2003-04-02 10:54 a.m.
Tonight I am going to interview Turbonegro for The Wave magazine. I can't get over how exciting this is. Their tour manager, Dean, just called me. He told me that the interview location has changed from the venue to the bar on the top floor of the band's hotel. Ooooh. That sounds very rock and roll. The time would stay the same, though—we will meet there at 8:30 PM.
Dean had a very thick English accent, and he had to say the name of the hotel many times before I could understand him. Sensing his impatience, I asked him to spell it and he was almost offended. Hm. I could tell from his irritated tone that the name was simple, it was just that his accent was difficult for me to decipher. I could also tell he thought I was an idiot. Luckily I felt like an idiot. Especially once I finally figured out what he was saying—the name of the hotel was totally a no–brainer. Duh.
But, that is ok. All I know is that I get to not only see their show, but I get to MEET THEM and INTERVIEW THEM. It's so exciting! But, seriously, the best thing about this interview is how it all came to be.
A few weeks ago Adam told me that Turbonegro would be playing on April 2nd. He also told me it was sold out. It had sold out in less than ten minutes.
They played at Hultsfredfestivalen in Sweden when I was there in 1998, but I had not heard of them so I didn't watch them. I kicked myself for this later, since they broke up only a few weeks later. But now they were obviously back together! I was frantic. I COULD NOT MISS ANOTHER CHANCE TO SEE TURBONEGRO. So, I called ticket brokers across the USA. They all said the same thing: the tickets sold out in minutes and they didn't have any.
So I tried ebay. No luck. I tried searching on Craigslist.com. At the time there were no tickets for sale on their classified pages. But, there were 45 listings of people willing to pay $100 or more to go to a show that originally only cost $10. But, no, my heart did not sink with defeat. I had another plan.
Here's the scoop. A few years back I booked the US tour for Big Bang, a Norwegian pop/rock band. At the time Big Bang was the biggest selling act in all of Norway, so this was an exciting job. The band was a joy to work with and their manager was a great guy.
Recently I found that my producer is friends with Michael Ilpert, the guy who worked on Big Bang's last album. I had made a mental note to call Big Bang's manager and talk about what a small world it was, and this was a perfect chance to do that. And, since Scandinavia is a small place, I figured he might have info on Turbonegro!
So I got out my phone card, pressed about fifty numbers, and then talked with Řystein for a long while. We talked about his current musical projects, the Scandinavian approach to music, and what we were both up to. He also gave me the lowdown on Turbonegro and how to get in touch with their manager in Norway!
Then I hung up and called the editor for The Wave and begged him to let me write an article about the band, and he agreed. This would be crucial—I figured it might be my only hope to get in to the sold out show.
I phoned their manager in Norway and while she was very kind and helpful, she informed me that Epitaph Records was handling their American tour. She couldn't really help me.
I emailed her contact at Epitaph in LA. The woman I spoke with was charming, funny, and overall a big blast of sunshine to my day. She was the biggest Turbonegro fan in the world and was so happy to talk with me about them. But she couldn't help me. She was in charge of retail sales and had nothing to do with the Turbonegro tour. Ugh.
But there was still hope! She gave me the name of yet another person to contact there.
So I emailed this new woman, another name on the long list of people I had touched on the long and winding road to Turbonegro's glorious ass apocalypse. She emailed me back and seemed skeptical. She had never heard of The Wave magazine. I sent her a link to the web version and dropped a hard copy in the mail to her. She emailed me back and said, "You are on the guest list. Meet the band at the venue at 8:30 PM the night of the show."
The GUEST LIST! I literally jumped up and down as I read that email—my feet left the ground. My smile almost broke my face in two. Sure I had been on countless guest lists before, but none that I had worked so hard for or cared so much about. It's a great life, this life.
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