The Pasadena Poets recently put on a show at Tonopah’s Clown Motel as part of their 2021 “American Motel Tour.”
Guitarist Jake Kelly and singer Kelly Kidd, the founders of the vintage-inspired country duo said the show originated last year as many musicians suffered from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Unable to perform under the regular circumstances, Pasadena Poets decided to create a show that would “provide relief from a mundane reality while while promoting small businesses,” according to the press release.
Last year, they hit the road with their guitars and suitcases with a mission to “spread their classic honky-tonk sound” at local hotels, motels and bed &breakfasts, according to the press release.
“Clad in worn denim, the duo serenaded audiences from porches, inside barns and in front of glowing neon facades,” according to the press release.
After the first round of successes, the Pasadena Poets ordered another round of touring and rode out for the 2021 “American Motel Tour” in July.
So far, the tour has spanned over 15 states and 30 locations.
In a phone interview with the Pahrump Valley Times, Kelly said the band initially reached out to “hundreds, maybe thousands of motels” across the country, and while they haven’t heard back from everyone, he said those who responded liked their “innovation and spirit.” Tonopah’s Clown Motel was one of them.
“It was a lot of fun,” he said about their show in Tonopah. “I think the audience of the Clown Motel are a special breed of people. They are not looking for luxury, but for adventure. That attracts a certain kind of people,” Kelly said.
During the show that took place outside the Clown Motel, the duo dressed up as rodeo clowns. While about 25 people attended the performance, about 500 people also live-streamed it online.
“The audience at the Clown Motel didn’t want us to rest,” Kelly added.
The Pasadena Poets said their shows help to connect them with people who might not know about them otherwise, and also promote small businesses.
“We get a diverse audience of people who don’t like going to bars, but they still like to have a good time,” Kidd said.
“What’s important to us is we take a lead from the owner. What’s the best way to showcase their place,” Kidd said.