ABSINTHE TOUR 2005-Germany

The first show in Germany was in Koln, where, in 1989 or so, bassist John "Casanova" Carlucci and I destroyed the dressing room of the Rose Club in a drunken brawl over a junkie bartender (who, by the way, ended up with me.... John, on the other hand, ended up with 12 stitches). This time was not as eventful, but it was here that we met up with our fearless tour manager, Kurt, at Die Kantine club, where he surprised us with a new spacious tour van, complete with table for food and card game playing. Can't remember much about this gig other than it was a bit cozier than I'd expected. The following gig was at Cafe Central in Weinheim. This place had a great staff and prepared gourmet pasta and Greek salad for us. Igor snuck a copy of my solo cd to the dj and he played "White Trash Thing" in it's entirety before the show, instigating quite a few sales, which came as a shock to me. Guess heartache and despair are universal. If memory serves me correctly (and it rarely does), my pal Werner (head honcho for Fan Pro, the sci-fi publishing company) came out to catch the show again (he'd brought his teenage daughter backstage at BeBeat - a brave thing for a dad to do!) The club (and the two previous) did almost no advertising, claiming that they felt the band would not draw, so why spend the money on advertising? No wonder Germany lost the war. Nevertheless, the amazing backstage resembled a victorian bordello, complete with generous rider (though no booze - unless perhaps Igor snatched the whiskey before I did)! I forget the name of the gal who did sound but she was fantastic.

LeBeatBespoke pics courtesy of Stevie Gomez
By the 6th show I knew that IBD had really put some effort into the routing of the tour - as it was a vast improvement over last year's gruelling "Kill The Fuzztones" tour. The average drive between towns was about 4 hours, opposed to last years 6-8. With a practically new line-up of 'Tones that actually enjoyed touring, as well as each other's company, the drives were not only bearable, but often FUN. Igor kept everyone amused with enebriated tales of his sordid life, as well as constant bouts with sexual tourettes. Our last show in Germany (until our return a few weeks later) was in Osnabruck. We played a "Youth Center" called Westwek - but I didn't see one audience member under the age of 30! Liquor was not allowed but Igor snuck us some whiskey nonetheless, and Jana had brought me a bottle of absinthe from Berlin's Absinthe Shop, making it possible for us to put on our usual inspired show. By this point the band was really jelling. Gabe and Roger found their impenetrable groove, a perfect foundation for Jana's soulful keyboard playing. New kid Vince started to feel at ease and really began sinking his teeth into the leads, making it easy for me to feel loose enough to let 'er rip. Fans continually told me that this was the best line-up yet, and I have to agree!