Summer Hair = Forever Young: A Warped ’08 Recap

So, Warped Tour is over and I gotta be honest, I’m experiencing some post-tour blues. You never would guess I’d feel this way if you read my first week twitters. (To recap, I was on The Audition‘s bus, and it was continually malfunctioning. Then I had to find a new bus and do the whole new kid at school thing all over again)

I wanted to blog every day, but there was an issue of personal space (lack thereof) and, I don’t know, I didn’t want to pass judgement on anyone or anything right away, if that makes sense. I uploaded tons of pics and videos constantly, but despite primarily being a blogger, I had trouble blogging. I’m not the kind of person who hangs out with a band member for 30 minutes and then goes OMG WE ARE BFF and then immediately log on to various interwebz to recount every detail of the conversation/interaction.

And maybe thats backwards and I need someone to slug some journalistic intent into me or maybe I just live in fear of being anything like that MS-paint abusing bastard Perez Hilton. What I know is everyone is not one thing all the time. Sometimes someone needs a shower, needs a sandwich, needs alone time, needs a phone call from their mom. I don’t believe in snap judgements, even though I make them in my head, so I try to sort out why I feel a certain way about a person before I put my fingers to the keys. Maybe that’s ridiculously over analytical, but I GET the power of the internet and being behind a computer screen shouldn’t make you feel like you can say things you wouldn’t normally say to someone’s face.

I watched tons of bands. I sang along to so many songs. I almost passed out a few times. I took a ton of videos. I met a lot of kickass people and made several solid friends. I accidentally ate a few bugs in Florida. I cried both times I left. I had good conversations. I had lunch sitting across from people who wrote some of my favorite songs. Would I seem cooler if I name dropped? Probably, but now is not the time.

Secondly, there really isn’t anything that different about being a girl on tour aside from the obvious guys can pee easy anywhere aspect. Some touring boys are actually pretty sanitary and don’t like their bus to smell like feet, despite whatever misconception you may have had. Oh, but truck stops don’t carry freaking LOTION so if you’re concerned with being soft and moisturized, you better bring your own supplies. Most things can be macguyvered if properly prepared. Just don’t be shy about hooking a hose up to the side of a venue and showering in your bikini while kids file in. If you gotta get clean, you gotta get clean.

Thirdly, Warped can be a bit cliquish at times, but the authentic connections will make your life. I really didn’t anticipate becoming attached to The Lordz of Brooklyn, but they were the sweetest group of guys ever. I got to be part of the best conversation between Kaves from The Lordz and Tatiana from Tat. Yonnas from The Pirate Signal was maybe my favorite person to talk to. He’s so instrospective and open-minded. I had seriously fun times with Aisha (TAI merch girl), and some fun slightly-drunken conversations with people I didn’t even know were in bands ’til I was in their photo pit later. Mendoza spread warped gossip and saved my life with allergy meds. I often sought shade in the Glamour Kills tent or in the Guitar Center weblab (shoutout to Sara!) MC Chris made everyone on our bus die with laughter, constantly, and effortlessly. I got to meet my Buzznet BFF Trendysecret, as well as the amazing talented Unsceneunheard and her sidekick Bellavenom. I lurked the FBR tent to hang out with Metal and Chad. Evan gave me directions to catering every day. I bought two awesome bags from Two Tree Designs and probably will buy more in the future because I love their stuff and Pablo is cool. I got some quality time in with Brianfax while he was on the tour, and got to hang with Jenrrray in Portland. I tried to watch Broadway Calls & Tat as much as possible because they’re solid people. And Sirah made me cry on the last day.

But the Warped Tour best friend award goes to Lazer, who does merch for Broadway Calls. He made me watch strange bands (Gil Manteras Party Dream, Hunter Revenge), complained whenever I got bigger servings of mashed potatoes, critiqued by iTunes library, send me more than a few texts that said “Wake up!” -but- he kept me entertained in the notoriously long catering lines (and even let me cut twice) and, while a large majority of people on tour were concerned with getting f*cked up in their free time (I’m not straight edge, but I don’t smoke and I don’t drink very often) I could be like, so, Lazer, I have some candy cigarettes, wanna hang out? and that would work. Also, he can draw goldfish pretty well.

All in all, it was a good experience, and I’d do it again. I have a lot of respect for touring bands and a crazy amount of respect for the artists who were out there hustling every day with very little support just so they could keep doing what they love. Warped Tour can make you or break you — this year especially, with gas prices and all — so I wish nothing but success for the bands that busted their @sses (and wallets) out there this year.

So long, and thanks for all the shoes (ok, i didn’t get any shoes, but I really wanted to say that)-breesays