DESIGNS BY ML

2004 All Access

 

10 / 05 / 04
FALL USA 2004
Seattle, Washington: Moore Theater

Coming Soon

 

07 / 11 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Stockholm, Sweden: Klubben

Coming Soon

 

07 / 10 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Oslo, Norway: Rockefeller

I can’t remember the last time I was here but it was a very cool city to walk around in. The show was packed and the fans were amazing!!! We did not go on until 10:25 pm because of noise restrictions; I guess there was a mall next to the venue with lots of restaurants that did not want to be disturbed. I had a great show except for on the 2nd song I broke a string but trusty Mikey V. was ready with a replacement. Then on the double solo for "I Don’t Believe In Love" I bumped my headstock into stone and went way out of tune. Thank you Oslo for a great show this was one of the better crowds of the tour.

 

07 / 09 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Gothenburg, Sweden: Tragarn

This was a great crowed that chanted after every song. We played another sizzling show. I got the guys to play Anybody Listening I think we did an ok performance, but that tune is bit up and down and long so I think we lost a little of the momentum but hey, we tried. Some songs just click live and some are just great to listen to. Still I think the crowd liked it. I ran into my old tech Gomez, it was good to see him. Afterwards we went to the tower bar at the hotel where we said hello to the promoter and had a night cap.

 

07 / 08 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Malmo, Sweden:

Another great show for me as well as an appreciative audience; the stage was small and limiting so it allowed me to really focus on some precise playing. I am now at the point were I am so automatic, I wish the guys would like to play some different songs but I think everyone is a bit burnt and thinking about home, that is understood since sickness has entered our organization due to the fact of constant long travel and only 1 day off this whole tour. That’s rock-n-roll! The opener was called Debase, they were from Malmo.

 

07 / 06 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Travel Day to Malmo Sweden

Again, another long journey, 17 hours to be exact. We crossed the Baltic Sea on a ferry. More reading and more thinking about home.

 

07 / 05 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Innsbruck Austria: VAZ Hafen

This was a warehouse full of different stages and bars. I believe for our first time here the crowd enjoyed the show and got a good injection or Ryche. By the end of the night they were thoroughly into it. Afterwards we hung out with the opener Prospect. They are good guys and I wish them the best.

 

07 / 04 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Travel Day to Innsbruck Austria

Another long drive. We have had so many that I have really started reading again. I picked up a CD-rom that has 5000 books on it so I am reading all the Sci-fi I can find to pass the time so I don’t drink myself into oblivion. Upon arrival to Innsbruck the first thing I noticed was the beautiful mountains and the perfect storybook city in the valley. All I can say was what a surreal picturesque place to be. Oh yes I have to say happy 4th of July. This is my second one I have missed in a row.

 

07 / 03 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Dusseldorf, Germany: Polo Express

We headlined this festival with a host of bands I have not heard of or heard of in a long time. Most notably Saxon. Also on the bill which was a surprise was Steve Adler from Guns and roses. He called his band Adler’s appetite. The show was smooth with no problem. A rain storm had come through the area and cooled things down so it was quite comfortable to play. After the show we went back to the hotel and found that the promoter had kept the bar open for us and all the bands. We whooped it up and said good night.

 

07 / 02 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Vienna, Austria: Planet Music

Upon arrival to our hotel we passed the sickest thing, a brothel of ugly fat over 60 year old hookers. Yes, they were right down the street from our hotel. I guess we were in the quality part of town. The place we were playing did not have an adequate sound system. We were informed that 4 of the subs were blown so the bass may have suffered a bit. Other than that it was a killer rock show. My strap broke on the 3rd song so I played it in the same position the whole song resting my guitar on my thigh not missing a note!!! The crowd was very energetic and enthusiastic, thank you Vienna.

