Lisi here! Wassup?! It’s definitely been a long time since our last blog post. Something happened yesterday that I just couldn’t resist sharing…
Here’s my story:
A couple years back, we were trying to figure out our place in the Twin Cities’ music scene… funny, we still are. But, back in 2010, we thought we’d give Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar & Grille a try. We’re aware we’re not a country band, but The GCO obviously has country roots (which were definitely more apparent in ‘10) and Mr. Dan Neale can rock out 400+ country songs via his mind jukebox! At any rate, in August ‘10, we tried a gig at TK’s. We thought maybe we’d be the one weird band that played there… Dixie Dreg-esque, but still play some good ol’ boys tunes.
Needless to say, the experience was less than desirable and we ultimately had a falling out with the booking agent there (we’ll call him “Joe”). What happened, you might ask? He was angry with us because we played too many instrumentals in our first set (Wabash, Orange Blossom and Gypsy Grass) and he approached John – Marc & Pam Kowalski, do you remember this?!? – and was making pushy song suggestions. I tell you what, I’ve literally never seen John get as mad in public as he did at that moment and he told (Joe) off. It was pretty awesome, actually. Afterwards, (Joe) wanted to try another booking, but make sure we only played one instrumental per set. I politely and professionally declined, and we then went into an email battle much like the fight between the server and the manager at the end of the movie Waiting:
Manager: “You’ve got the job,” Server: “Thank you, but I quit,” Manager: “Too bad, you’re fired!”
As compared to…
(Joe): “Let’s try again, but play what I tell you,” Me: “Thanks, but we’re not interested in playing there anymore,” (Joe): “Yeah, well we’re not interested in having you back anyway.”
As I initially mentioned, we’re still trying to find our place in the TC music scene and we’ve decided to try playing more around town once again. John sent out an email to the band to let everyone in on our plans.
Here’s what John wrote at the end of March:
The booking agent and I spoke this evening and thought it would be a good idea to try and play more in town, as we could all use the gigs.
So, stay tuned for further updates.
I replied with:
I already have an email into (Joe)… hoping for a house gig at Toby Keith's. :)
I thought that was brilliant and had a nice little chuckle as I wrote it.
Yesterday, April 4th, I found out from John that both Dan and Mark thought I was serious. Which makes my email even funnier, at least to me! Mark, in particular, was very unhappy with the thought of playing the great TK’s again. Ha!
So, here’s what I wrote yesterday:
I hope this isn't a weird email, but I wanted to address something that came up today… John told me that he had let both of you know that the whole Toby Keith's thing was a joke. I needed to write to let you know, it's actually not. I've been putting some time into this and repairing my relationship with (Joe), too. We actually grabbed a drink a few nights ago and it definitely seems like we're on the same page. He'd like to try us out on Monday nights starting in May. Because Mondays are slow, we're thinking that the band should play longer so that we can reach more people: 6-Midnight. This is only going to help us because we're working off of a door deal. I know, I know… door deals aren't the best, but honestly, both (Joe) and I see some real potential in building an audience for the band. We're getting an 80/20 split of the door - 20% to us, 80% to the bar. Unfortunately, they're not charging a cover, so it's actually a split of the tips, but Scott assured me that the folks who frequent TK's are incredibly generous, so I'm looking forward to some financial success with this as well.
At any rate, I hope that makes you guys feel a bit better about the house gig. I'll be in touch with more details as we find out. I think (Joe) will be forwarding our set lists to me next week.
Talk to you soon.
I was laughing so freakin’ hard while I wrote that! And, you see, I’m one of those people who likes to share when I’m funny. Don’t you think I’m funny? DON’T YOU?!?
…Mark still didn’t think it was funny (so he said… he must have had a bit of a LOL moment, don’t you think). Too soon, Markie? J