THE TOUR SOFAR

San Jose + LA Recap! 

VENUE      

A really great, spacious venue above a brewery in downtown Campbell, CA (right outside San Francisco). That California SUNSHINE + breeze. There is just nothin' like it. 

#OOTD

I had less than 24 hours in San Jose, so exploring a local vintage shop was not quite in the cards. Need to come back and visit to get that done! I did an outfit repeat from night one of the tour in DC, because that Cristian Siriano dress deserved a repeat. Another plus - I got to actually wear my hair DOWN because of that beautiful lack of humidity. In the SUMMER. It was revelatory. Then, I headed down to LA to bop around with a lovely friend-for-the-ages, Haley Estes. Wee went to Playclothes and I got the best dress I have ever seen in my life. It's like I dreamed it. And if I can survive the NYC weather in it, it is coming to an end-of-the-tour show near you. Hint: feathers. Lots of feathers. 

FELLOW ARTISTS      

Vudaje - San Jose native, did an amazing cover of "Wicked Game". Falsetto on fleek, as the kids used to say.

Anna Dellaria - Recently moved to LA, super autobiographical songs that hit home. 

Check out the playlist below!    

WHAT I SAW      

As I mentioned, San Jose was VERY quick. I did get to spend time with my amazing sister-in-law, which was a *treat*. From there, I went down to LA and painted the town red with my college BFF/roommate/gal pal for life, Haley. We saw "Rebecca" at the Orpheum Theater and heard the sweetest eulogy I've ever heard for this precious 90+ year old man who was obsessed with grand, Old Hollywood curtains. He collected them and was super involved in the Orpheum's programming, and in his honor they did a pre-movie curtain show featuring all his favorites. So precious, so cool. 

I finally made it to Griffith Observatory and did my best Emma Stone in La La Land impersonation. So beautiful at night. We also checked out the Beverly Hills Hotel (the coffee bar downstairs has pie that is to die for), which has such a classic California look with the pink and green. We also stopped by a speakeasy, The Varnish, in the back of Cole's, the home of the Reuben sandwich (which of course, we indulged in as well). Live jazz. Good vibes. 

If there are any New Girl fans out there (ME), the bar from the show (that has also been featured in a ton of other stuff) is a really cool actual bar/restaurant in Korea town with a fabulous menu. I stood by the piano and was tempted to sing "Nick Milla, Nick Milla, the streets of Chicago", but I digress. LA was lovely and I just had the best time. 

   

Till' next time! Follow me on Spotify, follow along on instagram, and I'll see you on the road.      

     

Love, 

Portland Recap! 

VENUE     

Avea Solutions, a building with a fabulous view of the sunset (even though the sun doesn't set till like, 9:30pm) from East Portland. We packed it OUT. #OOTD     

Okay, this was probably the biggest get of the whole West Coast trip, sartorially. I walked into Hollywood Vintage, this massive warehouse with vintage booths in every corner, and to quote Lennon & McCartney - I SAW HER STANDING THERE. An oversized, sequin track suit for the ages. I thought to myself - Natalie, find yourself something slightly more practical for the weather, the gig, your own humanity. But as usual with me, practicality did not win out. Fun fact: I did have to safety pin the pants so they would stay up during the gig, and there was a very real moment where I was sure the pin was going to break and I was going to experience a terribly embarrassing wardrobe malfunction from the stage. Luckily, they held up, literally. Shout out to the Julia Louis-Dreyfus episode of "Armchair Expert" (an obsession of mine on this tour), which I listened to in FULL while deliberating over said tracksuit. 


FELLOW ARTISTS     

Bowyn - Really powerful lead vocal and dynamic energy on stage. And off - they were far and away the best crowd participators during T-Pain.  

Lucy & La Mer - On a tour right now, and her lyrics are really personal and accessible. She led everyone in a middle school slow dance. She really knows how to create a memory live. 

Check out the playlist below!   

WHAT I SAW     

Portland was the longest stretch of time on the West coast, and I gotta say with apologies to Seattle and San Jose - my FAVORITE. Few places on the road feel truly homey, but Portland felt like a lot of my favorite things about my favorite cities combined - Texas friendliness, Nashville diverse but somehow not-too-trendy food scene and wraparound porches, Brooklyn's artistic crowd. Just heaven. I am usually SUCH a museum person, but I spent more time in nature on this trip, caftan / red dress and all. 