 

07 / 01 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Graz, Austria: Orpheum

A small but good looking crowd. There was a rain storm before the show, our first. This caused the show to be seriously humid. I am starting to feel a bit beat up. I definitely need some quality rest. The stage had a foreword slant to it. I had to use 30 pound weights to stop my racks from rolling down stage. We performed "The Thin Line" which we have not played in about 8 weeks. That one is fun to play on the guitar. The crowd really reacted to the Empire/Mindcrime songs.

 

06 / 30 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Milan, Italy

 Coming Soon

 

06 / 29 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Paris, France: Elysee Montmartre

This was to be our last show with Pamela Moore as Sister Mary. After sound check the band and crew went out for a farewell dinner up a top the Montmare. It was beautiful and very sedating; we were right next to the Dali museum where local artist were painting and selling their art. We performed a 2 hour set for the small but loud crowd. It was very hot on stage. Afterwards I met some very cool French fans.

 

06 / 28 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Day, Off: Paris, France

This was our only true day off of this tour. I did the traditional touristy stuff with some of the guys walked to the tower and the arch. Went back to the hotel for awhile then Stone and I got some food and hooked up with Ed Bass. He was drinking some champagne and told us to hang out for a while. We ended up going back to the Irish pub. Eddie was in rare form talking sports to the locals, I left then I found out Eddie almost got in a fight with some guys. I think they kicked him out of the bar.

 

06 / 27 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Albacste, Spain: Metal Mania Festival

 

Coming Soon

 

06 / 26 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Dessel, Belguim: Grasspop Metal Mtg

This was our last big festival show with a host of heavy bands on two stages. Some of the bands that I hung out were Motorhead, Alice cooper, Slipknot, Anthrax, Soulfly and Brides of Destruction. We actually went on at 3:30 in daylight. The crowd was responsive but you could definitely tell they were there to mosh to Soulfly and Slipknot. I had a great time with Phil from Motorhead. He kept me and Stone entertained all night.

 

06 / 25 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Balingen, Germany: Bang Your Head Festival

This was the Bang Your Head Festival. Alice Cooper was the headliner. The boys from Anthrax were there and they kicked some ass! We had some technical problems; the second song OMC, we lost stage power on stage right. Apparently we blew a breaker. This took a minute to fix so we had to drop the encore. It was a great crowd for us. Stone and I took a picture with Doro and I ran into Hans Issler (photographer).

 

06 / 24 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Munich, Germany: Gr. Elsehalle

Coming Soon

 

06 / 23 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
TRAVEL DAY: Travel day to Munich, Germany

8:00 am bus call for 11 hour drive. Most everyone is asleep for most of the ride. We have to pull over to a truck stop because they mistakenly put some other guests’ luggage on our bus. I think it was a very fast BMW that caught up to us. Upon arrival I check in then go for about a 2 mile walk around the city by myself to clear my head from the long drive. I am in good spirits because our merchandise guy actually put the swag on our truck in customs so I know it is here in Germany.

 

06 / 22 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Hamburg, Germany: Fabrik

After a great night of sleep I am fully rested and back firing on all cylinders. I even had enough time for full workout in the hotel gym. So we get to the venue called Fabrik, it looks like an old production factory. I find out that all the rental gear is for the most part there, the only problem is that we do not have enough rental guitars to do the show. So fortunately the opening act guitar player allowed me to use his Les Paul. The show is to be a 2 hour performance so we pick the songs that will be the easiest to pull off with rental gear. The stage is very small and the feeling was that it was very intimate. There were people all around us 360 degrees on 2 levels and it was very hot. The sound in our in ear monitors was pretty ghetto but it was manageable. The show flowed great until the intro to Mindcrime. Both Stone and I were ready to go into Anarchy X but the set list said Operation Mindcrime!!! Finally Scott leans over his drum set and yells at me "Mindcrime" I snap out of it and slam a D chord. I can’t help but chuckle. Spinal moments are so priceless. The rest of the show went pretty good for me. I did an interview and photo session for Guitar and Bass magazine. Finally some guitar press!!!

