Oh, the Places You’ll Go…

erica bryan, behind the mic, beaverdamusa.comWell, this past weekend we wrapped up our Fall Tour. It got me reminiscing about all the shows we’ve played this past year, and how we found ourselves doing a lot of things we never thought we would!For example, I played at a local pageant! There wasn’t much room in the auditorium, so we ended up waiting backstage when we weren’t playing.  Billy felt really weird being surrounded by only young girls, and tried to stay as close to me as possible. Billy and I were originally scheduled to play transition music between the age groups, but at one point in the pageant, the judges needed to see the girls again. So, they had Billy and I come out and play songs while the girl’s waved and walked across the stage. I’m not sure they thought they would make their last entrance to Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off,” but that’s what we played!

Another day, we played at something called “Mule Day Jam.” I was told there would be hundreds of mules everywhere. To be honest, I wasn’t even sure what a mule was–and I’m actually still not sure, because there were no mules at this show. Apparently Mule Day was about 20 minutes down the road and, instead, we played at a car dealership. So…we never saw any mules, but that doesn’t mean we didn’t have fun!

Now I’m gonna be real with you–some of the best experiences we’ve had playing this year is playing in our own basement and streaming it online. It’s weird, because I still get nervous jitters when we go “live” while streaming, but there’s no one physically watching the show. But, the responses from everyone watching online is always so great and I love being able to reach out to listeners across the globe!

We’ve played for crowds of hundreds…and we’ve played for crowds of just my parents. But either way, every year is full of experiences that I never would have dreamed of.

Now that my shows are done, I’m busy recording my EP (that may become a full album…because…well…I have too many songs for an EP). I can’t wait to go on tour next year to promote the new record, and will eagerly await our new experiences to come! Thanks to everyone who came out to the shows and/or watched the shows online. As always, I couldn’t do it without you!

erica bryan, beaverdamusa.com
beaverdamusa.com, erica bryan
erica bryan, beaverdamusa.com

When on the Road: Expect the Unexpected

erica bryan, beaverdamusa.com, behind the micI’ve started expecting the unexpected when it comes to out-of-town shows. It’s a good habit to build, because you never know what you’re going to run into on the road. My last show was no exception.The day started at 8:30 a.m., when we met at one of my band member’s houses to load up the Delta Mama (our “tour” bus…see previous post). We headed to Chick-Fil-A, a band ritual for early morning drives, then headed down I-65 from Nashville to Birmingham.

The trip was fairly uneventful, just a lot of laughs at the comedian we were listening to, and some bathroom breaks. After 3 hours, we pulled up to the house we were staying at, got out of the car, and my guitarist/bassist said, “I just realized I didn’t bring my bass.” My initial response was, “Wait- is this a joke? Is this serious?” She confirmed that this was, indeed, not a joke. Luckily, the band member we knew the best, from the other band we were playing with that night, was the bass player. So, we asked him if we could play his bass. He kindly responded that we could. Phew! Disaster was averted…for now.

We then ate some lunch, had some rehearsal, and went on our way to the show. At 7:30 p.m., we got to the venue. When we walked in, it was a brisk 90 degrees inside, and we were aptly informed that the air conditioning was broken. My immediate thought was of my drummer’s Grandma, who was going to be in attendance, and thought that she would probably not enjoy watching the show from a sauna. They said they were going to bring in some fans, but never did. However, my band is awesome, and 2 of them took initiative to find the fans and assemble them in the room.

While the fan fun was happening, the other band was sound checking. However, that band had already been there about 2 hours trying to sound check, and there seemed to be some confusion with the sound guys that took a while to figure out. So, we just waited a while. After we waited what seemed like eternity, one of my members said, “Maybe the sound guys don’t know that we exist?” I thought, “there’s no way they don’t know we’re playing tonight…but maybe we should tell them just in case?” So, he went up to them, told them we existed, and their response was, “There’s another band?!”

At this point, it was 8:40 p.m., and our show start time was 9:00 p.m. We hadn’t even put our equipment on the stage yet. They were already letting people in the doors, so our audience ended up watching us put the instruments and cables on the stage. We then sound checked for our entire audience.

Finally, we got everything situated and started our actual show around 9:10 p.m. There were many loud drones of sound feedback throughout our set, but considering everything we had just gone through, it was the least of our worries.

When people ask how our show went, my response is simply, “What we could control went very well.”

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