San Francisco, CA. 18 Oct. 2012

Jim, Ian, Mike and I had a little expedition to Haight-Ashbury this afternoon for a visit to Amoeba Records a small chain of shoppes specialising in new and used CDs and vinyl.  We grabbed the first cab outside the hotel manned by an insanely aggressive driver that happened to be a woman.  All of us hanging on for dear life as she sped through the streets of San Francisco, the radio blaring a political talk-radio show.  While I tended to side with the message, the messenger and the volume were so loud and annoying the only thing that took my mind off it was the terror I felt in taxi.  We arrived 20 minutes later at Amoeba thankful the whole thing was over.  Once in the store we all migrated to various interests and formats.  I bypassed the CDs for vinyl and came away with some great albums in wonderful condition for a song; Kenyon Hopkins, Johnny Smith, Jerry Byrd, Homer and Jethro, Flanders and Swan to name a few. That was mercifully before I even found the jazz section at which point everyone was ready to leave.  Just as well, once in that aisle it could have become expensive.   After checking out we hailed a taxi and were treated to another terror filled journey complete with screeching tires.  Fuckin'ell.  What gives with the cabbies here?  Mercifully, the radio was not on but the driver talked non-stop on his phone.  Pulled up in front of the hotel and was again relieved to vacate a taxi for the second time in two hours.

Show number two at the Bill Graham Civic.  A later than usual sound check which meant it was more abbreviated than usual, only ten minutes or so.  Most of us had gone to catering on arriving at the gig so bypassed dinner which was just as well since there really was hardly any time after sound check. Got dressed and took the stage for another fab show, tonight's song line-up a little different than last night's. Just before we went on we got word that the pick-up in Glenn's string bass had lost all it's bottom end. I don't think it affected things much and certainly didn't dampen any one's spirit or game. It would take a whole lot more than a pick up not behaving to accomplish that.

Backstage after the show we made quick work of bbq'd ribs and chicken.  Our own Pete MacKay getting a big nod tonight for thoughtfully purchasing a cocktail shaker, extra dry vermouth and a bottle of Martin Miller Gin.  I know nothing about this brand of gin but it is now my all-time favourite.  Our caterer Scott supplied the olives and I shook a couple up before heading back to our hotel.

Tomorrow is The Greek Theatre in Berkeley, an outdoor show in the bay area in October.  Although the weather's been unusually warm, it promises to be a chilly one tomorrow night.

So long,

Richard