 

06 / 21 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
TRAVEL DAY: Travel day to Hamburg, Germany

Well it felt very good after 9 hours of traveling to be back in Europe, but upon arrival we find out that our gear was still stuck at the airport in Turkey, The promoter for some odd reason had lost our carne and our equipment inadvertently missed the only flight by an hour. Go figure!!! So we had to have a meeting to decide if we should cancel the show our try and do a rental thing again. It is a 2 show gig so we could not cancel. Our production manger found some adequate gear and the show is on.

 

06 / 20 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Athens, Greece: Rockwave

After an arduous task of trying to clear our bare necessity gear and luggage through Turkish ticketing, (which took over an hour). We boarded our plane to get us on our way to Athens. The crew had basically no sleep from the night before as well as one band member so the plane upon take off was instantly quiet. Within a blink of an eye we landed in Athens. A sense of calmness came over my body. Gone was the frantic pace of life that nearly drove us over the edge. Imagine calm music playing in the airport, sweet smelling trees with flowers blooming, people taking there time as if there were no worries in the world, (other than Stone being detained in customs. The tattoos do it for him every time!) The crew went straight to the gig to sort out our rental situation, while we went to the hotel for 2 hours of sleep. The drive to the venue was an hour out of town. As soon as we arrived at this place out in the mountains this feeling of uneasiness fell over me. I have learned this intuitiveness very well after doing so many of theses loosely put together festivals. The first problem was the bus we were in could not fit down the backstage dirt road, trail. So Eric our tour manager argued again with promoter assistants speaking in broken English to get us a mini van and bring it right to our bus so we don’t have to walk with the fans a mile in 90 degree heat with our bags. Eventually we got in the van and took off. Upon half way up the road we see this group of guys walking delirious in our way. It was our crew!!! They said "start drinking boys this is going to be a train wreck". We get to our dressing tent and learn that most of the gear that was promised to us by the promoter did not happen. In fact our front of house equipment was being used by one of the other local bands so we were stuck with inadequate equipment. We were promised a 2 hour line check since we would not have a sound check, we got 30 minutes to try and set up an inadequate stage. So with complete chaos going on in 90 degree heat our beaten down crew scurried to get us a basic sound to start the show. Imagine as a guitar player not to even be able to see the amp your going to play through or the pedal configuration. Our in ear mix was a disaster and the local stage manager said we had to get started. The sun was blaring as we hit the stage the crowd roared as we started the intro of Anarchy X. My mix in my ears disappears; all I can hear is my Marshall 4x12 which is to close to me. I look at Scott as a deaf man to try and read his beat. Not happening. The same with Ed and Stone. All I can say is one word, FUCK!!!

I move to the center of the stage to get away from my cabinet then my in ear monitors get unplugged. I am melting in the sun. I head over to my new foot pedal and it is the wrong one. I head over to my Marshall amp and it is the wrong one. I plug back my in ears and turn them up super hot over my stage sound. Wow! "It sounds like shit I say to myself" at least at this point I figure out how to start troubleshooting. I manage to get back in the flow by the end of Revolution Calling then I fix and repair my sound by the next couple songs and by Mary I am dialed in. From then on I had a pretty kick ass rest of the show and I think the crowd loved it. I was glad when that one was over. I went straight for a RBV to try and wind down. The band was pretty disgusted with our performance. I concur and the mood starts to slightly loosen up only a bit. There is still a lot of bitching and complaining going on and a lot of pointing of fingers. I feel as thought the moral of the crew and band are crushed! We are in Hell!!!

When I get back to Athens I start to feel a faint calmness come over me. Stone and I go up to the top of the hotel where there is a bar, restaurant and pool. We meet some other people and enjoy the view with a nice dinner. After the sun went down Stone and I went over to the bar where a few of the other bands that were to play tomorrow where getting hammered. I met the singer for the band Placebo who was very cool. Then some of our crew showed up as well as some of the Soulfly guys and crew. Things began to get a bit ugly when these 2 guys got out hand. One guy fell into a glass table and smashed it to pieces along with all the empty glasses on it. Then this other dude seamed to start hallucinating and walked out to the ledge of the 12 story building. He thought he was being cool. He managed to walk back to the edge of the bar then he knocked over some glasses that shattered everywhere. Eric our tour manager told me to get out of there and go back to my room because a call had been placed to the police. I heard that Eric cleaned and swept the place up and kicked the belligerents out. I was glad that day was over.

