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Current page: Concert Diary 2008

Current page: Concert Diary 2008

Concert Diary 2008

Nettlebed, Oxfordshire - 25th February

Matthijs Barnhoorn writes - After quite a hectic couple of weeks for all of us it was time to get together again!

On Friday I flew into Leeds-Bradford International Airport, to be welcomed in by two beloved friends Pete and Bev. Driving back, Pete took a lovely touristy route through the lovely Dales… to arrive soon at my second home: Hebden (well, it really feels like coming home).

That day I spend most of my time in bed (Chris always makes a point of telling that the Dutch are always ill, stressed or on holiday. To proof the point... I was ill).

Luckily I felt better that evening and together with Pete and Bev, Linda took us out for a lovely dinner: traditional English dinner buffet, including Yorkshire Pudds.

The following day I still spend most of the day in bed. Poor Linda, after a long time looking forward to being together again, I'm spending most of my time in bed. Sorry, love.

Chris rolled up in the early evening, with a whole trailer full of logs. If only he'd warned us. Anyway, once the logs were in the shed and everybody got warmed up we had a lovely evening together. Chris and I also went up to the Clarendon for an hour or two to meet up with some more beloved friends there.

On Sunday we made our way to the South. In a six-hour journey Chris drove us to Twyford, Berkshire.

There we got a lovely welcome from Neil and Caroline, our wonderful hosts for the next set of days. Chris, Linda and Neil go back to the early Eighties, when they were in the Middle East.

It was wonderful to hear the stories, but most of all I enjoyed the funny songs that Neil sang. If ever the chance is there, I'd love to learn them!

The day of the concert arrived. A lovely day! We first did some 'E-bay-business', followed by a run-through of some songs. Neil and Caroline made us wonderful sandwiches to keep us going until after the show. They were ace! We loaded in the equipment and had a pleasant drive through the countryside to arrive half an hour later in Nettlebed. There we saw Lee unpacking his car. After saying hello to him and his lovely wife Shirley, we were met in by Simon, the sound engineer for that night.

All four of us have been looking forward to this night. For me the main reason was to play with Lee again. I find it a true privilege to share a stage with one of the best fretless bass players in the world. Apart from being an 'orgasmic' bass player, he is also a wonderful person and so is his family!

During one of the MC performances in England in January, the sound engineer had recorded the concert. Listening back to those recordings on our way to Newcastle - for our Barcelona adventure - I heard that Lee had made new bass-lines, which were in harmony to my violin / mandolin-lines. So this could a very interesting night.

A quick and efficient sound check, followed by a run-through of some songs, this time with all four of us. After that there was only very little time to get changed and have a cup of tea.

Linda and Lee opened up with the fabulous 'Blues for a long road Home'. Chris and I joined them on stage and off we went. The audience was great, which made that we had a lovely night. Lee's bass-lines were stunning and I hope that Simon succeeded recording the lot!

In the interval there were some friends coming down to the dressing room, including a delegation of Rockin' Roy's family. (For our adventures with Rockin' Roy read the Berne write-up of 2007). It was so nice to see them all, I wish that we had more time to spend!

The second set went down really fast, in my opinion. But the reward for it afterwards was stunning. Everybody got up there feet for a standing ovation, that's something you don't always get from an English audience. Thank you all very much.

Afterwards we took some time to talk with some members of the audience. After that we cleared out our equipment, helped Simon with getting his in the van and when all was done we thanked everybody and set of for the home of the lovely Neil and Caroline. There good company and a lovely Shepard's Pie welcomed us!

Another adventure in our book. Thanks everybody!

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