The saga of Minneapolis rock trio Gully Boys' stolen van and instruments has come to a sad conclusion, but the band is going ahead with a tour scheduled to start Friday thanks to a little help from friends.
"An absolute mess and a total value loss," is how drummer Nadirah McGill described the state of their 1996 Ford Fantana van.
After going missing in south Minneapolis overnight Saturday-Sunday with most of their musical gear inside, the vehicle was found on Tuesday afternoon in north Minneapolis and then towed to the city's impound lot. Predictably, all the instruments, amps, band merchandise and other equipment had been pulled from it — although the thief or thieves weirdly left a bunch of lawn tools inside instead.
Between the window break-in, hotwiring and other damage, McGill said the costs to fix the van are more than it's worth. The band continues to pass around a list of all the music gear in the hopes some of it might be found.
In the meantime, Gully Boys actually played a gig Tuesday night at the Fine Line using borrowed gear to open for Hippo Campus' semi-surprise set. Understandably, they did so with mixed emotions (and results).
"We had a lot of fun but couldn't shake the technical difficulties of new equipment," McGill said. "The crowd was very encouraging, but we really needed a win last night."
Hopefully, the band can triumph on the road. Fellow Minneapolis rockers Author have offered up a van for Gully Boys to use on their eight-city trek to the East Coast and South, starting Friday at the Tonic Room in Chicago. That's along with other borrowed instruments and help they're using from local musicians including Deano Erickson, Andy Holmaas and Kai Brewster. Their co-headliners for most of the tour, Cleveland's Sonder Bombs, are going to let McGill use their drum kit.
There's now a roundabout way fans can also pitch in: A bit of good coincidental timing, Gully Boys just announced a four-week residency gig every Sunday in December at 7th St. Entry with a slew of stellar opening acts, including Kiss the Tiger, Sass, Niiice and the Sonder Bombs. There's not much that helps boost a band's bank account and spirits better than buying tickets to their shows.
Said McGill, "We are so thankful for Minneapolis and how they have cared for us in the last few days. We would be a complete mess without our community."