 

06 / 19 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Istanbul, Turkey: Open Air

After a grueling 12 hour drive from Sofia Bulgaria we were awakened at the first of 8 checkpoints. We waited 2 1/2 hours to leave Europe. My first view of Turkey was a gang of ravaged wild dogs fighting and tearing one poor pooch at every limb until he could bark no more. The traffic in Istanbul rivals that of any great city in the world. Upon check in at the hotel we learned that our equipment truck was still stuck at the border 3 hours away so we were not to hit the stage until midnight. I was able to walk and be a tourist all day with a guide the promoter sent to be with us. Bush is not a welcome person in this city as I learn there is no Anti-Americanism they just dislike the Bush administration. The feeling I got being in this city is that of franticness yet slow to react when you need help. I got to go to the top of the Galata tower and snap some breathtaking photos of this ancient city. Upon walking back to my hotel my guide says that we are right around the corner from where a bank six moths ago was bombed and 60 people died. Okay??? I suddenly feel like I want to go home!!! Back at the hotel we find that our truck is still stuck at the border. Stress, Anxiety and sleep deprivation has set in. I think why am I here? Why am I paying my dues now at this time in my career? I miss my family.

We leave for the venue which is an hour and a half out of the city. The ride is like Mr. Toads wild ride at Disneyland. The driver takes us to the front entrance where the crowd is. Eric yells at him to turn around. It is strange that only when you scream and yell at people they seem to snap out of their world. We finally get to the backstage area which is right near a beach. People are swimming in the ocean and watching bands play on 2 stages. We have 2 small white tents and not much else. There is no security. People are all over the back stage area so it is like a zoo! Eric is yelling for security, yelling at the promoter and is basically ready to explode and guess what? It is 12 midnight and we have no equipment!!! The truck is stuck at a turnaround and cannot get to the venue because it is too big!!! So now they have to use this mini van to bring 3 cases at a time down to the stage. I am in a nightmare that will not end!!! So guess what? We hit the stage at 2 am and the fans are wiped out. I notice they have these big boom cameras swinging back and forth. Are they filming this? Who gave them permission? This is royally Fucked!!! Being consummate professionals we did the show and waited for the equipment to be loaded. All of a sudden our production manager comes steaming in the tent. There are no Fucking stage hands!!! They all went home!!! Eric is patrolling like a mad man to make sure the promoter does not bail on us. We have 3 vans to take everyone back. It is 4:30 in the morning and our crew is ready to start world war 3. The band gets the first van and the crew and equipment that had to be sorted because we are to rent gear in Athens, or to go in the other 2 vans. There are 3 drivers and 3 promoter assistants for each van. Eric is yelling at the promoter to help the crew with everything so they can get out of here in time for the 7 am lobby call. Well, our van takes off with 1 assistant, then the next van takes off with the other 2 assistants and the driver!!! Weasels!!! We made it back to the hotel by 5:30 am, the crew by 6:00am. I managed to get 1 ½ hours of sleep. The crew just stayed awake drinking in delirium. Everyone just wanted to get out of Turkey and get some sleep. We get to the airport and there is NO line yet it still takes us 1 hour to check in. I just do not understand. My worries switch to the equipment making it to Germany.

 

06 / 18 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Sofia, Bulgaria: Akademik Stadium

Our dressing room was a hotel down the street to the venue, there were only a few thousand tickets sold for the Judas Priest/Queensryche show. George the promoter said people do not pay in advance since if the band cancels you cannot get your money back to easily; there are "no Ticketmasters here" Well just as George told us there was a 10,000 walk up!!! The crowd was very hungry for metal and they are one to remember. Not too many bands make the travel to Bulgaria so they eat it up!!! The streets were packed by the hotel so we did not make it out of there until 3:00 am. You see our truck driver was not insured to drive to Turkey so we had to get a driver from Turkey with his own truck, that raised suspicion, I started to wonder if I would ever see my equipment again. So we got into the most uncomfortable mini bus with George and his driver and drove off into the night towards Turkey.

