Monday, November 26, 2012


When you think of a touring band, you probably think of U2 rolling up to your hometown stadium with seventeen semis full of gear and a massive tour bus or seven. Or, maybe you think of charter jets, 5-star hotels, and a massive rider. Sold-out shows. Hundreds of roadies.

That's just rock & roll, right?


Let me introduce you to the world of the independent touring band.

My band Crown Point is in the middle of a 29-state US tour supporting the release of our new album, Curtains. We're an independent band by choice: We've gotten label offers, but have chosen to turn them down and retain the rights to our music and our career choices. That means that we tour the country in a Ford van and trailer, guzzling gas at a 9 mpg clip, staying in cheap motels and on couches of fans, and eating cold soup out of a can. We get to visit some amazing places, but never have time to actually explore them, because we're too busy booking and promoting our own shows, and setting up our own gear and lights.

We're no Goliath. We're barely even David.

However, for the uninitiated, cold soup is actually not as bad as it sounds. Call it gazpacho, and it practically becomes gourmet. Furthermore, adding a little Frank's Hot Buffalo sauce to anything makes it awesome.

Here's a rundown of our last 72 hours:

Friday night, after driving all day from Michigan, we played a show in St. Louis to a sparse yet amazing crowd. The local band who was sharing the bill canceled a couple days prior, and a lot of our fans were out of town for Thanksgiving or unable to attend for other reasons. We crashed at the house of a friend of a friend who we'd never met, yet graciously opened his house to us. As a result of the all-night party going on, most of us got little or no sleep.

Saturday, we drove to Indianapolis to play another show in a market we've only played once, back in 2010. One of the local bands on the bill never even bothered to cancel but simply never showed up, and the local band who did, while talented, brought a total of seven of their fans to the show. I was unable to use my in-ear monitors due to the subpar sound board at the venue, and the house monitors produced mostly feedback, so I torched my voice during the course of our 45-minute set straining to hear myself. We made a grand total of $0 from the venue that night. Afterwards, we loaded the inordinate amount of gear we possess up a flight of stairs in 20-degree weather, then proceeded to drive all night and all day to our show in Philadelphia. I had the first driving shift, from 1:30 to 5:30 AM, and had to drink gratuitous amounts of caffeine to keep myself awake and the band alive. As a result, I was unable to sleep on the fold-out bed in the back of the van, which, of course, is about three inches too short for me, when my driving shift was done.

I finally woke up after some fitful sleep and ate some 'gazpacho' just as we were exiting the Pennsylvania Turnpike. We literally spent more in tolls than we'd made at the past two shows combined, not to mention the $600 in gas we'd spent over the past two days. We checked in to our room at the Comfort Inn, showered, and then headed to that night's show in Philly.

Now, we're en route to tonight's concert at The National Underground in New York City. We've had one day off in two weeks, and we can't wait to have two consecutive days free in Florida next week. However, we can't wait to play in NYC, Providence, DC, Nashville, Atlanta, and Sarasota this week, either!

If it sounds like I'm whining a bit, I probably am. I apologize. I absolutely love what I do, and meeting great people across the country and getting to play music for a living (albeit a meager one) makes everything worthwhile.

If you're reading this, thank you. Thanks for supporting independent music, for coming to that Monday night show, for buying that album or that T-shirt. For hanging out with us, for getting to know us, for spreading the word about Crown Point online and mouth-to-mouth.

You make the sleepless nights, unprofessional local bands, thousands of dollars in gas, Wet Wipes showers, and touring-induced premature aging seem insignificant. You are the reason we do what we do, and we'd love to see you at a show. Check out our tour schedule here.

Thank you!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Stuff You Can Buy Pretty Soon.

2012 is practically 25 percent gone. Perhaps you've asked yourself, "What is Jon Davidson doing right now?" Or, perhaps you haven't asked yourself. But, either way, if you're reading this, you're about to find out.

Currently, I'm sitting in the control room of Black Diamond Studios in Portland, OR while Crown Point's drummer, Kaycee Kay, prepares to track drums for our upcoming album, Oceans. He's currently hitting the same floor tom monotonously as the engineer tests mics. For some reason, I want to dance like a white boy.

My first attempt at authorship, a book called Of Bombs And Blackberries, is at the publishers. The design team is working on the fifth cover concept proof. I've shot the first four ideas down in a fit of rage.

I'm also working on a brand-new solo album, my first solo effort since 2010. I've got some electronic surprises up my sleeve. The album is called Tip Of The Iceberg.

I'm also booking music at a venue in Portland, bartending at two different bars, working on booking and promoting Crown Point's Australia and US tours, and drinking gratuitous amounts of the new flavors of Monster Rehab energy drinks. Loaded with guarana, mangosteen extract, goji berry extract, acai extract, coconut water, and tons of other natural ingredients, it's actually not all that bad for me. Moderation is key--I've only had three and a half cans today.

So, although life is crazy right now, I'm thankful that my time is being occupied by projects that I'm passionate about completing. I'm also thankful that my tongue has almost completely healed from last summer's accident, and especially thankful that the genetic-modification wizards out there have created a seedless, easy-peel tangerine. I'm going to go crush a couple of them in my mouth right now.