In this Crazy Tour Stories segment, the indie rock artist, Local Nomad, shares one of his stories from being on the road. You can check out the story, after the break.
“Wouldn’t it be Nice”
It was 2012 and my band had gotten an offer to do the taking back Sunday TAYF Ten Year Reunion Tour. The only problem was the first date started in Arizona and we were based in NY. My whole band was amped as this was a great opportunity for us. We had previously toured with John Nolan and were stoked to be amongst good company.
At the time we had a 15 passenger 1996 Ford Econoline Club Wagon. Our drummer’s dad was a mechanic, so we were able to keep the van in decent shape. Overall the thing was a tank. We knew the drive would take a toll on us so we gave ourselves about 4 driving days to get to Arizona with one night prior to relaxing before the first show.
Altogether it was 5 of us total in the van. 4 band members and our merch guy/friend Anthony Natoli. I was 22 at the time and the rest of my bandmates were around 19 and 20. So you could imagine we were PUMPED.
After driving for several hours straight we decided to save money and sleep in a Walmart parking lot somewhere in Missouri. Now picture this: It’s 4:00AM, late October, we’re all dead asleep, bundled up in sleeping bags in 20-degree weather when all of a sudden our van gets struck. BANG. There is a loud noise and the van shifts about five feet.
I jump out of the van with the nightmare of us missing the first date of this monumental tour already running through my head. My socks hit the cold concrete and I see a Chevy Pick up Truck with its headlights beaming right at me. I approach the vehicle with caution and discover two 10-year-old boys that can barely see over the steering wheel driving this Chevy pick-up truck. Joyriding.
I asked these kids “why did you do this”
They said “ grandpa just went in to get milk and we wanted to try out the new truck”
“Please don’t tell grandpa.. he’s gonna kick our ass.”
I regret to inform you that I told grandpa and he was in fact pissed.
Since we were now all awake we decided to continue driving. It was cold, foggy and we were all freaked out and didn’t want to test our luck. So we left the 24 hour Walmart parking lot and continued our journey to Arizona.
Dom our guitar player decided to take the wheel. Our merch guy Anthony kept him company. The Beach Boys “Wouldn’t it be nice “ came on through our cassette iPod player and one by one we started singing along. “Wouldn’t it be nice if we were older. Then we wouldn’t have to wait so……” BAAAMMM!!! The car struck something that exploded into a red mist and we came to a screeching halt.
Perplexed – it wasn’t until I saw a twitching hoof illuminated by the high beams of our van that we realized a deer, unfortunately, went to go hang out with Bambi’s mother in heaven. It was heartbreaking and our front bumper was curved like a candy cane blocking our tire from spinning properly. Moments later a car pulled up with two women who we soon came to realize were strippers. They drove us a few miles down the road to a gas station to do some recon with a mechanic. A mythical man who looked like a culmination of Paul Bunyan and Andre The Giant drove us back to the vehicle and used a huge pole to bend the bumper in the opposite direction. This man saved the tour. Although the journey was quite stressful I have to admit…. that venison was quite delicious… just kidding.