 

06 / 17 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
TRAVEL DAY: Travel day to Sofia Bulgaria

It was a quiet flight as our entourage was well asleep before the plane took off. The first thing I noticed about Sofia was that it wasn’t a progressive up kept city. It definitely had that old gloomy Russia feel to it. When we got to the hotel our promoter/guide George told us to not wander off to far and to stay away from guys with black Mercedes Benz as the mafia is very prevalent in Bulgaria. I went out for a walk with Stone and the first thing we noticed was that nobody smiled. We went to an outside bazaar where nobody new a word of English. I wanted to buy a Euro adapter but the sales guy said I had too much money so Stone and I went to buy a couple of beers so I could get some change. I had to explain that I needed coins not paper; they looked at me very strange. I bought the adapter then we went back to the hotel. We had dinner in a nice restaurant where we were the only ones in the place. As soon as we ordered a guy came out of the back room and started to play for us on this badly tuned piano. After dinner George the promoter booked us the bowling alley underneath the hotel where we played until midnight. They did not have any bowling shoes so we played in our sock which was kind of dangerous. I definitely wiped out a few times but no damage to report. They had a playboy club with some scary girls outside trying to entice us to go in. I thought about it but I was too tired…Honest!!!

 

06 / 16 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Budapest, Hungary:Kisstadion / Summer Fest

This was a small outdoor festival with Judas Priest headlining. There were a lot of metal heads there to see local bands as well. I can say that everyone was a little exhausted from all the traveling and lack of sleep. Eddie's 5-string bass got knocked over by a local crew guy and cracked his headstock above the neck. We kicked some ass and the fans really appreciated it. It was sunny but the wind was blowing real hard, I definitely swallowed a fist full of my own hair. We watched Priest for awhile, it was good to here the original band back together again. Victim Of Changes was excellent!!!

 

06 / 15 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
TRAVEL DAY: Travel day to Budapest

The crazy train rides again. This was an overnight ride. There was not much time to get any quality sleep as we were awoken at 7:00 am to switch trains which got us there about noon.

 

06 / 14 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Pratteln, Switzerland: Z7

We played to a very cool Swiss crowd. I was amazed to see so many female fans in the audience. We played a 2 hour show which I think they surly enjoyed. They told us to please come back very soon. Happy Birthday Chris!!!

 

06 / 13 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Lichtenvoorde, Holland: Arrow Rock Festival

A 2 hour drive from Cologne arrived to hear the guitar riff of  In-A-Godda-Da-Vida. I said hello to the guys in Symphony X.  I also ran into Mike Inez who was playing bass for Heart as well as Ben the drummer, they gave us a couple of boxes of liquid B-12.  I guess they thought we needed it badly… I think they were right!  I said hi to Chris Squire and Alan White from Yes.  It was a nice festival with 15,000 people to play in front of.  The line up for the rock garden stage was Caravan, Iron Butterfly, Heart, Golden Earring, Queensryche, and Yes. The line up for the Rock palace stage was Symphony X, Saga, Fish, and G3.


06 / 12 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
TRAVEL DAY: Travel day to Cologne Germany

A train hopping day, or should I say the party train!!! When we finally arrived that evening we all went to the bar and ordered some good food and drink. Afterwards some of us went to a club. When we got there it was not what we expected so we tried to get the hell out of there but it was hard to get a cab so we did not get back to the hotel till morning. Rock-n-roll!!!

