Wheatus Tour Diary: Injury, Agony and the Will To Carry On

I would have written sooner, but I’ve been helping tend to the many injuries suffered by the various members of the Wheatus touring party.  During that time we’ve traveled to an played York, Manchester, Stoke-On-Trent, Sheffield, and Kingston-All-Up-On-Them-Thames.  Fan videos abound.  I am certain also that the twittersphere is bloated with errata regarding our goings-on.  What I bring to you here is something you can’t get anywhere else: the inside scoop.  Would you like sprinkles with that?

Our show in Newcastle was nothing if not exciting.  The shower in our green room was prone to flooding not only itself but also the bathroom adjacent.  Adding to the excitement was the appearance of a centipede in the water of questionable provenance, leading all of us to use the communal loos in the club.  Eventually the management built a makeshift platform of carpet and wood which made it technically possible, though still not desirable,  to use the toilet.  The load-out was absolute madness.  We had to carry our gear up two flights of stairs and then roll it around the block and through a crowd of zombie-like club-goers who seemed more interested in punching each other and taking off their clothes than getting out of our way.  Priorities, people!  Seriously.  They also moaned and banged against our bus, resulting in one of the hastiest departures thus far.

Things started to go downhill, health-wise, at The Duchess in York, where Justine from Math The Band broke her ring finger banging furiously (as she does) on her tom.  Then came Manchester.  During load-in I strained my left elbow, leaving me unable to lift our heavy gear with the vigor I am accustomed to exerting.    Delaney, in a fit of exuberance, sat down too hard on the corner of a deceptively comfy-looking sofa and bruised her coccyx so badly she had trouble sitting on anything else.   Matthew, feeling extra-excited about playing Teenage Dirtbag for the 5,342nd time, swooned during Frontalot’s unnecessary rap breakdown and twisted his left knee.  One Boots brace later he was back on point.

Incidentally, the Manchester show was tainted somewhat by what one vocal audience member referred to as “shite sound.”  MoHo had the audacity to post an “apology” to audience members, blaming the sound on our rig.  To that we reply simply with this video, shot at the Hippodrome in Kingston, using the same sound system.

Our show at Stoke-on-Trent featured the most awesome load-out of the tour so far, with fans who wanted autographs and photos and a DJ who spun nothing but pure awesome dance music which I, sufferer of an ancient curse, could do nothing to resist.  So exuberant was my boogie that I partially strained my lower back.  See what I’m talking about with the injuries?  That day was also super-sweet because of the availability of showers.  What was not sweet about the show was that it started a 3-day break from our touring party.  City Stereo went on vacation to Fiji while MC Frontalot and Math sat at the sidelines, watching us rock.  Except, incidentally, for that Stoke show, where Math was given an opening slot since one of the support acts cancelled.  Have I mentioned how much I love Math The Band?  They are my favorite.

Sheffield was another Uni gig, and had a blessedly easy load-in.  What was not quite as blessed was the appearance of what the rest of the touring crew has called the “K-Fuse.”  This refers to my tendency to get extremely angry at a moment’s notice if a certain bullshit threshold is crossed, or if I am extremely hungry.  On this night in particular I went to get food with Delaney and Wes (of Indywood Promotions) and got so bent out of shape trying to find a chip shop that I left them standing in the rain as I ran across the street and devoured a feral squirrel.  They are still giving me the cold shoulder.  Thankfully the protein in the fur gave me the energy I needed to make it through the night.

Kingston was a night and day of agony and ecstasy.  During the day I went for a stroll with Gabrielle and Noodles in order to shoot a little video for Penelope.  We got down to the waterside only to discover that Noodles had gone missing.  Tragedy!  I raced back to the bridge  we had just crossed and, lo and behold, there was Noodles, propped up against the rail, pan-handling.  “Noodles!” I sad, “You’re above such behavior.”  He gave no response.  I think maybe he is feeling left out of the whole band experience.   And what an experience it was a the HippodromeOur green room was, I kid you not, bigger than many of the other venues we have played.  Even larger was the crowd: over 1600 people showed up, selling out the floor of the club.  Madness!  The kids were cheering and yelling, riding the crowd and asking Brendan to spank their inflatable monkey.  He obliged.

The only downside to the show was another injury, once again befalling our favorite bass player Matthew “Six String” Milligan.  This time it was his ankle, which he twisted falling off of the trailer ramp while carrying one of our notoriously heavy power transformers.  Though it was purple and swollen, the internet told him that it was merely a sprain, so he soldiered on without a trip to the hospital.  He did the show, as one might expect, sitting down, like a heavy-metal James Taylor in repose.  Tonight’s show at The Boileroom in Guildford will feature him seated once again.  Be there!

5 Responses to “Wheatus Tour Diary: Injury, Agony and the Will To Carry On”

  1. carol

    CANNOT wait until Wheatus comes to the States!

  2. Stephanie

    however HOWEVER you walked away when I was about to get your autograph brendan :’( no signing of boobs for you xx

  3. Stephanie

    Wheatus you completely rocked the Hippodrome! I too spanked that monkey, that guy was looking for 40 people to do it. Much love from the UK :) best wishes to six string xx

  4. Mom

    May all your injuries heal quickly and you crowds be jubilant!

  5. Hannah

    I was at the stoke gig and it was amazing!
    No real lack of showers or chip shops here ay
    Sad to see so many injuries :( I hope everybody is fixed soon!
    and Math The Band were absolutely crazy but strangely entertaining… lol
    That night was the best part of my freshers week :)
    Hope the rest of the tour goes well & keep up the good work :)
    Peace x