German Tour Diary – Day 13

Hi all,

I can’t believe the tour is almost over.. 10 shows down and just 1 show left..

The show in Nurnberg last night was really fun. We met some cool people and a few are making the drive down to Frankfurt (approx 2hrs) for tomorrow night’s show at Sinkkasten.

Sinkkasten is a great venue to finish the tour in. We played an unplugged gig there last year, and it’s a venue that’s played host to legends of the music scene over the decades.. such as Bob Marley & Prince amongst others. You can almost feel the heritage & history when you step on stage.

I cannot wait to perform there with the full band!

Having played 10 shows in the last 13 days, the band is feeling so ridiculously tight with the songs, that we are really glad that tomorrow night’s show is being filmed for German TV. We are confidant that the set is well balanced and being well delivered.

Ok.. so what happened today..

We woke up in Nurnberg thrilled at the prospect of a “rest day”. After a late morning and lounging around the hotel we left for Frankfurt at 2pm. The drive was smooth and uneventful. Obligatory stops for bockwurst & smoke breaks along the way was the plan as usual..

Arriving back in Frankfurt and checking into the Lindner Congress Hotel was like arriving at our “home away from home”. This is the hotel that’s played host to us on all of our previous trips to Germany, and I can’t tell you how thrilled we are to be back!

The facilities and rooms are great as it’s a 4 star hotel, but it’s the management and staff that really set the hotel apart from all others. Nothing is too much effort, and the band are really treated like royalty whenever we’re here.

Little touches like an ice bucket filled with beers in each room, and knowing I’m a bourbon fan, a bottle of Jim Beam in mine. They really are a thoughtful bunch, and we look forward to partying with them all tomorrow night.

After checking in and having a few beers, we met for an early dinner at the hotel restaurant. Sitting at an outside table, it was brilliant watching the world go by and discussing the last 12 days as we enjoyed the warm weather. It’s amazing how much warmer it has become since we landed 2 weeks ago. It’s approx 23 degrees celsius this evening. Nice!

Sitting around just shooting the breeze with the guys is without a doubt one of my favourite things to do in the world. I feel so blessed to be on this journey and to have the opportunity to play music with these talented cats, that some times I have to pinch myself. The comraderie that comes with years of touring & playing together is also something that you simply can’t develop any other way.. it’s very special.

Some of the stories that came out this evening were also frikkin hilarious! The pearl for me personally, was Robbie J’s story of how this morning he had emerged from the toilet in his hotel room to discover Mike, unable to wait any longer, urinating in the basin..!!! ha ha ha ha..

Needless to say that put paid to any thoughts Robbie had of either shaving or brushing his teeth in the basin this morning!! ha ha ha

Touring with these guys is AWESOME!!!

Anyway.. early night as we look forward to rocking out our final show tomorrow evening!

Will let y’all know how it goes..

Peace

Andy Mac

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German Tour Diary – Day 12

Whew!!!!

All we can say is… THANK YOU Zurich!!!!!

What an amazing evening! The vibe in the place last night was absolutely electric.. and I confess to having got a bit choked up while singing "Anthem for the Living" live on Swiss soil for the first time. It’s a song that Clinton wrote after the passing of his father, and performing it in Switzerland with some of his dad’s brothers and sisters in the room really did give the song a huge amount of resonance. Yet another deeply special moment on this awesome journey..

The rest of the gig was a blur of sing-a-long moments and feel good energy. We really did have the most incredible gig. The Swiss crowd were warm and appreciative, and damn can they party!!

Most of the band managed to sneak out of the club and back to the hotel at about 02h30.. I say most, because of course the usual suspects (Neil, Tony, Rob N & Pauli etc) couldn’t bring themselves to miss an after-party in town.. so they joined some new Swiss friends and partied until sun up in the bars and clubs of Zurich. I think they rolled in around 06h00 ish..

That made for a predictably difficult lobby call at 07h00 this morning!

After Clint and I had been thumping on Neil’s hotel room door for about 5mins with no response, we brought out the big guns.. We fetched the hotel manager and had him unlock the door. Clint shook Neil awake, at which point Neil grunted and flailed around like a crazy man shouting "I’m awake, I’m awake"!

We left him to pack and get dressed, but when 10mins later there was still no sight of him, we started banging on his door again.. I kid you not the whole process repeated itself again! The manager had to come up again and unlock the door etc, etc..

This time we took no chances and wedged the door open, all the while shouting at Neil to get out of bed! After 5 more mins of coaxing and several shoves later, he lept out of bed in nothing but his red boxers and stood in the doorway of his room barking at me and laughing while thumping his bare chest and scratching his private parts.. scaring a poor cleaning lady half to death!

We finally got on the road at about 07h45 and drove across the border to Nurnberg. Arriving in town at about 13h00, the 450km trip was pretty smooth, but the band are absolutely shattered with exhaustion!

Tonight will be our 10th show in 12 days in 10 different cities.. pretty tough schedule and it’s taking it’s toll on everyone. We’re enjoying every moment, but are really looking forward to a rest day 2morrow before our final show in Frankfurt on Tuesday.

Clint and I did a quick interview on Radio Gong here in Nurnberg this afternoon to pump tonight’s show, and then we checked into the hotel. Quick shower and change and we’re now at the venue – Hirsch ready for soundcheck.

The venue is a great industrial looking rock club with big stage and great tech set-up. Should be a cracker!

Will let y’all know how it goes..

