Thursday, 17 May 2007

9am came awfully early for having been awake until three the previous night. I ran out to get a quick bite to eat and pack things up to head for Brookings. I ended up getting started nearly an hour later than I really wanted, but it wasn’t a big deal. I would be meeting up with Todd in Brookings and by all accounts it wasn’t like a regular club where you need to get there early for a popular act.

I got to Skinner’s around 4:30pm and since Todd wasn’t there yet I decided to check out Downtown Brookings. In my wandering, I ran across a few grain cars and a DME (Dakota, Minnesota, and Eastern) locomotive parked near the local grain elevator. Downtown is maybe 1 square mile, at most, so you can truly walk wherever you want to go. Being a bit of a train nut I stopped to take a few pictures. Like any of my snapshots, it’ll take me a while to get them on-line since I’m so far behind, but I got a couple great ones of the loco, including my favorite head-on shot.

Todd called when he got to the hotel and we met back at Skinner’s around 5:00 or so. We caught about half of the RCPM sound check and it went much like the previous night but without the applause. At one point Steve started doing the guitar part and vocals for “Personal Jesus” by Depeche Mode. It sounded good, but for some reason it struck me as funny. Different, but better than the original. More twang, less synth-pop — imagine Johnny Cash doing the song and you’ve about got it. Pretty cool if you ask me.

The guys from Shurman were late getting in due to a misguided oil-change on their van. Once they arrived, the whipped through set-up and did their sound-check as well.

Skinner’s itself is really a bar that happens to do live music. As you come in the door, the only bar is along the right side with the stage toward the far-left corner. The green-room is behind the stage and there’s a small game-room upstairs which overlooks the stage from behind.

They also don’t serve food, but rather refer you to one of the other fine establishments Downtown. Menus are available at the bar, so we chose the pizza place across the street because we wanted onion rings in addition to the pizza. The pizza place (George’s, I think) was willing to deliver right inside the bar without a second thought. Todd and I chowed down while others started to arrive, including a few folks I had seen in Des Moines and others I had met in Minneapolis.

Come show time several of us took our places right up front. Most of the fairly thin crowd stood a ways back during Shurman’s set, almost like they were afraid to get too close. There were only about 6 or 8 of us until it was time for Roger to come out, then people started moving forward.

The Peacemakers set was great and I met a lovely young woman named Lana with whom I shared a dance or two along the way.

As usual I got a picture of the set-list, which read: Andale, Wanted, Noisy Head, Americano, Maybe We Should Fall In Love, Tell Yer Momma, Winter In Your Heart, Mexico, Plenty, Banditos, God Gave Me A Gun, World Ain’t Gone Crazy, Counterclockwise, Bottom of the Bay, Your Name on a Grain of Rice, Wake Up Call, Who Let the Goon Squad In, Junebug In July, Mekong, and Hello New Day. The encore was Hourglass, Down Together, and Lemons.

Yes, “my song” was on the set-list! How cool is that? It just one of the many reasons that Roger Clyne is a great guy and another example of how he values his fans. That one thing made my night, as if the whole show didn’t kick ass.

After the show I talked to all the guys in the band for a few minutes and hung out with Steve for a while too. It’s fun hearing him tell fishing stories; and he’s got some good ones too.

Finally I headed back to the hotel and crashed at 3am — again. Sleeping until noon helps, but I’m not sure how long I can actually last this way. If this is how I go, at least I’ll die happy.

Updated: Fixed the entry title. Somehow I updated the date, but not the location.

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