Jan 11th, 2011

Its totally been a month since my last blog post. I have been busy working on my new album, I really want to avoid releasing a CD until I have something that is really good quality for you all! In the meantime I have my 4 releases out (yeah, I released a 3 song Live EP on Christmas day!) Check out "Grandmothers and Mothers and Brothers EP" @ www.speakerforthedead.bandcamp.com!

 

Anyways, the real point of this post: 

STUFF TO DO IN WORCESTER RIGHT NOW

Monday nights- THE DIRTY GERUND POETRY SHOW @ Ralphs Diner

this is a really awesome Poetry show on monday nights. Its a bar, so its 21+ (sorry kids). Tired of snooty poetry shows where everyone snubs their noses at you cause you dont know who walt whitman is? (I dont know either) Well this is the place for you. Its a Poetry Open Mic backed by an improv jazz/blues/noise/punk?/other band, poetry features, musical guest spotlights, a POETRY SLAM and a visual artist who paints/draws/scults/whatever while the whole show is going on. Its free, but we pass a bucket so that everything can get paid for. Seriously guys, awesome show! Check it out every monday night at 9pm! www.dirtygerund.com. The mastermind behind this is none other than ALEX CHARALAMBIDES, who I had the honor of touring with a few months ago. 

For those of you under 21, Alex also heads the Worcester Youth Slam, get involved HERE

Tuesday nights- English Club Open Mic @ 29 Camp Street, Worcester, MA

This week is this open mics third show of the series, and its been going great. Great crowds, great space, great performers! Also, for some weird reason due to the universe being awesome you can TOTALLY SMOKE BUTTS INSIDE?! I know for some of you that might be weird, but for those of you who smoke that is like some weird godsend. Anyways, 8pm on tuesday nights is when this goes down, and its hosted by none other than DAVE ANTHONY of Worcester Pop Punk band NEMES

 

THE RAVEN has a lot of really great shows going on so make sure to check them out every friday or saturday at 258 Pleasant Street, Worcester ma, or see the schedule HERE. Wanna play there? email me at mckillop.gregory@gmail.com and I will set you up with a show there! WICKED EASY!

TOUR PLANS WILL BE RELEASED SOON, HOWEVER my last weekend in Worcester involves some pretty awesome shows!

Friday Jan 21st- Folk Market #2- This is an all ages open mic oriented event. 1-10 dollars sliding scale to get in/perform on the open mic, and a 10-20 dollar sliding scale to have a vendor table to sell your art/homemade art/junk/books/used clothing/tarot card readings/whatever. I will be running an open mic and then playing a little bit of a longer set at the end. If anyone has no idea about running shows and wants to get into it, I will have little brochures with step by step procedures to run a show. Its really like 4 steps and not that hard though, so please take the music scene into your own hands!

(sliding scale means pay what you want!)

Sat Jan 22nd- RALPHS DINER- This is my LAST show in Worcester before leaving. I am not playing as SFTD, but I am drumming for my good friend COWBOY MATT, who does psychedlic jam band type stuff. ITS AWESOME AND YOU SHOULD GO. We are also playing with THE TICKLEBOMB ORCHESTRA, so you should totally go. Cause they are awesome. Facebook event HERE

 

cya round!

-sftd

 

Dec 24th 2010

Its been a little while since I posted this. Its getting to be the end of the year and three days ago I got off the road from pretty much about 6 months of touring. Holy crap. Sure there was a day off here, a week off here, but most of the time it was just getting prepared to go out again with a different band.

This year has been pretty nuts. The past few tours have been amazing: I gotta thanks Sound in Stone, Shane Hall, Sounds Like Funeral Music, The Fierce Urgency of Now, Dave Magario, Nemes, Sweet Hollow Drive, Alex Charalambides and Surrounding Ships for great times on the road all over. I have been as far north as (almost) Canada, as far west as Minneapolis, and as far south as florida. I am very excited for next year to go even further.

I have three more shows to play before the end of the year, if you are near any of them please check it out!

Monday Dec 27th- The Dirty Gerund @ Ralphs Rock Diner

Every monday night a few friends of mine put on this crazy awesome poetry variety show at Ralphs in Worcester. Some of you may have heard me talk about it before, but its worth mentioning again. It is a poetry open mic with a backing improv band (jazz/funk/punk/noise/whatever), a poetry feature, a visual artist, and a gameshow section at the end. I am featuring this monday night as a musical guest and get to play two sets. I am really excited about the line-up I have backing me for this show, its gonna be pretty spectacular. Also, if you happened to catch Alex Charl when he was on tour with me, and you liked what he did, you should stop by and check it out because he runs the show! Heres a video of him doing his thing:

This event is FREE but they pass the hat! its also 21+ sorry kids! more info HERE

Tuesday Dec 28th- The New Wave Cafe, New Bedford, MA w/ Sarah Donner!

