After a nationwide tour last September and a two-week, ten-show tour through the chilly Midwest in January, ’70s-style jam band the Donkeys apparently haven’t had enough of the road. On March 12, the band will load up their Dodge van, “Sancho,” and head out on their third tour in five months.
“The spacing in between trips is a little rough,” says bassist Timothy DiNardo in a March 3 email. “This current trip was actually just tossed together recently.”
The reason for the sudden departure is that the Donkeys are galloping off to rescue a Dead Oceans Records label mate, acoustic folksinger Phosphorescent.
“He has a tour coming through California on his way to Austin, and his opening act fell through for the West Coast dates. So we jumped on.”
The band plans to shoot up to San Francisco for a show, down to Los Angeles for another, and over to Austin to play four gigs at this year’s South by Southwest festival.
“Being on the road is the easy part,” explains DiNardo. “Just put one foot in front of the other, and you will eventually end up back home. It’s the preparation that can get stressful.”
For the Donkeys, another stressful part about the road is finding time to write new material, especially between visits to record stores and drinks at the bar. “Writing songs on the road is a little rough. We do most of our writing between trips at our weekly rehearsals.”
From those weekly rehearsals, DiNardo says they have a handful of new songs. And the band recently purchased an eight-track reel-to-reel to record the songs as demos for their next album, which, according to DiNardo, the band would like to see released by the end of summer.