Rhône and Saône, the two rivers that converge in the heart of France’s 3rd largest city. It was the Romans who initially recognised that the strategic location at the convergence of 2 navigable rivers made it a natural communications hub. Lugdunum, as it was known then, can be translated as ‘Desired Mountain’. The original foundations were built on Fourvière hill, and is the desirable location of our hotel for the past 4 days. Overlooking the entire city, the view is one of the best of the tour.
Here, in the centre of France, with the Beaujolais and Burgundy regions to the north and the Côtes du Rhône and Provence to the south, Lyon has no issue with ‘accessibilité au vin’. It was midway round the beautiful Lyon Salvagny Golf Club, I started looking forward to the large glass of Provence Rosé with ice cubes. The day was very hot but thankfully, cloud covered and breezy. I had organised the largest golf party of the tour so far as 6 of us met for a round on a perfect day off before the Lyon show. Our gracious host was course director Francois Tirard, a lovelier man you couldn’t hope to meet. The course, in mint condition, was challenging and genuine fun. Simon (Drums), Dave (Stage), Peter (Sound), Tellson (Lights), Alex (Cars) and myself were 2 very appreciative 3-balls.
Ônce we had finished golf, we joined Francois on the beautiful patio, enjoyed said glasses of Rosé and prattled on excitedly about the 4 birdies and the many wonderful golf shots we all played, and the inevitable shockers! Then it was back to the band hotel for more drinks and typical band-crew fun and banter. We have a lot of fun as a band party but when we get together with the crew boys and girls, the circle is more complete.
Next day was breezy and humid and the Tony Garnier hall seemed like a bit of a cauldron. The gig was going to be a hot one. Sound check and controlled dining completed, we headed for the stage at exactly 8pm, the excitement was tangible. The show felt loose yet the band felt, for want of a better word, ‘tight’. I hate using that word as it’s how we used to describe bands we used to go and see when we were young, it’s no longer a word we use… yet it is determinately correct.
Evenings like this are to be treasured and by 10:30, we were at the hotel bar, on the patio… treasuring. A large plate of cheese and bread, placating the inexorable hunger that follows every show, accompanied our final drinks session here. Sleep soon followed and was swift and deep.