March 30th 2003, 5:00pm
The Drill Hall
16 Chenies Street
London WC1E 7EX
Anyway, thence to the venue, where I’m the first to arrive, before the sound man or anyone. First Robb arrives, then the sound guy and we have a painless soundcheck (though it’s just two chaps with guitars and vocals each – the sound chap does make it sound very good, though) and sit in the curious backstage area waiting for the audience to come in.
Then the gig. It’s sold out, which is jolly cool, I can tell you (and sold out means fifty people – could have been more, as it turns out, because people who would have come to see me didn’t because there weren’t any tickets left. That isn’t a complaint in any way. I don’t think i’ve done anything sold out before).
Almost all “new” (that is to say post-Secret Agent) material. Very nice, too, although I’m aware of the tips of my fingers sweating which make my fingers stick to the strings. A couple of other distractions. I remember all the words to the New One, though, which is nice.
In the interval I meet up with Maude and Elisa, who have come to see me, and Ian, who has probably come to see Robb, but who I’m glad to see anyway. Bit rushed, though, so probably rude to all.
For the second half I sit backstage while Robb performs. The sound really is very good – he’s got a sort of “enhanced acoustic” rather than amplified sound. The fact that I can’t see anything also adds. Robb’s set is excellent – a lot of committed stuff that I can’t write but that he does very well and more inspired guitar-twiddling than he’d have you believe. Powerful stuff.
I suppose I rush of a bit quickly at the end – but apart from Robb and Ian I don’t really know anybody, and I want to say goodbye to Maude and Elisa before they go off on extended jaunts – Maude to her chap in the South of France and Elisa to her home in Argentina. And I do this. And then I take the bus home.
There’s not a lot to do in the evening except a bit of practise. So I do a bit of practise.