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Working from afar

September 9, 2008

Though it won’t be until late December at the earliest that I make my way to Athens, I expect my first actual interviews to be conducted months before then. E-mail and phone correspondence has already begun, but more importantly, it seems like some in-person contact could be happening soon.

Basically, there are a couple shows coming up (Of Montreal at the Electric Factory on October 31 and a whole bunch of random E6ers at the Brillobox on October 18) at which I could meet some people pertinent to this project.

The Electric Factory is in Philadelphia and the Brillobox in Pittsburgh, both significantly closer to my current home of State College, Pennsylvania, but since I don’t have a car of my own, this still presents a problem.

As it stands, I was able to get a press pass to the Of Montreal show in Philadelphia and was able to find a few friends to go with me, one of whom has a car and is willing to drive. On top of this, I think I’ll be able to speak to one of the band members in the afternoon, provided we can get to Philadelphia earlier in the day, although these details will be further fleshed out as the date draws nearer.

As for the other show, the bands (and I use the term “bands” loosely, as it still remains to be seen what the lineup will be – likely an amalgam of Elephant 6 hall-of-famers in various permutations) don’t seem to have the same draw Of Montreal has. This is likely just an issue of penetration (that is, it’s not that the bands playing in Pittsburgh are specifically worse than Of Montreal, it’s just that they’re not as popular), and I imagine I could easily sway someone with no more than a modestly crafted mix CD.

The issue here is twofold:

First, I need to find a ride – someone who a) has good enough taste in music to want to go and b) has a car and is willing to drive. Then, I need to get in touch with someone involved with the tour and make sure anybody would be cool with talking to me before or after the show. Both of these tasks seem easy to pull off, but until they’re accomplished, they remain tasks.

Worst case scenario, I could take a Greyhound to Pittsburgh and just watch the show, which really wouldn’t be so bad, but as this seems like a huge opportunity to move forward with this book, I don’t want to squander it.

And for all my complaints about living in the middle of nowhere, neither Philly nor Pittsburgh is terribly far, and it’s a profound stroke of luck that both shows are happening over weekends.

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