Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Return from Tour

Finally back to New York City after 7 weeks on the road! We had a very warm welcome when we played at Replay clothing on 4/22 - it was that great feeling that everyone in the room felt good about celebrating Earth Day. Replay gave 10% of their profits to the Ben Jelen Foundation that week -- as you can imagine, this turned out to be a significant deal for us -- so THANK YOU!

We then played the Knitting Factory and that concluded my tour. Thank you to everyone that was there.

So I'm back - its easier to recycle at home than on the bus... I've noticed that once I take out those recyclables, I'm basically left with compost in the trash. Its a shame I don't have a garden! Not being on the road has shown me all over again what a strain road life can be on the planet if I'm not careful. I'm happy to be in a city where recycling is second nature.

I just did a guest-blog at - their site is worth checking out, it explains how they are a carbon-negative company, something thats not easy to get your head around -- but if we're talking consumer vote, it means buying a bottle of theirs will end up taking carbon out of the atmosphere, and supporting a company that wants this change.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Sweetwater's new Green complex

For those of you who don't know what Sweetwater is, its a company that sells and delivers all kinds of musical instruments and equipment, mainly online. Many producers and musicians order their equipment from sweetwater, and they run a good business with people that are knowledgable about all the products. They're based in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Today we visited their new complex to record some tracks for a benefit that majic 95.1 (a radio station there) puts together to raise money for the Riley hospital for children. Sweetwater has a state of the art recording studio on its new premises that it opens up for this project. After recording a few songs, we got the tour of their building.

When sweetwater started this new complex, they began on a foundation of being 'green'. The windows are in the right places so as not to lose energy. The urinals are waterless (and pretty cool). They told me that they estimate the extra money they spent in building will be made back in 5 years from the savings they make from being more energy conscious. It is the first totally green building in Indiana - congratulations to sweetwater for setting the example they can.

omaha, nebraska and their frogs

Our show at Mick's Music was great fun, not too many people, but also very chill which allowed me to hang out with some people after the show. Brad from Des Moines came to see us with a buddy and they came on the bus after the show for some talking. His brother in law, an electrician in omaha was telling us tales of his childhood along the missouri river. When this man was young, he used to spend all available time fishing the river. 25 years later, he's already seen major changes in the river. Less fish. Signs warning of mercury contamination. The frogs, which used to be separately male and female have mutated into hybrid male-females, believed to be an effect of Atrazine (a herbicide) used on farms and running off into the river. There's also human waste in the river. And most markedly, many less frogs from 25 years ago.

Soooo -- a sad tale, but the positive part is that this man in Nebraska, also incidentally a Republican voter understood and cared about these issues.