I recently had the opportunity to sit down with The Shivas at the wrap of their Whiteout [KLP243] tour when they stopped by the Dub Narcotic Studio (WHAT. Holla at me sophomore album) and got to grab a sneak peak into their latest adventure touring with The Dandy Warhols.
A quick warning, most of these answers came from fairly silly questions. Their response: “Silly Questions? Oh, well, we’re very serious.”
Q1. Have you named your tour van?
Oh have they. Their van, a big white hunker you wouldn’t enjoy seeing outside a school, was previously a construction van owned by a company called Tim T. Taylor. To The Shivas it has been hence named Tim the Tour Van Taylor, which, of course, gets rearranged into every possible combination.
Jared: “But this past tour it was Tim the Tour Van Taylor-Taylor after Courtney Taylor-Taylor the lead singer of The Dandy Warhols.”
Tim, in total, checked in a whopping 10,000 miles for this past tour.
Rob : “The guy at the border on our way to Vancover BC was asking us about our band and what we were doing and stuff and he was like ‘So, who’s Tim Taylor, who’s van is that?’ and we were like ‘Uhh, we bought the van used bro, I dunno.’ He did notice the 420 and 69 in the phone number though.”
(The above picture is Tim chilling outside the K office in Olympia.)
Q2. What was the craziest place you think you guys slept?
Jared: “This tour wasn’t that crazy. Usually the record stores are [the craziest].”
Rob: “In general it might have been the Hovercraft House in Austin at South By Southwest.”
According to Kristen, with over 30 people staying there, the whole floor was people Tetris, people jig sawed, people getting kicked in the face. The house is owned by a friend of theirs who transplanted from Portland and runs Hover Craft Records. He wanted the house to be a stop for any Portland bands going to South By Southwest and had nowhere else to go, and did they all come. The majority of burger records caravanned down together and lined the backyard with tents. They had people rolling in and out of the house until 4 or 5 in the morning. “Yeah, it got wild.”
Eric: “I had set up a little bed before and had come back it, and someone was sleeping in my blanket with my pillow. I had to be, ‘Dude, I don’t want to break your heart right now but I totally brought that shit from home.’”
Rob: “Two of us did end up sleeping in the van that night. The guy we had parked out side his house decided to pressure wash his house at 7 the next morning.”
Q3. What was your favorite/prettiest venue you think you guys played in?
Jared: “This was the tour for that because they were mostly in theatres – gorgeous, with big chandlers.”
Kristen: “My favorite, not maybe the prettiest, was The Fillmore which was kinda surreal, and completely sold out. The 930 club in Washington D.C. also treated us really well.”
Rob: “They have the best cupcakes you’ll ever eat, their signature 930 cupcakes. It’s like biting into a black hole. Outside of that we played a show a couple of years ago at the Brookdale Lodge, which is a really cool venue. It’s this old haunted lodge up in the mountains around Santa Cruz, and the main dining room is built over a natural creek bed, so the creek is running through the center of the actual floor. And we played right next to that and the pool. Like there is the big plexi glass wall looking into the pool, which is closed off, and so it’s this scary pale blue glowing wall. Apparently a little girl drowned both in there and in the creek, so it’s a very haunted place. I guess the mob took it over in the 40’s and 50’s, so there are buried bodies and secret passages all over the place.”
Q4. How was it playing with The Dandy Warhols?
In complete agreement The Shivas had a great experience touring with The Dandy Warhols.
Rob: “Their whole crew was really supportive, and super knowledgeable. I was apprehensive before we left to how much attention we would get being the opening band, but that wasn’t the case at all.”
Jared: “It’s a huge rock and roll production. What we really realized is that the operation that they have rolling into those venues and playing those kind of shows isn’t nearly as opulent or as extravagant as some operations are. I’ve talked to crews who work venues, and one bus with a band and eight supporting crew member is pretty barebones for the big leagues.”