November 26, 2010

Driving The 5 with Kelli Schaefer and Drew Grow & the Pastors’ Wives: Day Four

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Coffee Run ::: photo by Dylan Preist

Its the final day of tour and we have the rare opportunity to sleep in. Thanks to hospitable friends in Sacramento, we had a (hardwood) floor to sleep on and a breakfast of cheese pizza and chicken quesadillas. After a quick stop of coffee and to say goodbye to our hosts, we’ll be making the 10 hour drive back to Portland. Everyone is happy with the past few days of the tour; the shows have been fun and many new fans have been made.

As we drive up the 5, we fill out Mad Libs with the worse possible things we can think of, always getting a good laugh. Unfortunately for us, a bad head wind is keeping our van around 50mph and we haven’t made it very far and our 10 hour trip is getting longer by the minute. We decide to entertain ourselves and take advantage of the long drive by filming some video sessions in the van. It turns out that a group sing along is just what we needed. It sounds amazing as I sit in the passenger seat and record. We make another stop in Redding,CA for the sacred final In-n-Out burger and continue our drive. We have plans to meet up with Wild Flag along the way since they are traveling south as we head north. Tonight they will be playing in the Hub and we hope for their sakes that they brought their own microphones. We try out a new function on Drew’s phone where we can track each others’ progress with Google maps. Touring bands: trying this out — it’s a great way to keep up with other touring bands that may be along the same route.

400 miles till Portland. Driving time lends itself to a few moments of peace for the touring musician. Being forced to do nothing but drive or read can be nice. Getting home will mean more shows, more work, and more meeting with people and planning for the next thing. By the time the sun is setting over mountains, most of us are already asleep.


This may be the end of both Kelli and Drew’s tour but it doesn’t mean they will be slowing down. Drew will begin tracking a new record in January and Kelli’s first full length album will be out in February.

As we roll back into Portland, the rain begins to fall again. It’s after midnight and most of the members of the bands have to work in the morning. This has been only a weekend of tour for me, and my very first, but I’m exhausted. Exhausted and happy. Tour life is not always glamorous but it sure can be fun.

See all of Dylan’s photo for the final day of tour on our Flickr!

Sleeping In ::: photo by Dylan Preist

Kris Doty ::: photo by Dylan Preist

Seth in the Leaves ::: photo by Dylan Preist

Tour Delirium ::: photo by Dylan Preist

Loading Up ::: photo by Dylan Preist

Back Scratch ::: photo by Dylan Preist

Van Session ::: photo by Dylan Preist

Rest Stop Phone Call ::: photo by Dylan Preist

Check Out All of “Driving the 5″ with Kelli Schaefer and Drew Grow:

Day One Day Two Day Three Day Four Kelli Schaefer Van Session Video Drew Grow & the Pastors Wives Van Session Video

November 22, 2010

Driving the 5 with Kelli Schaefer and Drew Grow & the Pastors’ Wives: Day One

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Kelli Schaefer ::: photo by Dylan Priest

[Editor's Note: We sent photographer and videographer Dylan Priest on down "The 5" for a weekend tour with Kelli Schaefer and Drew Grow and the Pastors Wives. We'll be sharing Dylan's photos, videos and tour diary every day this week.]

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“This one is for anyone who ever tried to do something in the world.” –Drew Grow.

I arrive early to the High Dive to meet up with Kelli Schaefer, where she will be playing to a sold out crowd of Wild Flag fans.

Kelli and I grab some tea before the show and talk a bit about her new record. She and her label (Amigo/Amiga, run by her drummer Jeremiah Hayden) set up a kickstarter to help fund the record. Although by this time they had yet to reach their goal (they ended up exceeding it), Kelli’s not too worried about it. Mostly, she is just filled with excitement about releasing a full length album into the world, having only released EPs thus far. Kelli glows as she tells me about how she will record the new album. She plans on going into the studio and setting a tempo to sing lyrics over, then having Jeremiah come in and doing whatever he wants with the drum track. Once that is in place, she plans to come back and write guitar parts to the songs. She finds it easier to figure out the guitar parts once everything else is recorded.

As we sit in the High Dive, the place starts to fill up. It’s a few minutes before show time and Kelli is getting excited to play. Most of the crowd has no idea who she is, but she knows it is a great chance to win over some new fans. Tonight her backing band is comprised of her housemates and friends, Drew Grow and the Pastors’ Wives sans Seth (who plays organ and slide guitar in DGPW). Over the course of this small tour, they have really tightened up their set list and how they play together.

As the band starts to play, the room is filled with the chatter of people who are there only for the headliner, but by the time she plays “Better Idea,” a solo song about her ailments, the room goes silent. She sings “I can’t treat my body as a temple when its failing, are you kidding, was that your plan to keep me grounded, well its not working.” The audience is so captivated you can almost hear a pin drop. Kelli’s powerful voice and songs grab people’s attention, making them want to hear more and know more. After the set, I overhear people in the crowd people talking about Kelli, and I even hear a few “that was fucking amazing!” Kelli comes close to clearing out her merchandise that night.

After the show, we crash at a house near the venue. We have an early day tomorrow as we’re heading back to Portland to play another show with Wild Flag at Doug Fir.

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Check back tomorrow for a Van Session with Kelli Schaefer and check out the rest of the Dylan’s Day One tour photos on our Flickr.

Kelli Schaefer ::: photo by Dylan Priest

Kelli Schaefer ::: photo by Dylan Priest

Kelli Schaefer ::: photo by Dylan Priest

Kelli Schaefer ::: photo by Dylan Priest

November 19, 2010

Photo Tease: Kelli Schaefer and Drew Grow & the Pastors’ Wives Tour Blog and Videos

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Kelli Schaefer ::: photo by Dylan Priest

Pretty gorgeous, huh?

Please welcome Dylan Priest and his beautiful portraits and videos to Sound on the Sound. You’ve already seen a couple of Dylan’s stunning photos and videos here on the site, but we are pleased to say you’ll be seeing even more soon.

Every day next week we’ll be posting a tour blog, photos or exclusive Van Session video that Dylan took while on a weekend tour with Kelli Schaefer, Drew Grow and the Pastors’ Wives. We’ll be sending Dylan on the road with bands for more Sound on the Sound Van Sessions, photos and tour blogs whenever he can sneak away and we can’t wait to share a little slice of what life is like on the road with you. As someone whose never been on tour, I can’t wait to see for myself.

Here’s our first glimpse:

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Drew Grow On The Road ::: photo by Dylan Priest

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Kris Doty Stretch ::: photo by Dylan Priest

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Thumbs Up ::: photo by Dylan Priest

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Drew Grow ::: photo by Dylan Priest

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On the Road ::: photo by Dylan Priest