Thursday, September 13, 2007

"The Office" (Workstation series) 39 ("On the road again" edition)

[Inscription on the in-airport stage reads "Live Music Capital of the World"]

I wasn't kidding when I said flying into/out of Austin was, for a musician, an anomalous and energizing experience, because here, they understand that music and musicians (and the tourists they draw) are about the only import/export option they've got, although maybe you could add Robert Rodriguez and the much-missed Molly Ivins as two more priceless exports.

This is an airport where they treat you respectfully when you walk up with instruments, when cabin staff ask you if you'd like to store your instrument in the crew closet, when you walk through the airport carrying the instrument and people look at you curiously, wondering who you are. Even with the geek-squared (G2) quotient of carrying two banjos--for this project--they treat you good.

This is a very different experience from flying as a musician just about anywhere else, where ticket and cabin staff tend to treat a musician carrying an instrument like some overdressed Fort-Lauderdale-bound vacationer who's trying to skeeze 4 overloaded bags full of clothes, shoes, and jewelry past them without paying the extra fees.

Next leg (departs 12:15) is to Nashville, another town that recognizes the level of value-added income musicians create, and treats them accordingly with relative decency.

Blogging off-and-on throughout the day; will post photos for sure.

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