Driving into Cleveland was quite a surprise. With big brand new high-rises and a new stadium being constructed, the city had a very clean and modern looking downtown. Our plan was to visit the legendary Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and then hit up a show in a suburb right outside of Cleveland. On our drive in, I asked Ashton…why Cleveland? Why was the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame erected here? And he shrugged his shoulders unsure as well…so we definitely needed some questions answered.
As we walked up to the Hall of Fame we saw a band setting up on an outdoor stage, apparently it was the last of a summer-long festival….pretty awesome. We go in and immediately learn that Cleveland made it's claim to fame as a rock scene because of a local AM radio station in the 50's that broke in many new rock bands, which created quite a scene in Cleveland. Later, the Agora club opened which brought in a loads of Rock shows, including artists from the UK exposing American's to a whole new sound.
The Hall of Fame was pretty amazing, but we were pretty disappointed about the fact Led Zeppelin and Van Halen were poorly represented. We thought they would have their own sections carved out like many other famous bands, but instead there were just different remnants scattered throughout the exhibits. (Although the full 1982 mega drum kit from Alex Van Halen was amazing!) On the other hand, they had a pretty elaborate tribute to the great Jimi Hendrix which had 2 walls full of his ornate costumes, the couch from the old Hendrix house he use to sit on a kid and practice guitar on while listening to the radio, to drawings (really good ones) he made as a kid. There was even a series of collegiate football stars he sketched, and Ashton was pretty stoked to see Cal represented in one of them.
After being good Cleveland tourists and buying some souvenirs at the gift shop on the way out we had to stop cause the band on stage had 4 guitarists/singers and sounded pretty damn good. We decided to stay and shoot the show in hopes they would be up for an interview, and to our pleasant surprise they were. Don't be deceived by the name, Diarrhea Planet…cause I was when I first saw the bill. They were legit and really cool dudes from Nashville that were currently winding up on their US tour. Look out for the interview as they talk a lot about life on the road as a musician. We tried to make it to the original show we had planned to see, but were a bit too late…can't win them all.
We ended the night with some of the most amazing grilled cheese sandwiches at Melt Bar & Grilled. Fried green tomato BLT and a Caribbean War Pig sandwich…just take look at the pics!