May 14th, 2014
10 o’clock Monday morning and the alarm goes off.
So off, in fact, that next thing I know it’s 11.30 and I don’t know if I’m Arthur or Martha.
I’m sure Bremen is a lovely town. In fact, the bit between the hotel and the Irish pub yesterday was delightful. But sadly, that was all I was destined to see.
By the time I had showered, shaved and gathered all of my possessions – which were scattered around the room as though I had just held a jumble sale – it was time to leave for the venue.
Today’s venue was a municipal theatre, which was rather imaginatively called “The Musical Theatre”. They must have been up all night thinking of that one!
It was another seated venue but at least it felt like the audience were in the same room, so we held out hope that it would be a good one.
Soundcheck took longer than usual as we wanted to try out some different endings to the show. The closing number of the main set is power ballad “The Rain” and it’s perfect as it has a great big, thundering ending with everything but the kitchen sink chucked in.
However, the past couple of shows we have felt a little uncomfortable at the timing of the end as Lisa walks off. Either we were finished before she was completely off stage or she was off and halfway through her second pint and we were still going for it.
So, we decided to experiment with some different endings to give us more flexibility and to help get the timing perfect.
Seemed like a great idea at the time……..
Anyway, show time came around and, as it was the third night in a row, Lisa was a little concerned that her voice might be a bit under par. However, as usual she delivered the goods and the audience were really rocking.
A great show was rounded off by the glorious sound of the new experimental endings.
All of them….
Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the end of the show sounded like a fire in a pet shop, with 3 different endings all competing against each other and all of the protagonists insisting they were right.
Thank god it wasn’t being recorded! Somehow, we managed to get sort of in sync and finish roughly together but it wasn’t pretty, I can tell you.
In actual fact, I spoke to a fan after the show who said that he didn’t notice anything so, either I’m making a mountain out of a molehill or he went to a different gig?
Paddy, the lighting Director, prepares for the show…….
Mickey, the Sax player, prepares for the show……
After the show was a 6 hour drive to Amsterdam so we pushed off around 1.00am and I went straight to my bunk.
Got up at 4.15 am to pay a visit to the little boy’s room and Lisa, Ian, Walter and Andrea were still up drinking red wine and talking absolute bollocks!
Good job tomorrow’s a day off again!
Next thing I know, it’s 10.00am and we are parked outside the venue with the hotel a mere 2 minutes walk away.
As we were early for check in, not all of our rooms were ready but by 11.30 or so, I had my key and was – surprise, surprise – running a bath.
A day off in Amsterdam is something to relish as there is so much to see and do there. The new Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh museum plus just walking around taking in the lovely relaxed vibe of the place.
Outside of Andrea, who had several episodes of Coronation Street to watch, the band and crew divided into two camps: Cultural and, shall we say, counter-cultural.
Museum or coffee shop…..
I had a good wander around the old city which has a special feeling for me and it was one of those tour days when I wished my wife was with me. However, sadly she wasn’t so I had to make do with spending time in a second hand record shop with Snowboy.
Much as I love him, he was a poor substitute!
As we walked in to Wax Well Records, the proprietor recognised Snowboy straight away (he’s also a famous DJ, as well as a world renowned pan clatterer) and they were off on an unintelligible train of music trivia and minutiae.
After an hour, I lost the will to live and branched out on my own, getting back to the hotel with just enough time for another bath before heading out for a quick drink and a curry at the now traditional Akbar restaurant with the guys.
Once we had eaten our own weight in Indian food – except Mike the bus driver and Tony the truck driver, who both wildly underestimated the XXXXXX rating of Dutch Vindaloo – the two factions split again, with Snowboy, 80s Dave and I heading back to the hotel and the others disappearing into the night and who knows what?
Just time for – you guessed it – the 3rd bath of the day and I’m in bed and starting my new book.
I’m SO rock and roll……….