So awhile back I played this show with this chick. Shes awesome. Imagine a really attractive musician female version (real life) megaman. Ok. Now imagine she writes really awesome poppy folk songs. Ok, now imagine she loves cats that are almost as cute as her. You now have Sarah Donner. We always miss each other on the "hey we should play shows together" deal cause I tour a lot, she does a lot, etc, but a great promoter by the name of Transient Authority is putting on a show featuring her, I happen to be home, and he is willing to let me hop on. Sounds good to me! Shows at 7:00 and you can get more info HERE

Wednesday Dec 29th- The Oxford VFW

This is going to be a great show! My long time friend Zack Cappoli put together a band called Here Come The Heroes, and they are hosting it. My also long time friend Erin's punk band The Clozapines are playing, and this is the first time I will be seeing my bros in Nemes (they have two awesome new members) in 3 or 4 months. Its the only all ages show I am playing in the area, so please spread the word and show up! Check out more info HERE

 

PLANS FOR THE 2011

Since I have taken the past few months touring all over the place, I am taking a break to get caught all up on songwriting and internet stuff. I know my websites haven't been all up to date, and this probably isn't that great of a thing. I looked around for awhile for a place to go for January, and the folks down in Fresh Brewed (Myrtle Beach, SC) have given me the oppourtunity to go and work down there to save some money while I record, and hook me up with some recording. So all of january I am going to be in South Carolina! I am really excited. Fresh Brewed is this really great faith based coffee shop where everyone is really nice, so I am excited to work with these people!

Tours will be announced when I update the whole website. But for now, I am going out with Sounds Like Funeral Music and Halfway to Avalon early febuary, and Surrounding Ships till April. In the middle there somewhere I am doing a solo tour up and down the west coast so get stoked and get in touch with me if you want to help me put together show near you! (speakerforthedeadbooking@gmail.com)

Finally, I released a new EP! This has three live tracks from my last tour, songs I wanted to get out (mainly for my family) but I will be re-recording them for the new CD. So please check it out if you want, the Grandmothers and mothers and brothers EP. Feel free to download it! As always, all my music is available for suggested donation of as little or as much as you want!

Also, if you have ever wondered what my music sounds like full band:

Dec 3rd 2010

Sorry for the lack of updates! I haven't had much time for anything due to driving through frozen tundra to the very top of michigan. Like, look across the lake to see Canada top of michigan. Its nuts.

Yes, I know all my friends from michigan are laughing at me because to them like 2 snowflakes fell, but we were in our little car driving north being all "are we gonna die?"

So anyways, I have been on tour with Sounds Like Funeral Music and my buddy Alex who runs The Dirty Gerund, and the tour has had its ups and downs but overall been awesome. Myself, and Carlos (the drummer for SLFM) have been backing Alex while he busts out some crazy spoken word. Its been a really great growing experience for me, because there havent been many instances where I get to JUST play guitar (without singing) in my life. Previously, I played guitar for Dental Plan for awhile, and every time I do I get to kind of just concentrate on guitar, and its pretty great.

That whole paragraph might have made no sense because I am in a car balancing a little tiny laptop on a bag while we drive through Wisconsin (I think) and making any of my words make sense is difficult. The point is, last night I played guitar with an amazing drummer while Alex made up crap and I made up crap for about an hour and it was great.

I really can't put together a coherant string of words at all in any way shape or form.

At All. More coherant update to come. I am so tired (I switched it up, I put it at the end this time)

-sftd

Nov 22nd 2010

Wow, what a leg of touring this has turned out to be.

Seriously, I am pretty sure this has been the most enjoyable string of dates in my life. Dallas Higgins of Foredoes Me Quite is really tearing it up too. We got some videos coming up of us performing if we ever get to sit down and upload them. Holy crap, there has been no time. Too much fun. I mean, I flew a kite last night at midnight. Life is pretty amazing.

After some serious car troubles (there always are), we missed our first date (sorry D.C.) and headed out to Philly, and missed that date too. However, we still got to hang out with all the kids who were gonna come to that date, so it was still really really awesome. (more on those kids later)

Friday we headed out to an impromptu gig at Goodbye Blue Monday, which is an amazing place in Brooklyn on Broadway. I have played there several times, and never ever had a bad experience. The owner, Steve, is a really pleasant guy and real easy to book with. A couple came in and one of them was originally from Sterling (near Worcester) so I made their second date a bit more memorable, which I am not sure if that turned out to help or not. Hopefully you two come out to another show so I can find out!

