smallsongs — Rae Fitzgerald
‘smallsongs’ is a Youtube series brought to you by Americana Highways featuring small & stripped down performances on the streets of different cities.
A couple days ago our baby Elliott had his first birthday here in Lima, Peru. My wife, Elliott and I spent this past year traveling the United States in our bus and meeting musicians along the way. We fell in love with New Orleans. We witnessed how each city we came to was handling the pandemic differently. Living in a bus, we needed to spend time in cafes to charge our electronics and to hide from the heat or the cold. Just south of Nashville in Franklin, Tennessee there was no mask mandate in the middle of March. A couple weeks later we were in the dense and beautiful city of Philadelphia which had much stricter regulations. Our observant baby stared at masked New Yorkers on the Subway. I held his thumbs on long walks to get him to nap as the day turned to night.
There was a socially distanced dance party at Barton Springs in Austin. Our three legged cat Bilbo watched other cats and people pass by outside the window. He sat on our bed in the back of the bus, then hid under the bed when it was time to leave town for somewhere else. When we were sick of a place we got on the open road with no intention of going backwards, just forwards. The road trips were timed out accordingly to match up with Elliott’s naps in the carseat. He got his knees dirty in city parks, and he chose to sit in the grass instead of on the picnic blanket.
At Wilson State Park in Kansas he sat in the lake. We were in cities mostly, to film music videos and to walk dogs. We made food and tea on the propane stove. We covered the windows, lit candles, and turned on ferry lights for dim lighting.
We parked on the beach at Mustang Island. Sometimes we took breaks in hotels and at friend’s places to shower and to watch HGTV. People’s energy varies from one area of the country to the next. The connections that we made were temporary because we were always on the move.
We built out the bus in Colorado and now it’s back there again as if it never left. We’re taking a break as the summer heat is a bit too hot for us to be in there, but we’ll be moving back in and heading for California this Fall!
On the way from New York to Colorado we made a stop in Columbia, Missouri to meet up with the talented Rae Fitzgerald for a couple ‘smallsongs.’ Rae and her partner Tobi are such sweet and welcoming people. We were able to park our bus in their driveway so that we could hook up our AC unit to protect us from a heat wave. Tobi also made us some delicious baked vegan mac & cheese, and we had plenty of time left over to stare at the baby.
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