Maggie Reilly Tour Diary Part IV
Phew… We’re back home after the last epic leg of Maggie’s tour in Denmark and Germany. If I see another plate of cheese and speckled ham I’m gonna puke.
We started off with a one-off show on Easter Sunday near Gothenburg on the way into Denmark. We arrived in heavy snow (in fact it was snowing in London too… we all ended up dumping our cars in any old place at Stanstead, I could barely find the road let alone the spaces) and all we knew was that the gig was at a racecourse. ’How exciting!’ I thought, envisioning an enormous outdoor show with thousands of people all stood out in the snow whooping and screaming. Little did we know that they’d set up a stage at the bottom of the grandstand in the vip area. This not only meant that we did the whole show craning our necks to look up at the audience, but it also meant about six flights of stairs to load the gear in. We played for a small but enthusiastic audience and everyone had a great time. Then we had the pleasure of lugging the gear down all those stairs on the way out and loaded the van in a full-on blizzard. Definitely ranks high on the weird gigometer.
The Danish shows were fantastic. We played some great venues in Horsholm, Skive, St. Hedinge and finished up in Fredrikhavn.
On April 1st we went to Berlin to record a TV show called ’Hits Giganten’. No idea when that’s being aired I’m afraid; but if I find out, I’ll let you know. We were on with a bizarre mix of artists, all performing their ’Hot Hits’ in front of a studio audience. Obviously a number of these were leather trouser-clad moustachioed German artists I’d never heard of, but Sam Fox was there doing ’Touch Me’, the finale was George McCrae singing ’Rock Your Baby’ under a glitter-cannon and (my personal favourite) Baccara did ’Yes Sir, I Can Boogie’. Class. It was a long day with an unbelievable amount of hanging around, but we all had a laugh and it all looked good on camera. I still can’t stop singing ’Yes Sir, I Can Boogie’…. I don’t seem to have any control over when it’s gonna come out….
We then had five shows back to back in Germany, starting off at the Kammerspiele in Ansbach. A couple of the venues were so small it was untrue, but we all managed to squeeze on the tiny stages (Maggie was virtually in Steve’s kit on a couple of occasions, and he’s not the quietest of schlagzeugers). Chrys valiantly had to invent a PA from a seemingly non-sensical pile of leads and speaker cabinets at the venue in Bad Hersfeld (or bad hair day as we’ve taken to calling it). I really don’t think they were quite ready for a band like us to turn up with our van-load of gear, but nevertheless we managed to put on a great show under some extremely difficult circumstances.
On Friday we went back to Twist again (like we did last summer). After the show, Mark and Steve came up to the dressing room declaring ’Simon! There’s a couple of people that want to talk to you downstairs’. ’Finally!’ I thought, ’fans of my own!’ After roaring off a quick post-gig fag, I went out into the hall to be greeted by a tall bloke and his nervously giggling girlfriend. ’We loved the show’ he said. Good. ’And my girlfriend really likes your hat’. Right… ’And she was wondering if she could have it?’. What?! No she bloody can’t! I couldn’t believe it. Cheeky bastards. Needless to say I gave them my thanks and made a quick exit… I’ve still got my hat.
Last night we played Lubeck in some kind of arty-farty/veggy/hippy centre. After five shows in a row and seemingly endless drives, we were all shattered and Maggie had all but lost her voice by the end of the previous show. We had a very subdued soundcheck and the acoustic was horrendous. Miraculously, this turned out to be one of the best shows we’ve done thus far and a really good end to the tour.
We must have driven all the way around Germany about six times over the last month. We all agreed that we’ve seen enough conifers and wind-farms and eaten enough leiderdame and speckled ham to last us a lifetime. We’ve got a bit of a break now. There’s a couple of bits and bobs over the summer, but Maggie and Stuart are busy sorting out a big Autumn tour so watch this space for new dates.
Yes Sir, I can Boogie…. Boogie-woogie all night looooong!
I can’t help it now…