A day off in Chicago is always a prospect to relish but for me, it was a trip out of town and yes, more golf. Blake and I were both invited to join Gray (other pilot) at his home course in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. Quite a drive but the course was lovely even if it was a little blowy. On our way back we stopped off at the incredible Capitol Grill. Supremely delicious and extraordinarily expensive steaks.

Show day saw me and a few of the chaps in the best gym of the tour. On the 20th floor of the Peninsula with views out across the windswept lake…I always find a view makes the perpetual battle AKA torture session a tad more bearable.

We left the hotel to go to the venue late in the afternoon and were there in no time. The Chicago Theatre is another truly fabulous and historic venue. Every time we’ve played here, it’s been great. The lights on the front of the building are always worth a trip outside for and most of the band did exactly that.

Backstage is cramped as most of these buildings are and the walls are adorned with many autographs and drawings from the many artists who have played here, note Frank Sinatra’s signature.

Alfie proudly shows off his new work-shorts…

As for the show, typically Chicago. Another great sell-out crowd lifting the band energy as soon as we took to the stage. Our second attempt at that song we last played 23 years ago and it seems we still like it. It’s a tricky little blighter.

Pippins Tavern was our final stop of the day and I guess inevitably, since Richard and I mention it in our diaries, there were quite a few folks there from the audience.  We chatted into the wee hours and found ourselves being plied with beers for which we were most grateful at the time, although the morning after doesn’t bear such enthusiasm. More gym work required!

Today’s Track of the Day is Fantastic Man – William Onyeabor (a true pioneer of Nigerian synthesised funk – watch this 31 minute documentary made by Jake Sumner)