Saturday was pretty much the turning point. Arcadia College has one of the best crowds of students. Quiet, apreciative of everyone, and very supportive. Dallas and I didn't quite know what to expect, but the place blew us away. Special thanks to Julia, Matt, and Becky for making our time so awesome. We played with two great bands by the names of Kite Party (cool post rock-ey-sort of stuff) and The Pleasure. I also got to see a great lady by the name of Erin Cornely (who I get to play with when I return to on Dec 6th @ The Chat! Check it out if your in the area!)

After a night of hanging out with gracious hosts who we already missed as soon as we left their door, we jumped in the car and drove 7 hours to Rochester, NY. There is a place there called The Boulder Coffee Co. I showed up and realized I had played here a year or two before! It was a great realization because I realized that it was, once again, going to be a great night. We played with Shelby and Carly and Never Going Home, who both did acoustic sets. I felt really good about this night. 

Than (through the magic of friendships and the internet) my friend back home Laura sent out a call for a place to sleep for us. Her friend Ana answered the call and showed us an amazing time around Rochester. We ate Garbage Plates (a Rochester Diner Specialty including burgers, sausages, fries, and macaroni) went to a great punk show, and flew kites. Flew Kites? What? Ana and her friends all circulate in houses that run shows, so I am hoping to come back here as often as possible to hug them, because they are all amazing.

Tonight we are off to NYC for our second to last tour stop and then CT. We are playing tonight at Angels and Kings in NYC, so if you want to come by, COME ON BY!

-sftd

Nov 18th 2010

Awhile back I got a comment on my facebook which was along the lines of "Greg I don't even know you anymore, you are just some kind of show promoting robot!"

Its true, that is basically what I use it for: show promotion and the occasional once a month moment of weakness where I post some depressing status update to get attention.

However, I am trying to be a bit more real in this blog. So if you want to get some glimpse into what I am feeling, please either keep up here. Or call me. Calling is fine (email if you think you should have my number, and I will probably give it to you, or tell you the reasons why I disagree).

I wish I had taken more time after quitting Nemes to really figure out who I wanted to be as a musician. I was still kind of in BOOK BOOK BOOK PROMOTE PROMOTE PROMOTE mode (as that is primarily what I did in the band). When you are that attatched to something and its your job (which it was, I rarely had "real jobs" while I was in the band, I would just spend 16 hours a day on the computer or flyering or what have you) it becomes like a drug and its hard to get rid of the effects right away.

Well its been about 2 months since I left the guys, and the effects finally wore off. Im ready to be a musician again. And in the time since then I have pretty consistantly been touring, and have seen what I want to be, and what I don't want to be, and what I want to be a part of, and where I dont want to play.

So I have a couple hopes for Jan 2011, and I am not claiming that any of these will happen. But after I finish up all the tours I have booked this is what I want, and I may not get it right away but I will try my best. If you cared enough to click on this blog, I figure you might care whats going on in my head and whats in my future:

(WARNING if you DONT GIVE A CRAP how local/indie music operates: this will bore you)

1) Become self Sufficient and Mobile: Currently I rely on others to get around. I am able to provide gas money, but I do not have a car. There is not always so/meone to drive. I am usually able to find bands who want to tour, but not always with reliable vehicles, and not usually in the time frames I want to tour (which is every single day).

Solution: Greyhound (pay attention solo musicians who want to tour constantly) Bus lines has a promotion where for 530 dollars you get 60 days of travel anywhere in the US (and Canada). The pass extends to other lines as well, the full list is on their website HERE. This effectivly lowers the price of travel to $8/day if you travel every day, or if you take days for travel in between shows $16/day. Either way this is still far below gas costs, toll costs, and you get to sleep while you travel or work on a computer (with wifi, in most cases) to get work done. Most importantly, for 2 months straight you never run the risk of getting to a show, not getting paid, not selling merch, and getting stranded in who knows where. All you have to do is take 10 bucks from every show (2 cd sales, or 1 t shirts sale, in most cases) and put it away towards a new pass. This overall takes the stress of travel costs off (which is one of the biggest financial stresses of touring) which gives you more options of where you can play, who you can play for, and how much $ you have to spend on food that night.

