As some of you may have noticed, Hot Pink Hangover has been playing a fair amount of regional gigs this summer. Up until recently, we had no choice but to either take 3 cars (which is incredibly uneconomical) or borrow a bigger vehicle from one of our parents and rent a U-Haul trailer (which is incredibly uncool at our age.) So, we bit the bullet and bought a big old band van. She has a sordid past, but I think her future with us is bright... We named her Vanna White. Thrilled to be riding together in comfort for the first time, we piled into our tour vehicle and embarked on her maiden voyage up to Ashland, WI and back down to Houston, MN, then home. Despite having quite a few notable quirks going in, I am happy to report that our little jalopy made the 665-mile trip without issue!
I'm the type of person who automatically visualizes the worst possible scenario in every situation. It's a trait that drives poor Davey Hazard crazy (because I can't help but share my irrational concerns with anyone in ear-shot) but I think it's a coping mechanism so that I can avoid disappointment by being psychologically prepared for endless catastrophe. In my mind, we were broken down on the side of the road 100 miles from our destination, being ransacked by road-side bandits, while caught in a tornado. Thankfully none of my inner thoughts came to fruition.
The weather was frighteningly unpredictable, however. When we arrived in Ashland to play a battle of the bands, we were told the event was canceled because of the impending 80 MPH straight-line winds and hailstorms. I nearly fainted at this news. As fortune would have it, the storm went south, we went into battle, and we won! Our next show was at a festival in the middle of nowhere and the trip took us through some of the most beautiful landscapes I've ever seen. We stared in awe at the lush rolling terrain, the jagged bluffs regally jutting out from the hillsides, and the idyllic little farms spattered among the green fields. Unfortunately, the festival had been hit by a series of storms and morale seemed a bit low in general, but we played our set with gusto, met a few new folks, and then headed back onto the open road where we were met by a stunning sunset with clouds resembling a layer cake constructed by heaven's own baker.
I'm not sure what people think of when they hear the phrase "We're going on tour." Do they think of glamorous green-rooms stocked with beef tartare and Prosecco? Or performing in front of a sea of adoring fans who chant your name while enthusiastically raising their cell phone lights towards the sky? Though we haven't gotten to experience any of that yet, what we have experienced time and again are truly amazing fans who we genuinely connect with and who we want to serve. We've learned that being on the road is a serious grind and not for the faint of heart. It's late nights schlepping gear through mud or snow, it's trying to make the healthiest choice you can when presented with an array of gas station convenience foods, and it's hour-after-hour in close proximity to other people who may or may not have showered (I'm usually the latter.) But it is also the beauty of the road, the thrill of the stage, and the heartfelt connection that- if you're reading this, I have to believe you’ve experienced at one point or another. Believe me, I have. XOXO Stay tuned for more chronicles from the road. ;-)