Monthly Archives: June 2003

06.30.03 – The Burgh

Our show in Pittsburgh turned out to be an all-day festival with two stages and over ten bands. I’d spoken with James from Maroon 5 the night before and mentioned that we should “get everyone with an acoustic guitar on stage for a 15-man acoustical jam version of SIGNS by Tesla.” I was kind of joking, but it actually happened:

Perhaps most surprising is the amount of satisfaction I feel from it. You know, taking a bunch of up-and-coming singer/songwriter MattNathansonAriHestGrahamColtonMarcBroussard types and bringing them on stage with you so you can perform one of the lamest songs ever written together. So much talent, all… wasted! I expected the song to sail right over the heads of the people in the crowd, but I was wrong. People were psyched. People were singing. People were putting their pinkies, thumbs, and index fingers into the air. I got to sing the line from the bridge that goes “You gotta have a shirt and tie to get a seat!” James and Joe played a harmonized acoustic muzak solo together and we all laughed. Only four of the fifteen acoustic guitars were actually plugged in.

In case you’re not familiar with Tesla, or their five-man acoustical jam, you’re really all set. Don’t worry about it.

easy there, bri

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06.28.03 – CBS Too Early Show

This picture of us on the set of the CBS Saturday Early Morning Television Program doesn’t even scratch the surface of the experience. The make-up disguises the bags under the eyes. We need the guys there at 5am. The make-up disguises the room where they do the cooking segment every week. We need the guys there at 5am.

Somewhere in our sleep-deprived haze we ended up playing five seconds of Ramona in an awkward segueway from the news anchor: “Sixty years in prison for the woman that hit the homeless guy and left him to die in her windshield and when we come back we’ll have a guy here who wrote a book about how you can keep your sex life interesting and are the Guster guys ready with a tune?” The lady with the headset on pointed at us, we sang “JUST LIIIIKE…. YOUR FAVORITE SINGER” and then the anchor started talking again. Did that just happen?

We thought it would have been funny if we all had our eyes closed and our heads resting limply on our shoulders when they cut to us for our teasers, but we weren’t sure if CBS would also think it was funny. We played half of the last chorus from Barrel of a Gun, and ten seconds of Happy Together, and a minute of Jesus on the Radio as bumpers to commercials.
Oh no, we forgot to brainstorm answers to The Question on the bus…

Interview in 30 seconds.

Psst… ask us anything, anything at all, just not The Question…

Interview in 5, 4, 3, 2….

It’s coming… I can feel it coming. Oh no.

We’re here with the Boston pop group GUSTER, guys welcome to the program. So tell us, how did you come up with the name Guster?

Good morning, Gordon.

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06.21.03 – Rochester

Someone emailed me to warn me that the Marshmallow Peeps Fun Bus was going to be in Rochester the same day we were. Peeps are those little stale Easter marshmallow birds with lopsided dots for eyes that blow up when you put them in your microwave. They don’t taste very good, but they’re cute. Somehow Peeps Inc. turned out to be Guster fans and were happy to send 42 cases of Peeps to our show last night.

42 cases, 24 boxes per case, 12 Peeps per box. Let me do a little math. Search hard drive. “Calculator.” There we go. 12,096 Peeps at the show. We held a Peep-eating contest on stage while modulating the guitar lick from Happy Frappy a half step each go-around. Someone won a t-shirt. We debuted “Come Downstairs & Say Hello,” and then the show was over.

See you in Boston on Tuesday. Gulp.

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06.15.03 – Nederland

I walked through the pink door at the end of the alley and I remember the screaming, but I couldn’t see a thing. And whereas my instincts would normally tell me to walk *away* from the screaming and *away* from the pitch black darkness, there is something about being inside a giant inflatable cowboy suit that changes a man. And so I kept going towards the screaming, bumping into walls, concentrating on whatever seemed to make the screaming LOUDER, and doing it some more. I am pretty sure I was in a room full of prostitutes.

Oh, I’m sorry… I was just trying to make the Amsterdam video shoot sound like a tantalizing clip you’d find on the back of a book jacket. The truth is that we have a full week or two of editing ahead of us and the video could end up going in any direction. But this we know:

1. We got to fly to Amsterdam and shoot our video.

2. When we were writing the lyrics to Amsterdam, we needed a three syllable word to put at the end of the chorus that would probably end up being the name of the song, and we reasoned if we could work the word Amsterdam in, the label might let us shoot a video out there.

3. It can’t be worse than Fa Fa! It just can’t!

Here are some tantalizing photos from the last few days:

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