So we did it, our UK tour! It was an amazing experience, exhausting, elating, some highs (actually lots) some lows (very few) and with a 30 piece choir accompanying us (Münchner Kneipenchor) it was certainly an experience we’ll never forget.
I thought I’d write a blog about it – I know usually blogs are written as events happen, but the tour was so intense and demanding that I just didn’t have time to write anything – also most of the time I didn’t have internet connection and my rubbish phone could only hold it’s charge for a couple of hours. So this is a sort of delayed blog. Perhaps a little old fashioned, but it does seem that old fashions eventually come back into fashion. I’ve recently seen a couple of girls wearing un-ripped jeans high on the waist in a sort of 80’s style (one was at a party for the fashion industry – I cant remember the name of the company because I’m not into fashion I just let my girlfriend (Fatty) dress me up – lucky for me she’s a costume and stage designer with excellent taste – not that I’d notice if she had bad taste – anyway, I digress, so back to the main story)
Usually my more recent blogs / articles I’ve kept very short as someone once told me that my articles were too long – but actually I’m not so worried about that anymore or at least at present – in any case the reader can stop reading any time they like. At least I’m presuming so, it is possible that these blogs could be used as some sort of torture technique by some unscrupulous agents, forced lengthy blog reading to drive the poor victim slowly mad. So if you are being forced to read this and you are going slowly mad then just before you completely lose your mind let me apologise whole heartedly.
It occurs to me as I write this that I might still be under the influence of the lovely beer I was consuming last night at Craft Bräu in Dießen, Ammersee – we played to a lovely audience. Ok, now I will get back on with the story proper. Perhaps I’ll pop a little picture in now to alleviate any boredom incurred by my meanderings.
So here we are (pic above) just loading our tourbus at Janine’s practice studio about to set out on our tour. May I just extend a huge thankyou to both ladies in the band for doing most of the driving – my driving license didn’t arrive in time – I may have done some driving, but this is only rumour (just in case any traffic police are reading this).
So our first concert was in Wetzlar. What’s that you say? You’ve never heard of an English town called Wetzlar? Well ok, we made a sneaky stop at this lovely town in Hessen on our way to the ferry – and as our lovely Sousaphone player Daniel Smith had an important show in Vienna (he took a high speed train to meet us in that really big German town that reminds me of a sausage in a bap, but I can’t remember the name of just now) we had the pleasure of Mr. Bernhard Ebster on Double Bass for the gig.
Our hosts were the wonderful Siegmar and <**sorry name is temporarly on a wander**> – may I just point out that my memory has always been a little strange – actually I don’t think it’s just my memory, I am very chaotic in nature – something that sometimes infuriates people, for instance I’ve met some people in the past who took offence that I couldn’t remember their names – they said it was rude because it shows how little you think of the person – well in repost may I say that it took me a few years to remember my own name and their’s no bad will intended, I’ve come to learn that the way my mind works is that the memories and little bits of information sometimes get bored being trapped in my head all the time and occasionally (often actually) take a little wander or even an extended vacation and when they please they come back all refreshed and ready for use again. Sometimes it can be embarrasing or inconvenient and people don’t understand it – for instance I remember a very embarrassing episode when I was in Junior school – for some reason the teachers thought I was quite bright and so when there was a school quiz (in the school hall in front of the whole school) they thought they’d put me on the team and of course I knew not one of the answers – but I was always very good at making up stories, I think maybe because I had to develop this ability because I couldn’t remember stuff so I had to quite often just invent things so I had more than nothing to say.
Sorry I’ve wandered off again.
The gig in Wetzlar – was most enjoyable – lovely, lovely audience and full of characters (as we say in England) – I was even commended on my command of the English language, which I was very happy about – we actually played in Wetzlar about, oh when was it, at least 4 years ago, maybe longer – another thing about my mind, I have no concept of time, or anything with quantities, numbers, amounts of money, weights, shoe size (no idea) – I couldn’t tell you when my driving license was stolen as I was swimming in the warm seas of Rhodes while I was there for my older brother’s wedding (actually it wasn’t just his wedding, it was also his wife’s too – Polly) or how many years I’ve been playing with Lischkapelle – to me it seems like either yesterday or eons ago depending on my state of mind.
After the gig we went to Cafe Vinyl for a drink – which was where we played the last time we were there – the last time we also had to drive back to Munich after the show (topped up with Club Mate to keep us awake) all cramped into one car with all the equipment, Regine our ex-Helikon player was almost in tears it was so painful on the long journey back – gott sei dank that this time we could stay overnight in the soft inviting beds at our hosts’ place (sorry the missing name is still on vacation).
So the next day we said goodbye to Bernhard, promising to bring him some Purity UBU back from England (we’d brought him a crate of Augustiner as him being an Austrian living in France he misses the excellent beer of the Alpine / German speaking regions and of course of England – well, what can I say, France has wonderful cheeses and wines amongst many other things, but beer is not their forte – you can’t be great at everything – for instance I am remarkably bad at conducting (as in waving a baton around in front of a choir or orchestra) – the teachers at the conservatoire always got quite angry because I always ‘danced’ while I waving the stick – sorry couldn’t help it)
I think perhaps that’s enough for part one ay?
Here we are rehearsing one of the oldest songs in the GT repertoire (written in 2006) at Bernhard’s place in Schweinheim.