September 12, 2016

On Tour With Belle Noire: Day 7


I always found it interesting that Michigan City is in Indiana and not Michigan. It was a friendly place to wake up and get ready for the two-hour commute to Grand Rapids. I was excited about my driving shift. For someone who deeply misses the Mitten, driving on these horrifically bumpy roads brings back the fondest and harshest memories.

This trip to Michigan marked the first time for Joey, Dan, and Rob to see the Great Lakes state. Roman had ventured through here supporting A Lot Like Birds a few years back but was eager to see more of it. I thrive for opportunities to be a tour guide and Michigan is a state that’s easy to sell. With 4 hours of time to kill, I took the boys to Brewery Vivant near the east side of Grand Rapids for some poutine and craft beer. Joey couldn’t stop talking about the cheese curds all afternoon. (more…)

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September 10, 2016

On Tour With Belle Noire: Day 6


As we woke up outside of Springfield, IL, we felt a sense of relief in knowing that the show in Chicago would be the start of an amazing run with Daisyhead and Only Sibling. Its felt like everything we’ve done the last few days has been by ourselves and now that experience can be shared.

3 hours later we arrived in Chicago. Similarly, to St. Louis our guard was up about finding parking in a good area because of stories we had heard about theft with bands coming into town. We got into the city at 2:00pm and the show wouldn’t start until 10:30pm. It was such a crazy time for a show to start, but it gave us a great opportunity to explore the city for quite some time. Dan headed off to the financial district to meet up with his Uncle who lives in town while the rest of us ventured off to a local record store and a Taco Bell Cantina. Yes, you heard that correctly. (more…)

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September 9, 2016

On Tour With Belle Noire: Day 5


The worst sensation I’ve experienced so far on this tour happened this morning. Waking up to the van slowly coming to a halt amidst a traffic jam outside of St. Louis and feeling your body being nearly stuck to the pleather seats you’re on. The humidity continues to get worse the further east we get and it’s something I honestly forgot about. Living in California has spoiled me weather-wise and I often forget the roots in which I was raised.

Luckily we were on the road way before we needed to be this morning, so the slowdown didn’t delay us at all. We wandering into St. Louis to find some parking near the venue and scope out the area. We heard lots of rumblings about how this particular venue isn’t in the safest area and is prone to break-ins and stolen belongings. (more…)

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September 8, 2016

On Tour With Belle Noire: Day 4


We have the day off today. What does that mean? It means a whole lot of doing nothing and cherishing every minute of it. Well, that’s the case for a couple of us. Since we’re still in Denver, Rob is using his time to run errands, spend time with his girlfriend, and get packed for the rest of the trip. He never needed to pack much since we were hitting Denver in 3 days anyhow. Dan shot off to downtown Denver to work on Postmates (a bicycle/car delivery service for food). It’s an awesome opportunity for him to earn a couple extra bucks and explore the city. Dan is all about exploring new places and he’s loving any chance to do so. That leaves Roman, Joey, and myself. (more…)

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September 7, 2016

On Tour With Belle Noire: Day 3

tour 6 summit

It’s a strange feeling waking up and forgetting where you are. Hearing the sound of trucks passing by and the sun beaming down on your face as your back readjusts to normality will be a staple of this trip. Yesterday marked the first time I was able to fall asleep while riding in the van. To quote Dan, “I love falling asleep in the van. It’s like time travel when you wake up.” Hard to argue with that logic.

We woke up in the famous Little America truck stop just inside Wyoming. Roman was keen on getting a $12 shower in while the rest of us moseyed around for a little breakfast. We had a 5 ½ hour drive to Denver’s venue, Summit Music Hall. Denver is where Rob lives so we were looking forward to some home-style Denver hospitality. (more…)

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September 6, 2016

On Tour With Belle Noire: Day 2

tour 3 nevada

Monday – September 5, 2016

Nevada. What an incredibly boring state to drive through. This is my second time passing through this desert wasteland in the last two years and I know it’s not going to be the last either. The distant mountains in the backdrop of I-80 are a small consolation as you pass through towns that look like the set of Tremors was filmed there.

Our stomachs are doing their best to digest the French toast sticks from Burger King as we embarked on the 5 hour drive to the first venue, Metro Bar. Today was rather quiet as naps and conversation filled the time rather briskly. My designated bench made it difficult for me to get comfy as the piercing sun engulfed my feet and required me to move frequently around to avoid the rising temperature. Thankfully the temperature outside stayed around 70 degrees so it’s hard to really complain. (more…)

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