Ancient River North American Tour 2014: Good Times in El Paso

Ancient River's name in lights in El Paso

(Ancient River)

[Editor’s Note: This is the fourteenth part in an ongoing series chronicling Ancient River’s 2014 North American Tour. If you missed the first part or would like some background on the series, click here.]


We arrived at The Flycatcher in Tucson right on time for load in. There weren’t many people there, and the sound guy thought it might have been because of a comedy show that night. He also said that Beck and Cage the Elephant had both recently been in town, so people might have been a bit rocked out. The first local band played and left; I guess they had other things to do. After we played there was supposed to be another band but they had to cancel, so one guy from the band did a solo performance. Kind of a shame though, as the place had a great stage, acoustics, and sound guy. We needed to get to El Paso, Texas, so we hit the road pretty quickly. Needless to say, it was one of the least entertaining stories to tell.


We used our day off yesterday to drive to El Paso and get some rest. We got to the Monarch with several hours to spare since the show started at 11 p.m. I didn’t mind because I love to play late. We had some really good Mexican food at a place called Ciro’s (not the chain). It was amazing to pay $2.99 for a burrito at a place where you can literally see Juarez, Mexico from the parking lot.

Ciro's Mexican restaurant  in El Paso

(Ancient River)

James took a nap afterwards, but I was feeling in an adventurous mood. I began to explore but I didn’t make it very far; there was a massive sandstorm making it incredibly difficult to walk around outside. So I posted up at the Monarch, which ended up being a great idea. They had $3 pints until nine, including craft beers. Looks like I had found my spot. I hung out for a while and made some new friends. Everyone in El Paso was incredibly friendly and warm-spirited, more so than almost everywhere else I’ve been so far. We loaded in our gear, watched some of the other bands, played our set, and had a great time.

The owner enjoyed our set so much that he invited us back to play the next night for a charity event. We had that day off, so we agreed to do it. They let us leave our gear set up in the club, which was great because it made everything easy for us the next day. There were multiple people offering to have us stay at their homes, and we decided to stay with this dude who worked at the bar. We hit up Whataburger and crashed out for the night.


We dropped our buddy off to work at the Monarch and watched some NBA at Ciro’s. Thankfully, there was no sand in the air today. The event we were playing was for charity, and there was a huge turnout. It was nice to have our stuff already set up. We made a lot of new friends — shout out to Erik, our friend and new super fan. The people of El Paso are so friendly, and I can’t wait to return. We stayed with the owner of the venue, and prepared for a long journey to Fort Worth, Texas in the morning.


AlexCordovaAlex Cordova (@theAncientRiver) is a guest contributor for Little Utopia.

Previously from Alex Cordova:
Ancient River North American Tour 2014: Beautiful Vistas and Sketchy Scenes in Los Angeles
Ancient River North American Tour 2014: Some Much-Needed Time Off and a Return to San Francisco
Ancient River North American Tour 2014: California Dreamin’
Ancient River North American Tour 2014: An Ugly Experience and Nasty Weather En Route to Denver
Ancient River North American Tour 2014: Supportive Fans, Great Sound, and Awesome Food

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