Road Blog: Friday November 02, 2018 - Erie, PA
November 2, 2018
We left Gabe's house around 3pm and headed south through downriver, avoiding the construction on I-75, eventually hooking up with Telegraph Road, I-275, and finally south on I-75 into Ohio. It was raining on and off the whole way, Gabriel was driving, Patrick was in the back and I was riding shotgun. There's a problem with the aux input panel on the van so we didn't have our iPods or phones to pull music from and had to rely on (gasp!) CDs! It felt like the stone age. We came prepared, though, and cranked out some R.E.M., The Beatles, The Beach Boys, and Old 97's before picking up a college radio station around Cleveland that was playing a bunch of cool, obscure country 45s. That faded out as we approached the Pennsylvania border and we flipped around the dial for a bit before we crossed into New York and checked into our hotel. That stretch of northern Pennsylvania between Ohio and New York is a pretty drive, with big rock cuts and trees changing colors. We spent just a few minutes at the hotel, met my pal Brooks in the lobby, and headed back across the PA border into Erie.
Scotty's Martini Lounge is a corner bar in a neighborhood in Erie, with a non-descript front door draped in ivory. There's a dimly-lit front room with a bar and some nice lounge chairs, and a back room with a stage, a pool table, and a pinball machine. There was a thick, visible cloud of cigar smoke wafting in the air just above head-level, and we know our gear, merch, clothes, and van will carry that smell for a while now. We ordered in some pizzas, loaded in our gear, ordered beers, and set up. The bartender and owner were both super nice and welcoming. We met Marlene last time we were in Erie and had planned to play Scotty's since them. Pretty soon Dan and Dawn walked in, making the trek from Geneva, Ohio, and it was good to see them.
Paper Matches set up and went on a little after 10. They have a cool old-school punk vibe kinda like the Ramones but less bubble-gum and more Heartbreakers (JT not TP) if that makes sense. They did a couple old-school garage covers and had a good crowd out, including some in great (post) Halloween costumes. They were super nice dudes who stayed till the end and partied hard. Drinks were flowing and the smoke got thicker as we went on sometime around 11:30. We played to an ok crowd that came and went, in and out, a couple times as the night went on. We handn't played a lot of those songs with Gabe since the Spring tour, and just had one quick practice since we got back from the UK, but things came together well and we had a good time. We tore down around 1am, sold some merch, had a couple more rounds, and headed back to the hotel in New York state.
This was our second ever show in Erie, our first was in June 2017 at a different venue. It's a cool rust-belt city that's been hit hard by the economy and drugs. There's always talk about how Detroit released a couple jails full of heroin addicts and sent them here a couple years ago and that's why Erie has such a rampant heroin problem, but I haven't been able to find any real evidence that that actually occurred. "That shit is true man!" someone yelled when I asked about it from the stage. Still, people here are nice, hard working folks who like rock and roll, and we were glad to be back. See ya next time Erie!
Tonight we're at Cebar's Madison Tavern in Madison, Ohio. It's our friend Dawn's birthday party and she's hired us as entertainment. Not sure what her guests will think of that, but we'll do our best not to scare them away. See you tonight! xo