If you had the means, what would you do to help your favorite indie band slay during their tour? With the cost of fuel, increase in plane tickets and inflation all around, it’s the artists and what they put up for sale that is first to be cut when it’s time to tighten the belt and make sacrifices. This is what I feared for many musicians when the mandates began to lift and were instantly replaced with gas prices higher than I could get. I kept thinking about the night The Writher’s came through Portland on their very first West Coast Tour. It was when I learned about the thrill of being on the stage being so worth the lack of showering, comfortable places to sleep and making money for food and gas on the road by means of merch sales. The Writher’s did not once complain about the lack of everyday comforts. The show proved that.
It was also the night I wondered why my pink and black-clad buddies didn’t ask to stay with me while they were up. It would have only been a night or two as they were off to Seattle the following night. HOWEVER, Rikk R Treat, Chewy Morsel, Robert Writhe, and Kenny Wolfsbane hadn’t thought to ask, but if they did, would they have?
Because of that night and my desperation to get back to small venue live shows, that I had the idea to offer my basement to a few of the bands I have connected with through their music and interviews when they come through Portland. As creepy as it sounds, it’s not a basement with a Necronomicon but, I do have a ‘Goth Dad Thirst Trap Calendar’ that I forgot to take down when Vision Video accepted my offer to use my basement. So, there’s that.
My husband didn’t put up a fight when I told him who would be coming March 25th. He is used to me inviting what he once called my “virtual friends” over. That’s because quite a few have become like family. But, when our family fur baby, Zero, reacted to Dusty, Emily, Jason and Tom the way he does when we come home, my hubs knew these goths were cool. Besides, it was The Writher’s who turned us on to Vision Video in the first place and we would trust them with Zero.
Not only were Vision Video cool as fuck, but ultra kind and grateful for allowing them into our home. While we chatted and they rested, I’ll admit there were times I was screaming, “Oh fuck my goth! I have THEE Goth Dad putting on his makeup in my powder room!” inside of my head. But, I instantly remembered that this moment was for them. And aside from having Goth Dad and Emily hanging out, I got to know the other members of the band; drummer Jason and Bassist Tom who is filling in for Dan for the tour. While it was a bummer I didn’t get to meet Dan, I am considering connecting so well with Tom as one of those once in a lifetime gifts. The stories Dan and Jason told about themselves and their life as musicians and other roles were enough to make me forget to get ready to watch the four of them play at the famous Coffin Club for the mini OFTS Fest.
March 25th, 2022 was one of the funnest nights I’ve had in so long. Not only did I finally get to witness Vision Video delight the goths of Portland, I discovered Datura and Profit Prison. Give me all of the new post-punk elixer! My husband and I were welcomed with open arms and love from the founders and regulars of Portland’s goth scene. That alone was so fucking awesome because I didn’t have to have to a certain body type or certain amount of followers to even communicate. The bartenders are friendly but, it was the fans that were my favorite treat. I don’t know if it’s Vision Video’s energy or that’s just how PNW goths are but, everyone was smiling, happy and willing to socialize. Even Shadowplay!
The next day, before my fam and I set off to SoCal, I was left with a note from the band. It’s a message I’ll frame and keep next to my workspace. Not because I’m being creepy but as a reminder of who I am and what I have to offer those who have given me and the world music. Sometimes, music is all I have to keep moving through this existence. It’s my favorite kind of poetry. So, if I can help offset some costs, offer a weary band to lay their heads and help them sell merch so they can have more time with their fans, then thats the very least I can do. I feel like so many artists have felt alone and hopeless and needed just one person to offer their genuine help despite how small the gesture. I know I have.
Vision Video is a genuine art movement. Every member is an element to the whole and the energy they emit once they combine is spellbinding. I wish Dusty, Emily, Jason and Tom well on the rest of their Inked In Red Tour and I hope to hear all of the stories that came from it.