As Charlie and PJ said "happy bandiversary" to each other in their living room today, we laughed and shook our heads at what a journey it's been these last 9 years.
Things that have changed (in no particular order):
The number of country tunes we play has exponentially increased from 1 to 5, LOL.
We've aged! LOL ----People no longer ask PJ if she's 25 and charlie is 50. They just ask if we're both 50, ----PJ has more grey hair than Charlie, despite that she's over 20yrs younger, LOL.
Chuggalug does 200 gigs a year. So PJ no longer makes fun of Charlie for wheeling everything around on a hand cart because she uses it too now, LOL.
Chuggalug now plays a huge variety of live music venues within a 90mi radius, whereas formerly it was a 30mi radius.
Chuggalug no longer does "Barracuda" because PJ burned out on it, and can't muster the energy to wail on it anymore. Oy!
Charlie's hair grew super long. And then he cut it. It's the most popular part of our band LOL.
Actually our electric fans have become the most popular part of our band. LOL!
Chuggalug no longer plays Blue Sky or the Greater Frederick area, or MacGregor's in Havre de Grace. That's a little sad.
Chuggalug started playing Winchester, VA - WE LUV THE PEOPLE THERE!!!!!!!!!!
Friends and colleagues have died, far too young. We complain a lot about the traffic. But it sure beats the alternative, doesn't it?
We have no longer have spouses with day jobs to rely on for income and benefits. That's a biggie. ----Chuggalug doesn't play unless we get fed, or are compensated at a high enough rate that allows us to buy a meal before or after the gig. ----Charlie repairs all of our cables when they go bad. We don't just go out and buy new cables.
Charlie and PJ now have the same mailing address. They are together allllllll thhhhhe tiiiiiimmmmmmeeee, LOL.
In addition to bantering about everything at the gigs, we now also banter about everything at home too, like who made the biggest mess in the kitchen, LOL.
PJ now lives with two of these prehistoric things called "record players" LOL.
We rarely play our original music anymore, and we haven't written anything in years, because life got too complicated. ----We need to stop going through divorces LOL (that's funny because you only do that once, get it?). ----We need to stop moving all of our worldly possessions around LOL... like from a rented room... to an apartment... to our housie.... ----We need to stop joining new bands LOL!!!!! OMG the amount of driving, practicing, and promotion that goes on behind-the-scenes when starting a new band is phenomenal.
WE JOINED A LOTTA BANDS, LOL: ----In 2013, Charlie and PJ started 'Us!', released an EP produced by Lee Townsend, released a full-length album produced by Rennie Grant, and performed shows playing originals only. ----In 2014, Consuming Fire formed in Baltimore/Southern PA as a Christian rock, Third Day tribute band that no longer plays. We met friends for life Paul DiBastiani and Darryl Matarozza in that band, thanks to John Tracey. ----In 2015, we joined the Baltimore/DC iconic band Face Dancer, shot a music video for "Smash," played and managed some incredible hard rockin shows with friends for life Jeff Adams, John West, Billy Trainor, John Jamison, Cheryl Kilduff, John Harding, and Jim Steward, in addition to the late David Utter, Richard Kilduff and Bill Wiley. ----In 2018, we joined Motel California from the Baltimore/Harford Co, MD area. We met friend for life Spike Settles and his stellar wife Diane who books our shows (which means PJ doesn't have to do it for a change... YAYYYYYY! LOL).
Charlie still plays an '84 reissue of the '62 Strat, but it's a different one than the one that got stolen in Philly. Musicians know that instruments are very personal to us. No, he's still not "over it".
PJ now plays a Korg Krome, because the Triton went kaput. Change is hard!
We have both now played a fun schwanky "funeral party" - that was a first for both of us!
PJ no longer drinks alcohol on the gigs (unless it's a bar gig, and at the end of the last set). It had gotten outta hand years ago.
But! Some things haven't changed:
We still have the best job in the entire world - playing music to make people happy!
We still continue to meet and remain friends with the most wonderful people in MD/DC/NoVA/SoPA.
We still play, and continue to learn, a huge variety of mainstream music.
Charlie's outspoken Greekness is still sometimes hard to swallow, LOL. Like the time we weren't allowed to pull up to the door to unload at the Electric Palm due to new concrete, so Charlie gave the guy a piece of his mind. It turns out it was the owner. <doh!> (The owner was VERY gracious about it. Whew!)
We still get to play with 2 1/2 great drummers who we cherish!!!!!!
We still play at pitch (no tuning down).
Charlie still plays thru his Mesa Boogie, the loudest guitar amp known to mankind.
PJ still has the same last name, despite divorce, because she will never go through that horrible hassle again, even if Elvis himself marries her!
Pheel still has no kick drum mic stand, just a corn hold bag and a cowbell. Oy!
God & Universe willing, people still hire us to play music. We are truly blessed.
Hey. Maybe for our 10th Bandiversary we'll explain publicly to you all why we call each other "Otter."
Thanks so much for reading, and for supporting live music. We love and appreciate every one of you!
Charlie n PJ
(P.S. If you think of other changes that you've noticed, we'd love to hear about them!)