ned holding it down on bass, and Alex singing lead or harmony with me on guitar- damn I wish the tour never had to end. And as always it was a thrill to hear Alex sing 4 Days Drive to Chiapas, and duet with me on Christmas Day in Australia, Song for the Revolution (aka Song for 2116), and belt out Hillbilly Hippie Haiku Heaven. And her high lonesome harmony on Cry Me a Rainbow always gives me chills.
We’d picked Ned up near Placerville where he’d been spending the summer doing some interesting horticultural work. Alex lives in Santa Cruz and we got to stay and hang with her for a memorable time in the best US city ever- ok hella expensive and traffic is a daddy fucker but holy fuck the Giant Dipper is right on the beach! Coming into the city at night and seeing it lit up against the backdrop of the ocean is truly magical. And the best part is you can park on the street outside the Boardwalk and ten minutes later be riding the Giant Dipper! If I lived in santa cruz I’d ride the Giant Dipper before work, on my lunch hour, and every night after work. If aliens invaded the USA and demanded to be shown one worthwhile thing that americans have accomplished, I would take them for a ride on the Giant Dipper.
All over downtown Santa Cruz there are buskers and artists and cool local stores and the vast soul eroding crapfest that is the rest of America seemed like a distant dream. The four of us spent a day at a beach less than a 30 minute drive away, completely deserted and we saw dolphins and sea otters and the sun set and glowed while the California stars slowly appeared overhead. Less than 30 minutes east and there is the mountains and redwoods and small little charming towns that have somehow managed to ban the corporate chain death in life that plagues nearly every other community in the United States of Asskissers. We so did not want to leave...:(