Alaska - early times
Road dread for me was fueled by other's interest in drugs and lack of interest in new music. The shows were usually fine and looked forward to, but between leaving A to get to B there was not much R & R, a lot of C, D,. In the '70's 'it' got boring sometimes. Not the audiences, nor the shows. It. Just the overall it. Logistic problems were often the most rewarding challenge.
Approval of tentative concert dates being lined up by our agency had long fallen in my lap as Bill got further in to managing Steve and the film business, and that made it more interesting. Looking at the map of America, and figuring how we could get from A to B and net enough $s to get home was a challenge. I was good at it.
One overcast Denver day, in our agent's duck hunter appointed office, I told Lance to confirm a few 'far apart' dates just to test the American Transportation System and my judgment of what was do-able logistically. It seemed the 'system' was built for rock and roll anyway. Airports were everywhere, right next to car and truck rental places; hotels next to those. We could knock off 22 cities in 21 days, and sometimes did. So, I approved a trip for would be called extreme touring even now.
The dates taken, each consecutive day in this order, were: Denver to Central Park (NYC) to Grand Junction (Colorado) to Anchorage to Phoenix to Aspen. We spent over 44 hours in the air that week yet made it early to all the gigs. Unaware I was the approval culprit, the band wanted to kill our agent - until our checks arrived. There was a lot left over, as most nights we were in the 'air hotels' at 35,000 feet.
From my first time in Seward's Folly, this last frontier was noticeably spirited. Anchorage is great, different than any American city or place, and it wears out most people from 'below' with its pace. Especially during 'Daytime', when people play golf from 7:00 a.m. to Midnight, and the winter zombies are out everywhere.
Although in Alaska only 9 hours the first time, it has been appearing in my night vision and life since that first love affair fling with it. That first mid- '70's visit we flew in at 2:00 p.m., played at 7:00, left at 11:00. Thoughts of this first trip were with me years later as I headed a motor home north from Santa Fe, during an I-hate-us from the Dirt Band, for a much better time in a later chapter.