The shows are coming thick and fast now, and that impression is probably enhanced by quick visits home as the touring routine is temporarily altered. There never seems to be enough hours in the day and diary entries in the UK tend to be slightly rushed. I’m throwing this one together from my living room after last night’s show in Cardiff.
Before we checked out, there was ample photo opportunity as we assembled in front of Lime Wood. It was another long day which started in our hotel in the New Forest and continued with a very short 18 minute flight from Bournemouth airport into Cardiff. It may have been shorter if it wasn’t for the stiff North-Easterly headwind. At least the sun was out. Small sushi platters were swiftly distributed about the cabin and as usual on short flights we all mucked in and helped Liz. We were soon in the cars on our way into deepest downtown Cardiff and the familiar Motorpoint arena.
Soundcheck comprised of a few songs which we are planning on running at the Jools Holland ‘special’ tomorrow (23rd). Also, we managed to get Nigel involved in another one of the tunes in the set.
After a chicken Katsu curry with rice in catering, there was just enough time for 30 minutes ‘feet up’ our most spacious dressing room. I was out in a flash and woke, not knowing where I was. These short naps can be great before a show but If you go down even a tiny bit too deep, it can be difficult to regain show-awareness. I feared the worst as I was gone for a full half-hour so I tried my hardest to immerse in the vocal warm-ups with Mark and the boys, breathing deeply and a little spot of yoga for good measure. I think I got away with it although during the show, the mind wandered dangerously. In this band you simply cannot afford to be anywhere else. It’s heads-up 100% of the time.
Another unsolved dressing room mystery. An unclaimed sock.
We had another fantastic show and most of the band are now benefitting from the new in-ear systems. The stage sound was great and the audience, well, simply wonderful. Another warm, appreciative reception and they were ALL on their feet for the last two encores as Mark had to intervene in a case of slightly over-zealous security. “Don’t spoil it” he said over the PA to a front of stage security chappie who clearly had forgotten our briefing. It happens. It wasn’t long before the front of the stage was decorated with smiling Cardiff faces.
The runner from the venue was slightly different as Jim and I went our separate ways, I was heading home and Jim went to London in-car. A little over 2 hours later, Eike the driver was pulling up into my driveway.