 

06 / 11 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Manchester, England: Academy 1

A fun gig for our last UK show. In the back production office there was an old poster from a Suicidal Tendencies/ My Sisters Machine gig check out the picture. This was our last show with Hurricane party (Thanks Mates, Good luck). It was great to perform for the Man. Hopefully next time promoter contracts will let us play a little longer. Cheer

 

06 / 10 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
London, England: Astoria Theater

This show was kind of a matinee show. We had to be finished and out of the building because it turned into a gay night club. I had very good performance.  I think the crowd wanted more but it just wasn’t possible. Curfews are strict in certain halls. The crowd was very loud and sang the guitar solos as well as the words to the songs. Afterwards we went back to the hotel. Some of the guys went out to an after hours place. I just called it a night.

 

06 / 09 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Nottingham, England: Rock City

We took the train which I find surprisingly much more enjoyable than a bus. It is always a joy to play here as I remember our old manager getting clocked in the nose at this venue. I had my first good meal in England at the Rock City. The Hells Angels seem to always take care of us. Thanks Gang! The crowd was very energetic. I always try to give it back and more. Again, I wish we could have played longer at least 120 minutes. I can’t understand why they shut down so early here. Ian our friend took some photos for me. He also gave some vintage shots. Thanks for the memories.  (We will post them in the new "PICTURES" section soon)

 

06 / 08 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Wolverhampton, England: Wolfrun Hall

Well here we go all lagged and it’s off to the train station we go. Surprisingly it was a nice ride but I do not understand the sandwiches. (Prawn and mayonnaise on wheat) Yuck! The venue was F’n hot. Is it always this hot here in June? The crowd really was into the whole Mindcrime set with Pamela. They didn’t expect her to pop on stage like that during O.M. Thank goodness we had some fans on stage. My guitar rig did not blow up that is a good sign. Last tour I had horrible voltage problems. If I do not get at least 110 volts from the step down transformer my Bradshaw pedal board shuts down. At one point during sound check I noticed I was only getting 105v. The venue was not cranking enough juice so Mikey my tech stretched 3 extension cords across the stage and tapped into the main APS power. It looked very ghetto but I got the show to go on.

 

06 / 07 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
London

I had Rehearsal at John Henry studio. It was again very hot weather. The gear all sounded good and we had no problems. Geoff and I went to the Metal Hammer awards with Roland the PR guy for Sanctuary records. It was a freak fest. People protesting out side with signs "stop this sort of thing" People dressed and painted up as it was "Dawn Of The Dead" Had some horrible tasting absinthe. Hung out with Damage plan, Hatebreed, Soil, Brides of Destruction, Kerry King and a bunch of other bands I had never heard of. Dimebag broke a Gibson destroyer in half by hitting a table in the bar. Everybody was stunned. I think it was the guitar player for B.O.D. that it belonged to. Geoff and I had seen enough. We left the Sanctuary guy and got a cab back to the hotel.

 

06 / 06 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
Load in, still jet lagged.

 

06 / 05 / 04 
SUMMER EUROPE 2004
London

Jet lag, Had a wonderful cold Guinness. I went to a club with Stone, a place that had RBV. The kind of place that nobody had ever heard of us, or knew that we were performing. Why was it so F’n hot?

 

05 / 01 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Las Vegas, Nevada: House of Blues

A short flight from Orange County and we were in Las Vegas. It can be a first class journey straight to hell in this town if you’re willing. It’s amazing how any band can make it to the stage with so much decadence around you all the time. This was to be our last show of the tour so we were in rare form for this one. Apparently the band Damage plan had played the night before and some of them were in the audience watching the show. Again the set flowed very nicely with no acoustic set. The general consensus from talking with the fans is to play more Mindcrime, Rage and Empire although they like Open and Tribe from the new one. After the show an unexpected party happened in our small dressing room. Lonn Friend publisher for RIP magazine (I think the mag is dead but I am not sure) came back with a few of his friends and then one of the Blue men showed up as well as a few local friends from home. It got so crowded that we went up to the foundation room which was jamming!! We hung out with some locals as well as China and Martine from the openers Snake River conspiracy. Martinis were flowing and people were dancing and getting shithoused in the packed room then they closed the club and sent us down the secret servant elevator back down to the casino. I retired at a respectable 4:00 am pre daylight time were a raging party was going on next store to my room. Needless to say I had no problem passing out and waking for my 8:00am wake up call! back to suburbia.

