Tour Blog #8: Portland, ME

I awoke in Maine to the word “donuts,” and rolled out of bed (sofa) to find donuts, eggs, and oatmeal in Chad’s apartment. I’ve only cried a few times on this tour, but that morning was one of them. He made us all breakfast, truly going above and beyond any expectations. 

Because we had driven through the night, we had quite a bit of time before we had to load in. We slept in until 9 or 10, and three of the guys went to work out. Michael and I stayed behind to do some work, and because exercising is gross.

By “do some work,” I mean a variety of things. For me, it’s finishing up editing, getting the files to the guys, writing/publishing these tour blogs, organizing the massive amounts of content I get every day, and keeping my social media updated. For the guys, it can be anything– settling invoices from the previous nights, bookkeeping, planning for upcoming details of the trip, booking more shows and organizing future tours, tending to personal business, or planning out the details of that night’s set. Wifi is truly a treasured commodity on tour, so a lot of work is done in coffee places.

Portland is JTD’s hometown, so we entrusted him to show us all the cool local places, and he didn’t disappoint. We visited the world’s most photographed lighthouse (you can bet I jumped on that bandwagon), a state park with incredible rock formations, and some of the local food places. Maine is breathtakingly beautiful, and I would consider living here if it were warmer.

I took quite a few promotional photos, and I’m very happy with the way they turned out. The guys are super easy to shoot portraits for—I think they’re so comfortable with each other that they just fall into natural positions.

We loaded in, and the guys claimed it was a great sound check. I’ve taken to setting up merch while they’re checking, then coming in at the end to film if I’m low on b-roll for the day. The staff at One Longfellow Square was super accommodating, always asking if I needed anything or offering to help. This isn’t to say the staff elsewhere were unhelpful, but the friendliness in Maine was very much appreciated.

The show itself probably ran the most smoothly out of all of them so far. The sound was great, and all the technology and humans performed exactly as desired. The guys walked away feeling awesome about the cleanliness of what they put out, which is always fun to leave the venue with. 

The shooting situation was almost boringly easy. There are situations in which I would pray for all white light with no changes, but it actually made it kind of difficult to create variety in the shots. Nevertheless, TNS were very happy with my content for the day. 

I can kind of feel the tour winding down (even though we still have four more dates left), which is pretty heartbreaking. I’ve loved the time I’ve been able to spend with these guys, so the idea of leaving and resuming “normal life” isn’t something that really appeals to me. We’ve been discussing options for our summers, so that’s providing some hope for me to cling to. It’s hard for me to even picture spending time apart from everyone after we’ve spend the last 336 consecutive hours together, but I’m doing my best to channel that premature nostalgia into working harder to crank stuff out

We’re heading up to Canada next! It’ll be my first trip up there, hopefully customs will go okay! Make sure you keep up with my social media to see my work in a more real-time format.