Author Archives: dayna

Seattle cyclists with cameras, we want your footage!

Seattle-based dream-pop band Half Light needs help from the city’s cyclists. We’re looking for cycling footage to use in a video for our song “Emerald City.” The song’s lyrics were written after our bass player / lead singer, Dayna Loeffler, had a particularly nice ride into work. Dayna says she remembers that there was no traffic on the Ballard Bridge sidewalk, that she had no trouble merging into traffic and though it was cold, the sun was shining and the view of the Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains from Myrtle-Edwards Park was epic.

We want to stitch together video that shows the glory of our city as seen from the saddle by using footage taken by cyclists during their rides all over the Seattle. In particular we want footage taken in sunshine (or Half Light) that is not too shaky, bumpy or rough (easy to look at and follow) and shows the beautiful places in our city. Places like: Seward Park, any bridge, the arboretum, Lake Wa BLVD, any mountains, downtown, waterfront, iconic skyline views etc. If your clip is used in the video the band will get you a free MP3 download of the entire new album and full credit will be given to all video contributors. Contact half.light.music.seattle@gmail.com for complete details.

This commuter vid has nice lighting and is not too shaky – we’d like a little more scenery, but this is pretty close: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5CvyRCDnF-g

Here is a link to the song if you want to hear it: https://soundcloud.com/half-light-seattle/emerald-city?in=half-light-seattle/sets/things-to-figure-out

Contact us at: half.light.music.seattle@gmail.com

“Feel” video from Comet show

Hey All,

we posted a video of the song “Feel” from our gig at the commnet.  You can check it out here.

Thanks to all who came to the gig, and the other bands for rocking and C-monster for taking this video.

SLO wed. 29th October 08

Well, we managed to get rolling on the lovely, typically sunny, california morning of October 29th.  My body was extremely pleased that I had hit the hot tub the night before.  Collectively, we had to do a little laundry and got some of the killer crepes from the killer crepe place in Pismo Beach.  Yumsters.

Then it was off to San Luis Obispo.  The first gig we booked on the tour.  A gig we had obtained press for.  A gig that we had lined up a local band for.  We had heard that SLO is a great college town and we were ready for a little juice bar and coffee shop action complete with a great gig.

SLO is actaully not far from Pismo beach, so we got there early.  Early enogh to hit the park for some relax time:  Some folks read, some slept.  Scott and I wote a new tune.

sleepin in da park\

We killed a lot of time, and tried to stave off drinking until a somewhat reasonable hour. We made it until about 4pm, when we hit Downtown Brews.  DTB do actually brew their own beer, but being the northwest beer snobs that we are, we didn’t think it was amazing, well except for the happy hour $2 pint.  Half Light supports $2 pints of microbrew.   We also really want to play at DTB next time we hit SLO.  Some band called Senses Fail was playing there that night.  A lot of cute little punk/goth teenagers were lined up to see them.  I have to say I pretty much loved every single concert I got to see as a youth, but looking back on how it felt compared to how it feels now – well, I wish I would have known to love them even more.

we found a nice bar called the library directly across from the Frog and Peach where we were to play.  Now, they too had a nice happy hour and the extremely lovely bartender actaully topped off my generous pour of saphire gin before I left the bar for a comfy window perch.  This place could easily be a location for a scene in a David Lynch movie.  Half Light loved it there:

library

Well we cheked out the Frog and Peach, it was going to be a new record for fitting HL on the stage.  Luckily, the extremely cool and nice booker Hank, had let me know that we would be running our own sound that night, and the house PA was small (no monitors.)  I put my amp on the bar itself.  I have been a sound person before, so I dusted off the PA and got my mic plugged in and off we were.  The band we were going to play with had had a recent falling out with their drummer and were not going to make it, we weren’t checking our myspace regularily so we did not know that.  We waited a bit for them then we went for it.  We played ALL of our songs.  Dayna S., with her broken wrist and all.

Have you heard a band say, “well if it meant something to one person then it was worth it?”  I would like to extend a gracious thanks to the tye-dye hippie dudes that were dancing, and the nice young gentlemen at the bar who listened to our whole set and bough our CD.  The place was so not full, and the majority of people so not paying attention that i actaully manufactured cricket noises in my head after our tunes, beacuse most people did not notice that the band was playing.

