Bush Tetras played the Saturday night of Flywheel’s 20th Anniversary weekend on April 13th 2019. As Tanya Pearson’s great video shows, this was a perfect way to celebrate Flywheel. I still can’t quite believe it happened. And the story of how it happened is one I like to tell, so here goes!
I went down to NYC to see Bush Tetras at the Kitchen in December 2018. I was supposed to meet a friend there, but she got stuck at a dinner party (which is itself a story that she probably tells). I remember waiting for the show to start, and seeing Pat Place walk in, and feeling starstruck in the same way that I was when I would see Kim Gordon in Northampton. They were so good – I was thinking to myself that they were probably the best live band going, and that Pat Place deserved a place in everyone’s list of guitar geniuses (check out Tanya’s interview with her). They were playing right on the floor – there was no elevated stage – and it felt really intimate, like a Flywheel show. Looking around it seemed like they were playing to a lot of their friends, and they were talking enthusiastically with a lot of people before and after the show.
Because I was there alone, I was dancing by myself, in front of the band, blissed out. When the last song started Cynthia Sley pulled me onto the stage to dance there. That song was Too Many Creeps, so I hope that I wasn’t picked out as an illustration!
We had by that time started planning our 20th Anniversary, and it struck me how great it would be to have them play. Cynthia and Pat were busy talking to other people, so I went over to Dee Pop and Val Opielski who were packing up at the back of the stage. Dee said that they might be able to do and gave me his e-mail address. When I brought the possibility back to the collective, everyone was very much up for it, so we made it happen.
During the show, one of them, Dee I think, congratulated us on our 20th Anniversary, and said that we were still kids, since they had just celebrated their 40th anniversary as a band. That felt inspiring for the future of Flywheel. And I got the feeling that they got some good energy from our enthusiasm too.