Bob is back.  Do we need to say anymore?

Sorry about the hiatus, loyal readers.  I swear I’ll stay up on the blogging this time.

Well, we’ve been pretty darned busy since my last post.  We finished out our last tour with three shows in mid-December, including an appearance at the Media Club in Vancouver, an opening slot for Blue October at the Crystal Ballroom in Portland (which was sold out), and a homecoming performance of sorts at a mostly empty Old Firehouse in Redmond, WA.  We took a short break over the holidays and I spent some time with my mom in Spokane and my dad on Whidbey Island, where I blissed out on Perry Como’s Christmas album.  Our big New Year’s show in Tukwila fell through at the last minute due to a dispute between the venue owners and the promoter, but we still got paid.  We recorded a new song at Chroma Sound in Seattle for a very special [ed. removed at the behest of Matt Sullivan] which I’m not at liberty to speak about any further at this time.  Our commercial radio campaign is in full effect and attendees of music meetings at alternative stations all over the country seem to “not hate” our single.  Our music video was disseminated across the internet and MTV2 has approved it for their Subterranean show.  We played a tour warm-up set at Sirens in Port Townsend–a venue we’ve played a million times and where we’re now treated like family.  We have big performances booked in France and England which I’m also not able to elaborate on at current, but needless to say we’re all very excited to be making our first trips across the pond in the coming months.  Meanwhile, we’ve rented a comfy 24-foot RV in Portland and we’re in the midst of the opening leg of a month-long tour of the western US, with tour manager/sound guy/extra player B. Brown and merch lady/Garnet’s girlfriend Heather back on duty.  The RV was a last minute decision and it’s thus far turned out to be a great one.  We actually have some room to move around and sleep and we have full kitchen and bathroom facilities.  In short, we can now live like human beings on the road.

Our first order of business for the tour was to record a session for iTunes at Different Fur studios in San Francisco on Thursday.  Amazingly, we’d never been to San Fran before and we were very taken by the city.  It’s a beautiful, unique place.  ITunes head Bruno met us at the studio and gave us all brand new iPod Nanos, which I thought was a nice gesture.  Matt Sullivan and Lars both flew down and met us there as well.  Anyway, Different Fur has excellent facilities and a fine staff and we had a very productive session, recording eight tracks for iTunes to use exclusively.  We’ll be working with house engineer Patrick to get final mixes in the coming week or so and we’re optimistic about the end results.  In celebration, we got drunk at an Irish bar around the corner with Lars and Matt.  We later launched into a spirited discussion over dinner at a neighboring Thai restaurant about how to ask fans to request our songs on the radio without coming across as douches.  It made little sense.

The next day we had a show at Bottom of the Hill in SF, so we spent the afternoon seeing some sights with Lars.  We rode the cable car to Fisherman’s Wharf where I had some oysters-on-the-half-shell imported from Washington.  Delish.  After loading in at Bottom of the Hill and doing a sound check we had the opportunity to meet the local band we’d be touring with for the next month, The Magic Bullets.  They seem like good people, but it’ll be interesting to see how they fare on the road for an extended period of time with six members plus gear crammed into a van.  At any rate, the show sold out and we played to a packed house of about 400 people.  It was pretty fantastic.  At one point Lars handed Snow three shots of whiskey for all of us and he downed them all in about ten seconds.  Further drinking ensued after the set and we eventually went to sleep in the RV after some late night cheeseburgers.