Franki Chan Blog

06/29/04 - catching up pt 1

it's been a while and i feel like i've been neglecting my audience :) not intentionally, mind you, it's just been hectic. there's been many, many a time where i've wanted to write, i've felt like i've had something powerful to say, but just lacked the motivation and the time. maybe now i can make it up to some of you. there's been a lot that's happened, and as much as i'd love to go into the excruciating detail that i did with 'a week in the life of trouble', i'm afraid i'm not gonna be able to. that week was exhausting and exciting. i learned a lot and i feel like in the weeks since i've grown up more, rediscovered my roots and possibly learned what romance is really about. i suppose a brief overview is in order. almost two weeks ago i went back to indiana for five days to play a reunion show with my old band operation: cliff clavin. we broke up six years ago and had done one reunion tour 2 years after that. as far as we were concerned the band was dead and gone, played out beyond it's time and should have been left buried. that is, until the 10 year anniversary of our record label came around. we were dug up once more and were added as the headliners to a three day punk festival. i didn't know what to expect in going back, i hadn't been in three years. i was going to see my momma and i was to reunite with old friends and bandmates, most of whom i hadn't seen since we originally broke up. i spent everyday wandering around to old haunts, catching up and struggling with the small town environment. i spent everynight at the video saloon, drinking with older old friends and rehashing past gossip. as the days went by, i began to loosen up and embrace my past again, and eventually i began to miss it. 700 kids showed up from all over the country to partake in this festival. the dream that had begun with our little band, chris the owner of the label and all the bands that followed had finally amounted to something. there wasn't a single negative problem all weekend, every band had a packed and jubulant crowd and i found myself having the kind of political conversations i hadn't had since i was a teenager, filled with passion and initiative and a daring sense that we could actually change the world. if only we tried hard enough. when day three of the festival finally came around, it began to dawn on me that i was actually gonna play a show that night. i got a little nervous, but managed to avoid the show area for most of the day. out of sight, out of mind, right? when i finally returned, with two hours to spare, i was occasionally reminded of my impending doom by various comments of excitement and anticipation in watching my band. it didn't help. the band before us finished, there were a couple speakers, and then we were up. i set up my drums and looked out into the crowd, i don't think most of the audience knew who i was before that point, but as i sat there adjusting my crash cymbol, looks of recognition flew across the room. yeah, i'm not the fat kid with long hair i used to be. it was kind of funny. the moment of truth finally came. chris (the singer/guitar player) strummed the first couple notes of the first song, i saw a girl in the front row freak out, we kicked in and then all hell broke loose. it was the kind of show that anyone that's ever played in a band has always wanted to play. some get to do it every night, but for us, it was a first. over the last few years, i guess the band had slowly grown more popular, and even though there were a lot of old faces in the audience, there were just as many, if not more, new ones. everybody in the crowd knew every word and screamed it out louder than we could play. kids were stagediving in every which direction. there were dogpiles, kids hanging off raftors, human pyramids. it was insane. i sat behind my drumset, barely able to pay attention to what i was playing because i was so mesmorized and amazed by what was happening right in front of me. right before we played our last song, a bunch of kids rushed the stage with whipped cream pies and pied all of us. we finished off the set covered in whipped cream and then dove out into the audience ourselves. it was the climax of the festival, but also the climax of my trip to indiana. i was leaving the next morning, and as much as i loved to see everyone, i couldn't stay out that night. i wanted to hang on to that moment forever and not lose it in the intoxication and flagrant talk of the evening. the next morning my mother drove me to the airport. it was good to see her and i felt guilty that i hadn't spent more time with her while i was there, but then again, i've never been very good with all the family business. we said goodbye and she cried as usual. i wandered through the indianpolis, then dallas, then los angeles airports in a dazed feeling completely satisfied and rejuvinated from my experience, even as both my flights were delayed and my luggage was lost. this continued into the next night, tuesday, last week, as i was dj'ing, but that's a story for part 2 of this.....