I was sitting in a sidewalk café in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina this past Sunday morning, July 20th, talking to my lovely wife Debbie about how Watershed’s three-gigs in three-days in three-different bars Rock & Roll Junket event was going and I said, “I met a couple last night who came all the way from Idaho to see the band.” “ON PURPOSE?!?!?” was Debbie’s incredulous reply. “Yes, on purpose,’ I said, “why else would they come?” “No, I mean, did they come to Raleigh for something else and then see that Watershed was playing so they came to the show?” Debbie clarified. “No,” I explained, “they read about the Rock & Roll Junket online and flew all the way from Idaho to North Carolina for the weekend.” After a short pause to take that all in Debbie said, “Now I feel bad. I didn’t even go see Colin the last time he played solo right here in Columbus.”
That’s the kind of weekend it was. Dara & Nick are our new friend Superfans from Idaho and the story is possibly even stranger than this sounds. Stranger because Nick lived in Columbus and worked for our local daily newspaper, The Columbus Dispatch, from 1995 to 1998 – possibly Watershed’s most gig-intensive period ever, during and immediately after their Epic major-label years – and Nick managed to be only marginally aware of their existence and never saw the band live. After moving to El Paso and meeting Dara, he got more into the band long-distance before the couple moved to Boise, Idaho in 2001.
I found out most of this from talking to Dara (man, I hope I’m spelling her name right) at Colin’s acoustic show Friday night at Sadlack’s Heroes. She had come up to where I was selling merch and we got to talking. When she mentioned that she and her husband had come all the way from Idaho for the shows I couldn’t believe my ears, I thought I had heard her wrong. “You came here all the way from Idaho?” was the first thing I said. “Yeah,” Dara replied casually, as if it was the most natural thing in the world, as if stuff like that happened to Watershed all the time. The first thought into my head (which I’m really glad I didn’t say out loud, because Dara was such a sweetheart) was, “I have never met ANYONE from Idaho who was not an Aryan separatist.” The second thought into my head (much like Debbie’s reaction above) that I DID say out loud, was “You came all the way from Idaho for THIS?”
Luckily Colin, Joe & Dave delivered a Watershed All-Timer set at The Pour House on Saturday night or else I was gonna have to clear it with Biggie to start plying the couple with free stuff from the merch table to justify their weekend expenses. (I’ve seen Watershed literally hundreds of times since 1990 and the Saturday night show was easily one of the Top 15, possibly Top 10.)
There were other people who came from far away at the First Annual Watershed Rock & Roll Junket – Todd came from wherever he lives now, Catherine came from Georgia, at least one couple came from our hometown Columbus, Jenna and her boyfriend/husband came from Hilton Head – but all of them are another blog for a different time, because Dara & Nick came all the way from Idaho to North Carolina to see Watershed. No, seriously…… - Ricki C. / July 24th, 2013
For more on the Watershed Rock n Roll Junket. Setlists and recap posted at Colingawel.com