Tour, Day 24 – Revolution

Revolution CafeI tried my damnedest to get a gig in San Francisco – a place on the road where I actually know a number of people. I finally got one that then fell through and had resigned myself to just making this a hang out stop. My friend, Meme Curtis, however, was not having it. She called around and helped me score a last-minute happy hour gig at Revolution Cafe in the Mission neighborhood of San Francisco. A very cool place, Revolution felt like a very grungy, hipster version of a French brasserie. The weather was sunny though a bit cool, yet loads of people crowded the patio at the cafe, as well as at the many other bars and restaurants along the same street.

Miles: 353
States: California
Lodging: With my friends Kacy and Meme Curtis in San Francisco, CA

It turned out to be very nice gig. I was crowded into a back corner, where they have a PA. You run your own sound, but everything about the set-up is very easy. The crowd was very receptive. I ended up meeting a guy named Coskun (first name diminutive sounds like “Josh”) Caglayan, originally from Turkey, who had been living in the Bay Area for 20+ years. He is an artist and designer and was working on some album artwork for a friend while I was playing. Since I could see his screen, it was almost as if I were watching a projection while performing. It was fun, though a little distracting. We had a good chat about my upcoming show in Turkey.

During and after my performance, tons of people were smoking both marijuana and cigarettes on the patio. A friend of mine later told me a story about how he was having a beer at Revolution – and smoking a joint – on the patio with a friend. San Francisco requires bars to shut down their patios and outside seating a couple of hours before last call. One of the waiters came out to ask them to come inside, saying: “Hey guys, I’m really sorry, but you have to drink those beers inside.” No problem if you want to keep smoking that joint though…

Before I arrived in San Francisco, I made a quick detour – pilgrimage really – to Monterey, California and the Monterey Institute of International Studies (MIIS). Monterey is a beautiful town and was the host to one of the first major rock festivals, the Monterey International Pop Music Festival, in 1967, where Jimi Hendrix famously set fire to his guitar at the end of his set. (There is a live album of Jimi’s show which is awesome.)

Monterey Institute of International StudiesAnyway, I’m very big into languages – I absolutely love the learning them, speaking them, writing them, learning about the origin of words and grammatical structures. If I’m never able to earn something approximating a decent living playing music, I will have to find some way of getting paid to use the foreign languages I already speak and to learn new ones…that would be a near equal dream to being an international pop star. MIIS is one the very best language, translation and interpretation schools in the world. People that come out of the school are damn good. I love this school and for a long time have wanted to just stop by to see what it was like. Today is that day. Maybe when I retire, I will take one language after another here until I die.

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