Oh, man. Louisville, wow! Great show. Great people to meet. Wonderful time!
Louisville is pretty close to me, so I got to work all day and see Fruvous that night. I figured the jaunt down would be really easy, so I didn't need a really good map of Louisville. I had a mediocre one and that should be enough. I headed out the door of work at 5pm to the road and traffic.
I escaped Indianapolis in decent time and stopped to get gas and get one of those Hershey Chocolate Pie things from Burger King cuz they are yummy =) Then I headed on down the road to Louisville looking for the Phoenix Hill Tavern. I got Louisville no problem, but the road I figured was major enough to have an Interstate exit didn't. Now I know what certain ones of you are thinking. If I had Rand McNally, I could have know where the exits are by those little boxes. Well, I didn't have Rand McNally, okay. And here is what happened: I got lost in Louisville. As soon as I hit the south side of the Interstate Loop around Louisville I figured bad things had happened. So I got off the Interstate and began wandering about Louisville until I found a street my bad map recognized. This took a little wandering and a lot of patience, but eventually I found South Shelby which should lead me back to the north end of town. No. Of course it turns into a one-way street two blocks after I find it and there is no corresponding opposite direction on my bad map. So I wander some more until I stumble on Barret street to Baxter and safely into a free parking lot next to the venue at 8:15! I'm glad Louisville was kinda close to me or else I may have missed something.
The venue was the most cool place I've seen. Imagine the Addams family house with happy lighting and no man-eating plants or lions. There were pics all over the walls, great windows, and large (large like 12+ feet across) wood ceiling fans with streamers. Dave said it best: I'd hate to be the person that dusts this place.
Marcus had set up show outside the place where the guys would play. I talked to him for a bit about things. They had just come from Herndon and there were some great people there. I asked him about Asheville and he said the festival isn't actually in Asheville, it is in Flat Rock and he warned me about making sure we know what we are doing going there so we don't get horribly lost. I agreed. Also chatted with Cal a bit about Champaign and the busy nights they both had there. Cal commented on how bad the equipment was and how the house soundman would just stand there. Probably had one too many beers spilled in the sound board =)
Now, I'm terrible with names here on out. But I met someone from Louisville who had moved from St. Louis to go to school. I also talked to the man who was sitting under the big yellow beer sign at Columbus for awhile. He has been at Columbus, Champaign, and now Louisville so I introduced myself and we chatted for a bit. He is a high-school drama teacher in Danville IN and he has a lot of students that love Fruvous but can't get in most places.
This is Andi's home turf, so of course she was there with her family (her mom and a couple Mikes =) and a friend, Dale. I talked to Dale for awhile too. He's a guitar player I gather and we talked about music a bit. It turns out he works with someone from the same small engineering school as I'm from. Weird.
The guys came out and I took a seat in the front. There was a small dance place that kinda made a trough in front of the seats. There were three tiers of seats, so everyone had a great seat unless they were behind a support column.
Fruvous started by going straight through Message, Poor Mary, and Doorstep. This got the crowd going too. The people to my right had never seen Fruvous before and were completely enthralled. They loved Michigan Militia and sang along with the Happy Birthday Tricia part.
This was the lads second time in Louisville and they had done a radio interview on NPR earlier. They commented on Louisville and how it was the only place they could possibly play in Kentucky. Jian ended with F***in' hicks, but then apologized =) The audeince gawked at the Canadians saying Eh. And were laughing about 10 seconds into the guys talking because they were saying Loo-ey-ville instead of the colloquial Looo-ool-vooolle.
There was a TV behind the bar that the guys could see from stage. The Marlins/ Braves game ended and the guys requested the TVs be turned off. They wondered what would happen if the TVs were turned off. Would the crowd be angry? Would there be looting? Riots? It was also pointed out that they'd have an audience now when they play Atlanta since the Marlins won. But they might have to play all Dirges.
Mike was introduced as Grampa Fruvous after Boo Time. I never noticed this before. I always thought it was Mike, but you all know how much Mike and Grampa Fruvous look a like. And I could swear if Grampa Fruvous had a Chinese Yo-Yo, he'd be Spiderman. Or even sunglasses he'd be Lou Reed, the poet of New York. At the end of the scat secton, the kick-back in line was Get a Clandestine Thrill at Phoenix Hill, so after the tune Dave kidded Mike about Spy stuff.