The Rose Garden was a highlight. They test all kinds of rose combos here, and the smell hits you when you're within 50 yards of it. A dream. 

I decided to bite the bullet and go to a concert solo, and what a lovely one it was. I saw John Paul White for the first time in the first week of my freshman year of college when The Civil Wars had just released Barton Hollow at a BMI showcase. It made me feel like I was a part of a city centered around music in a way that was tangible, that made it feel possible. His voice is also just sa' damn angelic. I saw he happened to be playing in Portland that night, and seeing him solo just felt like such a full circle moment. Check out his new album "The Hurting Kind" HERE.

Other honorable mentions: a mansion at the top of a hill with a fantastic view of Portland. I then walked down that hill in my black lace caftan and slides to get to the Japanese Garden thinking it would be leisurely. I did not realize the walk was going to be on a country highway and I would be walking along the shoulder in a very dramatic outfit. A man in a cherry red convertible stopped to ask if I was okay. One for the books. 

Picked up some souvenirs - a Rilke book at Powell Books, which takes my beloved NYC-based Strand to *task* - and had the best ice cream of my life at Salt and Straw. So much more to share, so little time. Go to Portland. It's great. 

WHAT I WROTE    

  

Till' next time! Follow me on Spotify, follow along on instagram, and I'll see you on the road.     

    

Love, 

Seattle Recap! 

VENUE    

Sanctuary At Admiral, a historic venue built in 1929 as a church, now clad in dramatic velvet furniture. So, yeah, I was a goner. Loved it!

#OOTD    

I didn't have enough time to get to Red Light Vintage (which was LOVELY and I got a black silk slip dress and bronze grapes earrings that I fell in loooove with), so I had to make due with random existing items in my closet. This resulted in a startling combination of a dress with a broken zipper being halved into a feathery skirt (there are a lot of things I'm not good at, but making a broken clothing item versatile is a #gift I will own up to), a velvet pajama top, and an Elvis-in-Vegas-esque blazer. When the Lord closes a door, somewhere He opens a window. 

FELLOW ARTISTS    

Payge Turner - super soulful, charismatic, and her live version of her song "Garden" is beautiful and out now. She also busks at Pike Place Market if you're in town!

Rainne - VERY sassy duo with a VERY catchy song called "Petty". Their merch was fiyah. 

Check out the playlist below!  

WHAT I SAW    

I had a full three days in Seattle and had never been before, so I was pumped to soak it all in. And because no tour stop is complete without a local art museum, my first stop was the Frye Museum. It was a fantastic collection with classic oil paintings and rotating installations, I was particularly moved by the installation by Jane Wong "After Preparing the Altar, the Ghosts Feast Feverishly" and the poem she wrote about her grandfather. Such a thought-provoking work about family and what it means for a generation to fade. 

I also got to visit the world-famous Bop Street Records and met the owner, who showed off his talent for reciting all of Rolling Stones Top 100 albums of all time in 30 seconds. The man knew his stuff. I signed the wall and picked up a rare Sinatra as a gift. Delight! 

If you want a seaside restaurant experience, look no further than Ray's Boathouse. And yes, I made a controversial decision to get hot soup on a hot day, but the waitress withheld judgement and the white wine provided dat relief. 

Honorable mentions: Museum of Pop Culture (so much Nirvana and an exhibit full of Prince's outfits, so you know I went shopping after), Tallulah's for brunch. 

WHAT I WROTE   

 

Till' next time! Follow me on Spotify, follow along on instagram, and I'll see you on the road.    

   

Love, 

Chicago Recap! 

VENUE   

The event space at the Ace Hotel, which THRILLED me. I'm a big fan - typically work from the NYC location & have stayed in the London and LA locations. Such a wonderful friendly staff and gorgeous spaces. 

#OOTD   

A velvet tuxedo dress (v Lady Di late 80s inspired) & drop pearl earrings from my new favorite vintage spot (you can find them online too!), Lost Girls Vintage. They just opened up the COOLEST new space in Chicago (very 1970s tropical living room vibe, which, as far as I'm concerned, is the *only* vibe), and the staff there brought out so many awesome pieces for me to try on. The drop pearl earrings were a revelation and so is pretty much everything inside. Visit! And tell Kyla and Sarah (the super friendly and stylish owners) that I sent ya. 

