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Current page: Concert Diary 2007

Current page: Concert Diary 2007

Concert Diary 2007

Radio Gelderland Session - 30th October

Chris Simpson writes - We had done a session for them a couple of years ago and I called them up and suggested another one as we needed to hit all the surrounding shows in the area. It was all agreed.

Linda had gone down the day before to spend the evening with Lizzie and Henk leaving Matt and I on the phone for most of the day busy being agents (sweet lord, who would want to be an agent full time. It is mind crunching) and we decided to have a let-it-all-hang-out evening when we had become totally number dead.

So your two hellraisin' all round rock n' roll animals decided on supper. I said I would make it and bent to all my culinary skills, honed to razor edged precision on the road. It would have teased the tonsils of a passing gourmet. Fish fingers done to a turn and turned til they were done. Very done in this case for even the smoke alarms were teetering on full alert as I crisped sliced potatoes in a wok and cut up an avocado salad just as the boy and I like it. When served up it tasted wonderful, looked mighty colourful and plummeted into our intestinal workings like wet cement. Captain Jack Sparrow would have been proud of us as rampaging members of a pirate crew as Matt's eyes slowly banged shut in front of a movie he had seen twice before, clutching a fruit juice in a sticky hand whilst I attempted to damage a bottle of Chablis before falling asleep.

It was time to turn in and indeed your heroes did just that. The wind blew softly in the pines outside the window; the fridge having a mind of its own went into freezing mode on the hour with an electronic thud and a sound like something heaven bound leaving Cape Canaveral. Occasionally I could discern young Barnhoorn's snores percolating down the wooden walls like a distant dentist's drill......to sleep perchance to dream.

Radio Gelderland

We're on the road. Hell, another mind numbing clutch of hours telling the theatres that 2008 will be their last chance to book the greatest acoustic act in the world; grab the guitars and then out onto the crowded Dutch highways and on to Arnhem. The SatNav sytem Doris 2, ( Doris 1 left to have a baby) almost has a route-finding miscarriage as we hit a set of roadworks and diversions, but drops the black and white chequered flag smack on the radio station.We have arrived and load out.

Every establishment in whatever field of human endeavour hangs or falls on the style and quality of its receptionist. Sadly in England you all too often tend to get some estuary English speaking bimbo with compressed air where there used to be brains, and an on/off smile like a gash in a curtain, and a personality to match. Elly at Omeoep Gelderland could show them all a clean pair of heels. Attractive; polite and a smile to melt an icecap,she not only remembered our names from the year before but had some 'English sweets' for us. This is what the Dutch call liquorice allsorts.

Eric the presenter come down to welcome us; off goes a mobile phone and Linda has arrived with Henk and Lizzie outside and we make our way up to the studio. Setting up and sound checking on cans( headphones). Dick is the sound man and he knows what he is doing as well. Both he and Eric are really nice guys. The leads snake off under the studio door to connect to the control console downstairs and the red 'ON AIR' light is on and we launch into 'For the Gypsy.' Eric then interviews us and the story is all of us ending in 2009 and why.

Because forty years is a long time.

On through Linda' s lovely song for her Dad,' Shine,' to me a rightful celebration of a life, rather than sentiments of gloom and despair which nobody really wants.

A very funny man with a face that seemed almost reconciled to living in one of life's vacuums came in to read the news. I thought we had finished but Dick liked it so much downstairs that we did one more, 'You and I' went down and he commented, 'that was just beautiful'.

Guitars; stands; bags and assorted bits of equipment made their way down to the foyer. Fond farewell's all round. Elly' s smile is as dazzling as ever and we are given more 'English sweets' to see us down the road.

Outside it is a golden Autumn day and yet unseasonably mild. The smell of leafmould is in the air and a light breeze from the river. This town has always given me a sense of melancholy. It even has small gradients the Dutch hopefully call hills, but it is the memories steeped into the very earth. For below us is the 'Bridge too far', and my generation knows only too well that English blood amongst it all was spilled here in the battle of Arnhem. And the Dutch, God bless them, never forget.

I think it is always essential to remember these things in the light of our lives and times...

It is back up the road to Soest where tomorrow is just another day, and yesterday has been and gone.

Left Arrow Noordpolderzijl, Holland Arnhem, Holland Right Arrow