Right Place, Right Time.
We drive out of Berlin having had a great gig there. Somewhat similar to a cool ‘Go-on-and-prove -it’ London audience, the gig at The Admiralspalast was one of the best, and we left feeling that our return later in the year would be something to which we could look forward.Hamburg, four hours later, and as before, nothing out of the ordinary except that for this entire tour, we are playing in some seriously cool venues. This time The Laeiszhalle.
We prepare, do the usual stuff, soundcheck, offered the ‘conductor’s dressing room, resplendent in dark velvet furniture and upright Steinway piano (!?) and Jem starts her vocal excersises, generously prepared by the lovely Dave and Carrie Grant. “Memememe Momomomo Muuu”, A bucket of Fetachini, Red Leather, Yellow Leather, Fiddle faddle Foooo” and so it goes on.
I am meanwhile noodling the same old scales runs and chrods,, loosening up, and trying to put her off….. such is sharing a room with ones daughter!
We get the bell….. 5 minutes; The bowels start to move, and it’s a choice of ‘holding on’ or a last minute dash!
House Lights; We walk on…..No preamble, introduction or announcement. They haven’t come to see us’ we’re extra, a bonus, The Support!
There is definitely something in the air tonight….. After the first song, they are generous and appreciative. After the second they don’t stop applauding. Jem is ‘overwhelmed’ and tells them that if they don’t stop, she’ll start to cry!
It gets better, and we do our usual five songs, they laugh at the gags and clap along finally to receive a standing ovation and a raptous exit.The Boys, Naturally 7, are standing in the wings listening. Their reaction is lovely and ‘white boy’ tries to look cool doing several High Fives in a row. It’s then you realise, that you have done what you were asked to do; Support the show, and the Main Band for the night. The Audience is ready, warmed up, prepared, and happy.
But to receive such an amazing and encouraging response, confirmed by the slightly manic stampede at the merchandising table during the short 20 minute interval is totsally head spinning.At the end of the show, Jem is called back on stage to do a short dance with the boys. The audience still remember who she is.
We both return to the dressing room, pack up, collect our bits and drive back to the Hotel.
It’s like the biggest ride on Space Mountain, ten times in a row! The head just doesn’t stop spinning and you feel that you’re still up there, a kind of giddy motion sickness while standing still.
It’s now 6 30 am, and I’m wide awake, thinking about the next show, but still on a high from the previous. What a silly job this is; we have one week to go until we go home, and two more concerts with The Boys. There’s talk of more, bigger, better and of course our next tour in the Autumn. But for now, a brief run around the very dodgy Reeperbahn, an even more suspicious breakfast including the Tower of Meat, and solid block of scrambled eggs, and another 4 hour drive to Cologne….. Let’s have another like last night.
I like ‘Right place, right time’.