March 9, 1997
8 X 10, Baltimore MD

That's a small stage

Review and photos by Mike Dare. Check out the setlist.

Baltimore, MD- The second stop of the Cranes US tour. While checking into their hotel, Mark and Ali notice that one of the elevators is boarded up and has an "Out of Order" sign on it. Then they run into a gentleman that tells them the lovely story as to WHY the elevator is broken...

Apparently, the week before one of the guests in the hotel went out for a beer late at night. The elevator was broken, but he somehow managed to step into the empty elevator shaft and fall 4 stories to his death. Of course, at the time, nobody knew what happened to him. At least not until somebody complained that their was a horrid smell in the elevators.

Welcome to Baltimore.

Anyways, as for the gig...The 8 X 10 club is an extremely small hole in the wall club. I'm estimating maybe about 200 people were there at the most. That's about all the place could hold. The stage was cramped way in the corner of the club and barely had enough room to fit all 5 band members on the stage. If Mark wasn't careful, Ali's bass may have wacked him the back and sent him flying off the front of the stage. And in case your wondering, the 5th band member of the Cranes is Paul Smith. He's the guy with the long blond hair (a.k.a. Fabio). He's not officially in the lineup, but he's been with the band for awhile, and is pretty important with the Cranes live shows.

The set was the same as the Atlanta gig. Once again, most of the fans at the show seemed quite blown away by the Cranes. Mark and Ali still didn't think it was their greatest performance, but for the type of club and audience that night, they did a pretty damn good job. I seriously doubt if many bands ever come out of that club feeling they've put on the performance of their lives.

The best thing to happen for the band that night, though, was that they picked up a free roadie. Enter Jeff Martin ( and no, he is not the same Jeff Martin who's the lead singer of Idaho). He's just some crazed fan with nothing to do and who wants to tag along on the tour. But he is very beneficial. The Cranes need all the help they can get. They still are a struggling band.

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