Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Tour Diary: The Mighty Sequoyah (part 1)

Posted By on May 29, 2012, 11:33 AM

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Some bands get burned out on the road; others thrive. On the heels of releasing their latest album, Provo’s The Mighty Sequoyah is touring the West ... and loving it.---

When City Weekly contributor Spencer Flanagan interviewed this local indie-rock four-piece, they were wrapping up the finishing touches on Sunken Houses. They spoke of their pride in the record and excitement for the release show at Provo’s Velour Live Music Gallery (which was a huge success), but they mentioned that they could not wait to get out on the open road.

So, as with several other local bands last year (Desert Noises and Bronco, to name two), we asked them to write us from the road. Here’s the first of two Tour Diary installations from The Mighty Sequoyah. For more information on the band and to purchase Sunken Houses for $6, go here.

On May 28, frontman Caleb Darger wrote (and gave some inspirational tales to other up-and-coming bands) to City Weekly:

“After a week of sleeping on floors, playing shows and making new friends, I think we are all looking forward to the second half of our coastal tour—we’ve already had two dates in Arizona, and four up the coast of California. The shows and responses have been great: we have met every nice kind of person the world has to offer. It sounds nice to play huge shows for millions of screaming fans, but that is definitely not what touring is about—at all.

The best part of any tour is meeting the people who relate to making music, and going out on the road. It feels comforting to travel hundreds of miles everyday, and then find people who share something major in common with you. We get to meet great musicians, and great supporters of DIY music; they help us, feed us, listen to us, and support us. If they should ever decide to visit Utah, then we will do the same for them.

Touring benefits us because it gets the live version of our music to different people. It’s great for those people because it -- hopefully -- gives them something entertaining to do a few nights a week. Back home in our local community, it has a two-pronged result: It shows people outside of Utah that bands are still playing and coming from the state, and it also helps our musical interests grow and develop by bringing in more outsider bands. Utah has always been a hard sell for bands on tour, and the best way to bring them to us is to give them a personal, musical invite.

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The morning after: The band waking up slowly.

Though this tour has been great, it has not been without unique events. The day of our first show, our bass player, Mike Dixon, had to fly from New York and meet us in Flagstaff. It’s more than a little strange to start the tour without every member, only to have them all on stage for the first show. We also ran out of shirts at our kick-off show, and had to have more blank shirts delivered ahead of us to Orange County. They were blank because we screen print them ourselves, meaning we have to get up early one morning, print nearly 100 more shirts, and hope they were dry before our show in Los Angeles that night  -- they were.

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The Mighty Sequoyah screenprinting T-shirts early in the morn.

There is almost no better feeling than seeing the Grand Canyon, Pacific Ocean, Golden Gate Bridge, and the L.A. skyline in the space of a few days. Lucky for us, one of those better feelings is getting our music out to more people—some people start getting burned out on tour, but we are thriving -- so far. Yesterday, we even set up on the street near Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco just to get another, quick chance to play for people. It's awesome to play a huge kickoff show in our hometown, and then play to 40 energetic people in a small art space two days later. Not knowing what to expect each night is very humbling. Sometimes after playing a lot of well-attended local shows, bands develop unrealistic expectations; going on the road will change that. So far, the response and support have been overwhelming, and we can only hope to keep up the same great pace as we finish up this tour.”

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