Tour Stories! Photos! A Video for The Way We Run!

First part of the news: we have a new video! I’m not sure why, or if I’ve said this before, but videos are very difficult and take a long time for us to make, so this is a big deal. I worked with Erin Fleck (one of the creators of the Black Shadow video) on the treatment. The Way We Run is about how oppressive the city can be if you don’t have the time or means to enjoy it. In the video, Beams has to escape the city. Each member is only allowed to bring three things with them, and we choose snorkels, wine, cats, snakes, gameboys, special photos. What would you bring? My original choice was trail mix, water and toilet paper, but then we decided to go with things that were more sentimental than sensible.

The Way We Run was directed and edited by Luke Higginson (who did the trailers for Just Rivers as well as the video for I’m Not Human) and shot by Cabot McNenly with his assistants Tyler Shoemaker and Andrea Krepelka. The animation is by Aaron Long, who’s recently had a sweet gig storyboarding Bojack Horseman.

Now for the tour news. We had originally planned to play Nashville on August third, Bowling Green on the fourth, and Nashville again on the fifth, but as things sometimes go, our plans were foiled. Our visas took longer to process than originally thought: after waiting the standard forty-five days, we found out that there was an additional twenty-six day backlog, meaning that we would get our visas after the last date of our tour. The options seemed stark: either shell out another grand to expedite them (and still get them two weeks late), or convince one of the venues to ask their local congressman to request it be expedited. It was a long shot but Marty from Mohawk Place in Buffalo came through for us and his congressman in New York helped us out!

Picture of Anna's day planner
Revised tour itinerary

We thought that we’d have our visas by Monday the third, so we played a last minute set in Windsor at the Phog on Sunday night so that we’d wake up nice and close to the border, but Monday morning we got an email saying that our visas would actually be ready Tuesday afternoon. So, we had to cancel our first Nashville gig, which was a bummer. We made the best of it though. We hung out at our friend’s place, played Settlers of Catan and Euchre, went to a local pool, had dinner; we made do.

Beams Euchre tournament
Martin, Keith and Craig: Heather’s Euchre buddies. Photo by Heather.
Photo of Dave and Craig outside the Phog Lounge.
Dave and Craig chillin’ outside the Phog. Photo by Anna

We woke up on Tuesday morning to see that we had been approved on the visa website but wouldn’t get the papers that we needed for a few days because of some sort of bureaucratic shenanigans. Mike fought hard for us all day, and someone working in the office did eventually take mercy on us, but even her powers did not manage to get our papers to us on Tuesday, so we had to cancel our Bowling Green show. By this time we’d also learned that our second Nashville show had been cancelled. So, although we were quite disappointed, we set out on a mission to get another gig in Windsor while we were there, and ended up playing a pretty fun gig at the Windsor Beer Exchange.

Finally, everything came in Wednesday morning and, after not too much time at the border, we got over to Detroit (USA! USA! USA!) where we were welcomed by Robocop.

Photo of Robocop mural
Robocop welcomes us to Detroit. Photo by Mike

Since our show at BLDG in Nashville was cancelled we decided to visit PJ’s Lagerhouse to make the best of our day off and our expectations were greatly exceeded. We made friends, ate delicious po’boys, Heather had a beer that she actually liked (I had a mango habanero cider!), we got to play with an incredible band called Mountain Animation, and slept for free, courtesy of our gracious hosts at Trumbullplex.

Photo of Heather drinking "Not Your Dad's Root Beer"
Heather finally found a beer she likes – “Not Your Dad’s Root Beer”. Photo by Keith
Photo of Mountain Animation at PJ's Lagerhouse
Mountain Animation playing at PJ’s Lagerhouse. Photo by Mike
Picture of Anna setting up the banjo station
Setting up at PJ’s: The stage from Mike’s perspective.
Hanging out at Trumbullplex
Hanging out at Trumbullplex. Photo by Mike

Thursday morning found us on the road to Buffalo after a little brunch, and when we got to Mohawk Place I knew it would be a good show. The audience actually threw down to some of the songs, Mike’s mom came, we made even more friends, and then got to sleep in our own beds that night. Score. Buffalo is not just a place to get cheap Levi’s.

Heather carrying merch at Mohawk Place
Merch is metal. Heather carrying merch at Mohawk Place is more metal. Photo by Anna

Our tour continues even though we’re home: on Saturday we woke up super early to drive to Boler Mountain in London to play Mantis Eco & Arts Fest. I am a sucker for playing outside, and as we played the songs I was reminded of the environmentalist themes that live inside them. Then, in the evening, we played at the Manantler brewery in Bowmanville. I suppose that has environmental themes too – buy local!

Photo of Keith setting up
Keith setting up the vibes at Boler Mountain. Photo by Anna

We’ve got lots of stuff coming up! This is what’s set in stone so far:

Aug 14 @ Junction City Music Hall (Toronto) w/ Run Coyote
Aug 16 @ Arlene’s Grocery (New York) w/ Floating Compass
Aug 20 @ The Boathouse (Kitchener) w/ Run Coyote
Aug 21 @ Mahall’s (Cleveland) w/ Shawn and Shelby
Aug 24 @ The House Without a Name (Columbus)
Sept 11 @ The Blacksheep Inn (Quebec) w/ Shawn William Clarke

…and now some more photos!

Photo of a show poster up at Villains in Windsor
Beams made it onto the wall at Villains!
Mike on the computer tour managing.
Mike, in Colin’s apartment, working hard to get us our visas.
Photo of Anna and Craig
Anna and Craig waiting for brunch at Honest John’s in Detroit. Photo by Heather
Photo of Beams and the tour van
Van congregation in Detroit. Photo by Anna. From left to right: Mike, Martin, Dave, Heather’s legs, Keith, Craig’s head.
Photo of a box
Just a cute little box face at PJ’s Lagerhouse. Photo by Anna
Photo of Beams hanging out
Mike, Anna and Dave hanging out at PJ’s Lagerhouse. Photo by Craig
Photo of Mike stretching
Mike decompressing before sleep at Trumbullplex. Photo by Anna
Heather playing Galaga at Trumbullplex. Photo by Dave
Photo of graffiti
Graffiti in Detroit. Photo by Anna
Photo of Dave and Craig
Craig and Dave leaving Honest John’s in Detroit. Photo by Anna
Photo of Keith, Dave, Martin
Keith, Dave and Martin admiring the architecture in Buffalo. Photo by Heather
Photo of Anna
Anna glowing up a glow-in-the-dark shirt at Mohawk Lounge. Photo by Heather
Photo of Craig and Dave and Mantis fest
Craig and Martin manning the merch table at Mantis Arts & Eco fest. Photo by Anna
Photo of Heather
Heather gracefully balancing buttons while one of the volunteers hams it up at Mantis Eco & Arts fest. Photo by Anna