‘Saturday 15 January 2022 in West Texas brought such super high winds that we were unable to take the bus to our show in Sweetwater, Texas.
Winds were biting cold and gusting to 35 – 45 miles an hour. Our bus is 45’ long and almost 14’ tall. If there’s a high wind, it can easily catch the bus and blow it over. We decided that all of us should drive our own vehicles. We loaded the sound equipment into Todd’s truck, Staley and Mike carried all the instruments in Staley’s Tahoe, and I loaded the merchandise into my truck.
Over the years, we’ve had numerous trips where we’ve had to pull the bus off the road to wait out the wind. When the wind is fierce, it’s like a small tornado hits the bus, throwing things off the shelves and making it difficult to even sit upright. It was just too dangerous to take that chance.
Even with such an eventful start, the show was fun and we had a very enthusiastic audience. An interesting thing is that the historic Sweetwater Municipal Auditorium, which was built in 1926, still has the old police station and jail attached. The old jail cells have now become the ‘green’ room where we waited for the show to start. Yes, we sat behind the old iron bars, so I guess you could say we were in jail in West Texas on a Saturday night. Must be a song there!
The venue staff even had a big poster of Elvis from ‘Jailhouse Rock’ in one of the cells, because the Auditorium has hosted two shows by Elvis Presley (Tuesday 8 January 1935 – Tuesday 16 August 1977).
The photo above is one of Todd Hines, our drummer, who is also an amazing sound engineer, and he’s shown here testing the microphones during soundcheck with bandleader, Chad Phillips, who is on guitar behind him’
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