Best of the Best

*Please note, this list is ours and ours alone, and the opinions set forth below are not those of the Magnetic Fields. I mean, sure, they might be, but they might not be, and you shouldn’t blame them for our poor taste. Proceed.*


Best Cupcakes: Cupcake Royale, Seattle, WA

Best Pho: Xe Lua, Toronto, ON

Best Meal: Pok Pok, Portland, OR

Best Breakfast: Sparrow, Montreal, and The Crumpet Shop, Seattle, WA

Best Local Delicacy: The Montreal Bagel, The Wisconsin Beer, The Chicago Hot Dog


Best Hotel: Ace Hotel, Portland, OR


Best Hospitality Service: BAM (care of Sahadi’s, which was Claudia’s idea)

Best Venue Staff: Town Hall NYC, Fox Theater, Old Town School (appearing at the Harris Theater)

Best Crowd: Town Hall NYC; The Pabst Theater, Milwaukee, WI; Herbst Theater, San Francisco

Best Dressing Room: The Pabst Theater, Milwaukee, WI, and The Fox Theater, Oakland, CA

Most Seizure-Inducing Lighting: Harris Theater, Chicago


Places Well Represented Despite Our Not Visiting: Louisville, Vancouver

Best Mode of Transportation: The Deathstar, obvs

Best Five Minute Vintage Store Shopping Spree: Tag, on Barack Obama Blvd, St. Louis

City in Which We Wanted More Time to Play: Los Angeles, CA


Biggest Ham: John Woo

Best Story about Bloodletting that Should Have Been on the Blog Even Though It Would Have Scared You: Dan Bora

Leadership Award of Excellence, Dude: Jason “Tourganizer” Thompson

Best Snacks Hidden in Her Bag: Claudia Gonson

Perpetual Winner of the Movie Game and Scrabble and Every Other Game We Played: Stephin Merritt

Best Faces: Shirley Simms

Best Team Spirit: Sam Davol

Most Devoted to Task at Hand: Michael Fusco

Most Devoted to This Particular Task: Emma Straub

Up next…Outtakes! Photos from Europe!


M + E


Get Your T-Shirts Here!

Did get to one of the shows? Have an extra large friend who is in need of a Hootenanny? Starting in the very near future, you will be able to buy the remainder of the tour merch directly from us at M + E. Stay tuned.

Town Hall Night Three: We’re About to Get All Boyz II Men on You, So Watch Out

Last night was very bittersweet– we adore Town Hall, we’re happy to be back at home in New York, but our buddies are heading to Europe for another grueling leg of tour, and we’re not going with them. I think in a perfect world, we would all head to Hawaii with our loved ones and pets for two weeks of R + R.

First, let's all congratulate Jason on his tour baby. It's name is BBQ.

Outtake from 'Australian Guitar Hunk Weekly' c/o the Fancy Cam.

More modeling by Jason, minus the tour baby.

Yes fan # 1.

Yes fan #2. YMike must have something to do with this.

Meet Calvin.

Meet the cake Calvin's mother baked for us. Way to go, team!

Are these glasses Orch-Folk? Maybe not. But we had to photograph them nonetheless.

The Dewanatron, manned by two Dewans.

Do your parents bring tiny bottles of whiskey to your office?

This lovely lady was Orch-Folk and totally knew we were going to take her picture. Well done, missy.

Advertising in Big Pete's hatband.

We were also advertising across the street.

We aren't always this flummoxed when someone hands us money.

Tim is nice.

So are Kenny and Brendan.

Sam is sad this part of the tour is over.

But he just heard that Clarence Clemons is opening up for TMF in Europe.

John is sad this part of the tour is over.

But there's a huge Dungeons and Dragons convention this weekend!

Shirley's sad this part of the tour is over.

But Troy's picking her up in his uniform!

Stephin's sad this part of the tour is over.

But in Europe, every day is Wednesday.

Claudia's sad that this part of the tour is over.

But there are so many exotic snacks to look forward to!

Dan's just happy to get back to his homemade Absinthe machine.

Mikey's just plain sad.

But now we get to do our taxes! Oh, wait...

Emma's sad, too.

But these chubby cheeks need some yoga, stat.

Passed during the show. This time, thankfully, it wasn't for us.

Harold, one of Town Hall's finest, was game enough to make a face.

Stephin bought a few dozen Magnolia cupcakes, despite it being Friday. He must already be on the European schedule.

Two little teapots.

Jason's trying to be sad, but really he's wicked stoked to get back to all 700 hours of his Tivo'ed American Idol.

And in the end, it was just a boy and a cello.

Our own little chorus line. Okay, this is where the Boyz II Men starts playing.

Fancy Cam Pano of M + E inside the Town Hall spaceship. And we're done!

