As this UK bank holiday weekend gets into gear, finally the weather takes a turn for the better. The sun is out and in 24 hours, the temperature has risen about ten degrees. For the rest of the band, it’s another frustrating journey out of central London congestion down to Brighton but for me, it’s a 40 minute ride from home along the South Coastal M/A27 in what must be described as minimal traffic. I was at the venue well before the guys and found myself alone in catering viewing the remnants of the crew lunch. Georgie always leaves the soup out for the band but today there was also some delicious home-made pizza. It was churlish to resist. The soup was a carrot and coriander, the better of which I’ve honestly never tasted.
The venue is right next to the famous Grand hotel Brighton which was the horrific scene of the bombing in 1984, an attempt by the IRA to assassinate the Prime Minister of the time.
The Brighton Centre is renowned for it regular use as a conference venue for political parties and other bodies of national importance. It comfortably seats around 5,000 delegates but in concert configuration it accommodates 4,270. I’ve lost count of the number of times we’ve played what has become my local gig, but it’s a great venue, very comfortable and sounds pretty good too. The dressing rooms are also nice and by the time the London boys arrived, I was on a couch writing yesterday’s diary entry. As always when I get the opportunity to spend time at home, my online musings take a back seat….hence this late entry. I will get to writing about some of the more technical, musical things that go on just as soon as we get back onto the Continent and the touring routine returns. For now, whilst in the UK, there seems little time for anything.
Sound check was thorough and a last chance to run some tunes Ruth will be rejoining us for in London. Catering was its usual sublime self and Dave had prepared today a brisket of beef in a delicious broth, amongst other things. Out of the corner of my eye, a home-made cherry cheesecake seemed to silently call. Jim and I were easy prey. It was incontrovertibly the best cheesecake I’ve ever had.
Back in the dressing room there wasn’t much time to let my slight over-indulgence digest before we were in the familiar pre-show routine of Honey, Ginger and Lemon tea prepared by John and the absurd howlings that constitute our vocal warm-ups.
On stage, the band was relaxed as we settled into another great evening of music that was so clearly appreciated by a sold out house.
Eike made sure I was back at home before the rest of the guys were half way to London, it was still semi-daylight and I thought to myself, Summer is finally here.
pic James Morris