|You never know what will happen with The Cheeseburgers!|
I shudder to think of the number of places I've been in playing music. Most are awesome, some are not. From the big venues like the Oakley-Lindsay Center to the small watering holes and fields with stages, it's been an adventure.
With the Cheeseburgers, there's been some wild times ....
- My first show with the Burgers was in the summer of 2010 at Down On The Corner in Marceline. A party bus with a bachelorette party showed up. They started waving a giant inflated, well, private part in front of us and demanded we sign it. We went on break and I came up to a girl and said, "I'll sign your penis now." I mistook her for somebody else because she turned around and said, "Hi! I'm Mary, the bass player's wife!" Fortunately she still likes me.
- One night after a show at St. Anthony's, John Hodge and I were standing there and a cat came up to us with a chip bag on its head. It ran away, the bag still on its head. Hopefully it came off.
- At least 10 times people have drunkenly crashed into the band. Guitar player Tim Lawless has borne the brunt of it. At the South Side Boat Club in Keokuk (one of our favorites) a gal stumbled and landed on Hodge's pedal board and knocked my amp over. We didn't stop playing. We NEVER stop playing.
- Some stories I can't tell, like the Shroud of Urine in Warsaw. Ask about it sometime. Funny how many stories we have about Hodge, who now lives in Kansas.
- The worst gig was in Augusta, where the bar owner allowed everybody to smoke. I asked somebody why the no-smoking law wasn't enforced. He said, "Well, you can ask the mayor. He's sitting right there." Smoking, of course. Turns out the owners lived above the bar and it was considered a private dwelling. I couldn't get the smoke out of my hair and lungs for a week.
- In Carthage one night at the winery, we were playing for a maybe 10 people when a party bus from Quincy showed up with 40 happy citizens. Instantly the gig became electric. Those are the best!
- That same night, after we were done, a guy we know and good friend of the band came up and asked if he could sing a song. By then everything was shut off, so he grabbed my expensive acoustic guitar and started bellowing "Emergency" by George Strait. We just let him play. I did watch him closely so he didn't fall on my guitar. He has since become a great customer at the music store.
- At an outdoor gig, a private party, we were tearing down when a beer bottle whizzed by my head. I said, "Boys, we are out of here NOW." They were still brawling in the barn when we left.
- At another private gig, this one in a big shed just outside of Quincy, a big fight started in a room off the side. All I saw was people tumbling out the door and rolling around on the floor. Frank Haxel later told me about 20 people piled on top of each other while fighting over a girl. We didn't stop playing. We NEVER stop playing.
- In Plainville one night, they had a massive "Mud Bog" competition. Vehicles (mostly pickups) got a running start and tried to plow through a pond to the other side. I am not making it up .... everybody went nuts and mud was flying everywhere. This was at the end of a record summer drought. This gal next to us said, "We did fill this pond up special for this, you know." Yup. We know.
- Recently we revived the flaming drum sticks routine. At the Clark County Fair a few years back, Kirk threw his flaming drum stick at Frank Haxel, then our roadie. The stick landed by a big hay bale. We literally almost went up in flames. Another time we did it and set off the fire alarms at One Restaurant. The firemen hung around for a while and seemed to enjoy the music.
So if you want to have a great time, see you Saturday at Red Light Bar & Grill, 5th & Maine. Who knows what will happen! We do promise one thing, lotsa Cheesey classic rock fun.