A tour's success depends heavily on the maintenance of body and soul. The band members each have their own regimen that has kept them going for twenty shows in a row. For some, it may be an afternoon walk around the neighbourhood. Others find a local gym or do yoga on the bus. The low doorframes are constantly being used as a grip for stretching exercises. The tour rider (a list of consumables requested by the band for each city) is completely organic. And then, of course, there are the long phone calls home-to satisfy the heart.
As for me, there's a spot in the centre of my back that feels numb from lugging around too much equipment. But I can't really complain. The only injury I've suffered is a bruised palm, sustained during an attempt to open a beer bottle on a ledge.
Today everybody is slightly more mellow. As I discovered during last night's bus jam, Marty Kinack (Broken Social Scene's wizard on the console) makes a mean Marguerita. The mass come-down is softened by the arrival of friends and lovers, who will remain for the last part of the tour. Marty's girlfriend, Shelley, and I chat through the first few songs of Do Make Say Think's deliciously meandering set. We connect over our shared joy in walking around town with headphones on and letting DMST provide a soundscape for the day.
I go backstage after the Do Make set and see Saxophonist Jay Baird in happy embrace with his much-missed friend, the lovely Jen. Having spent a good deal of time with Jay, I've learned that even amidst the crowded chaos of tour living, you can develop a longing for certain people. Whether it be a girlfriend, daughter, husband or parent, the massive bombardment of stimulation on tour can make the people you love seem farther away, both in distance and in time.
In keeping with the warm atmosphere of the evening, partway through "7/4 Shoreline," Kevin brings the show to a temporay halt to prevent a fight breaking out between two guys in the audience. "That's not what our music's about," he says to the hushed crowd. The matter is resolved, without anybody being thrown out, and the good vibes continue.