Oh, my dears, don’t worry. We’ve got a few more posts up our sleeve, and the band has promised to email pics from Europe, and we will post them for you here. It’s been such a pleasure! We are never eating cupcakes ever again, and it’s all your fault, you generous, sweet people.

We Live at Town Hall, and Here’s Proof

Yesterday, we spent all day at home before heading to Town Hall, and unless you want to see endless pictures of our couch and empty refrigerator, I think we’ll get right to the show.

Shirley was a little ray of sunshine during soundcheck.

View from the Pianet.

Sam and John, heading in opposite directions.

James and his beard popped by for a visit before the show.

Orch-Folk, complete with cast and crutches.

Darren Hanlon, pinball champ and all-around charmer.

Darren, doing some more charming after his set.

MIchael Hearst. Is this a sexy look or a disapproving one, I'm not sure.

We know every single person who works at Town Hall. Last night was our 9th time there with the band.

My body is really ready to get back to yoga class. My shoulders are now attached to my ears.

My wonderful friend Laura brought us a little nip.

It was both magic and medicinal. Thanks, dude.

Kate and Kevin brought us cookies in an inside-out pizza box. Hurrah.

Look everyone, we got Amy back! Double the Tourganization.

Tourganizers unite.

I'm not really that much taller than David.

Alexandra has a mean picture face. And when I say mean, I mean good. When I say good, I mean fierce.

The Davols are excellent totebag models.

They stayed like this for a really, really long time. Hands off, Woo. That one's mine.

John and some lady friends.

Darren is also playing at Bruar Falls in Williamsburg on Sunday night. You should go, and bring all your friends.

Dan and I love to loiter in front of bathrooms. Do you have a problem with that?

After the show, we walked through Times Square until we found the bar with the antlers. Then we stopped for a drink.

And now, please enjoy the dance moves of Town Hall’s finest, Chris Prandy. You may remember Chris’ neck tattoo from the last tour blog.  He was at Town Hall in 2004 as well.

One more show! One more show. We’ll see you tonight, same time same place. Things to look forward to: more Straubs! Something called the Dewanatron! Videos!

Until later, yours as always,

M + E

Brooklyn Vegan Is in Love With The Merch Booth

And really, why shouldn’t they be? It’s about time someone used their photo press pass to take a picture of our gorgeous merch booth. I also found it very funny that one of the links in their story about Paul Rudd went to somebody’s Twitter page that had, as a tiled background, a photo I took of Stephin from the last tour blog. How about a little credit, people?

Read Brooklyn Vegan’s story here. Please ignore the mean comments. Or, better yet, flood their comment field with your undying praise about the band instead. Thank you very much.


M + E

Finally, We Know Where to Find All the Snacks: NYC, Night One

And, we’re home. It’s been several weeks of shows out in the world, and we’re delighted to be sleeping in our own bed. But don’t think we will neglect you, dear readers. There is still food to photograph, and, oh yes, a couple of shows to go.

World, meet Gravy Boat. Ah, home.

On the way to the venue, we stopped at Stephin's to pick up some boxes. Stephin also showed us this box, containing his laundry, which had been mailed by the owner of the van we used on the west coast. Skerik Night Goat, we salute you.

Pre-show noodles.

Empty Town Hall.

Empty Town Hall, looking up.

I was not feeling good. This was taken shortly before my nap in the dressing room.

Doing some business in the front row.

Claudia, perched.

The adorable Eula blew our minds by making our screenprints into this amazing dress.

The back of the dress features Ms. Distortion and Mr. Realism, the guy wearing the kilt.

Orch-folk finery from a very loyal blog reader. She also brought us a bottle of booze. Three cheers!

Zack was so excited he ate one of our cards.

It was Laura's last night on the tour. She snapped photos of me snapping photos.

Laura, Dana, Ajay and Stephin, being stags.

John and Dudley.

The really funny part of this picture is that we are watching SNL right now, and Paul Rudd just came on Mike's favorite sketch, 'What's Up With That.' Good choice, Paul.

We're going to miss our little Canadians.

Claudia found this banana-apples combo irresistible. Here, she's telling you why.

Modeling Lessons Available at the Town Hall 3/11 and 3/12.

This morning, we had breakfast at Egg with Dan, Laura, and Ajay. Always say yes to brioche.

Then sci-fi coffee at Blue Bottle. a recent import from San Francisco.

Bon voyage, Laura! Welcome, Darren! I’m feeling less sickly today, and promise to sneeze on you less. See you tonight, everyone.


M + E

Get Tickets for Tonight’s Show Now

Hello all! Town Hall just released about 40 tickets for tonight and tomorrow. Great seats! Act fast! Come and party with us!

Call Town Hall or just come to the box office! These are great, great seats.