2) Only play free shows : or if a venue insists on having a door charge (or if its a non profit type place, a charity, or other similar event/venue) try to keep it at $5 or below. Most venues you play with lights and sound have large overhead expenses. This means that a show needs to make $300-$400 dollars to pay the expenses of a sound guy or a bar or rent or whatever before bands can even start to begin getting paid. Most venues do not trust local bands to bring that many people, so (in a brilliantly ironic move) they usually up the door price to 10-12 dollars. This means 30-40 people need to come in order for the venue to be paid for, and 60 people need to come to even get enough to pay either the locals or the touring acts, usually not both. Locals rarely draw this much, so the venue doesnt reach its overhead, and bands dont get paid. Also, since fans paid 10-12 to get in, they have no money for a CD to help out with gass money. Everyone walks away a loser (including, usually, the venue, who probably also has large costs they can't handle, earns a bad reputation by not paying bands, and is left with a bade taste in its own mouth from bands who didnt draw)

Solution: Play acoustic more often than not. I want to only play full band tours 3-4 times a year and only when I know I can book shows along the way where we can get paid what we need but we don't end up screwing over local bands or venues or soundguys or fans or anyone. Playing acoustic allows you to play without a PA, ina  park, in a coffeeshop that doesn't normally have music. You can bring new patrons into a business or art gallery or open minded pizza shop that has never thought to have entertainment. Sure they can't pay me, but I am not asking for anything. Maybe some pizza.

2b) an extension, Never ask for a gauruntee again: If it is a show with a door charge, I want to ask for a percentage, and make sure the other bands also have percentages. I never want to ask a promoter to pay me out of pocket again, unless they want to buy one of my cds. I have walked away from shows knowing that locals who worked their asses off didn't get a cent because myself (or the act I was with) had a gauruntee. This just brings everyone down, and from a networking position (on top of being just wrong) it makes locals not want to work with you anymore because they worked hard, but for what? If a show I am on is the type of show that a no name local band with a fancy myspace is getting 400 dollars to play, maybe its not the type of show I want to play.

personal note: Colleges have budgets for this sort of thing, and usually pay 40,000 dollars for (not even) high profile acts to come through. I have no problem asking them for 300.

3) Continue to always make my music Free: this has worked so much better than any other format I have worked under. I would rather have 100 people download my albums for free, and tell their friends about it to generate more buzz and have the people who are generous and/or able donate money when they can, than have my music cost money and only the ten people who know who I am who have debit cards buy it. That Grammar was horrible, and I recognize it.

So now that I have been terribly idealistic, hope to see you on the road!

-sftd

ps: I want to put out more split EP's with whoever I can, or collaborate on music on various 1 album projects. If your interested email me at speakerforthedeadbooking@gmail.com

pss: told you that was boring :)

psss: 4) Never Book a Hot Topic Show Again (unless its Rochelle Furguson's store at The Greendale Mall in Worcester)

Nov 17th 2010

First step towards being a touring musician:

1) always assume everything will go wrong, and don't let it bother you when it does, and look for other avenues to get you to where your going to make every day worth it in some way.

(I am more typing this to myself than to anyone else)

I get a lot of questions from people in bands asking me how they can up their game on promotion/booking/should get they a manager/should we get signed? etc.

First off, I think I am the LAST person to answer that kind of question. I have a really long way to go to be anywhere near a succesfull musician. But overall I think everyone should do everything they can to learn how to manage themselves.

And this doesnt mean get someone to do it for you and figure out how they do it, I mean jump in head first to learning how to do the business end of things. Really, the only different between someone who "sucks" at booking and someone "who is awesome" at booking is the amount of people they know/how long they have been doing it. Anyone can get into doing any of this stuff if you put the time and effort in. And if you dont put the time and effort in you need to change that, or if you claim to be "too lazy" you should reasses your priorities.Being in a band full time isnt for everyone. Maybe your one of these people.

But really. Spend 4 hours on the computer sending emails and see how much better it works out than putting up a random facebook status asking if anyone books shows. Go to shows and meet the people running them and the bands they book and their fans (some of whom probably book shows themselves). Anytime someone introduces themselves as going to x,y, or z college in the first 2 minutes of meeting them, that probably means they work for the school somehow and can get you a show there. Everyone books shows these days. Just be nice to them and keep in touch and they will probably hook you up.

The days of the record label are falling fast. Theres no need for management, because really, you can do it all yourself. If you have a close friend who you know is hardworking, yea give them a shot. But most people who dont get paid put things on the backburner to things like...working a job and getting paid. And most likely you dont have the money to pay someone.

So just do the work yourself! Its rewarding to actually have an idea of where you are playing in the next month! Believe me its true!

On Another Note

I am not releasing a new CD in December. I might be releasing a split with Dave Magario that we recorded while we were on tour, but I need to get those tracks back first. But unfourtunatly, I was not able to get what I wanted done last week while I was recording. The tracks came out really weird and I am not quite ready to put out my "hey look at me I am wicked experimental and trippy" album yet. But I saved the tracks and am keeping them and maybe sometime in the future they will see the light of day.

