The big itch

I’m not going to claim that Yo La Tengo’s the best band name anyone ever came up with, but once we decided on it, that was that.  On this day 28 years ago, we are the first band of three at Providence’s Living Room.  Also on the bill, the band formerly known as Rash of Stabbings, recently redubbed Rash.  Was that an improvement?  Both Rash and Down Avenue took advantage of the generous dimensions of the Living Room stage by leaving their equipment in place for us to set up in front of.  Both Rash and Down Avenue had drum sets that were entirely electric.  An ideal night for our Providence debut this may not have been.  When asked for the beer that our contract called for, the club informs us of its policy of providing it only after we played.  Seems logical to me–if the band is sober for their set, who cares how drunk they are for the drive home?  Believe it or not, it would be four years before we returned to the Living Room.  (Speaking of believe it or not–we’ve been to Calgary three times in 30 years, twice on this day, 1995 and 2008.  Really.)