Peace

Andy Mac

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German Tour Diary – Days 10 & 11

Hey all,

The train down from Osnabruck to Freiburg was AWESOME!!! It was comfortable, smooth and makes me seriously wish air travel was the same!

Clint, Robbie J and I jumped on board at about 08h30 and we arrived in Freiburg at 15h00, but the time really did fly by. The rest of the boys arrived around the same time in the busses, but looked absolutely shattered from the drive!

Our hotel was directly next to the train station and across the road from the venue – Jazzhaus. Which was extremely convenient.

What a cool spot. Freiburg seems to be a big student town, and every 2nd person rides a bicycle.. Weather is significantly warmer as well.. approx 21Celcius!

Gig – Great stage and great sound (courtesy of Pauli), which made for another KILLER gig. Sold loads of merch and made some new friends.

After the gig, both bands headed into town for a late night dinner at a local restaurant. Our crew then went out for a party and crawled in at 06h00.. ha ha ha.. The crew are definitely partying harder than the bands on this tour!

Woke up this morning and drove across the border into a beautifully sunny Switzerland. I’d forgotten how pretty this place actually is… breathtaking!

Clinton is beside himself to finally have the band in Switzerland.. we’ve been talking about this for years!

We spent the afternoon wandering around Zurich and people watching as they all rushed out into the sun in the 23 Celsius weather. Rob N spotted a bunch of good looking people lying in the sun by the river in bikini’s smoking spliff.. and has decided this is one of the coolest cities on the planet.. ha ha ha..

Now I’m sitting backstage waiting for the doors to open and looking forward to a kickass evening!

Will update u again from Nurnberg.. just 2 shows left after tonight..

Peace

Andy Mac

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German Tour Diary – Day 9

Hi all,

After a great day off yesterday, we had a pleasant and sunny drive down to Osnabruck this morning.

We checked into our little "country inn" type hotel this afternoon and then came through to the venue – Rosenhof for soundcheck.

The venue is great, with a nice big stage and an awesome PA and lighting rig.

Pauli got a killer sound out of the rig and we’ve just played one of the best gigs of the tour thus far (I know I keep saying that, but they do feel like they are getting better & better!!). Couple of South Africans in the crowd, and a crowd that seemed very familiar with our music with nice sing-a-long moments during the evening. Really was fun!

I’m now sitting backstage with the boys having a few beers while we wait for Watershed to finish up. Then we are going to try and get out of here as quickly as possible, because we have a LONG day 2morrow! We are travelling down to Freiburg in the south (about 600kms) and so we are up at 06h00 2morrow morning to get there in time for s/check etc.. I know.. NOT very Rock n Roll!!

Clint, Roobie J and I have opted to try a different experience 2morrow and we’ve bought tickets for the high speed train. So the guys are dropping us at the station and then we’ll meet up with them in Freiburg. Will let u know how it goes..

Tonight kicked off the first of 4 nights in a row for us, so it’s gonna be a long weekend.. but I’m really looking forward to these shows…especially our first ever show in Switzerland on Saturday night!

Gotta run..

Peace

Andy Mac

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German Tour Diary – Day 8

Hey guys,

Well yet another German city has impressed us immensely. Hamburg kicks ass!

We had one of the best shows of the tour last night at the Stage Club. The vibe was amazing and we met some really cool people. Everything just clicked into place and we really, really enjoyed the performance.

After the show, Yannick (our merch man) tried to convince us to join him as he showed 2 pretty young girls the sights and sounds of Hamburg at night.. He managed to rope Pauli, our engineer in, but the rest of the band faded and chose to have a quiet after show drink at the hotel instead.

Apparently their adventures finished up at about 6am, so it’s just as well we opted out!!

What a pleasure to have a rest day today.. Everyone got the various admin things they needed to get done sorted out (laundry etc..). Otherwise the day was just spent at leisure, hanging out in the beautiful hotel.

Martin, our Tour Mgr, took Clint, Neil & I through to visit with the local Cort Guitar distributor. We are Cort Custom Acoustic Guitar endorsees, so it was felt it would be a good idea to say hi to the German representative.

What a great meeting. Thomas is an awesome guy and he gave us a great insight into Cort’s plans for the future. He deals with a variety of guitar brands and looks after loads of huge International performers such as Rolling Stones, Santana, KISS, Bryan Adams etc.. when they are in Germany (and has done since 1977!).

We look forward to staying in touch and working with him in the future.

Thereafter, the 3 of us plus Martin and Mike took a stroll through Hamburg and visited the infamous “Reeperbahn”. It’s a mini Amsterdam red light district kind of place, with girls sitting in their underwear behind glass windows trying to coax you over for a “chat”.

Very bizarre. Especially at 5pm in the afternoon!

After taking in all the “sights”, we hooked up with Pauli and Robbie J, and headed through for a killer early dinner at a local trucker restaurant that Martin recommended in the meat packing district. Portions were huge (biggest schnitzel I’ve ever seen!), food was fantastic and atmosphere was brilliant… and the prices were half anywhere else!

Now we are back at the hotel and looking forward to heading down to Osnabruck for the next show tomorrow.

The next 4 days we have back to back shows in Germany & Switzerland, so it’s been decided that a quiet night is a good idea tonight.

I’m off to join Mike, Robbie & Neil for a drink in the lobby bar now, but will update y’all again tomorrow.

Thrilled to hear that the airports in Europe are opening up again, so we just may still make it home to SA as planned next week..

Rock on!

Andy Mac

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