We land into Houston – where Garrigan, our driver for the tour, picks us up. First stop beer, second stop tacos and third stop ranch in the middle of nowhere. It’s Garrigan’s place and he is the perfect host. It’s amazing. So much space! Doughnuts and Tex Mex tacos for breakfast, courtesy of the beautiful Amanda, Garrigan’s girlfriend.
This was followed by some tunes outside and then down to the creek to skim stones and get up to no good.
Next stop is Dallas, where to meet up with Jenilea & old friends Flogging Molly! Back in the dressing room of House of Blues it feels like home from home. We can see the crowd grow below and we’re ready to hit the stage with new member Scott Milsom on bass. It’s a pleasure to have him join us on the rock’n’roll journey!
He kills it on stage and we’re all well up for the tour ahead! The party kicked off and we just can’t wait to continue. For now the jet lag’s a bugger though and it’s a good job we fall straight to sleep at our dodgy end of town digs!
Again, House of Blues Houston is the same venue just in a different town. We know the lay out of the venue, we know the menu off by heart (Dan always orders Jambalaya despite previous illnesses caused form it). Before the party starts there’s the usual waiting in the dressing room:
It’s great to be back in Houston. The show is fun and the very same security guard, Psycho, who delivered us to and from the crowd safely last time we were here is there again. So good to get so much support!
On our day off we head over the border surrounded by swamps and crawfish into Louisiana.
Round Two! The South
We leave the state of Texas behind and enter the swampy land that is Louisiana. It’s a long old haul but we’re all excited for a night out in New Orleans (or Norleans, as some people say) one of our favourite places. We stop off on route to eat crawfish at the hotspot in Lancaster The Crawfish Town USA restaurant. Delish on a dish.
It’s Scott’s first time in New Orleans so we take him to see the delights of Bourbon Street before heading to Frenchman. The whole vibe of the place is like a film. The sky is purple, the houses beautiful and with the skyscrapers in the distance it all just feels unreal. Everyone is happy and great music blasts out of every bar.
Despite lots of great suggestions on places to eat we failed a bit in terms of finding them in time but ended up having great Mediterranean on both nights. Max bumped into a friend who was busking in the street and he told us about $1 beers at a bar called Molly’s. Sounded up our street so we headed there and met up with our lovely friend Michelle from Bristol in the UK for drinks and laughter. Next day we manage to find Horn’s for breakfast, a quick trip to Crescent Park and a stroll down Royal Street. All very relaxed before we hit The Joy Theater for more fun with Flogging Molly. The show is great & next thing we know we’re drinking in The Dungeon, a real life vampire bar, eating vodka infused cherries and we end the night in Molly’s again where Mule spent an hour singing back to back Bowie. Party time!
The next venue is in Mobile, Alabama. It’s an outside stage and there are weather warnings of serious rain & lightning. The sky is heavy and it feels like quite a storm coming in. Whilst we wait for a safe time to sound check lots of wonderful people show up. Scott & Deena Keys, Jenilea’s dad Greg and his wife Sue and our friends James and Angie. It’s so amazing to have friends in every town.
Angie has brought her haircutting tools and so we all get a quick trim whilst we wait. Everyone has brought booze too so yep – we have quite a few drinks! Finally the almighty heavens open there’s 10 minutes of downpour then we get on stage and we’re ready for doors. The sun shines and we feel right at home on the outdoor stage. Nathan Maxwell of Flogging Molly joins us for John Kanaka and we have a fantastic set. The evening ends in chaos at an after party where one too many whiskies were consumed by a certain Party Mule!
It’s a serious drive from Mobile to The House of Blues in Orlando, Florida, which is situated in the wonder that is Disney World. I have to say we were extremely late though so didn’t get out and about to see the magic. Nevertheless, I think that there was more fun going on inside the House of Blues this evening than out and about. The show is packed from the minute we get on stage and we have a fantastic time. There’s an after party with Matt Hensley giving us some tunes on the accordion and then we hit the hotel for sleep and a morning swim. Nice times!