My three gigs in two days left me tired and thinking about gourmet breakfast, long journeys and tight shoes.
Friday morning started with a wonderful breakfast made by my husband. If I was a Facebook nerd I would post the yummy picture of scrambled eggs with onions, spinach, peppers and tomatoes and three slices of wholemeal bread. I am not going to post it but trust me it was really nice (a girl got to eat!).
On Friday I left home at 11 am to arrive for an early-ish sound check at The Public, West Bromwich for the Black History Month event held by Sandwell Council and Sandwell Volunteer Centre. It was chilly and I donned my heeled winter boots. Later for the performance I changed into my shiny heeled gig shoes and after the gig back to my trusty heeled boots. And why am telling you this? My feet were killing me, in truth high heels are not comfortable at all, but I looked cris though! 🙂 I hear you say “Girl! Wear some pumps!” Are you crazy? Didn’t you hear me say I looked cris! LOL!.
On the other hand CD sales went well again, lots of photo opps. The other participants from the community included OSCAR, School Steel Band, Retirees Choir, African Drumming, Asian Singer and Dance and the local Police.
Leaving The Public later than planned meant time just disappeared, It was early evening before I knew it. The original plan was finish one gig, have some R&R, arrive relaxed to New Style Radio – no such luck! The reality was phone calls whilst in transit, finalising sound and technical requirements for Friday evening and Saturday evening. This meant stopping off at a music shop for an electrical adaptor which they did not have in stock – oh no!!! Up to this point I still had not eaten my dinner. The Black History Gospel event over at New Style Radio was planned by a Minister friend of mine.
This was a intimate gathering far from bright lights, black ties and canapés. As a professional musician though you can’t forget those friends from back in the day. The evening gave me a chance to reflect on my beginnings, playing in the school band and supporting Church building rallies and concerts as a young musician. You can’t put a price on friendship.
Saturday came and…..traffic, traffic traffic! Getting to Central Croydon was a mission in itself. A loooong journey! The M25 was at a stand still and we came off it and drove through West London.
That part of the journey alone took 2 hours. In that time I could have driven from Birmingham to Manchester and be on the way back. The total journey took 4 hours although the SAT NAV said 2 hours 45 mins door to door. This really did my head in. I arrived at Fairfields Hall in pouring rain, peeled myself aching out of the car and had to set up and sound check in record time. The PA there was a heavy bass DJ system which muffled my sound badly on the trial line check, according to Craig Revel Horwood (Strictly Come Dancing) it would have made my performance a “disaster darling”. Fortunately, out of long hard experience I have learned to bring my own PA as back up to some gigs. What people tell you on the phone is not always what you find when you get there but in the end though, things turned out brilliantly. It’s always fulfilling when people dance. Taking pictures in mood lighting didn’t work too well but the results look creative. What do you think?
My original tracks “It’s all good” and “I will go on” are very much part of my repertoire and as I was signing and selling my CDs one of the guests said that they had come to the event to find something to help them get through a difficult patch. They said that the original pieces provided the message that they needed –WOW!
We finally got back to the hotel after the Croydon gig about 2 am. Oh, by the way I am after some new shoes!!!