I’ve been in Kalamazoo for 48 hours and have played two shows. A house show on Sunday night hosted by friends that I met in Lafayette years ago and another house show at No Fun House last night with my good friend Andru Bemis and new friend Alex Quinlan. I’ll be leaving town soon for tonight’s show in Grand Rapids but wanted to write this blog post while hanging out in the Black Owl Cafe (photo). Highly encourage you to stop by if you find yourself in Kalamazoo! Over their radio, I’ve already heard Wilco, The Strokes, Pixies, and Spoon. I know, right?!
Here’s a photo of Andru from last night’s show. He didn’t want me to take it, but I did anyway. And I’m glad I did. Reap the benefits, Internetz! More reflections below the photo.
I met Andru in 2000 when I was still in college. The acoustic band I played in at the time wanted to record a four-song EP, and we heard about a small studio in West Chicago, Illinois called Ground Vinyl Records. Entering a single door in a back-alley underneath a barber shop, we found ourselves in a studio control room with a long-haired gentleman named Andru Bemis. He showed us his analog gear, we talked about music, and he told us his rate (a ridiculous $15/hour!!!). Needless to say, we booked some studio time, finished the EP, and eventually worked with Andru on our first full-length album that we released in 2001. I even ended up playing drums on two of Andru’s albums, Singer in 2004 and Rail To Reel in 2006.
Over my 32 years, different people have come in and out of my life. And I’m mature enough to realize that some friendships will not last forever. People change, people relocate, and people move on. It’s sad to think about at times, but it’s true.
How lucky am I that I’ve known Andru Bemis for nearly 15 years and that we are still connected, that we still embrace each other every time life brings us together, and that we still play shows together throughout the Midwest? Andru has always been there for me and I am confident that we will always make time for one another. His is a friendship that I would never want to live without. My life is better because of Andru Bemis, and it warms my heart to know that he will surely be my friend until the day I die.