And I am not going to talk about releases at all. Sometime in the future you will happen across my Bandcamp page and lo and behold there will be a new album.

If somebody wouldn't mind coming out with more websites that work like Kickstarter, so that it will become more than just a trend and will still be around when I am ready to make use of it, that would be great.

(please let me know if you would like me to come play in your house for your friends and maybe we can have dinner. I am tired of playing venues and want to take a break for awhile)

Nov 11th 2010

I am super exhausted.

Haha, I just looked back at my last blog entry, which started with the same thing. I can't be tired yet I just started doing this! 

Anyways, the last gig of the Dave Magario tour (went splendid, thanks for asking!) was at Arcadia College. Ill talk more about Arcadia College (south of philly) when I return there in a week or two, cause the awesome folks there deserve an entire blog entry all to themselves!

Anyways, got back to New England and hopped in the car with Dan and Corey from The Fierce Urgency of Now. Iv mentioned them before, your going to want to look them up. They are doing a really great fusion of folk and I guess post hardcore, but in a totally different way than anyone else is. Ok I am sure someone is doing this, or I have missed some major influence they have that is a huge mark on the industry, but either way, they are great guys. I hit up a few shows with them and enjoyed New Hampshire and Maine. We played a sweet little spot north of Brunswick for a rather large folk crowd, and they went over great. I got to hang out with my dad (who I am hanging out with now, more on that later) as well!

(insert here complaining about the middle east, even though it was a great show and I had fun hanging out with bands who I hadnt seen in 2-3 weeks, good times!)

Yesterday was the Flea Market in Worcester, and my hometown friends did not let me down. We had a great time, and Evan Greer came through, and also did a set at the Gerund. Evan can take any crowd and do whatever Evan wants with them, so check out www.riot-folk.org

RECORDINGS

Yup, I am recording. Using a hodge podge of different equiptment and the help of friends from Maine, New Hampshire, and Western MA, I am trying to put out an album which I hope is a tad more elaborate than my last 3. Still not a huge improvement, and I am still skeptic as to how its shaping. Its half new songs, half old songs, half songs that are old that I never play out anymore, half whatever else you want. I really can't figure out if its going to be a folk album, or a cd full of fuzzy/dreamy rock ballads, or something crazier than that.

I AM, however, really excited about it, no matter how it turns out because it means a lot of different things.

a) since I am getting it done at a pretty ok pace, that means I will have a CD to release on Dec 9th at The Raven and Dec 10th at the Firehouse in Worcester and Providence!

b) After putting out this album, I will be entirely caught up on all the older music I have written!

c) Why NOT be excited about releasing another CD?

but seriously, (b) is important. I have been looking forward to getting caught up on older songs and getting them out there because I really want to write an album that is written all in a row. Nothing neccesarily conceptual, or anything crazy like that, but I want to sit down and just write a bunch of stuff from scratch to see what comes out, without being influenced by having to fit other songs I wrote a year ago. 

Super stoked!

 

Also, please remember to keep up with the TOURDATES section of my site so that you can find out when I am coming near you! I have two great tours with Foredoes Me Quite and Sounds Like Funeral Music. We are missing an odd date or two here or there, so please help us out if you can!

And download my music! its FREE!

 

Nov 4th, 2010

This has been a pretty awesome tour. Not too many crazy stories, just a lot of really enjoyable sets played for a lot of really enjoyable people.

I don't want to type that sentence again so I am not going to check my last blog post to see what I wrote about last.

In case you haven't noticed, I am really tired.

Anyways, Myrtle Beach was great (apologies if I am repeating myself). Dave and I managed to end up book-ending a AA meeting, and it went really well. People really liked us a lot (he is making my cd's way neater because I put them together all messy. A girl in DC said we were like a married couple. I guess that happens after a 2 week tour)

The place we played was called Fresh Brewed Coffee House, and they were all really nice to us. I even booked a date to come back with Sound in Stone right away! While I was there! I also had the privilage to meet an extended family member I had no idea even existed, my second cousin Kimberly and her son Mike. They were really awesome hosts and I had banana pudding. My life is pretty awesome with banana pudding.

Washington DC is a very pretty place. As we drove in through all those arches I felt like we were in the loading screen to an epic final fantasy game. Was nuts. We played for a few kids and my buddy Chris Litchfield (long-time friend from home) in Dupont Park, but it got too cold by the time my set came about and I could not play anymore. I also ended up playing that night at a bar/open mic, and this dude in a cowboy hat told me I had a wicked "Johnny Cash Vibe"

Very Cool

Now Dave and I are sitting in a dunkin donuts waiting for our show at Arcadia College. We are doing a radio interview, and if you want to hear us talk about the tour, tune in (on your computers) at 4pm HERE 

Dont forget about my homecoming shows this weekend...but I already blogged about those...soo...

