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Friday 2nd November 07                                                                                                                                   

Forum Theatre, Billingham.

Our early arrival at Billingham prompted Dave to wonder whether we had forgotten to put the clocks back, but it was all the fault of unusually low traffic volume on the M62.
In spite of an administrative cock-up over publicity print for this venue, the advance sales had been pretty good, and with a healthy walk up on the night, we would playing to a really decent sized crowd.
As we stood behind the curtain listening to the play-on, we could also hear a couple of voices that sounded as though we may be in for an interesting night.  When the curtain went up, the two ladies in question made themselves abundantly apparent by standing up and dancing to the front of the stage.  The ushers quickly had them back in their seats, but it took several more visits by them, a tube of super-glue and some nails to finally adhere their bums down for the remainder of the first half.  Their failure to re-appear for the second half, was either due to them being turfed out, or them being fed up and leaving of their own accord.  Whichever, they were missed by us, but not necessarily for the right reasons.

Bit of a wierd on stage sound, but the audience seemed to have a fab time.  Hope we can come back here!!




Saturday 17th November 07                                                                                                                             

The Shire London, Barnet.

This Golf Club Winter Ball was as "last minute" as gigs every come in for us and with Dirk away, we call on Chris O'Neil to stand in with the bass guitar.  It's also the first time in a long while that Dave or Ade have not been with us.  After nearly five years on the road together, it's a sad day but things change and we sincerely wish them success with their future plans.

The equipment is now being taken care of by Rooftop Audio.  If you have followed these postings for some time (poor sods), you may have seen Chris and Steve pop up in the blog over the last few years.  It's now a pleasure to formally welcome them to the team.

There is a lot more hanging about at these functions compared to the theatre dates and even though the surroundings were more than pleasant, it is very hard not to get bored.  Israel v Russia provided something of a lifeline in that department, with
Israel throwing a surprising bone to the England football team in respect of their defeat of Russia, leaving England with the task of only having to draw with Croatia at Wembley this coming Wednesday, in order to qualify for Euro 2008.
Meanwhile in the changing room, Eddie was enjoying the acoustics and singing songs by James Taylor and Cat Stevens with his usual remarkable vocal impressions.

The gig itself went very well and was well received.  The audience was enthusiastic, appreciative and kept the dance floor full during the set, even during the slower numbers.
We'd like to thank the club owners for their hospitality and humour, it was appreciated.
We arrive home late.



Thursday 22nd November 07                                                                                                                           

Happy Birthday Eddie!

Anniversary pose!

Friday 23rd November 07                                                                                                                                  

Forest Theatre, Coleford.

We thought it would be a good idea to arrive "well" early for this Gloucester concert, as it was Rooftop's first theatre with us and there were almost certainly going to issues that we would have to address.  
So...we did and we did.  Now everyone has met the full Rooftop squadron of Chris, Steve and Pete, as all three were on this gig.  There was even enough time for Eddie to have a go on the drums.

Good concert and good feedback from the audience, one I think we all enjoyed.




   

Thursday 29th November 07                                                                                                                            

Harlequin Theatre, Redhill.

Today started off wonderfully.  Within 10 miles of leaving home, I was pulled up for speeding on the Runcorn Expressway.  Totally guilty and not even borderline, 54 in a 40 zone, gimme the points and the fine.  Of course, I could moan about the fact that this particular road seems to change its speed limits more frequently than Roy has to scythe through his chestal hair, but that won't get me anywhere. Neither will droning on about the ludicrous amount of street furniture on the roads these days which you are expected to take in whilst avoiding the real twats who are driving in the wrong lane.......arhhh...maybe that's why we should slow down!!  The photo they showed me was remarkably clear, displaying the car reg. and a full face shot. Thank God I wasn't on the phone, smoking a fag and eating a Ginsters at the same time.  Still, I'm glad to think that I am doing my bit and paying a little bit more to the Police coffers.  If they are pulling in around 1400 an hour in fixed penalties from each patrol, they'd be pissed off if we all drove within the limits.
With Derek joining us on the M6, the conversation returns to our favourite subject of "this country", how oppressive things are getting, how apathetic we are and what we would do about it......if we could be arsed!

Seven hours have been allowed to make this journey down to Surrey.  As it turned out, we only needed five of them, in spite of quite bad M25 traffic and a lorry hitting the railway bridge in Redhill itself.  Steve and Pete were already set up and were just putting the finishing touches to the cabling as we found our way to the dressing rooms.  It's more than three years since we played here, the backstage area looked familiar, but I have no recollection of the stage or auditorium whatsoever....all part of the blur.

Dirk and Pete have now nailed the foldback sound on stage, but I'm still not happy with my amp. - it's too quiet for me and too loud for Pete front of house.  The old problem of the throw of an AC30 and the deaf bastard using it!

It's funny how half an hour can sometimes seem like such a long time.  We all think that it's a 7.30 start, and feel a collective disappointment to discover that it's actually 8pm.  With there often being so much time to hang around, is it any wonder Roy will read endless biographies, Eddie will find a cupboard to sleep in - well away from the rest of us, I will take silly amounts of pictures and Dirk will always have the thrill of shaving with cold water 10 minutes before curtain up.

At half time, Dirk maintains that we have played really well.  I know I've dropped a couple of bollocks, but more than that, I'm feeling it's all a bit flat, but can explain no more.  Roy is a bit cross because he can see a member of the audience who, although appearing to be enjoying himself, has not clapped once.
"It's ruining me gig!.....Madonna would have him thrown out y'know"
Roy also speculates that the chap may be a drummer.......  "They're right miserable gits at gigs!"

Act 2 continues in much the same fashion, but for me, the strong smell of humous coming from the bass player that had been so pungent, was replaced by the whiff of cheddar crisps. Oh the glamour.
Amazingly, it is six years to the day that George passed away, so I substituted the more crowd pleasing Here Comes The Sun, with While My Guitar, which seemed more appropriate today.

After the show, it was nice to see Liz and Beryl from Upbeat, who had made a titanic effort to travel to see the band that has been keeping them in champagne and truffles for the last five years!!!
My obituary.... may follow!




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