St. Vatty's Day

Top o' the day to you, sir or madam! You're listening to (if some nice person is reading this out loud to you now) The Unvarnished Truth.... the post-St. Patrick's Day blog that always gives you more quality bang for your buck. And since you're not paying for this, let the blarney begin! 


Every March 17, Punch Drunk Cabaret seems to always perform on this hallowed holiday of Ireland and this year was no exception. But why is that? Does our band moniker subconsciously trigger and unleash the inner Irish stereotype within all of us? Does our dapper appearance evoke visions of charming eccedentesiasts who make you dance and accept your free drinks? Are we simply just cheap & easy?


Perhaps yes to all of the above. And who are we to plead not guilty to the aforementioned? For that is our job -- vaunting, flaunting and jaunting across the land showing you a grand ol' time no matter whose bloody holiday it is. 


Now having said that, who the hell is St. Patrick and what is the significance of Red Deer, Alberta, Canada?


Well ol' St. Paddy was the patron saint of Ireland, of course. Nice fella he was. Except for the part where he allegedly drove all the snakes out of the country like some mad Pied Piper with a shillelagh. Cuz where there's snakes, there's snake oil. And where there's snake oil, there's us! So we can't officially endorse the good saint Patricius..... but we can endorse drinkin', carousin' and the sellin' of our quality wares. And that we did at The Vat in Red Deer.


Load-in... with Keith watching over us 



The St. Vatty's Day (M)Assacre


We had our usual band meal a few hours before the show at a place that rhymes with "Schmoston Teetza". Well thank goodness glorious gracious because that gave whatever I consumed plenty of time to work it's black magic in my stomach, causing me to wonder if I would defecate, detonate and subsequently desecrate the stage with an unholy, intestinal deviltry. Oh, St. Patrick, thou hast forsaken me! But fear not, dear reader, for I soiled not my trousers nor the band's reputation that evening.


Kind of ironic, actually, in that a product I discovered earlier that day gave foreshadowing to the evening's plumbing trouble. Though I admit, it wasn't exactly what I was looking for....



Faith & Beergorrah!


More irony... while neither snow nor sleet nor tummy trouble will ever stop this band from putting on a great performance (you pay 10 bucks? You get a 10.50 show!), I admit I was stopped in my tracks onstage when I found that our good friends & hosts at The Vat informed me that there was no green beer served that evening. Wha-AAAT???? As long as this old chunk o' coal has been playing in bars & taverns, I have never seen one pass on the colourful, drunken St. Pat's tradition of a lovely smaragdine ale.


That is their prerogative, of course, and this shocking revelation did not affect our performance. But Jumpin' Ewan MacGregor! Somewhere, a leprechaun is turning over in his very, very, tiny, hilarious grave.  

NOT a leprechaun. His name is Panda The Doorman. And he can hurt you



Fun With Toothpaste


Despite the day's hiccups & revelations the show came off without a hitch. Two sets of the kind of musical mayhem that put PDC on the map and you on the dance floor! We even threw in some Irish content with a little U2 for good measure (we were all out of Thin Lizzy). Some kind person approached me and described PDC's performance that night as "incendiary". Isn't that nice? The folks we meet in our travels are truly wonderful.


New wonderful fans!


And then there are the folks who share things with you that are.... interesting. Rock 'n' roll, kids, is a funny hobby. Nowhere else can you have incredible highs, adrenaline-drained lows, screaming fusillades of admiration, quiet moments of pre-show introspection, adoration from both male & female alike, intoxicated naysayers.... all in one night!


My personal favorite moments are when ordinary folks feel comfortable enough (substance-aided or otherwise) to share very personal details of themselves with you, a perfect stranger!


A fella from Nunavut shared with me of his travels from that far away land and adventures that led him to Red Deer.


One lady I spoke with told me her entire life story in five minutes though I didn't ask for it.


Another young lady I talked to after the show somehow veered into the topic of using toothpaste in the shower for personal gratification other than your chiclets.


And with every person I chat with before or after a show, I make eye contact, listen respectfully and, in some cases, try really hard not to laugh.


Essentially, you just give folks the time. Hey, they pay to get in, buy a CD with your lousy mug on it so the least you can do is spend a few moments with them. Isn't that what St. Patrick would have done?


Beats the hell outta me. I sure like those toothpaste stories, though. 


And that's the unvarnished truth.




Additional pics by Cap't Sean E. Watts