Late July, 2011. The Hawks have taken once again to the summer road. Green oaks rise above the yellowing grasses. Mount Volcano Shasta peeks over the foot hills white and tall. Streams and rivers across the West are fat and full. We cross over deep green rivers crowded with Saturday boaters in cut off shorts with coolers of ice and beer, pink shoulders and fading tattoos squeezing out of tattered tank tops. It’s been a while since Californians have felt the calm that comes from an abundant snow pack and an end to the rationing. We can sprinkle at will for a while. Our glass is half full.
So, it is with loving nostalgia that we return to our blog. In the mid-2000s when we first took to the road, it seemed that the blog would last forever, the new literary form. But so quickly was it replaced by ever shorter status updates. 140 characters of attention span. So indulge us, dear reader, as we let our vocabulary run free on the open range of the page.
Last night we played at Evangeline’s in Colfax, east on the 80 in oak and evergreen foothills past the encroaching reach of Sacramento commuter traffic, a backwater only recently ravaged by a drive through Starbucks and still retaining its beyond the pale local culture. Such a place is great to find in this stiff corporate age — a genuine community that appreciates music, life, and dancing. Evangeline has created a sanctuary, a refuge, for the traveling musician. Oh, yes, Evangeline is real, not the imagined muse of a cafe seeking cred through colorful moniker. She knows cool music and books accordingly, pays the bands astonishingly well for the modest square footage of her espresso based den.
Dave Raven, drummer phenom and Renaissance Burning Man, is making his maiden voyage with the Hawks, and we introduce him to our ways by pulling the faithful Yukon up to Evangelines in the nick of time. The locals, firmly committed hippies with jobs and medicinal cards, greet us warmly as we hustle our gear through the cafe’s front door. Several custom rolled cigarettes are handed to us, and we haven’t even cracked a beer. Richard March and his tight acoustic combo open the show with the sun still above the horizon. We ease into an electric show in the tiny room as our smiling audience swims in and out of Evangelines, watching us through the front glass on the breeze gathering front porch, coming in for some AC and unfiltered sounds, dancing, singing along. We stand in the middle of it all, beguiled and then digging in as the set catches fire. Dave rocks our rockers as they are meant to be rocked. A good time is had by all.
A long hang with friend fans, farewell to our kind hosts, long philosophical discussion with Jamesons at the Colfax Motor Lodge, and to bed. We have an early rising.