As one half of Best Coast, Bobb Bruno loves California and stands by his band's designation of it as "The Only Place." That's the title of the album and single they'll be touring at Grand Central tonight, along with Tennessee troublemakers Those Darlins.
So what would Bobb call Florida if he were to write a song about it? "The Death Metal Place," he says. "Tampa's got the Morrisound studios, the home of death metal. Walt Disney, then death metal. That's what I think of."
After the cut, witness Bobb's superhuman patience as he agrees to name songs for 14 other states before politely opting out. In addition, you'll get Bobb's tour stories, including dealing with racist bikers in Indiana, eating Donald Duck's head at Tokyo Disney, and his second choice for where to live in America after Los Angeles.
Florida: "The Death Metal Place"
I love Disney World. I'm obsessed with Disney stuff. I wish we had time to go there. If we go anywhere with a Disney park nearby, I try to go.
At Tokyo Disney, they have a secondary park called Tokyo Disney Sea. It's incredible. There's a fake Titanic / Queen Mary cruise ship. They make everyone speak English on there and it's supposed to simulate 1920s or 1930s dining. There's a Journey to the Center of the Earth ride inside a active volcano, too. On the cruise ship I had a steak dinner and in the park, I had a really cool green gelatin dessert shaped like a Donald Duck head, inside a giant tree. Popcorn is really big there and they have some that's coffee-flavored.
Louisiana: "The Toughest Place"
They survived a hurricane and there are some mean streets down there.
Nevada: "The Howard Hughes Place"
I just think of Howard Hughes in his hotel room. We did a residency there, in the hotel and I tried to live like him. I left my room only once.
Alabama: "The Rusty Place"
I've only been there once but I remember lots of rusty train yards and buildings.
Kansas: "The Awesome Place"
We were just there. It was really awesome.
Rhode Island: "The Tiny Place"
New Jersey: "The Wawa Place"
We were just there, too. There's a lot of awesome stuff there like Wawa. As soon as we got off our flight, I had to show our drummer the milkshake they have there.
Indiana: "Pass. I've Had Some Unfun Times There."
It was just racist people that were the problem. The state's not like that, of course, but there were some. Me and my friends were laughing about it but it was mind-blowing that these still happen.
There's a place in Indiana called Pizza King. It's almost like a budget Chuck E. Cheese. There's a model train that runs through and brings you your soda. There are pay TVs in the booths.
There were also these biker guys who look at me and go, "I've never seen a Chinaman in a pickup truck before." And that is so not what I'm used to. That wasn't a good first impression and that happened literally after crossing the state line.
New Hampshire: "The Unknown Place"
That's one place I've never been.
Texas: "The Biggest Place"
That's a long drive to get around from anywhere to anywhere in Texas.
Alaska: "The Coldest Place"
Or so I'd imagine. Maybe the Lumberjack Breakfast place.
Georgia: "The Sweetest Place"
I think of sweet tea and a lot of soul food. Candied yams, peach pie and cobbler.
Illinois: "The Best Place to Eat"
Chicago really is one of the best cities for food.
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Louisville is the only other place I ever thought of living other than Los Angeles. I just have some really great friends there and the food is amazing. The architecture, the pace of life is perfect. The attitude and the people...
It's a totally different vibe from California but it reminds me of some of the things I love about Los Angeles. And I mean the people born in Los Angeles who continue to live there. Just laid back and not pretentious. Life there is about hanging out and having fun but also being a hermit when you want to be.
Best Coast with Those Darlins. Tuesday, July 10. Grand Central, 697 N. Miami Ave., Miami. Doors at 8 p.m. and tickets cost $20 plus fees via fla.vor.us. Ages 18 and up. Call 305-377-2277 or visit grandcentralmiami.com.