Boise, ID

Get ready for Boise! I didn’t record anything there!

“Explain this long post then,” demands AG snippily.

Whoa, what’s gotten into you today?

“Sigh… I’m impatient to hear about further recordings, not just travels. I already know you traveled, and all those scenic pictures just make me jealous.”

Well, lucky for both of us then that my remark about not recording was a gimmick. I didn’t record in Boise, but I did record in two fairly close Idaho towns — Nampa and Mountain Home. But first, an interesting story!

So there I was, driving away from Bend.

The geographical center of nowhere.

I didn’t realize before leaving Bend that there would be no civilization at all for the next billion miles. I had a half a tank of gas, but it kept dwindling

and dwindling

and dwindling

until the fuel gauge was starting to go below E, still with no sign of civilization in sight. I actually found a couple gas stations — more like shacks — but they didn’t have prices listed (and had trees growing out of them), so I assumed they were closed.

I began to formulate a plan: the moment my car dies, call AAA. I took note of the mile marker and got my coordinates from the GPS so I could tell them exactly where I was. It would mean costly delay, but I was planning on using the time to fire up my laptop and get some work done.

I was well below E at this point. Another gas shack was coming up, but I assumed it was also closed until I saw a truck parked in front of one of the pumps.

SALVATION! I feel certain I was literally seconds away from running out of gas. I rewarded that gas shack with business by filling up and buying some snacks.

Interesting story right?

“That story sucked,” compained some of the teenagers.

You guys… what reprehensible vocabulary. I bet you’d like my story if I had sung it to the tune of “Love Shack”… “The gaaassss shack is a little old place wherrrre… we can get –”

“No, that sucks worse,” they agree immediately.

Anyway, the rest of the drive through Oregon was scenic as all get out. Which is to say, quite scenic.

This nothing is the most something-like nothing I've ever seen! On this trip I often thought about the engineers who built these roads.  They were the stuff of legend. Wide-angle lens would have been nice. This vista looked so huge and awesome in real life that I fully expected it to look this unimpressive on film. Now we join that river we've been loosely following on a trek through the mountains. Scenic as heck.  Actually, far more scenic than heck. Let's go in for a closer look. These mountains were to prove my undoing! On the other side of the mountains, having forgotten to put my seat belt back on after the photos.

I was about to safely leave Oregon, when suddenly,

Do you know why I pulled you over today?

I had removed my seatbelt to take some beautiful mountain pictures. This particular officer, unlike me, was attentive to my lack of seatbelt. Good job officer. It’s probably because he is used to all the mountains so they don’t give him a sense of awe which normally causes one to forget one’s seatbelt.

“Ok, fun stories about gas, scenic scenes, and tickets. Now what about the recording sessions??” says AG impatiently.

You’re going to have to change your name if you keep that up, Girl.

“Hmph,” she pouts cutely, folding her arms and looking away.

Haha, ok. So, very soon after leaving the attentive officer, I was in Idaho!

Entering ID.

Wherein I drove to Mountain Home, which oddly enough is not in a mountain. But it is kind of between mountains, so that’s permissible. Still better than Rhode Island. A fellow named Corey Grubb had contacted me via an amazing amount of text messages about the project, and we arranged to meet at a gas station in Mountain Home. He showed up in a car with some friends, and I followed them back to one of said friends’ house. (It doesn’t sound right but I think that’s correct grammar.)

Follow, follow, follow, follow, follow, follow the Idahovian students.

Wherein we unloaded everything and I got to officially meet Corey and his friends, Anthony Mazel and Stephen Kruckeberg. They are high school students who enjoy making music. Sweet. I set up the stuff and we started tracking!

L-R: Anthony, Corey, and Stephen, laying down the tracks.

I would like to reiterate my previous assertion that cleaning supplies make great mic stands.

This mic stand really sucks!

But sometimes so do … wire bins?

I was always pretty good at improvisation.

After that, I backtracked a ways to my host, who lived in Nampa and who also happened to be a musician with a sweet name.

Um, this is where someone asks me what his name was.

“What was his name,” mumbles a surly teenager, looking at his shoes.

His name was Amadeus DeKastle! Sweet name!

Amadeus, with instruments.

Amadeus did a lot of awesome things for me:

  1. He hosted me, which is of course awesome.
  2. The following day, he recorded all the above pictured instruments for me. Yes, that is a digeridoo (and a mandolin).
  3. He introduced me to joik, an amazing traditional music from the Sami people in Norway, and some of the modern bands which perform music in or based on this style.

I had a great time hanging out with and recording Amadeus, who is also a teacher. He’s a super friendly dude and I’m glad we got to hang out. As usual, however, the hangouts were cut short by my need to be at the next stop.

No one’s asking? Fine. The next stop is Logan, UT!

“Logan? What’s in Logan?” barks Mr. Yerfulovit scornfully.

You shall see, my skeptical friend. You shall see.

NEXT: Logan, UT!