By Jonny Cragg Special to Published Aug 21, 2014 at 6:26 PM

When my buddy Andy Tarnoff at asked me to write a few words; a blog if you will, I spent the first couple of days in a stunned catatonic state.

Newly arrived in Seattle, from New York and originally from Leeds England, what could I possibly write about that would resonate with his readership?

Taking a look at the website, I could see that it was a resource very like the ones I would use in the aforementioned cities; taking the reader to places they might not have visited, both physical, intellectual, artistic, epicurean, libationary and otherwise.

It got me revisiting some of the times I came to Milwaukee with my band, Spacehog -- the countless times we played Summerfest, our appearance at Shank Hall, and random visits to the state to play places like Oshkosh and Sturtevant. The warmth of your average Midwesterner is noteworthy; I knew because I had tended bar with a couple back in New York, none other than Spoon's Rob Pope and The Hold Steady's Bobby Drake.

Andy has shown tremendous support to Spacehog over the years and has tried to step out every time we played. He didn't let me down on at the Wisconsin State Fair on Aug 7, when I was back with some old faces on the Summerland Tour.

After some apprehension about the nostalgia angle, we ended up having a bangin' tour with Everclear, Soul Asylum and Eve 6.

Sure we had some differences with Art Alexakis back in the day, owing to our opposed views on sobriety. But they were graciously put to bed after he invited us back to Summerland after an 18-year absence.

Yes that's right, we did the first Summerland, put together by Art in 1996! We wound up playing as part of (yes you guessed it!) Summerfest.

I remember being disappointed at the time because the agents had been talking a big game about getting some of the strongest names on the scene at the time. Names like No Doubt, Bush and Oasis. It wound up being Ourselves, Everclear, Tracey Bonham (with whom we got along famously) and Seattle's' Seven Year Bitch!

Touring the United States for two months is a whole lot different now for all of us, from those days in the ‘90s. Gone are the actresses and supermodels, replaced by long suffering wives, mothers of our children, or at least caretakers of our various pets. AA meetings, green juices and transcendental meditation have superseded drugs and alcohol for the most part; it's all a bit Spinal Tap, but then it always was and always will be.

Crews have become noticeably smaller since bands have had to rely solely on touring and merchandise income to survive.

Everyone chips in on Spacehog, from tour management, press, radio, travel agent tasks, driving, to good old fashioned roadying.

In spite of the the increased workload I enjoy it more than ever now. It seems more real somehow. It's a great feeling crawling into your bunk at night knowing you put on a good rock show, which sounded great and was conducted safely from start to finish. And hey maybe you got out front to the merch table to meet fans who'd waited 15 years to see the band and somehow weren't overburdened with expectation.

Hoping to return to lovely Milwaukee very soon.

Jonny Cragg Special to

Jonny Cragg was born in Hythe England on July 18th 1966. Raised and educated in Yorkshire he chose Leeds as his spiritual home. Whilst at school he learned to play the drums, playing in local bands until opting to study Psychology at the University of East London in 1985.

Almost by accident his first job after graduation was back behind the drums for Leeds band The Hollowmen. They recorded four studio albums, signed to Arista Records, and toured extensively throughout Europe. A press trip to New York served to strengthen his resolve to move to the States, and that finally happened in the Spring of 1993. By the following year, Cragg had formed Spacehog with a group of Leeds expatriates in The Lower East Side: The group went onto sell millions of records, and tour the world to great success. He remains active in the group having made four studio albums to date.

Jonny is also a session musician, producer, writer, DJ and educator. His credits include: The Pierces, Supergrass, Edie Brickell, The Utah Saints, David Johansen and Richard Butler and Marty Wilson Piper, HBO, Comedy Central and Nickelodeon.

He has two daughters, Laila and Domino, and lives with his partner in Seattle.