Saw Deer Tick in Aspen the other day. I’ve since tried to tell several people how incredible the show was, but they always seem to get disgusted with what I say.
1. When they came on stage, along with a bucket of beer and a bottle of Jack Daniels, they also brought out a Cardboard Box…
2. John McCauley has a gold tooth on the same side of the mouth that he grins with. When I picture him now, all I see is sideways-glancing blueblockers and a stage-lit gold tooth grinning below. Its like that moment in Alice in Wonderland (the original cartoon version) where the Cheshire cat is grinning through thin air before he appears. Like that, if only the Cheshire cat was coked out and eyeing both a bottle of whiskey and your girlfriends tits.
3. In response to the previous note, and the general wonderment of the community, YES, he does actually wear those blueblockers all the time. Even in a dark club. At night.
4. John McCauley played a lounge-singer version of “Ashamed”, which involved him kneeling on the edge of the stage, holding the mic and leaning his face as close to everyone as possible, flashing that same Cheshire grin. He then sauntered around lazily holding the mic. It was the only song of the night that he put down his guitar. Until he played drums for the entirety of the encore.
5. He also played a samba version “Art Isn’t Real (City of Sin).” It was amazing.
6. No matter what, no matter how much of the show he spent looking straight down my future-wife’s shirt as we stood front and center, John McCauley will always be a badass (in the sense of the word as one would use to describe Bukowski). I wanted to write that before Note #7.
7. He stopped to light his pubes on fire. Successfully.
8. The smell is haunting.
9. And then he finished the song, including an extended solo, with his jeans around his ankles.
10. He stopped after that to play a few solo songs. During this time he repeatedly made fun of himself for having to do “the singer-songwriter bullshit.” It was one of the best parts of the show.
11. The previously mentioned Cardboard Box turned out to be a box of silly string, which he poured out for the last song. Everyone went batshit. This was apparently against the venue’s wishes.
12. As I mentioned before, John McCauley played drums for the encore. The drummer played front-man. The new Deer Tick album (coming soon!) will be the first to feature original material written by anyone other than John McCauley. The lead guitarist played a couple as well. I think they ‘ll fit with Mccauley’s writing, but I’m (secretly) disappointed that the project is no longer fully centered around him.
13. After they walked off stage, I climbed up, ran across, and grabbed the setlist (which was labeled “Deer Tick and Deer Ticker, a reference to their trip from RI to Aspen, CO…among other things.). When they came back out to help clean up the silly string, I asked John to sign it, which he did (relatively) happily (writing “XO!” next to his name). I was the only person to get an autograph. I believe that I was the only person who wanted one.
If you, at any point during this “article”, said, “I’ll believe it when I see it…” then here:
PHOTOS OF OUR EVENING COURTESY OF PLYWOOD VIOLINS (still just me)
Belly Up Aspen
Z. Saint James