UPCOMING TOURS

Yup, Im getting back and then going out again. You can find my schedule in the "TourDates" section, but heres some upcoming ones:

W/ The Fierce Urgency of Now

11/5- The Roundtop Coffee House- Damariscotta, ME
11/6- Ground Zero- Allenstown, NH
11/7- The Middle East- Cambridge,MA

W/ Sound In Stone + Shane Hall and The Ticklebomb Orchestra

11/12- Dover Teen Center - Dover, NH
11/13- Keith Anderson Center -Orono,ME
11/14- The Bayside Bowl - Portland, ME

W/ Foredoes Me Quite

11/17- Hot Topic - Wheaton, MD
11/18- Hot Topic - King of Prussia, PA
11/20- Arcadia University - Glenside, PA
11/21- Boulder Coffee Co- Rochester, NY
11/22- Angels and Kings- NYC

 

HELP ME BOOK A TOUR!

So a lot of people have been asking me "come to my town!" I need your help! I am coming around End of December/ Early November with Sounds Like Funeral Music!

11/27- HELP US BOOK NORTHERN ME
11/28- HELP US BOOK SOUTHERN ME
11/29- HELP US BOOK NYC/CT
11/30- Love N Cup, Rochester, NY
11/31- HELP US BOOK GRAND RAPIDS/KALAMAZOO MI
11/32- VFW, Houghton, MI
11/33- HELP US BOOK CHICAGO
11/34- Rhino's, Bloomington, IN

Thats the first leg of the tour! if you want to help us out, send us a message of where you can get us a show near you!

See ya around! Hi Mom!

-sftd

Nov 1st 2010

Today and yesterday have been kind of down days for me. Sir Magario is out busking trying to make some cash while I get some internet stuff done (a few days ago the situation was reversed and I played for 5 hours on the streets of bloomington, IN. Pretty Great Experiance, hope he is doing just as well).

Yesterday since we had an off day and it was on the way, we stopped into Nashville. I believe I have to go there again sometime, because I did not really get a really great time. We walked down this long road to an area full of bars all with cover bands....it felt kind of similar to those "old west" areas in Six Flags. It was a sunday on halloween so there just were not many people walking around.

We went down to The Commodore to play at an open mic, but because it was a big halloween deal there were tons of regulars who took precedent to us, and it would have been midnight or 1am till we would have gotten to play. Since we had a drive to North Carolina to do, we decided to make some new merch and get some of the random free buffalo chicken (makes any trip worth anything), and then bounce. 

Hopefully next time I am there I have better luck.

So tonight we are in Asheville, NC. Dave's family put us up for the night and we have new merch. I was finally able to update my website and tourschedule (to a point) and tell people on myspace that I never use it, and that they should come here. So take a look around, its pretty nifty.

Tomorrow we are playing in Myrtle Beach, SC, which should be pretty awesome. I am stoked to be on the way back to New England to see friends back home, even if just for a week before I head back out with Dallas Higgins of Foredoes Me Quite.

-sftd

 

Oct 30th 2010

Tour so far has been amazing (but costly, if you have downloaded my songs for free please consider donating. Click here, its wicked easy) I will have an update with videos and stuff once I have time to upload them. Houghton, MI was a great little town on the border of Canada (I think), and we played at a Poetry circle in Chicago with a group of really awesome and supportive readers. Last night we played Bloomington IN at my favorite venue (Rhino's!) and everything has been amazing. I am going to make a post soon about bands you should check out to have more wonderfull listening material!

I AM COMING BACK NOV 7TH AND 8TH Since people have been asking, these are the two days I am back in New England! Nov 7th I am playing THE MIDDLE EAST. Originally this show was cancelled due to booking problems but we got it back! I haven't had much luck in Boston in the past so please come out so that the venue doesn't hate me and I am allowed to book again! The bill is entirely made up of my friends so you should check out the facebook event HERE. (later that night I am playing a special ninja gig somewhere in Providence, at 11pm at night. Want to keep up with where I am gonna be? Keep up HERE)

Nov 8th QVCC FLEA MARKET?!?!?! (click the link above for info, or click HERE. ) This is not an event I am playing music at, but something I am going to be running around organizing. It is a flea market with an open mic at the QVCC, headlined by Evan Greer. If you are interested in having a table to sell/showcase/giveaway your art/homemade stuff/t shirts/tarot card readings/other junk, it is a 10-20 dollar sliding scale to have a table/spot. If you just want to go to enjoy yourself, it is a 1-10 dollar sliding scale. Open mic! Open Discussion! Check it out!

