Touring and other animals. Day 4
Is nothing sacred any more? I guess thats a silly question really. You only have to look at the gutter politics currently happening on both sides of the Atlantic to see that the world is being completely flushed down the toilet!
Right now though I don’t care about any of that. I’m up early……….ish, again and I’ve made it down to breakfast. I’m very happy with myself and all is good in the world. But then things comes crashing down on me. There is no bacon!…………………I’m sorry could you repeat that? This is breakfast time in a hotel and you’re telling me there is no fucking bacon. Clinton, Trump, May and Holiday Inn Express……..you can all go to hell. Surprisingly I’m still in a good mood. Even though sausages are a very poor replacement for my bacon addiction. I guess the sugar rush from the Danish pastries has helped restore the balance.
After breakfast we are straight back in the cars and have another long drive down south to Hungerford for a gig none of us have ever been to.
I know nothing about Hungerford and have always expected it to be a bit of a hole. How wrong I am? It’s a gorgeous place and Croft Hall where were are playing tonight is stunning. We turn up to meet Tony and Mark, the local organisers. Very friendly guys who have just had to replace an amplifier on the P.A. because it's gone bang. We are early and they are already half set up and sorting the problem. Its great to see people on the ball. We have done well so far on this tour for people being quick and efficient. It really does make a difference to a show when people do their job properly.
Faustus are giving another workshop today and I’m sitting watching it while I write this diary entry. They explain how they approach writing and arranging some of the songs for their new album. It’s amazing to watch, I have been touring for nearly 20 years and I don’t remember ever seeing musicians teaching their audience before a show. Folk musicians generally have a much better face to face relationship with their audiences than musicians from other genres. I guess this is partly down to the lack of money involved, and that it’s still music of the people, for the people. But its also due to the traditions that folk music has of passing the music and stories from generation to generation that keeps it a close knit community. The workshop lasts an hour and by the end the guys have split the group up into 3 and are getting each one to sing a different part of the vocal harmony on a couple of the new tunes. It’s a great bit of communal fun for everyone and the audience seem to be enjoying themselves.
After that we run straight into our sound check. Todays P.A. is an old TOA system which I have no experience of, and with a completely flat E.Q. its very very harsh in the hi mids. It sounds very phasey around the 2.5khz area and I start to worry that I could be in for a tough night. I have to spend a bit of time and get quite creative with a graphic E.Q. but after a while I get the rig into a decent state and I know its going to be good. We have dinner and then the show gets underway. The venue is packed and there are a few friends and family of the band in the audience so the atmosphere is very positive. The following show is an absolute blinder. Faustus are really nailing down the new material, the P.A. is sounding awesome and the crowd get involved which always lifts the show. It is one of the best Faustus gigs I have been involved with both sounding and performance wise. We are shifting into top gear on this tour for sure.