FELLOW ARTISTS   

PTH - Really powerful tone. Usually in a more electro-pop duo, but I *dug* the stripped down sound.   

Matt B - R&B singer from Chicago but based in Japan. His cover of Stand By Me was an interactive *blast*.   

Check out the playlist below! 

WHAT I SAW   

I stayed with friends who are SO good at getting to know a city, and the lovely Jessica Zuberek showed me the TOWN. We got a delicious brunch and a great view of the city at Cindy's Rooftop - the potato soup was HEAVEN. The lobby at the Palmer Hotel - a historic spot that is rumored to be REAL haunted - is gorgeous, and we had a little champagne break because why da hell not. 

I cut out on my own the next day and checked out The Center for Intuitive & Outside Art - basically, a small museum dedicated to self-taught artists. Found the concept so interesting. The main exhibit was an artist from New Zealand who is still active, and who has built a career doing variations on the doodles of her youth. There was also a great art project from local students centered around conceptions of identity, which is such a hot-button topic, generationally. It was comforting to see that, even in a generation once removed from myself, the relics of adolescence are VERY present and very pure (see the Taylor Swift fangirl lyrics - mine would have been decked out in NSync for sure). 

I also have to double down on this section, because I fell in L O V E with Green Mill. I had some time to kill one evening and had heard this was one of the world's historic homes of jazz, so I had to stop by. It was GORGEOUS, for starters. All wood, and it felt like I was on the inside of a gramophone. I got a small table for three and had some regulars join me as the night went on, who were so so kind and introduced to me by one of the managers. There was an old school big band, and I saw one particularly spry older woman hitting the dance floor in light up shoes. It was the tops. Billie Holiday performed here, among other greats, and Al Capone built a trap door under one of the tables so he could escape quickly. What I have learned from this tour (see Philly post) - Al Capone really got around. 

WHAT I WROTE  

 

Till' next time! Follow me on Spotify), follow along on instagram, and I'll see you on the road.   

  

Love, 

Boston Recap! 

VENUE  

An apartment in a historic home in Dorchester. I *love* a commercial venue, but there's nothing like a house show for this formerly Nashville-based gal (the official city of the house show, I'm convinced). 

#OOTD  

Wore this one for the album release, and when it is a sparkly gold and black dress, you bet that I am going to be an outfit 👏🏻 repeater 👏🏻. Also, because of traffic we rolled in right at showtime, so no time for shopping quite yet.

FELLOW ARTISTS  

Chris - His Beatles cover got us MOVIN'. 

Israel - Such a nice guy & from one of the future tour stops, San Jose! 

Check out the playlist below!

WHAT I SAW  

I had a travel buddy on this one (the incomparable Dylon Walker) who is *quite* the culture maven/expert foodie. First of all (and against what I just said), we definitely picked up some Slim Jims for the road, and we are heavily lobbying for a sponsorship, which they did in fact respond to (the power of the internet). Also, Boston I love ya, but there was a whole lotta chaos while we were there. Harvard graduation meant everything was packed, and we also just kept happening upon mayhem - as we pulled into town, someone threw up out the passenger window and just kept driving. C'est la vie. Onto the good stuff!

We hit up several spots - Harvard University (my caftan got some looks for sure), a streetwear store in the back of a bodega that was actually called BODEGA, and an outdoor bookshop where I picked up some Mary Shelley and a big Zelda & F Scott coffee table book called "The Romantic Egoists". And of course, to follow up our Slim Jim fame, we chose another big brand to close things out. Ain't no marg like a Chili's marg. 

WHAT I WROTE  

Till' next time! Follow me on Spotify), follow along on instagram, and I'll see you on the road.  

 

Love, 

Philly Recap! 

VENUE 

MNYK Recording Studios. New spot with SO much space. Nicest people ever. NYC musicians - worth the trip to not be in a cramped space, dare I SAY it. 

#OOTD 

Bedazzled, tassled jumpsuit w/*plenty* of sparkle. Wore the same one in the main photo for the tour! Parts sourced from local vintage spot, @retrospectvintage, which I recommend wholeheartedly. They're on a block with a ton of other good spots as well, and across from the most outlandishly Greek restaurant ever. Picked up a fishnet pearl shawl, because how fun are all those words strung together, ammiright.  