And then I am off again so come to these events if you want to hang out! Please if you live in  Boston come to the Middle East show so I don't lose faith in the city completely.

total overhaul of my web presence to come soon!

-sftd

Oct 26th 2009

Unfourtunatly, I do not have any fancy pictures or videos to post, because Verizon is under the impression I need wireless to upload everything. And even then its spotty. But, I have stories. So.....

Rochester was amazing. We showed up at The LoveinCup and the atmosphere was great. We ended up opening for a comedy contest show, and the crowd was really generous. We even got a visit by friends of friends who were home, and this lead me to believe that Liz Swenson is really some sort of angelic fairy creature. Based on this event, we finally figured out a name for our tour. The "Parachutes" Tour. On a similar note, upon getting to Grand Rapids we were offered to record a split EP with James Shotwell of UTG. So now we are currently in sir Shotwell's living room, I just layed down 2 new tracks and 1 REALLY old song I haven't played in years. The "Parachutes" EP will probably be out in about a week.

On another note, recently I have been exploring some of the songs I wrote earlier in my "career" and I don't hate them so much anymore. Or I learned how to play, or something. Anyways, probably only 5 people will be pleasantly surprised by the older song I recorded but I will be happy to make them happy :)

Also, to all the kids who couldn't make it to the show last night, I am returning to Rochester to The Boulder Cafe on Nov 21st, so you have another chance! Or rather, its more like I have another chance to play for you, so please grant me it!

-sftd

Oct 25th 2010


and so our journey begins.

Roughly a month or more ago, I had a conversation with Dave Magario which ended in the decision to tour to Michigan and back. Fast Forward to now, a few vehicle changes and album/tshirt releases/getting out stuff together later, and we are on the road. After a rather hectic morning we got to Goodbye Blue Monday and played a set with a lot of really awesome bands. My favorite of the bunch was  Me and My Arrow, a band from MN (actually all the bands were from there, somehow). Ok, actually, Me and My Arrow was actually made up of members of every other band on the bill, who somehow converged on tour to play this one show all together, and still brought tons of people. It was a pretty amazing sight to see.

Also, they share a name with one of my favorite movies from when I was a kid, called "The Point". Look it up, kids movies used to be deep. I guess they still are, because movies like "Up" are still considered to be kids movies, and "Up" had some pretty meaningful contexts.

So we stayed with new friends (Daves sister) Theresa and Hugo, two amazing artists from Brooklyn and had a great time walking around the city. Its kind of nice actually taking time to check out what the places I am playing looks like. These two super impress me because they are working artists...and wicked talented. Check out their work  here and here

Oh, and I beat Dave at everything:



Tonight! We are off to Rochester, NY, which I am thrilled about because I have not been there in a little bit, and people actually listen to my music there!

-sftd

ps- hopefully I get some videos of Dave playing and Me and My Arrow before tomorrow, so I can get caught up!

Oct 24th 2010

So I will make a tour update soon, I am just trying to get caught up on uploading videos from my phone and its verrrrry sloooowww.

In the meantime, there are some things you should CHECK OUT while I am gone. The first of these is a monday night Poetry show called The Dirty Gerund. Its a great show that includes a poetry open mic that is backed by an improv band, a feature, guest hosts, game shows, pretty much everything. Heres a video:

 

It is at Ralphs every single monday, and is one of my favorite places to be all week in worcester. My buddy Shane Hall (who also has a radio interview on Blog Talk Radio tonight) is returning tonight to the Gerund to bring some rock!

If you hang out with me and my friends at the Gerund, this is what you will eventually encounter:



As the video suggests, through foot and head rubs the Gerund has convinced Shane Hall to return this monday night! So go support the show!

Also, go check out The Fuck Yeah Center, a really cool junk/punk/skateshop/thriftstore/awesome place in general. I played a really fun last minute solo show there before leaving, and it was great. Also, I have left a bunch of Speaker For The Dead t shirts and CD's at the store if you want to pick some up:

Cds are: pay what you want

Tshirts are: $10 give or take a little.

so go check out the Fuck Yeah Center at 420 Pleasant Street, Worcester for all your SFTD/book/thrift store/patches/pins/other junk needs!

(I promise a more hefty post will come when I have time to post one and when these stupid videos get posted)

-sftd

Oct 20th 2010

www.speakerforthedead.bandcamp.com

-sftd

Oct 18th 2010

Sorry Boston, I think we're through.

I've been playing shows for at least ten years now and I always thought I knew the deal: you have to work as hard as you can on each and every show to get as many friends/fans/random people to show up and either like you or pretend to like you as you can. I figured, yeah this is a job you have to pull teeth.

