US East Coast Tour Wrap-up
Once again I delay a tour ending blog entry and I forget most of the stuff I wanted to write about. Thankfully I have a list of the cities we went too and I will refresh my memory and/or quite frankly, make stuff up, hahaha. One thing I’ll say right away just to get it out of my system is that I lost my camera in the 4th gig or so and with it all the pictures I failed to backup.
The tour started with a few shows Florida: Tampa, Jacksonville and Orlando where the cities visited. I met up with Felix Deluna from DDrum Drums and he delivered my new and gorgeous drumkit!! MAN IT SOUNDS BADASS!!! It looks amazing and sounds even better. 20″ bass drum, 14″ floor tom and a prototype version on their killer Golf Ball Snare, red with black hardware… its hot. believe me. The show itself went great and we got to meet tons of cool fans that had been waiting for Richie to tour the US for the first time in 15 years. Next up was Jacksonville, I had never been there and i dug it. Cool beach and the people were very laid back. The sound was KILLER at our show…
Orlando was the stage for a few great moments for me. Not only was the show great as well but I had 2 very important people come see the show. One of them a dear friend of my family’s and one of the men that has supported me since I picked up a pair of drumsticks: Freddy Vilchez. We had a very nice lunch talking about life, music and how he saw my progress in this business, truly beautiful experience, family for sure… The second person was my old Berklee friend Omar Vivoni… one of the most badass drummers in Puerto Rico, this cat is a serious serious drummer and hands down one of the funniest dudes i’ve ever met in my life. I had only seen him for a couple of hours last year when he dropped by Draco’s studio where I was recording with Jamie Alonge.. it had been 4 years before then and another since, so it was again a great feeling seeing old friends, supportive friends, and funny friends. Another cool person in the audience was Mark Tremonti from Alterbridge, ex Creed… nice times.
We then headed to Georgia, Marietta to be exact. Cool bar, great food and even better company… another friend on the road you ask? you bet! not any friend this time, someone whom I have known since the day I was born, Frederick Arciniegas… i wrote about him here …. long story short, we hung out, it was epic.
Nashville was absolutely KILLER, one of the best gigs I’ve ever played with Richie I feel. The vibe, performance, and energy were all there, amazing crowd and got to see my homie Bill Franco and hang out with Kenny Olson, former KidRock guitarrist. Another cool thing was going to a party and meeting a couple of the guys from Cheap Trick, never a dull day/night in Nashville right?
Virginia followed then a few shows in PA, where Richie is from so it was a very emotional few days. The venue in Pittsburgh called Diesel was one of my favorite on this tour, Reading was a huge party and Philly was incredible, mostly due to my cousin Juan Carlos coming to see me perform… man moments like these make me feel so grateful to life and the people around me, I feel extremely privileged and humbled by these experiences.
NYC is never disappointing… we started by hangin out at Eddie Trunk’s radio show followed by great dinners and a phenomenal show at The Highline Ballroom.. once again i got to see close friends such as Ronen, another MONSTER DRUMMER and even better human; my friend Janet and Justin who took some insane pics, THANKS BRO!!!
Last but not least my old home of Boston… Foxborough to be exact but I felt close enough, believe me… specially after hearing the accent… what a great hang!! When I was at Berklee my friend Juani would always make listen to Richie Kotzen’s solo albums… ALL THE TIME, Juani is one of his biggest fans, and when I told him I was playing with Richie he thought i was joking, for a very very long time. I got him in the show and obviously got to meet Richie, we hung out and talked lots about the greatest team in all sports, Arsenal FC. Shout out to Ramon for coming down and incredible guitarrist Ethan Brosch with whom I recorded a song with.
It was AMAZING see all of you guys!!! THANK YOU!!!
Special thanks to our manager Erik Luftglass and road manager Todd Phillips for making it a perfect tour… you guys are too damn funny.
To conclude i’d like to post the OFFICIAL video clip for Richie Kotzen’s “LARGER THAN LIFE” off of his latest cd “Peace Sign” – Shooting this video was a lot of fun, hope you enjoy it!