 

FELLOW ARTISTS 

Shlomo - Really raw and honest. Loved his sound. January Eyes slayed me. 

Zaxai - Great stage presence and a big crew. Excited to see what he does next, and he's a fellow Voice alum! 

WHAT I SAW 

LOTS of things, but a very compelling thing was the Masonic Temple. I booked a tour on a whim. Everyone has always talked about the Illuminati, secret society, etc. etc., and I wanted to see what's what. Fascinating stuff - the Freemasons idolize societies that build things, and they see it as a metaphor for building good character. Each room was very grandly decorated in tribute to a society they hold in high esteem (i.e. the Greek room, Egyptian room, etc.). I noticed when I got close to something that looked like marble that it seemed hollow. Found out the ENTIRE place is pretty much made of plaster. So. They painted it all to look like those fine materials. Read up on it and call me if you want to talk freemasonry because I have a *lot* of thoughts. 

I also visited the Eastern State Penitentiary - super famous prison with a history that brings up a lot of mixed emotions and conflicting thoughts about our country's system of imprisonment. The prison was begun by a lot of freemasons who wanted to thwart the idea of public executions they had seen so often in England, instead striving for rehabilitative practices. Still, a lot of darkness in this place. Al Capone got his tonsils out in the hospital ward. It was SPOOKY, but mostly enjoyed the new exhibit that talks in depth about imprisonment in America and how we can do our part to reform.  

 

WHAT I WROTE 

Till' next time! Follow me on Spotify), follow along on instagram, and I'll see you on the road.  

 

Love, 

Washington DC Recap! 

VENUE

Two! The Lindley (penthouse apartment technically in Chevy Chase, Maryland - which like, who came first, the actor or the city? It's a google away but I'm loving the mystery) & Hill Country Barbecue (This Texan was pleased).

#OOTD

NIGHT #1 - I thrifted a Cristian Siriano dress in NYC at my favorite local spot, Beacon's Closet - you have to go to the one in Greenpoint. It's massive and there is always a dog there that sleeps in the sun spots and looks like a mini Lassie. I also sported some Kapten + Son sunnies, which were a lovely goodbye gift from that team. Feelin' like Lennon. 

NIGHT #2 - I walked into lovely local shop MEEPS VINTAGE and found the blazer of my Dynasty/Joan Crawford-loving DREAMS. Glittery dice on a cropped blazer with white lining and shoulder pads. Come on. Love. It also felt like a reference to Snake Eyes. The staff at Meeps was lovely, highly recommend! I also wore a lovely serpent-esque necklace given to me as a goodbye gift by the lovely Rose Figueroa. So kind of her! 

FELLOW ARTISTS

ALAN - Awesomely dark lyricist, folk vibe. Really powerful voice. 

NIU - Lovely artist from Madagascar. Gorgeous voice, and it was such a special moment when she had her brother (it was his birthday) come up and sing the last song with her. Not a dry eye in the house. 

JOY - SUCH a joyful presence. Her cover of Mr. Rogers' "Won't You Be My Neighbor" was beautifully done and a crowd fave. 

BABY FUZZ - offbeat Elton meets Father John Misty. Want to study the rhythm of his lyrics. Great!

WHAT I SAW

I visited the National Museum of Women In The Arts - the only major museum in the world solely dedicated to celebrating women's achievements in the visual, performing, and literary arts. I had to look up that claim because it SHOCKED me. Got to see some really innovative pieces and some classic faves (Frida Kahlo, Marina Abramovic). 

I also went to all the Smithsonians (maybe not all, but close) and my NYC self was ready to pony up until they reminded me they are FREE. I wandered into a corner of the museum and found this surrealistic gem. The official title is "The Throne of the Third Heaven of the Nations’ Millennium General Assembly". It was made over the course of 14 years as the artist believed he was seeing visions of Christ. He was a night janitor and spent all this time gathering common items and building a grand shrine, essentially. The top of it reads "FEAR NOT". 

WHAT I WROTE

Till' next time! follow me on Spotify), follow along on instagram, and I'll see you on the road. 

 

Love,