Leaving behind New York, Zach (my tour manager) and I ventured up north into New England. Our first stop was in Burlington, a beautiful and pristine city in Vermont. The cleanliness and uber liberal laws, such as no car idling, make every breath you take feel so revitalizing to your health. There is definitely a certain type of person that lives in Burlington though. I’ve been playing around with letting people ask me questions during my set recently. The first question during my set in Burlington was, “how come banks control the country?” We spent a few minutes talking it over, but in the end a consensus could not be reached on the who, what, when and why. Then I played some more pop songs.
Our next stop, at a teen center in Dover, New Hampshire, set in motion a three day stint of all ages shows. I’ve been pretty used to playing for 20 or 30 something’s, but not many age groups outside of that. I’ve just always considered my age group as “my audience.” But by the end of our set in Dover we had about twenty middle school kids dancing their asses off. When talking to them after, I was pretty shocked by how much our musical tastes overlapped.
The next show at Rock City Cafe in Rockland, Maine continued that realization. Rock City is a very hospitable venue set up like a coffee shop with some killer local brews, sandwiches, and baked goods. Reminds me of a place called Kafe Kerouac in Columbus that I used to frequent in my college years. The 16 year old girls up front seemed to enjoy the set just as much as the 60 year old man in the back of the shop. At this point, I was feeling pretty inspired about how the music was bringing these people together and how similar the reactions were.
It all came full circle at our next show on Saturday night. After leaving Rockland, we made our way through the snow dusted mountain tops of the White Mountain National Forest to Littleton, New Hampshire. Our show was at a place called the Loading Dock, a small DIY venue set up by a guy named Jason. We drove in through a pretty bustling small town main street and pulled up to the venue, which had an actual loading dock on it. Inside, the space looks like what every New Yorker dreams of having. A large open loft/warehouse space with all the tools an artist in any medium could need.
Jason told us he moved up to Littleton with his wife after spending a lot of his life in New York. They wanted a different pace, and I gotta say he picked a great town to get settled in. It’s a small community, but it doesn’t feel plagued by heavy leaning politics or the constant growing pains and debates associated with other towns I’ve been to. Just a place where everyone gets along.
Jason has done a great job creating a space where anyone at any age can enjoy the show. Some kids were painting on a giant open canvas in the back, some lovely girls were getting down and funky with me up front, and some people just sat and quietly observed with a glass of wine in hand. It was a wonderful vibe and the perfect culmination of some shows that showed me to not limit who I think my audience might be.
We’re not out of New England yet, but we’re certainly heading back to a different environment. We’ve got a week in the Boston/CT area lined up and I’m excited that we’re finally heading south!