FNP

We went back to the hotel, the first night that we had two rooms, and after the boys downed a 12 pack of PBR and the girls hit the Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, we got some sleep. It was the first night that I had slept in a bed in a week, and it was nice.  Next off to Fresno, then home….

October 30 and 31 – 2 days in 1 – Fresno and Seattle

We required the requisite 2 hours to get rolling in the morning.  Barb and Mr. Breakfast located the best breakfast in the Tri-county area.  It was big, it was greasy, the coffee worked.  It was Barb’s birthday.  She bought us breakfast.  We thought this was kinda upside down given it was her birthday, but she would have none of us buying her birthday breakfast.  She had informed us that she would not be repsonsible for driving after the show.

breakie in SLO

So off to our next show in Fresno.  Mega thanks to the Sleepover Disaster, who set us up with a gig.  I was nervous to play with them because their recordings sound amazing.  They were playing with lablemates Light FM. We were excited and hit the road.  The scenery reminded us of our own Eastern Wa.  I got to see the backside of the “Plains of Giant Webbed Feet,” from the Half Light tune, Golden West, one of the first songs I wrote, many years ago, on my first tour ever.  This is alot of what we saw:

boonies

We made it to Fresno in the afternoon.  We weren’t sure what to do there, we found the venue:

Tokyo Garden

The venue was not open, and there was no where to drink in the immediate vicinity.  We called our friend C-monster, to hook us up with the local microbrewery. One can always count on Charlie to be at or near a computer, ready to hook you up.  We eventaully made it to Seqoia brewery where we found a parking spot that would allow us to keep an eye on the gear (the van), always essential.  Here is some artwork in the parking lot:

They also had a happy hour, and well it was still Barb’s birthday.  They had the best Stout we had ever had, on nitro tap and everything.  I seriously considered getting a growler of it to bring home, but quickly realized that it would never make it, and someone would be too drunk to drive and that would not work.

We still had hours to kill. Some folks hung out in the van, some went shopping.  I needed a feline fix, so went walking in the neighborhoods, it wasn’t long before I was treating a sweet orange tabby to a killer petting session.  Finally I went to a great record store where I couldn’t afford the records I wanted, but I did pick up a sweet paisley dress for a Halloween costume.  Because, at this point it still seemed reasonable that I would survive the mega hour drive and make it home in time to go out (and want to).

Finally, we got to the Tokyo Garden and it was open.  It was quite some time before the other bands showed up.  Of course, we drank in the meantime.  Check out the Karaoke this place offers:

karaoke books

The proprietor is super nice.  He poured stiff drinks.  A super nice guy, who also served as soundperson, opened the show.  He had a really tasty Gretsch guitar, and great songs.  I am sorry I don’t remember his name, thought he is partially responsible for that, since he bought us all drinks at the end of the night, and that was a full Markers Mark.  Next up, Light FM, they were really cute and great.

light FM

We played, it was really fun.  Then Sleepover Disaster took the stage and slayed.  Anytime a guitarist is playing a Jazzmaster and splitting the signal between a vox and fender…well I’m a sucker for that, throw in some Ride-style drumming and killer bass and vocal harmonies….

SD

Please buy all of Sleepover Disaster’s CD’s.  You will enjoy them.

Alright – we somehow managed to get our stuff into the van (it was actually raining in Cali) and get on the road about 1:30 or so in the morning.  Thus began our 18 hour drive home.  The first driver was Brian.  It was rainy.  The road between Fresno and Sacramento totally sucks.  Barb was co-pilot.  I got a bit of sleep.  So we have 6 people- driver, a co-pilot, 2 to the next seat, and 2 to the next seat and then a bunch of gear, surrunded by our backpacks and such.  It really isn’t very comfortable.  I slept for a couple of half hour stints.

Next it was Scotty’s turn to drive.  It was dumping rain.  It was dark.  I don’t remember much of it.  It was then about 5:30 am.  Scotty was beat, no one was up.  It was my turn.  I put in 7% solution’s classic “All About Satellites” and tried really hard to stay awake.  I had only been up for about 20 hours at this point, so it shouldn’t be too hard….I only hit the rumble strip once.   I assured Scott that I was just fine and finally found a place to get crappy coffee.  The crappy coffee burned such a hole in my stomach that I was kept awake not by the caffeine, but by the pain.  Ah, the road.

