In this Crazy Tour Stories segment, the blues rock duo, Jocelyn & Chris, shares one of their stories from being on the road. You can check out the story, after the break.
It is a truth universally acknowledged that if something is going to break on tour, it’ll happen at the absolute least convenient moment.
Let’s set the scene: a nine-and-a-half-hour drive through the middle of nowhere from Sioux Falls, SD, to Cheyenne, WY. Nothing but flat plains, scrub grass, and the occasional herd of cattle. A tight travel timeline with little room for hijinks. And then… snap.
We were stopped at a gas station when Chris first noticed something was off with the trailer. There was a piece hanging down near the left side of the axle that hadn’t been hanging down before, which, in my (very) limited auto-repair experience, isn’t generally a good sign. So we did what any band would do – broke out the zip ties, got back on the road, and started googling. Chris started watching Youtube videos about trailer suspensions, and our bassist Dan texted some photos of the dangling part to an auto expert friend of his. The news was… not great. Turns out, the rear shackle link on the left equalizer of our trailer (the part that equalizes the trailer’s load weight evenly across the trailers axles) was broken – and the 1000-ish pounds of music gear we were carrying was now running the risk of completely breaking the axles and putting us out of commission for good.
So yeah, not the best.
We had about 5 hours to go to make it to Cheyenne – we figured if we could just get there, we had a prayer of still making the show and finding someone to fix things in the next couple of days. Fast forward through endless phone calls to trailer repair shops, on-the-fly trailer part research, and several different conversations with sassy U-Haul dealers. Our plan was to limp our way to Cheyenne, get to the venue, empty the broken trailer, send a couple of us to drop the trailer off at the shop while the rest of us set up for the show, and then bring a rented U-Haul back to use for the next couple of shows until we could get things fixed. We were due to be in Park City, UT, the next day and then Jackson, WY, the day after that – we could swing back through to pick up the (hopefully) repaired trailer and drop off the U-Haul on our way from Jackson to Ohio.
By some miracle, we made it to Cheyenne. And do you know what? The plan actually worked!
It was like we’d been training for this. We moved with Avengers-level precision. We were giving each other hand signals like a team of Navy seals. I mean, it was beautiful. The Cheyenne venue crew must’ve thought we were insane.
But we made it. We were going to get to play the show. That’s the part that mattered most.
We got the gear unloaded. Got the trailer dropped off at the repair shop. Got a U-Haul back to the venue and ready to load up after the show was over. Set up and soundchecked.
And then, right before we were set to take the stage, we got a phone call.
It was the trailer repair guy. You know, the guy who’d told us it would take at least two days to fix the trailer? Well anyway, he was calling to say he was done. It was fixed. In less than two hours.
Tour life… there’s really nothing like it.