That’s rock-n-roll!!!

 

04 / 30 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Anaheim, California: House of Blues

It was good to be back. Face it, I love Disneyland. Another great Orange county show with a ferocious reconditioned Ryche set. The tiny stage does not allow for much movement so you have to make up for it with slabs of molten guitar work. With this crowd the more you give the more they give back and again…the exhibitionism!!!

I love it… It’s like the Ryche crowd gone wild! After the show we hung out with some cool people. Kerry King from Slayer was there with his wife and my good friend Eva and Mr. Gargano as well.

 

04 / 29 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
San Diego, California: Viejas Casino

The day started out with a lovely tour of the USS Nimitz. We had a personal tour guide who led us up and down stairs, through corridors and up to the base of the ship were we learned how the 60 million dollar jets take off and land. When asked whether they saw any action they said that they were to far out to sea to be attacked but there jets dropped a hell of a lot of bombs. The show was out of town a ways in an outdoor amphitheater/ outlet mall located on an Indian reservation. It was a warm sunny day but when night began to fall the temperature dropped to about 40 degrees. The audience had the right idea wearing parkas for the show. Even though it was bitter cold the front row was gracious enough to flash the band there goods. I love California!

 

04 / 28 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Hollywood, California: House of Blues

It was a wonderful feeling to be back on the west coast. I think the feeling was mutual as well with the festive crowd, even for a Wednesday night. The house of blues was laden with partiers taking it to the extreme. When I first hit the stage I just about passed out from the view which came into my vision. It was a dreamy site of cleavage, all in its glorious splendor moving to the beat of Tribe. And in the balcony, hanging off the edge they were letting it all hang out the same as well. To the girl right in front of Geoff, next time try a Red Bull, it will stop the world from spinning and you will remember more of the show. Thank you for the first class cornea burn.

 

04 / 27 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Travel Day to Hollywood, California

Travel Day

 

04 / 26 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Day Off: New York, New York

It was an early morning rise to go film a couple of acoustic songs for the show Cold pizza on ESPN2. We were whisked on to there sound stage to perform Sign of the times and Rhythm of hope. I do not know how in the world Geoff can sing that early in the morning, but he pulled it off with ease. I think we played fairly well. That show will have to Tivo’d because I will not wake up that early to watch TV. After that I went to do an interview with Guitar one Magazine.

 

04 / 25 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Sayerville, New Jersey: Starland Balllroom

The day started off with a ride in a van that got lost going from downtown Manhattan to New Jersey. We were supposed to go to an in-store but the driver had the wrong directions so we ended up being an hour late. We did a few songs acoustically then we signed autographs and took pictures. The guy from the radio show Tourbus was there. He was a guest on that show "Queer eye for the straight guy". The show that night was sold out. We decided to cut the acoustic set. I thought it flowed much better, so did quite a few fans. This was the last show for Symphony X. They were a nice bunch of guys, I wish the best for them.

 

04 / 24 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
New York, New York: The Beacon Theater

A big stage means a fun gig for me. I definitely had a great show. There is always so much energy in the air when we play here. I met an old high school friend, Adam Brenner, who I have not seen in years. I hung out with my friend Erik from VH-1 as well as Jason, Kevin and Gabe from Sanctuary record company. Afterwards some of us went out to an Irish bar near Jason’s place. We hooked up with Frank and his wife from Fates Warning. We stayed out very late and had a good time.

 

04 / 23 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Hampton Beach, New Hampshire: Hampton Beach Casino

Another sold out show that kicked some ass! For this place being a casino it’s not too bad to play even though it is a long wide room. They have good chowder and amazing red lobster. I had some great fans in front of me especially the girls that were getting very friendly with each other.