All this time I realized I was wrong. After touring to different parts of the country and seeing how (much better) other scenes operate, it makes me realize that boston just sucks. To a lesser degree, the rest of mass does too, but mostly boston.

Boston has become little more than an empty bar you play cause it used to be famous, and itl look good on your resume.

Now I have thought to myself: greg, everyone thinks where they come from sucks. But its hard to say Bloomington IN sucks when every time I have played Rhinos its been packed for no particular reason, when in the past two weeks in Providence I have brought more people to shows than in 5 years of trying to figure out where I fit in with the vneck infested waters of massachusetts.

I was going to give the middle east in cambridge one more go in november, but they decided the last show I did didn't pack enough people in so they pulled the plug. So sorry to the ten people in boston who care, but I think I am through. If the lot of you want to get together and have dinner, invite me, I will play you songs. As for worcester, I am coming back December ninth to the Raven, so please come out to the show and prove me wrong.

To everyone in other states, thanks for showing me playing music can actually be fun.

I now have THREE albums online for free download. Get them at www.speakerforthedead.bandcamp.com for the next week for free, than I will be upping them back to 3 bucks.

If you have paypal and like the money, you can choose to pay for the cds by sending any amount you want to mckillop.gregory@gmail.com

-sftd

Oct 10th 2010

Sorry for the lack of updates guys!

This is me basically everywhere I go:

The trip to NY was pretty long. No matter how many times we touring musicians try to think otherwise, the trip to other states ALWAYS takes 6-8 hours. No matter how early you leave, no matter how well you plan, something will happen that destroys all those plans. However, despite a few van troubles, and columbus day weekend traffic, we made it to the super secret loft where Amanda Palmer was putting together a show. Despite us being late (and holding up the whole process of setting up, rehearsing, all that jazz) her staff was extremely nice and awesome to us. These two folks from Kentucky who were stage managing (Kate) and running sound (Eric) were the best. Eric is in a 8 or 9 piece carnival punk band called Ford Theatre, and I

totally can't wait to get out there to play with them (OCT 29th!!!!!)

Above is the opener of said webcast (as well as a performer in an amazing show we got to play the day after) by the name of Zoe Boekbinder. She is amazing. There isn't really a way to describe her music (or I am just not versed in culture enough to do it well) but she uses loop pedals and is wicked good at guitar, and looks like Elvis and James Dean. Do I need anything else? no. She also played with us the next day at Goodbye Blue Monday, and her and everyone involved with her is amazing. GBM is also probably the best place I have ever played in Brooklyn, and I will be there next week on tuesday (Oct 19th)
 

Other (amazing) performers from the night included: A pop diva/cabaret wielding jazz lounge artist with a voice that attacks you by the name of Meow Meow, and an amazing performance by Bitter Ruin, a dramatic acoustic duo that I really can't explain how great their stage performance is. Go look up a youtube video. Actually, to make things easier for you, I will just find one for you.

 

::looks::

here:



 

Seeing Amanda Palmer play was somewhat like a musical pilgrimage. I have been doing radio interviews lately where whoever it is asks me who my influences are. And I know people say I sound like Deathcab for Cutie and Neutral Milk Hotel, but last weekend in Brooklyn I rediscovered that Amanda is a huge influence on me and I never even knew it. A lot of songs she played I could see traces and origins on where some of my songs came from. I used to have her music on my (insert player here) all the time, and I really need to make that happen again. I always knew she was who I wanted to be promotionally and she has an amazing connection with all of her fans, but. Yeah. It was awesome.

So Sunday Oct 17th is my official tour kickoff, and I am actually playing two shows that day.

for my BOSTON friends, you can go see me play at the MIDDLE EAST, which runs from 1-5. You can find all of the info on the facebook event HERE.

for my PROVIDENCE/RI friends, I will be jetting over to CLUB HELL, show starts at 7pm and I am opening. All the info can be found HERE.

I have tickets for both shows so please get in touch with me and go to either one based on your location/desire/when you get out of work!

A few reminders on how to stay in touch:

I have a Facebook Fan Page which I update fairly regularly, and it is connected to my Twitter (@greg_fordead).

Also, I did not end up going into the studio, however, I found ways to record on my own and will be putting out a new CD next week. I could really use the funds to make CD's and such (seriously, 60 bucks makes me 300 cds, so your $3-$5 dollar contribution REALLY DOES mean something) and my two previous albums are still up for sale online for 2.99:

www,speakerforthedead.bandcamp.com

Bandcamp has an option for donating more if you want, so if you happen to have an extra buck between paying rent/car insurance/food/phone bill/whatever, please help out. A dollar essentially pays for 2 cds to be made. Hope to see you all out on Sunday and after!

-sftd