Dear english readers, please find the first episode of the East Cameron Folkcore Tour Diary below.
Dieser Tage sind East Cameron Folkcore aus dem US-texanischen Austin wieder im deutschsprachigen Raum auf Tour. Was die Folk-Punker in den nächsten zwei Wochen erleben, hält Drummer James Taylor dabei exklusiv für noisiv.de in einem mehrteiligen Tour-Tagebuch fest. Dies ist die erste Teil, der den Tour-Zeitraum in Trier, Reutlingen sowie dem schweizerischen Zug umfassen und auch einige Gedanken zur US-Präsidentschaftswahl beinhalten – schließlich lässt sich gerade diese Band das nicht nehmen und das ist auch gut so! Haltet in den nächsten Tagen eure Augen offen für den zweiten Teil!
Alle Einträge des Tour-Tagebuches findet ihr übrigens auf der eigens eingerichteten Unterseite: ECF Tour-Tagebuch!
[8:00am, Wednesday, Frankfurt]
After a smooth flight, we’ve arrived in Germany ready to meet our new Tour Manager, Lianna. Strangely, the Frankfurt airport feels familiar. Folkcore has toured Europe almost as many times as the United States at this point. Very ready for this next adventure.
[11:00am, Wednesday, on the road to Trier]
Immediately upon hitting the road I’m noticing the difference between our last tour and this one – the main difference being our transportation. Before our July tour, I talked with Dana Filloon of the Boston band Junius about touring Europe. I remember him saying that the biggest difference is that on a bus tour, your drives are frequently overnight, so you spend driving time in your bunk, reading or sleeping (or playing video games in the back of the bus) but on a van tour you get to see more of the countryside, which can be absolutely breathtaking.
Arriving in Trier in the afternoon, we power through our jet lag and do some exploring. Porta Nigra (180 AD). Konstantin-Basilika (3012 AD). Saint Peter’s Catherdral (11th Century). Karl Marx House (born in Trier in 1818). Raised in the United States, I’m often taken aback by the history of Europe. Nothing in the United States is this old (or what there was has been wiped out along with the rest of our land’s First Nations). Trier is beautiful and a perfect place to start this European tour.
[2:00am, Thursday, Trier]
Incredible first show with a warm and receptive crowd. Our first time in Trier did not disappoint. As is often the case in Germany, we are staying in a band apartment above the venue. The folks running Lucky’s Luke are the most gracious hosts and let us cut loose with them well into the night.
[1:00pm, Friday, on the road to Reutlingen]
In the back of the van and nursing a monumental hangover, I devour a recent Huffington Post long form on the rise of the alt-right in the United States. My biggest fear, as we move beyond election day and put the last 12 months of absurdist campaigning and rigamarole behind us, is where the country goes from here. There are people out there, mostly white, males, who believe that “their” country has been “stolen” from them (hypocrisy, much?) by immigrants, minorities, feminazis and queers.
Describing the variations within the alt-right, author Luke O’Brien writes, “A broader circle still – you could call it the “alt-white” – encompasses a large number of Trump voters. Cas Mudde, a political scientist at the University of Georgia who studies populist movements, described these people as ‘not necessarily racist or consciously racist. They just think they have a right to things they used to have and they don’t realize that was in a racialized and fairly racist structure.’”
These people scare me. The casual racists. The entitled white male who, in a world where Donald Fucking Trump can be a major party presidential candidate, feels encouraged, emboldened by notions of “rigged system” that put a “crooked Hillary” into office. One of the reasons I wanted to keep this tour blog while on the road is to have a place to capture my thoughts as the election unfolds.
[7:00pm, Saturday, Zug]
In Zug we meet the band Bukahara. Their bass player Ahmed teaches me (or tries to teach me) to play the darbuka, a North African hand drum. I can’t figure it out. I’ll stick to holding sticks when I drum. Ahmed received a full scholarship from Berklee School of Music to play and study bass but was denied a student visa by the United States. He is Palestinian. As Ahmed tells it, it was “all for the best” because shortly after that he met his bandmates and Bukahara was born. A couple days prior, Ahmed found out he’d received a German passport. He and his band mates were ready to celebrate and some of the Folkcore were ready to join him. As absurd as it might sound to a European audience, I’m fairly certain I’ve never met a Palestinian citizen before.
Back at our hotel, I turn on the news to a breaking BBC report about a security threat at Trump rally. A protester, a self-proclaimed ‘Republican Against Trump,’ reportedly had a gun (later it was confirmed he did not), forcing the security service to rush Trump from the stage, and the crowd at the rally to violently attack the man. To hear him tell the tale of what went on that evening is rather frightening. This is the sort of fascist hysteria Trump and his followers have created.
[6:00pm, Sunday, Bern]
Bern, Switzerland may be one of the most beautiful cities in the world – certainly the most beautiful city I’ve been to. It’s a perfect city to go explore by yourself, walk along the river and reflect on how lucky you are that music has brought you to this picturesque town. I found a cafe and drank wine by myself, the other members of the band all off doing their own thing.
[11:00pm, Sunday, Bern]
We squeeze into a corner of the cozy Cafe Marta for a long show, where we happily play a few extra songs, slow things down and enjoyed the atmosphere of the Old City. The co-owners of Marta invite us to stay in their homes with plenty of warm beds and cold beers in the fridge. The hospitality of strangers never ceases to amaze me. Thank you, Adrian and Steph.
[10:00am, Monday, on the road from Bern to Salzburg]
There’s snow on the ground in Switzerland. Tomorrow is election day back home in the United States. By all accounts, Hillary Clinton is going to win. Of course she is. But by how much? A resounding victory will silence the far-right, the aforementioned alt-right and alt-white and otherwise small minded minority that has been given a voice by the Trump presidential campaign. It will also show the rest of the world that, Trump is not us. A close victory? Well… I just hope that doesn’t happen.
East Cameron Folkcore auf Tour
- 08.11. – AT: Salzburg, Rockhouse Bar
- 09.11. – DE: Dresden, Groovestation
- 10.11. – DE: Nürnberg, Z-Bau
- 11.11. – DE: Bremen, Tower
- 12.11. – DE: Hamburg, Kleiner Donner
- 14.11. – DE: Berlin, Musik & Frieden
- 15.11. – DE: Weinheim, Cafe Central
- 16.11. – DE: Köln, Underground
- 17.11. – DE: Lingen, Alter Schlachthof
- 18.11. – DE: Braunschweig, Eule
- 19.11. – DE: Essen, Zeche Carl