 

04 / 22 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Boston Massachusetts: Avalon

The day started off with an acoustic rehearsal in Stone's room. We were trying out "Sign of the Times" on acoustic guitars when I popped an E string in the solo. Well I did not have any replacement strings so we had to go find a music store on the way to WAAF radio station. I ended up buying an E string from this brain dead salesman at this music store across from Berkley School of music. When we got to the radio station I opened up the string to find out that it was the wrong type! One of the guys at the station had an electric guitar there so I pulled off the B string and tuned up. Snap! I broke it again. People started to get a little nervous so I then again pulled off another string from the electric, this time it was the E string. I said we better play this song last just in case I pop another one. This time it worked great. We had a good sounding performance and a fun interview. Next we were to judge a cooking recipe contest. 5 chefs had to make any dish as long as it had jalapenos in it. I forgot which one we picked to win but they all tasted pretty damn good. Later that night we played a killer show and afterwards we hung out with some of Stone’s friends.

 

04 / 21 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Glenside, Pennsylvania: Keswick Theater

This is the place we almost didn't make it to because of horrendous traffic problems. You can be 1 hour away and it might take you 5 or 6 hours to get there. I felt like the crowd was very sincere and very intent on listening and enjoying the show. They demanded a great performance. Then half way through the show they suddenly became very intense and very loud! All in all, a very cool audience. Afterwards, Philly cheese steaks and we were off to Boston.

 

04 / 20 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Verona, New York: Turning Stone Casino

This was a very interesting gig on an Indian reservation. A theater hooked on to a casino. I did not gamble. They make every one sit down at tables as well as bring in their own booze. The show started out with a bit of a hiccup. We blew a breaker and all the power went out. Fortunately we were only a few minutes into the show so we just started it over again. A few got a bit out of hand but otherwise it was a smooth fun show.

 

04 / 19 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Verona, New York: Turning Stone Casino

Day Off! We all went out for the evening to celebrate Pamela Moore’s birthday. After dinner we decided to Party, Gamble and stay out of trouble, that’s my motto.

 

04 / 18 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Columbus, Ohio: Newport Music Hall

A packed show for a Sunday evening. The gig was right in party town central close to Ohio State. I met up with Amir Mirandi, our Soulbender live photographer. Stone and I went to one of his special locations and did a photo shoot for ESP guitars. Columbus is a Ryche town, We will be back!

 

04 / 17 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Chicago, Illinois: House of Blues

This house of blues show was on fire. Another sold out performance by the mighty Ryche. Saturday night in Chicago is intense and the crowd was a step above as we burned through another 2:20 minute set. Some side notes: I broke my first string of the tour. It happened on the solo for sign of the times, it was quite embarrassing. Also, between one of the songs were Geoff does a shirt change, he was to sweaty to get it on in time so he just ran like a banshee to get to the microphone stand shirtless! Wow! Speaking of shirtless, wow! I think you know what I’m talking about.

 

04 / 16 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Chicago, Illinois: House of Blues

A 2:15 minute blitz of Queensryche at a sold out House of Blues on a warm Friday night. It just doesn’t get much better than that. It was really cool to see a Soulbender shirt right smack center in the front row.

 

04 / 15 / 04 
SPRING USA 2004
Detroit, Michigan: State Theater

The day started off with an acoustic radio performance at WRIF in Detroit. While Geoff was giving an interview with the DJ he suddenly sang a verse in a perfect Tiny Tim voice from a song by the Darkness "Keep your hands off my girlfriend mother fucker" All our eyes widened with disbelief. I did not know whether to laugh or to hide. The DJ freaked and reminded Geoff about radio restriction fees. Geoff said "Charge it to Sanctuary Records" A brilliant way to jump start the tour!

For a first show I thought it went very well. The crowd was gracious and energetic, even with some missed cue and technical difficulties. Pamela Moore sang in great voice for her first extended sister Mary performance. And to whomever you were in the upper balcony thank you for uninhibited performance. People definitely know how to have fun in the Detroit rock city.