Travel: Road trip tips from Atlanta’s queer music darlings

The band, every member of which falls into the category of “queer” according to Muramatsu, stops at Eddie’s Attic for two shows on May 12 before heading to Europe.

After the death of their Ford Econoline, Girlyman bought a Dodge Sprinter — complete with a fridge, a loft for sleeping and cubbies for each band member.

“We all have different things we need to bring…” Muramatsu says. “Each of tend to bring earplugs — cause let’s face it, some of us snore — decaf coffee and an aeropress, running shoes, and peanut butter and jelly — it sure beats being hungry!”

Food options are usually limited to said sandwiches and gas station cuisine when you’re on the road for up to 14 hours a day, but most of band eats organic, non-processed food.

“Gas stations are not an option. Except maybe for sparkling water,” Muramatsu continues. “We joke that Nate will outlive us all on his steady diet of Sour Patch Kids and Diet Coke.”

New music

Girlyman’s fifth studio album, “Supernova,” was released on iTunes and other digital outlets May 1 and physical copies are due in stores June 19.

The title brings a mix of energy — and emotions — after a bumpy ride over the last couple of years. Muramatsu was diagnosed with leukemia in late 2010. The band cancelled a month of shows and questioned their future as their lead singer sat in a hospital enduring blood transfusions and chemotherapy.

The album’s titular track written by Borofsky isn’t about Miramatsu, but it helped her get through that time, she says in the band’s bio.

“Later I looked up the definition of supernova,” she says. “It turns out that while it is a dying star, it also gives birth to new stars… as difficult as it was, I wouldn’t trade the experience — it got us where we are now.”

Muramatsu says their time on the road helps inspire the music.

“I think touring and being in different parts of the country, or in other counties, certainly adds to the palate of experience. It kind of seeps into your very being, all these images and feelings and provides you with more to work with as a writer,” she says.

Getting along

Though sometimes the band flies two members and leaves two on the road — after all, Girlyman carries a lot of equipment — most of the time, there are four people relegated to that Dodge Spirit for hours at the time.

A recipe for disaster?

“Luckily, we all like to process our feelings and are all really close friends,” Miramatsu explains. “So if something hard comes up, we’re usually able to talk it our and come to a resolution more easily than some. It’s really special to be able to do that with your bandmates.”

Beyond looking at Priceline and sites like to see what people have bid for hotels across the country to get the best deals, what’s Miramatsu’s ultimate road trip tip?

“Always bring as many pair of underwear as the number of days not the road,” she laughs. “It sucks to run out.”