AG's Journal #2, Days 7-13

day 7- 1/22- empress casino, joliet, ill.- it turns out that we only play from 8-9 o'clock so we have the rest of the night to party. the place where we're playing is a club called the chameleon room. we basically do an opening set for the techno rave dance party. we play for about 75 people and by 10 o'clock the place is packed with ravers bumpin' complete with cage dancers. they treat us well with a big dinner and 4 hotel rooms. a good filler gig. we party for awhile and finally go back to the rooms to get ready for our day off in chicago before we play the house of blues on monday.

day 8- 1/23- we get into chicago at about 4 o'clock and check into our hotel. we meet our friend dolores and we all have a big family style dinner at the hotel restauarant. after dinner we go out for cocktails at a local bar and eventually head to a blues bar called kingston mines. i (ag) sit in for a couple tunes and right after, established blues guitarist jeff healy, who was playing at the house of blues that night, came in to do some jamming. reed talks with him for a while, and, being the manager that he is, tries to get him to come jam with us tomorrow night. the key phrase of the night is, "ahso ricker".if you want to know what that means, ask us at a show and maybe we'll tell you.

day 9- 1/24- house of blues-chicago, ill.- we have an early sound check at the house of blues. so a bunch of us go for a quick tour of the sears tower and see the awesome view of the chicago skyline. poor marty is stuck in the hotel room with food poisoning puking his guts out. corona beer is putting on the show for us and we'd really like to thank them for a great job of taking care of us. you can't help but have nothing less than a great show at the house of blues. they treat you so well and everything is so top notch from the equipment to the crews and staff, it really is the ultimate musical experience.

day 10- 1/25- another day off. we play in buffalo on wednesday so we decide to drive all the way there today instead of breaking it up. 5 states, 3 great lakes and 11 hours later (fueled by playstation boxing game ready 2 rumble) we pull into buffalo and crash.

day 11- 1/26- heenan's-buffalo,ny- everybody has pretty much shaken all the flu bugs and colds that were going around, so the guys take a trip up to niagara falls. we were here this past summer and i have to say it was much better then. buffalo is pretty damn cold as it is, but up on the observation deck at niagara falls it's about 22 below. we snap a couple pictures and hurry back to the warmth of the van. later, we have dinner at the famous anchor bar, home of the buffalo wing, where we scarf a mountain of wings before the show. the gig at heenan's goes really well. there are about 225 people and all are grooving and really digging it. it was also alley's birthday so the whole bar gave a rousing rendition of happy birthday for her. big thanks to jimmy t. for a great job promoting the show.

day 12- 1/27-the haunt-itaca, ny.- this place is a favorite of ours because it's a great music venue with really cool people that work there and awesome crowds. they don't dissappoint as toronto techno funk trio the new deal opens up the show with their high energy improv grooves and we finish it off to wrap up a great night of music. thanks once again to ryan for the great posters and to our radio friend stu for his help. we head out right after the show for rochester because we have to do an early morning radio show with our buddy the wease.

day 13- 1/28-water st. music hall-rochester,ny- i'm woken up at 8:30am in the van and reed tells me to get up for the interview. it turns out that i am going to be a celebrity judge for the first annual chicken wing eating contest. they are holding it at the rochester hockey teams' ice rink so it's really cold. lee,my e-mails can only be so long on this thing so i'll continue this entry on a new e-mail. ag