I’ve traveled my share to foreign countries and explored some of the larger cities and even some smaller towns. They’ve mostly all been in Europe (I’m including Istanbul, Turkey). I did make it around Australia once and Mexico and Central America a few times too. The first thing I usually notice, or like to look for, are the local music promotions along the streets or tucked away social areas. Whether they are on street posts, abandoned buildings, or designated spots I’m always comforted that the same hustle a local band from Chicago is going through to get their music heard is also happening in most other parts of the world with their local music scene. Some cities don’t even have a “scene” but it’s hard to find a decent sized city in most parts of the world that doesn’t have at least a couple of musicians needing to promote their live shows. In heavily religious parts of the world where things are a bit stricter I have to think there are certainly musicians and/or singers that play live and need to pull in a crowd of like-minded people. Not that I can ever verify this but one can only assume that there are musicians in North Korea and Iran that are also sitting at the table thinking of how to promote their very pro-country music. That’s why local music flyers or poster promotions in a foreign town are, for me, like seeing ads for Coke…it assures, on some small level, that we’re not all completely different. People from everywhere need to play music and most of the rest want to hear it. Amen to that.