Having a Blast!
Chris Rea’s fans are possibly the most respectful and listening crowd I’ve ever been in front of. Every night has been a full, crowded house in 2000-3000 capacity halls. I’m out on that stage all by lonesome with nothing but my old faithful guitar, and yet you can hear a pin drop. When people are seated and listening this intently, it means I can focus on the lyrics and dynamics of a song in a way that is inspiring for me. No fighting to be heard or dodging beer cans being thrown at the stage! I’ve been playing new material from my upcoming album, so it’s helping me get very familiar with the new songs, in a stripped-back acoustic arrangement. Chris’ crew are all pros who’ve worked together for years, and from catering to monitor mixes, I am getting spoiled with their efficiency and friendliness. If every tour had been like this over the course of my career, I wouldn’t have felt like I’d paid my dues properly! This is the gravy, folks. Tours like this are exactly why people want to be musicians in the first place.
We started in the south of England – Bournemouth, Oxford, and Brighton – then headed North to gorgeous Harrogate, Manchester (my favourite show so far) and Sheffield (where there was a white rose waiting in my dressing room – thank you Lee!). Today we’re driving to Edinburgh, and Chris’ crew and I will probably meet there in the pub later. A big shout out to my tour manager Rick Webster, who’s not only been calm and organised, but is an incredibly talented musician in his own right (check out Unkle Bob – he had a song on Grey’s Anatomy that was massive). We are having a great time. Well, I should say I’M having a great time, but you’ll have to ask him if he’s sick of dealing with the diva from New York yet!
Time to check out of the hotel and move on to the next town….