In this Crazy Tour Stories segment, the pop rock band, newfamiliar, shares one of their stories from being on the road. You can check out the story, after the break.
We’d only been a band for a few years, and somehow found ourselves with a few shows in the Philippines. None of us had been to that part of the world before, so we had no idea what to expect. We were to be there for 10 days, with only 3 shows, and the rest we were basically being filmed like tourists. Yes, we were that lucky! On our second night there, our tour guides (a guy from Leicester, and an Australian dude named Dusty ) decided to take us out, to show us what this place had to offer. Fast forward 3 hours, 2 of us have eaten a rotten duck embryo (Balut, a local delicacy), we’d all found a taste for a local beer called Red Horse, that tastes just like Peroni, but much stronger. We soon realized we were some of the very few westerners on this specific island. Fast forward another few hours, someone naked skateboarding through the hotel, while another pouring his heart out to the receptionist. This is where the memories wear thin for us all, which is definitely a good thing considering the flashbacks I still have to this day. We’re shocked we didn’t lose anyone that night.
The next day, after less than an hour’s sleep each, we had to clamber onto a bus, followed by a boat trip into a cave full of bats. Still to this day, the worst hangover of our lives. Some new characters to introduce, our photographer (a dry British guy), a tourist Texan man, who had made a move on all of us at some point, and Randy, our local guide. Randy was a jack of all trades, he could sail, he could dive from the side of the boat to catch a fish with his hands, and he could score us weed, which if you’re not aware of drug laws in the Philippines, it’s worth a quick google. We arrived at a small village called Port Barton, to find huge billboards of our faces everywhere before being greeted like celebrities. Again, we’d barely dipped our feet in the music world at this point, so this was quite the shock for us. We were taken out into the bay to swim in the coral off the side of Randy’s boat, one of the rarest eagles in the world was flying above our heads ( the Palawan Eagle ) and as we were swimming we were just inches from the most venomous sea snakes in the world never mind the equally dangerous jellyfish! We then went swimming at the bottom of a waterfall deep inside one of the island’s forests and on the trek back down from it we came across a local fisherman with his catch for the day. Ryan bought everything he had ( an eel and a few fish ) to add to a meal the locals were cooking for us that evening! We were to play a gig that night on the beach. We were given a specific time to arrive for food and as we walked through the hand-made bamboo and palm leaf windbreakers we were taken to sit like lords at a feast! They had roasted a wild boar and laid it on palm leaves on top of the table with an apple in its mouth and neatly placed around boar was the seafood we had bought earlier that day. Definitely a one of a kind gig. This is when one of us met a girl who was to become a constant over the next few days. The classic holiday romance ensued. Well, I say classic. What that entailed was a naked run up the beach, into the sea, smoking a joint that Randy had provided but when they left the sea, they realized her clothes had been stolen from the beach. Which was the least of their problems, with the two large vigilante-looking men armed with machine guns headed down towards them. We’re shocked we didn’t lose them that night.
Danny had bought a Longboard for the mountain roads and had made a habit of hanging onto the back of the Tuk Tuk’s, which was mostly received with a thumbs up from the driver, as they put the hammer down and sped up. He loved it until his wheel hit a stone, which stopped dead. His body carried on, at about 30mph. The only witness to the event was the Aussie Dusty, who shouted out ‘Gnarly dude’ as Danny’s body hit the ground and slid for 10 feet or so on the stony, damaged tarmac. His leg was literally cut to bits and was infected in no time but no worries you can just buy antibiotics in the local shop.
A few days later, we found ourselves at a boat party. Everything seemed to be going well apart from the odd drama of our Aussie guide falling off the boat in the dark, leading to Danny and our photographer diving off the boat in attempts to save him, not realizing the experienced surfer had already pulled himself back on. After another few beers, and luminous blue shots, Will fancied a dive off the boat too. What he’d not realized is, we’d anchored up in 2 feet of water. Face first into the sea bed, from about 10 feet up! He literally could have died from that.
Highlights of the rest of it include a drunk fight between two band members, visiting a prison and meeting mass murderers with kind eyes, visiting an island where they still use fish as currency, and a few tattoos.
Would we go back? Without a f***ing doubt!