Boss was introduced with Jian explaining there are 3 kinds of bosses. Mike, Dave, and Murray each played one. It was hilarious. I wish I remembered each ones characters, but I remember Murray's. Murrary stood next to Jian for a long time. He didn't say anything. Took deep breaths now and then. Jian just looked at him waiting to see what he did. Eventually, he said hi, put his arm around Jian and said, you're fired. It was great timing.
Boyfriend was very appreciated by the crowd too. People were rolling at the hilarious skit and it went well. The crowd got into the song and the clapping, but again broke up in laughter when it went into the slow part with Sing in the middle.
The audience was dead silent for Fell in Love. You can imagine what that impact has! And afterwards, they started to rock out to the end of the show.
But, someone got Cross Border shopping in their head so it was teased for a bit. Then they all looked at each other and said "Do you wanna do it?" The audience egged them on and I was just freaking out! Cross-Border shopping??!? In Louisville Kentucky? Yep! Jian said we were cheering now, but once they mess up that third lyric, everyone is gonna be mad. But they went through with it all the way and it came out great! Afterwards, dave tooled off into My Old Kentucky Home...
The show ended with Darlington Darling and Love Potion #9. Dave was intro-ed as Michael Stipe (I was expecting more Kojak or the star of the hit TV series Night Court - Richard Moll but anyway). In the medley part of potion, I could swear that Mike said "Are you a Hoosier like me? Would she have your baby? Would she..." for that Alanis song. A Hoosier is someone from Indiana (don't ask me why)...
The guys came out for the first encore with no costumes. I was expecting Green Eggs and Ham, but we got MBLABOA instead. It went well and the audience really liked it. In the taxi driver part, Jian modified the lyric ever so slightly with "I was looking straight" instead of looking straight ahead and yep! instead of so!. My baby was also hooked on Pulp Fiction and Murray flipped his collar up for the last line.
Jian chatted some more and thanked all the great people that they did stuff with in Louisville. They thanked their promoter (Bill maybe?) who was blamed for throwing bottle caps at Dave on stage and Andi for her work getting the word about Fruvous out. They also thanked WFPK (maybe?), the NPR station in Louisville. WFPK was the french station for Kentucky Fried Chicken (Fried Poulet Kentucky or something more French sounding).
They ended the first encore with Fly. The audience was quiet completely again and it was a great performace. But do you know how hard it is to get the audience riled back up after a slow tune to try and get the last encore? Well, it was a feeble attempt, but the guys came back.
Now, I was already for the sunglasses. I wanted to see Dave (who looked like a criminal. He had on a neck choker chain and a gas station attendent shirt. With the new sporty sleek look he looked dangerous except for the fact that the new look brings out his blue eyes. It was great really. But back to the show)... I wanted to see Dave in the sunglasses with the new look. But when they guys came out again, people started shouting tunes at them and so, Mike started up a song. I think it was a Beatles song, but I'm not sure and they played it all the way through.
There was some discussion again, and Dave left the stage and hid behind some speakers. Jian began a spiel on Monarchy and Republics and such and the King of Spain, who almost had a night off, was called upon to do his thing.
Overall, the show was one of the best I've seen. The guys were relaxed and obviously having a great time. Not many people stuck around so we got to for awhile afterwards. I found Marty Rosen whom I met at my first show in Bloomington and we talked for awhile about festivals and things Fruvous. His wider Mary was there too.
Mike and Murray entertained by explaining some Frugames to us. I'm not even going to try and remember them, but I'm sure they'll pop up again at a later time =) The drive back wasn't too bad. Marty showed me the way to the interstate and from there it was more a battle of staying awake than a battle of finding home.
Another Fruventure completed. A bit of warning for those planning for this
weekend. Nashville is a 6pm show at Union Station and Asheville isn't Asheville,
it is Flat Rock. Plan ahead for both those and ask Jude if you need more info.
Hopefully I'll see some of you there...
Some other tidbits from the performance include: