I think Appleton, Wisconsin might have the nicest people in America, excluding the one dude that works at the Radisson hotel on Superior St.  Let me rewind; we arrived at Gibson Music Hall, where Kurt, the owner and booker welcomed us with a fridge stocked full of Newcastle Brown, but told us to order anything we liked from the bar.  What a dang cool venue!  New equipment, an acoustically treated space, an enthusiastic sound tech, and a staff full of helpful people that we're excited about this place.  These are the places we need to exist.  If you ever come through, please pop in, grab a bite and support this awesome venue. 

We played with the Hookup Jam, and Karate School, both GREAT bands.  I'm really excited to see what happens next for these guys.  I'm in love with Kevin from Karate Schools songwriting.  It's sort of like if Kevin Shields was backed by early Band of Horses, but Townes Van Zandt penned some of the lyrics.  Kevin took us in for the night, offered up room temperature bagel bites, and couch space.  New friend for life.  (Kevin, pop over our way sometime, eh?) 

After the show, we found out that our van had been towed from a meter, which to the best of our knowledge was a legal parking space.  Apparently, the town usually just gives a $20 ticket unless the Radission throws a stink and forces it to get towed.  The Appleton police department was incredibly helpful and kind- the Radisson, not so much.  We went in to the hotel to talk to security to see if they could help us in anyway.  To put it kindly, we were met with the opposite of hospitality.  Oh well, you can't win them all.  An awesome local gal, Haley drove us around while we figured out what in the hell we were going to do with no supplies, a venue full of gear, and no transportation in the wintery night.   

The next morning, we rose with a solid three hours of sleep under our belt.  Kevin drove us to Femal towing, who understanding the plight of our situation, knocked off $40 to help us move along down the road.  We went to the Appleton police department again to see if they could help us in any way with the ticket.  Apparently the way they work, there would be no way to do it without going through th court system.  Much to our surprise, the dispatcher paid the ticket out of her own pocket.  She told us she was a huge music fan, to come back through to music loving Appleton, and to pay it forward.  So, that's what I'm going to do.   

So I urge you friends, instead of being like the Rotten Apple-ton Radisson (get it?), be like Dispatcher Angie, Karate School Kevin, Hookup Jam Harry (thanks for moving your set time brother!), Kurt the venue owner or cool chick Haley - you might just make a new friend.

Chad GosselinComment