The chronicle of how a band of unwashed fools, with but a well of whiskey and a tailored school bus, spent their American Summer.
In the Winter of 2010, three friends, having bonded through music under the radical sun of an expatriate Italy some years prior, found themselves reunited through general malaise with adult working life. "We need to do something crazy," Cornbread said, loosening the tie from his neck, and his two friends got to work.
Hickory Rick, recently returned from another aimless eighteen months abroad, lay awake in bed for consecutive nights forcing dreams until one seem to flutter down, landing squarely on his nose. "We need to buy a van, then tour the United States as a band." Reason caught hold of him, of course, and the van soon grew in size until it burst from his brain in the shape of a big yellow school bus. "It will be like we're traveling back in time, introducing alcohol and recklessness to our ten-year-old selves," he told his friends (in fact, such a phrase was never actually uttered). Soon the trio -- Cornbread, an architect from the San Francisco Bay Area, The Beard, also an architect, but based near Santa Barbara, and Hickory Rick, some sort of writer based near Los Angeles -- started meeting in San Francisco, dreaming up plans and aims over many pints of stout while searching in vain for a suitable and inexpensive vehicle for such intended purposes.
As if by kismet and at Los Angeles' sleaziest burlesque, it was mentioned to Hickory Rick that a mutual friend might in fact have a yellow school bus that he was desperate to sell. In no time, Hickory was prying his dollar bill from the dancer's skivvies, then slipping out the back door to call his friends with the news.
Months later, the three had quit their jobs, taken residence in a barn in California's mountainous interior, and, with the help of a friendly electrician with terrible musical taste, they rebuilt the interior from junkyard bits, complete with an upright, out-of-tune piano bolted eight times to the inner wall. Over countless cases of MGD, they christened her Pearl in the spirit of Jack Kerouac and hit the road.
With a number of recruits -- a giant-sized drummer here, a cavalier aerospace engineer there -- Pearl groaned and heaved her way through twenty-four states and four provinces, unwittingly smuggling illicit materials and unidentifiable stringed instruments over the border four times while prompting many friendly visits by scowling local sheriffs and curious young children all the while.
One of us (this one, as it were), spent each and every night aboard the bus making a chronicle of the experience and now, after more than a year of obsessive revisions and weathered demands from book-hungry friends, the tome is nearly complete.
It is the coloration of my most profound of dreams to have published and distributed a product of my own creative mind, and for once I am confident that it can inspire people as much as we found ourselves on the trip. I am surrounded by friends of a great level of genius, and thankfully, they are very supportive: two of them, designers by trade, have agreed to flesh out a beautiful and appropriate cover for this project and for them, as well as some of the many other contributors and participants, I would ideally love to gift a copy. More, and in consideration of the big picture, I need a number of copies on hand for promotion and sales on the streets of San Francisco: we have, on the side, a streetside soup cart that could stand as an initial point of promotion, and I am going to submit hard copies to the various contacts I have in the city and beyond: publishers, local shops, et al. I'm a resilient sweet-talker of sorts, I think, and once they've got some substance in their hands, we've got 'er made.
To check out some more of the bus and her music: http://salvatoreparadiso.tumblr.com/
I've thought long and painfully over the funding goal; it is not of my belief that one should subsist on charity alone, and at the end of all, it is, relatively speaking, on the lower side of estimates, but with your kickstart, I intend to see this through far beyond the initial vision: after all, I would have never believed that the bus made it as far as it did, and continues to, but most things are truly possible with a lot of effort and just enough fart jokes.
If you buy a hard copy of the book at $40, you are effectively buying, at cost, one for yourself and one for the project (S+H in consideration). Your rewards included, I need about fifty copies to get this off the ground, but the more the better. It is in my nature to want to do everything on my own, and in fact I've spent a year editing it, but it would be a dream to get a professional to have a look at it, which will cost, at minimum, $100. Beyond that, I need complete publishing rights and the ability to actually sell it online and in stores, and that takes the shape of an ISBN number, which is also available for about $100. It all adds up, man...
Finally, and most importantly: thank you SO, SO much for helping realize a dream, and feel free to contact me with any questions at all!
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
pledged of $900 goal
seconds to go
Oct 22, 2011 - Dec 1, 2011 (40 days)
Pledge $5 or more
The First Look: one .pdf copy of the manuscript as soon as it is available. Sorry, but the tear stains from my parent-like release struggle will not translate online.Estimated delivery: Dec 2011
Pledge $15 or more
1 backer Limited (9 of 10 left)
The Guts: the above-listed manuscript, plus an exclusive EP of music as written, performed, and recorded on The Bus. Prepare yourself to be overwhelmed, and I'm not sure if that's quite a good thing.Estimated delivery: Feb 2012
Pledge $20 or more
0 backers Limited (10 of 10 left)
The Flash: the digital manuscript and EP, accompanied by a selection of high-grade photos of North America's hardest corners, as taken by various trip participants. A reader would expect bare asses and puke, but we'll only bother you with trees and rocks.Estimated delivery: Feb 2012
Pledge $40 or more
The Heavyweight: a signed, S.W.A.K. copy of the book, featuring a remarkably stylish (but not TOO stylish) cover to be completed by two of New York's best young designers. I have nothing cute to say for this one.Estimated delivery: Feb 2012
Pledge $75 or more
The Vanity: Oh, you know, along with a copy of the book itself, I really could put your name in the back of the book as a benefactor. It'd look something like this: "Jeff Goldblum Helped Me Believe In Myself Though Money." We'd all feel good about ourselves, in fact.Estimated delivery: Feb 2012
Pledge $175 or more
2 backers Limited (3 of 5 left)
The Skullpot: all the rubies above, plus a custom-written song to be recorded on the bus! The author wishes to encourage such participants to specifically request lyrical content that will be particularly scatological, if not altogether baffling.Estimated delivery: Mar 2012
Pledge $400 or more
The Time: you are incorrigible. Take the book, the photos, and the EP, and upgrade them to a customizable day trip for you and up to fifteen friends in the SAME bus as is detailed in the book, complete with catered lunch! (note: option available in San Francisco Bay Area only...sorry)Estimated delivery: Mar 2012
Pledge $550 or more
The The: alright, seriously take it easy, now (but really, don't). Treat yourself to the literary package detailed above, then invite however many damned friends you can fit into Pearl's black-and-yellow chassis to a full camping WEEKENDER, complete with food and drink (note: should you opt to camp inside, the bus sleeps up to six in relative comfort, and has slept as many as nine at a time). The Bay Area has many great areas to explore, so let's!Estimated delivery: Mar 2012