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Current page: Concert Diary 2007

Current page: Concert Diary 2007

Concert Diary 2007

De Nobelaer, Etten-Leur - 26th October 2007

Chris Simpson writes - Strange kind of title. Sounds more like Alsace-Lorraine or a tiny European principality. In fact Matt explained that it is simply two communities joined together, way back in the scheme of things.

The weather here has been clear and cold with the first frosts biting into the trees and a steady fall of leaves sifting down onto the forest floor.

Linda went up into Little Soest last Monday on my bicycle and on coming back up the lane to the forest had an argument with a car. The car won and now madam besports a splendid shiner, bruised ribs and knee. It is getting better, although not yet disappeared and we have a photo shoot with Conrad tonight. Just our luck!

Anyway. Etten-Leur.

Chris and Jan

Jan the man picked us up at 2.30. He is quite superb. The archetypal tour manager; always on time; good to be with; and a problem is ever something to be quietly solved without any pressure on the act.

Across the flatlands again.I find my self drifting in and out of sleep in the back seat and wonder why, when one has had more than the supposedly-good-for-you eight hours. The simple answer is that on the road you rarely get quality sleep for your clock is permanently skewed around.

We arrive at an imposing theatre and as ever, you go to what you think is the stage door and it is the back entrance to the Theatre restaurant; we try another one and that is the advance bookings door.

We do get in eventually and meet William the sound man. A lovely guy with that old 70's ' hey, everything is cool,' attitude. It was, and we had the soundcheck done in double quick time.

A fine Italian dinner in our own Theatre dining room procured by Jan from the Pastapalace acoss the street and the odd glass of wine to help it along.

Showtime spot on 8.30 and in Theatreland that is the way of things.

Willem on sound

Linda and Matt start with 'Who knows where the time Goes,' the old Fairport classic performed acoustically in front of the mikes. Clever mover that for when I walk on for the second number, 'For the Gypsy', which I still love doing, it gives the impression of a big sound lift.

On through the set. Linda tells the audience that we will be finishing at the Theatre Carre in Amsterdam in 2009. Asking them to sign a kind of guest list for this event seemingly so far away in the future, she also points out that they all ought to check out the parrot e-mail she got got from some friend of ours. It is rude but very funny. So far the list of people wanting details of the Carre AND the parrrot is formidable.

We end on the Fields of Eden and as ever it has colossal impact. Something that I feel passionately about. It kind of brings it home when I point out that it is not just relevant to the Yorkshire Dales, it also applies to Holland where mass building is going on at a frightening pace. I point out that Matt told us during his month in South Africa next to his town they built a housing complex, supermarket and attendant car parks. All in four weeks. Apparently too, the Dutch are losing around eight farms a day and no-one seems to know and only a minority care.

Pauze, as the Dutch call the Interval and then on we go again. 'Backroads', with Linda and Matt hamming it up for all they're worth has the audience in stitches. On though the set punching home the 'Ordinary Man', and then thank you's and dedications, and finally, 'Paradise Row'.

We sell a lot of Cd's an as ever go out to the foyer to sign them. That is a great way of meeting some great people and I end up telling stories to three lovely people whom I never met before.It was ever thus.

Home with Jan the man; a medicinal tot of whisky from one of my Dutch birthday present bottles, and then sweet oblivion lulled down by the sound of a soft wind outside moaning through the pines. Tomorrow is just another day.

Our audience
Left Arrow Soest, Holland Druten, Holland Right Arrow