I played Lupine Howl, “Bar at the End of the World.”  Finally, it was almost getting light, but still dumping rain.  Scott had had it, and Jefff took over as co-pilot.  We made it to a pass, and put in Neko Case’s new record.  We found a hippie mart in Shasta and I got a great sun-dried tomato and corn Quiche.  It was awesome.  They were playing the Dead in the store which made me happy, because Half Light would not let me listen to the Dead (though, my accomplice slipped some in while they were sleeping…).  At about 9 am, Barb took over driving and I took co-pilot, which I was pretty useless at.  We finally made it to Oregon, and the sun came out, and we saw a rainbow.  Remember when I said the van wasn’t that comfy to sleep in?

teh van

I finally managed to utilize some skills I’d seen cats do, and curl up on the floor somehow.  I got a little sleep it was great.

Eventually, we made it to WA:

jeff

Brian drove the last shift, and we rolled in around 7:30 pm.  I rushed home, didn’t even take a shower, threw on my paisley dress and go go boots (it was Halloween) and headed off the the Hight Dive to see Black Daisy.  I should have been tired, I’d been up for esentially 36 hours, but my body would not stop.  They were great.  I went home, and still could not go to sleep.  I thought this would be my last tour ever, but it was actually really fun, and I’m ready to do it again.

LA to SLO – driving route 1, the other direction

Our next gig was on Oct. 29th in San Luis Obispo, or as the locals say SLO. SLO is not very far from LA, so of course, Half Light decided to spend the day at the beach. Pismo beach to be exact. We had a stellar time, relaxing, playing guitar, numbing our bodies in the mighty Pacific and drinking. There was a swing set on the beach:

We stayed at a fancy motel:

We saw yet another awesome sunset – from the bar of course, they had pitchers of margaritas too:

Now, if you haven’t read the Purr’s show updates, you should. When they stay anywhere “Planet of the Apes” is always on TV. Well, when Half Light stays anywhere “The Omen” (any version or number) is on. Tonight was no exception. We watched the Omen. We ate snacks. We went to the beach at night:

While at dinner, we picked up a copy of the New SLO Times, where we got a write up for our show the next night, “Seattle-based act Half Light will roll though town this week to promote their debut self-released CD Sleep More, Take More Drugs, Do Whatever We Want, a swirling semi-psychedelic rock album fueled by the ethereal vocals of two Daynas: Dayna Loeffler (rhythm guitar, pedal steel) and Dayna Smith (bass). Between the harmonizing and soft-fuzz guitars, Mazzy Star certainly comes to mind. They play Wednesday, Oct. 29 at Frog and Peach with local band Quality Fridge Buzz (never heard of them!).” Thank you kindly to Glen Starkey for listening and helping us out!

Oct 26th – Driving Route 1

Sleeping in the van, in the parking lot, next to the highway, in Half Moon Bay was really nice. The heavily oxygenated sea breeze carrying the ever-present hint of eucalyptus was soothing. Thanks to the Jamaica and Vodka drinks I should have had a hangover but did not. By the time I went up to the hotel room Mr. breakfast had already let us know where to go get breakfast. At the airport of course:

30 cafe

I started the day off with a fresh squeezed orange juice mimosa, and plenty of coffee. Everyone was most pleased with their breakfast, though this place is packed and you will have to wait..but its worth it.

After everyone had enough coffee to make decisions we decided to continue on down the 1 to check out Big Sur and eventually find a place to sleep. The road was windy, the scenery fantastic and I was really glad it was not my day to drive!

We stopped in Big Sur, which I always imagined amidst the crashing waves, but is actually in a nice little forest along a river. Barb knew of some pastry place – Big Sur bakery – I think, and well, we all needed more coffee so we stopped. This little stop had the bakery / resataurant, a gas station, a lovely garden and some shops. The garden had all these cool places to chill, including very large human sized nests that you could climb up in. Dayna S found an mbira tuned to aqualung. No kidding. I got two loaves of incredibly delicious free bread because it was closing time. This bread saved many a hungry Half Lighter on multiple occassions. Here is the surrounding scenery:

big sur yo

We continued down to San Simeon, but we were too late to tour the Hearst Castle. We went to the pier, and saw pelicans!

Half Light on the pier:

By now our Mexican food and Margarita jones was getting bad. We found a strip of hotels, and checked in. After a short walk, and a frogger-like jaunt across the highway we were at a sweet little family run joint. They had pitchers of margharitas, we had many.

