Mile High, or 6,450 feet (1,970 m) above sea level to be precise. This venue literally ‘rocks’. It’s certainly one of the most iconic places to perform on any tour and tonight’s show was a stunner.
It always takes a day or so to get used to the altitude in Denver, in the gym it really tells as well as simply walking down the street. The day off which proceeded the show here was mostly spent relaxing, or should I say, luxuriating, by the pool at the Four Seasons. In the evening, band and crew met at the crew hotel for our ‘tour party’. We took over the bar of the Kimpton hotel and enjoyed a rare ‘off duty’ evening with our amazing crew. We count our lucky stars to be out here, on the road, with our, not so little, family away from home.
Leaving the bar at 10pm was wise as in the past these little soirees can get out of hand. I remember the last one in Atlanta in 2015, or rather I remember the head the next morning and the consequential tough gig that followed. Most of us were in bed early ready for the day that lay ahead.
Early start and straight out to Target to buy a Heart rate monitor. The Peloton can push you hard and other band mates have advised I should know what the old ticker is up to at all times. A Fitbit Charge 3 came with me back to the hotel room. I plugged it in, it buzzed and whirred into life and asked for a software update. I complied and that’s the last I ever heard from it. Stillborn. Many visits to customer support and the Fitbutt community revealed many, many other frustrated users with defective units. Why do they put these things out when they’re not bullet-proof? Well, I know why.
Hot and sweaty after another high altitude Peloton ride, I, and the rest of the band got our gig bags ready for a 3:30 departure for Red Rocks. Our convoy arrived just as the crew were finishing their line checks and were ready for us to do an early sound check. Just as we headed to the stage, the wind picked up. Up here, when the wind blows, it’s kind of scary as the PA and lighting ‘hangs’ sway about like outdoor Christmas decorations. The sun was thankfully behind a rather large cumulonimbus that seemed to come along for our benefit. It wasn’t rain-bearing thankfully. As soon as we finished our thorough sound check, the wind died to reveal a beautiful late Summer Colorado evening.
In no time at all the sun set. We were in catering as it got dark, the food here is always wonderful and everything on the menu was great. The closest thing to our European catering team so far on this US leg. Danny and I recorded a couple of video interviews in the keyboard department. I’ll put them together as quickly as I can. There seems to be so little time for video editing on this tour. I’m not quite sure how I did it all before.
Getting ready for an outdoor show, it’s prudent to check the temperature, especially up here as it can get quite chilly as the evening wears on. I wandered up to the stage (the dressing rooms are below) to get a sense of it. It was quite balmy and with 30 minutes to go until showtime, it looked like the venue was packed. There was definitely a buzz in the arena which was familiar. This gig is special, for sure.
Heading to the stage with ‘ears’ in, a few of us too big breaths from disposable Oxygen canisters Steve had thoughtfully provided. House lights went out and the roar was…so…Red Rocks! What a place. What a gig. Reports coming back after-show were great and in the Four Seasons bar afterwards, the lovely Pieta Brown joined us. After one drink, at 11:30pm, the ‘Edge’ Four Seasons bar took last orders which we all agreed was utterly ridiculous. The girl behind the bar was in no mood to negotiate but Tim, our tour manager showed up just in time and called the hotel manager in who immediately arranged for another round. The barmaid was visibly annoyed, shaking her head and splashing mixers around. The Four Seasons chain has evolved, you can’t blame them, but nowadays the clientele make us look decidedly old-aged. Yes, I know we are but that’s not the point.