Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Well Lit and Amplified Tour with Blake Shelton: Day 1

"Where is everyone?" I whined into my smart phone. I was standing out in the rain, withering in my rain boots without socks, in the chill air of Toledo, Ohio.

"Walk to the back of the bus. There will be a door open just a crack. Carlo is waiting for you." Click. Sure enough Carlo peeked behind a crack in the dark cement wall just ahead of me. I slipped inside. Happy to be warm. Happy to have found everyone again.

"Go ahead. Take a peek." Dia said as she nodded her head toward a large door with misty neon-yellow lights shining through.

I reverently walked up a short flight of steel stairs and stepped onto the stage. It was gigantic! I had tried to envision this moment over and over in my head for months, and I couldn't quite wrap my mind around that enormous amount of space! There was room enough to have a small war. I peered out into the dark. I could see seats, tiny little bug seats way, way, back.

And I think I just stood there, motionless for about seven minutes, before I moved, before I breathed even.

We took our first tour inside the venue, reading out loud to each other, the laminated postcards taped just outside of each of the doors. "Production"…"Dia Frampton"…"Female Dressing Room"…"Catering"…"Beer Camp"…" 

Wait a minute.


Yes indeed! Behind door #1 there was a printed plastic backdrop of a wooden barn across the walls. A fully stocked bar  stood proudly on the far side of the room, complete with any and every beverage you could imagine. Carlo lost no time in picking up the karaoke mic. He sang, "Stayin' alive! Stayin alive! Ah ah ah ah…" (Yes there was karaoke set up on the other side of the room …Of course!)

We peeked our heads around the next door. The room contained a treadmill, some weights, and a bicycle, as well as a several other workout machines.

"Do you think all that stuff is Shelton's?" I asked Nick, my jaw dropping.

"I wouldn't be surprised with everything else that's happened today." 

We watched Blake's rehearsal. His background scenery was beautiful: mason jars, open highway, his face:) The music was mesmerizing. After every single tune, I kept leaning over to Dia and whispered, "Now, THAT'S a good song." After a few more songs, she stood up from the seat beside me, and joined Blake on stage to sing their duet, "I Will".

It was at that moment, while bathing in those larger than life stage lights dancing and zigzagging across the stadium seats, when a small innocent thought began growing with a quick intensity: 

"Take me with you "Country Music".

I can put straw between my teeth, drive old pickup trucks, and drink sweet tea! I can sing about loyal dogs and missing somebody I love.

I could get used to this.



  1. It's good to see you're fully embracing the country vibe, gives me hope that I will be able to as well. I'll be seeing you guys in March for the Seattle concert. Never thought of myself as really a country fan, but reading this gives me high hopes that I will be able to enjoy myself the entire night and not just when you guys are playing. Can't wait to see you guys, have fun on the rest of the tour.

    1. Trust me Sunny, contrary to how you or I might have perceived "Country Music" or the "Country Western" lifestyle before, it's impossible not to have a good time in this atmosphere!

  2. Aww Meg! I'm so excited for all of you! That is just amazing! Have so much fun on tour! I wish you all were coming to Texas so I can witness all of the magic for myself, but I'll settle for watching the live videos on youtube! So stoked for all of you!

    BEER CAMP?! Too awesome.

  3. I'm soo happy for you guys!!!!! Finally on the big stage! How was the new guitar?

    1. I'm just about to try it out for dress rehearsal! Wish me luck.

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  4. Thank you so much for keeping us posted on your adventures with Dia and the band! I can safely say most fans have no clue just how much hard work and dedication goes into putting on a good show and making it look so easy. I really appreciate that you & Dia have been giving us your thoughts and a peek at what goes on at rehearsals and backstage. Fascinating. Wishing the best for you guys! My niece and I will see your Worcester, MA show on 2/23. Can't wait!

    1. You are so welcome. It is my pleasure. You know, I was thinking the other day that there are so many things that people do all the time that I would love to know what actually goes on. So I want to do the same for you guys.

      Stay tuned for more. I'm going to try to keep this blog updated daily!

    2. Yeah...Reminds me of the "Dirty Jobs" episode on TV where Mike learns how to...Oh, never mind. :-) Have a great time touring!

  5. I couldn't help but smile the whole time I read this post! I'm so excited and happy for you guys! Can't wait to hear about all the adventures throughout the tour! Thanks for bloggin' Meg!

  6. Sounds like you're a long way from the pantry ;) It's so awesome that you guys are finally getting to play a stage worthy of your talents. So happy for you!
    Good luck tonight...can't wait to see you next month!!

  7. "Country roads take me home to the place I belong, Toledo, Ohio..."
    Do you need another back up singer? A roadie? I work for Beer and Music. Probably not, but I could make myself available if you need it. Just all sounds so great.

    You guys are going be great! No Worries. I have a feeling that you are going to get a lot more new fans from this tour. Once you get past the first song, its all down hill. Enjoy the spotlights, you guys earned them! Break a leg or a string! Not sure what musicians say.

  8. This post makes me so happy! I love that you're loving country music. And I love that the tour has started. I can't wait til you're in Sacramento and I can see all of you perform!

    P.S. I finally got a Chandler necklace (as a Christmas present) and I wear it all the time! <3

  9. Your blogs are vivid as a children's book. It's definitely something I will continue to read for as long as you make an effort to post them.

    Hope the band and everyone has fun this tour. I really wish I could go, but my internship is not too flexible with hours. It's at a hotel in San Francisco so I have to go in whenever they want me to. Shucks, I wish I was not "working for free"... If I was actually working there I could call in sick or request a PTO!

    Who knows... maybe you will hear about some crazy guy breaking into the San Jose venue with a sack of gifts. It may or may not be me trying to see you guys and present wonderful goodies.

  10. These are so fun to read! Thanks for sharing Meg, I'm sure you guys rocked it. Can't wait to see you guys in March at the Troubadour.

    Btw, I love that Carlo went straight for the karaoke mic. Ahaha, way to perpetuate the stereotype man!

  11. Meg, what songs will you guys be singing when your with Andrew Allen? Is Andrew Allen ok, or is he u know TERRIBLE! I'm sure Dia and u wouldn't go on tour with someone terrible but I just don't want to hav.e to sit through his singing after Dia finishes (on 2/22/12)

  12. We will be singing the same set as we do for Blake's shows, plus a few more from Dia's record, "Red" and "Bandits" from Cocoon.

  13. Beautiful blog Meg. Country tours seem a lot of fun... and I feel you guys are ready to take 'em on! They'll love you guys. I can't wait to finally see you guys in this kind of venue. It'll be different--but from the sounds of it, I think it's gonna be one heck of a good kind of different!