So, we got on the bus after doing a show at The House of Blues San Diego as part of The Coup/Mr. Lif tour. As the bus took off, I thought that I would go lay in my bunk, listen to my Ipod, and write. But then Zhara, Mr. Lif's friend and the tour's merchandise seller, announced that she had "Anchorman" on DVD. Oh Shit. Will Ferrell or writing? Hot 16s would have to wait tonight...Good Night San Diego! So I stayed up in the front lounge of the bus and, even though I've seen this movie twice, commenced to laugh my ass off. Almost literally, because of what happened next.
Shortly after the acapella singing of "Afternoon Delight" by Ferrell et al., a big bump, then another, then plummeting down as we tipped over to the left. I was sitting in the diner-like booth that many of these buses have in the front. I held on to the table with one hand and tried to guard my head with the other, all the while thinking that I was probably about to die. I don't remember seeing everyone flying and flipping around me as it was happening, but Carter's (the road manager) and Wiz's face were covered in blood, and everybody seemed to be laying around hurt. The bus was on it's side, with the entrance door up.
I called for people to say there names so we could get a head count of who was conscious or not. Silk E, Q (drums), Riccol (bass), and Metro (Lif's hype man) were trapped in the back lounge because the doors connecting the front and back lounges to the bunks were electrically powered and didn't move with no power on. They ended up ripping and squeezing their way out of a tiny little window and jumped down off the bus as the rest of us got out the front. I was the third person to jump off the front of the bus, as I hung down to make the jump shorter, I saw that the front of the bus was on fire.
I yelled to everyone, saying to get off the bus immediately because the bus was on fire and it could blow up. We all did. No one was killed. The bus was totally engulfed in flames. For a while no one stopped to help, supposedly because they thought we were "illegal aliens" crossing the border. Eventually some great folks stopped and helped.
Silk E has two broken ribs and a punctured lung. Wiz has a broken nose, two deep lacerations to the head, and a shattered knee. Zhara has injuries to her hand and had to undergo surgery. Carter had to get stitches to his head and lip. The driver, Glenn, has a broken jaw. All the first three will be in need of follow-up treatments. We all have aching backs, legs, heads etc. Many of us are on pain killers.
We lost everything in that crash and fire.
We were packed to live and do shows on that bus for a month. Most of us had every stitch of clothing we owned on there. We lost clothes, computers, recording equipment, cameras, IDs, phones, keys to cars and homes. We lost cash.We lost all our damn instruments and equipment to perform with. We were and are happy to walk away with our lives. But now we're home.
Most of the band touring with The Coup has kids, rent that won't quit, bills, and holiday expenses coming. We need money, because like I said the band doesn't have the tools that they make a living with. Not only did we lose cash and material things on the bus, but we also were depending on this tour for money to make it through. It may take a year for us to see any money from the insurance company.
I have set up a Paypal account so people can make donations for The Coup. The money will be split between Me (Boots Riley), Silk E, Q, Steve Wyreman (guitar), and Riccol. Mr. Lif is setting one up on his site and when I have that info, we'll let you know.
There should be a button right below this that allows you to donate even without a paypal account.
If you have an account, ours is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you in advance to anyone who does this, this is a really crazy situation. I never thought I would would be doing something like this. I also never thought that we would almost die like like that.
We're grateful for anything you can do.
P.S. Thank you for the messages of love and warmth we've been receiving. It makes a difference.
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