Archive for September, 2013

Home again, Home again…

Its September 11 and we have just returned from New York.  I remember September 11th 2001, and in much the same way we had just returned from New York as well.  By an odd twist of fate, I was in the World Trade Center just days before it came down.  I was looking for a pharmacy.  Go figure.  I was only in the building for a minute or two (and I am not even sure which building), but nonetheless…  Its worth remembering.  The events that happened that year have affected almost everyone in the world in some way…  The truth is you can never take anything in life for granted.  You CAN however be the best that you can be.  The way we treat others has an impact on the world we live in… There’s always a bigger picture.

 

The dust from our tour has finally settled and we are back in Florida after what seems like a whirlwind couple of months. Our European dates with an appearance at Mera Luna, DragonCon, and finally Triton Festival in New York has left us tired… but fulfilled. I was really proud of the band, all of us have grown together not only as a cohesive unit on stage, but also as a family. I love these guys, this is what Cruxshadows was always meant to be.  Jessica on drums has made a huge difference in the show; There is an added edge that makes me glad that after 20+ years we are still doing this.  The biggest thing however is the fans.  You are the fuel that keeps CXS rolling… and when it becomes difficult to continue, your stories often convince me that the difference I set out to make, is in fact being made, one listener at a time.  Thats huge to me.

 

In recent years my daughter has become the center of my world.  As many of you know we take her on the road with us.  She has been amazing and I am so proud of her.  She is so much a part of us and our world… and I wonder how I could have been so blessed to have such an amazing little girl.  I was worried about taking her with us initially, its fairly common among European scene bands as well as bands in the indie scene in the US… but you always stress a bit about how things are going to actually work.  The truth is she has a blast, and we have taken strong steps to maintain a safe, drug free, smoke free environment.  She has been around the world and seen things at age two that many adults have never come close to seeing, and many never will.  She is so smart… and she just keeps on getting smarter.  Cruxshadows has never been a party band, and our band members have gone out of their way to be like big brothers, sisters, aunts, and uncles to Anmi.  Thats just how we roll I guess:-)

 

Even so, I was a little worried about doing Triton right out of DragonCon when I was approached earlier this year.  We have not really played any club or theater shows in the US in about 5 years and I wasnt sure what to expect.  But the festival pushed hard to get us and even agreed to move the dates to ones we could do. They agreed to our rider in advance, even prior to negotiating our Thursday night headlining spot. I won’t lie, there were a number of unexpected setbacks.  We were unable to get a hotel in the city that could accommodate our people and a large touring van with a trailer.  We prefer to have a bus, but it was not in the cards for a one off event. Parking was a problem just in general so we probably lucked out there. Technical issues, merch issues, the list goes on and on.

 

But through it all, Jet( the event promoter) and his people tried to make everything work.  Effort makes a big difference. The staff at the Gramercy, the crew of Triton, the bands with whom we were fortunate enough to share the stage with that night, they all behaved admirably.  Likewise, I was proud of my band, my crew, my manager, and our agent Athan.  They made everything work somehow.  The dressing room situation was not ideal for anyone. Our contract stipulates a private dressing room.  It became more significant as we had no where else to be with our little girl.  There were only two dressing rooms, both little more than closets.  We were worried that this might be a big problem, but nobody complained. The other bands were respectful of our situation, and showed themselves to be true professionals.  For that alone I have gained so much respect for the acts that played that night.  Bands we have little or nothing in common with musically, congratulated us on our show.  I went in expecting the worst, and I was pleasantly surprised by what I found that night…  Nachtmahr spoke about the scene standing united and supporting each other, maybe someone was listening.  Anmi enjoyed a little bit of Assemblage23 from a safe distance, Its awesome to watch her dance and move to the music….

 

For us the show was a great deal of fun.  The energy from the band was fantastic, and I felt like Zak our LT did a great job with the lights.  Sound was crisp, both on stage and off.  Overall I thought the show sounded and looked the way it should, and there is a great feeling that comes with that.  We agreed not to hang our banner and waived that contract point a few days before the show so that a projector screen could be hung instead.  Several of the other bands required it for their show and for whatever reason the venue could not do both.  Even so, We decided to use the screen ourselves and made arrangements with Xris Smack to do our own video programing.  He came highly recommended… and I have to say, he really came through for us.  It added so much to the show… we may have to consider doing it more often.  Happy accidents…

 

But the best part of the show was meeting the fans.  We spoke to so many people who had traveled so far to see Cruxshadows play.  I know, we need to do more US shows.  South American shows too:-) I will see what we can do…  I felt humbled by the people who waited for pictures and autographs.  You all are the point of everything… You are what its all about.

 

After loading out we drove to Jersey two hours south before finding our beds that night.  The next day we did the 15 or 16 hours to get home.  We originally planned to stay to see the bands on Friday and Saturday, but it just wasn’t possible without a hotel in the city.  I know the band was disappointed.  We have  a lot of friends we really wanted to see.  I did get to meet up with a writer that I have been collaborating with (but thats another story for another day).

 

Thank you to everyone at Triton and best wishes to the other bands out there trying to keep the scene dynamic and alive.

 

Thank you to everyone at DragonCon as well.  You all do such an amazing job each year.  Maybe we take you for granted a little.  There are plenty of stories to tell from DC this year too… but basically my point was it has been fun but its good to be back home.

 

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