Category: Tour Journal

The 1 week mark
The 1 week mark

We have officially crossed the 1-week-on-tour mark.

The first week is generally pretty mild and sweet, family-wise. I miss everyone like crazy, and they miss me. We FaceTime almost every day, but we’re all feeling the distance now. … and weeks 2 and 3 just get harder.

Here’s to hoping that these stories are helping to buffer the difficulties and strain of being apart.

There are some terrific new adventures posted on the Stories and Songs page. Again, they aren’t factually or anecdotally accurate… at least, not completely. I did have a crazy run in at a gas station… and our Uncle Pierre does have an amazing coffee machine… but I didn’t get stuck in any webs, nor did I drive the van in to any mud.

The tour continues, and so too do the stories. Tomorrow we play State College, PA, then we drive back to Trumansburg, NY. Lots of long zig-zaggy drives on this here tour.

See you at the next update.

More stories!
More stories!

Well, I’m a day behind, but there are three new stories up in our “Papa goes on a long tour with lots of wacky, monster-oriented adventures and – thankfully – gets routinely saved by The Pink Heart!” series.

There are a few things I should make clear: I only brought purple and blue pens, so The Pink Heart is not accurately rendered in Pink… she is purple for this tour.

Also, I am pretty sure I’m misspelling some things. I apologize.

Also also, there are no real correlations between the events in the stories and the actual shows… there was no Gloom in Massachusetts – there was no terrible smell in the van (or, no more than usual). There WAS a Gio full of pizza in New York and it was a small, but awesome show – it was also a small venue, so that worked out.

Enjoy folks! I’ll try and keep things moving here.

Papa on Tour… just for the weekend
Papa on Tour… just for the weekend

Leaving the family is always rough on everyone, and – 4 years later – we are still working on finding ways to make it better.
We try and get some FaceTime in, and there’s always a good old fashioned phone call, but it helps to have some extra snazzy things for the kids to look forward to, and for me to have a way to keep some of my Papa-at-home traditions intact while I’m away.

A few years ago I started making little stories and drawings while I was gone. It’s not so easy to find the time to get it all to happen, but it is worth it for the kids to have a little Papa-style bedtime story at the end of the day, to be able to tell some stories from the road, and to remind them (Jenny included) that I’m thinking about them.

This past weekend was a quick 2-day fly out, fly back tour to Kentucky. The travel was brutal and the sleep was in short supply. The plus side was that there were plenty of hours on airplanes or backstage before set time to hammer out a few stories.

I’ve shared the stories here for your enjoyment! There’s a longer tour in July, so expect to see some more posts then.

Remember all ye Copperfield’s goers – there will be no Benedettiville this July due to the band tour schedule! We’re back in August!

Tour Report – at the end of the tour
Tour Report – at the end of the tour

It has been some time since I promised stories and musings about touring with the family. I apologize for the delay. It was due in part to back-to-reality culture shock, a 4 year old who had to go to the ER after a week of the flu, and a general difficulty with collecting thoughts, processing them, and finding time to communicate them.
But – finally – here we are.

First off, to answer the main question that I’ve been asked since we’ve been back, yes – it worked. It is physically possible to tour with your family of small children. It is not easy. You will not sleep. You will never wake up well-rested. It is expensive if your RV only gets 7-8 miles per gallon. You need to have a partner that is beyond amazing and is willing to handle the sizable task of adventuring with kids / managing kids / putting kids to bed in an RV that will be parked in a new and unknown location every night while you load-in, soundcheck, rehearse, play, unload, and do all the late-night music bits. You need to be very good at finding parks and romping very hard in a very short amount of time with a very low amount of energy. You need to bring good coffee with you – never be more than 8 minutes from a good cup of coffee.

As far as an experiment of: “Can our family go on tour, have a good time, make it to the shows on time, maintain a tour schedule, spend time together and share the touring experience together?” – it was an unqualified success.
We saw some extraordinary parts of the country (albeit, usually out of windows at about 65 miles an hour), met some incredible people, read The Princess in Black a bazillion times, romped in parks across the Northwest, and go to do it all together.

This was so much better than the alternative of only one person having the fun, exciting adventures:  ol’ Tour Mc’Papa coming back home to Jenny –  who has been having adventures herself, but of a much more kid-filled and familiar variety – and trying to get her excited for all the fun, exciting, and care-free times that were had.

The gap between shared experience and individual experience really struck me on the trip. Being able to tour together and to share the experiences of the road, the band, the music, the clubs, the schedule, the work routine, the crazy routing, the food, the people, the rivers and the mountains, was incredible. Trying to communicate any of those things to Jenny after coming home from tour was impossible for me, and even if I was better at it, it would still be something that was my story to tell, and hers to try and imagine. This trip (like our oh-so-ill-fated trip in the legendary TransVan 3 years ago) was a shared adventure that is now part of the Benedetti family lore – like the vacations of my youth. It’s hard to build family memories if your family isn’t together to build them.

There were lots of great things about the trip, but that is the one that jumps to mind in this general view of things: doing things together = family.

There were so many parts of the tour that were difficult, some near-impossible, and the future is by no means secure and set and stable.  I’m looking forward to trying to describe bits of the tour in more detail – both to process it for myself, and because I know that different aspects – both good and bad –  are going to start crystallizing out of the currently jumbled and messy pile of memories I have to sort through.

Please feel free to ask any questions if you have them, and I’ll work on getting another installment of our epic tour saga posted.



Family on the Road – Part 1
Family on the Road – Part 1

If you were wondering why the walls of Copperfield’s were not ringing with the cacophony of kids, grown ups, singing, yelling, laughing and story-telling this past 2nd Tuesday… well, I am here to explain all.

For the past two weeks, Jen, Stella, Emmy and myself have been on tour with The Brothers Comatose. I play bass in the group, and – until Emmy was born – was a full-time member of the band, galavanting off on tour for long stretches at a time. Once Emmy was born, I left the band. I didn’t tour at all in 2014, and Jenny and worked on being the parents of two daughters. Late in 2014, the opportunity presented itself to – possibly – rejoin the band. We discussed what it would mean for us as a family, and the bottom line was – if we can do it together, we can do it.

Thus, the last 2 weeks on tour.

It was pretty wonderful.  Exhausting…  but wonderful.

We’ll be posting our experiences here for family and friends to read, and for anyone who is wondering about how family and work / bands / tours can work (or not work) together.  We’ll be posting in the coming days, so please do pop back and take a look.

In the meantime – don’t forget to come by Copperfield’s this next Tuesday, April 28th, 10:30am for Benedettiville!  And feel free to check the Shows page for our upcoming schedule.

Thanks all.  See you soon.