Of course, the only reasonable thing to do when you’e had pitchers of margaritas, and you see a motel 6 with a bar, is to go in for tequila shots and/or beer and/or whiskey:

After all those drinks Jeff and Barb and I thought it a great idea to hit the hot tub. It was great. Cool, fresh air, PBR, a buzz and a hot tub is a fine combo. It was time to pass out after that. Folks had starting catching on to the joys of sleeping in the van, and that night Dayna S took a turn. We did see a family of fierce looking ‘Coons underneath it, but all survived the night.

October 25 – Half Moon Bay

Well, I started my 36th year by waking up in a van in a parking lot in Portland, next to two strip clubs and an hourly motel. Playing a rock show in Davis later that night was great fun. Much thanks to my co-worker Cate, who braved the “girls gone wild” crowd to support Half Light. Turns out, I had so much fun that I had a bit of a hangover as I started my second day of my 36th year waking up early, in the van, in the parking lot of some motel next to the interstate. Turns out its really hot in California and the “Silver Bullet” quickly turns into an oven. I scrounged around for some water, not really caring who’s it was or how long it had been in its container and tried to make the head quit hurting before it was time to go up to the room and get the troops rolling.

This is the day that I learned of Mr. Breakfast. Apparently you give Mr. Breakfast your coordinates and Mr. Breakfast gives you the best breakfast nearby. Mr. Breakfast did not let us down, Jeff and Barb scoped it out in the parking lot.

We decided to not make any decisions about what to do that day until we had coffee and food. Half light are pretty useless until we’ve had coffee. We decided to take advantage of our days off and head to Half Monn Bay then leisurely drive down to LA on the world famous highway 1.

We made it to Half Moon Bay, and it is a lovely place. The fragrance of eucalyptus and dill slowly roasting on the surroundign hillside was splendid. We got to see the afterglow of sunset on the Pacific:

All of Half Light wanted Mexican food and Margharitas. Lots of Margharitas. There was a great mexican reastaurant within walking distance from hotel. They did not have margaritas, so we drank beer. The food was awesome. We bought some Jamaica, that we took back and mixed with the bottle of vodka Dayna S had so wisely brought with us. A good night was had by all.

Nick Cave & Sustainable Ballard – Come say Hi!

Hey folks,

No, Nick Cave won’t be at the Sustainable Ballard Festival, but I’ll be volunteering at the Bicycle Alliance table this weekend on Saturday from 2 to 5, stop by and say Hi. Going to Ballard, and sitting outside in our lovely fall weather, means I get a cupcake from cupcake royale. Last time I was there they did not have the Lavender one, how could that be? Though I’m hoping they have some sort of festive carrot cake one. And if anyone is a mega-chocoholic we can go get truffles from the Art Coop.

Anyway, about Nick Cave. I went to the show last night. The performance was great, but boy does the sound really suck in that venue! Did anyone find a good spot? There were zero mids. A ton of highs and some low rumble but no definition….Most disappointing at $57 a ticket, especially since the band was playing well and Nick was singing great. The one thing I can say is the Showbox SODO can actually make a drink, as the Showbox Market has forever been plagued by their choice to charge a lot for drinks with hardly any alcohol in them. The $7 sapphire and tonic at the SODO venue is worth $7, though if the sound is as shitty as last night, I’ll have to have a few to bare it.

West Coast Tour – Oct. 23-Nov. 2

Hey Folks,

Half Light are busy bees booking our first West Coast Tour.  Want us to come to your town?  Drop us a note with a venue recommendation and we will start working it, if we aren’t already.  We have got some really nice press lately – head over and check out our press page.

We are also playing a gig this FRIDAY SEPT. 5th at the Comet.  We love the Comet, we love to be so close to y’all.  We will be playing 2 never before heard tunes.  They currrently have band working titles – which is a subject that should have a book.  Most bands don’t actually have titles for their songs until it comes time to write it out in the liner notes.  They have titles like E-jam, or heavy MF, or 6/8 song.  Or fans name them, like Wilco’s “kidsmoke” which is still referred to as “Spiders.”  Speaking of spiders, I had a spider induced panic attack last night when a spider so big that I could hear its footfalls came creeping along the floor.  Anyway, our two new working titles are “The Pretty One” and “Cardboard Boxey Box.”  You can guess which one is which, hey, you can even give them names.  Soon we will have “War2″ ready to play.

Cheers! – Dayna