I don’t know if it’s because we’ve been on tour for over ten days now, but today there was a sullen mood in the air. It was probably just me to be fair. For the first time on this tour I found myself needing to take fifteen minutes and go for a walk. Luckily Nuremberg is a very gorgeous town, and finding the local castle was a nice distraction from everything.
When you tour, you don’t realise how much socialising it involves. You hear stories of bands turning up to venues and not wanting to talk to anyone. I now entirely understand why this is; not because they’re antisocial, but because they are knackered. It takes a lot of energy making sure you say hello to everyone, signing CDs, listening to stories and then having to perform on top of that, everyday. I found myself becoming that person; the one who stays at the back and says very little. It’s not that I didn’t want to socialise, I just couldn’t muster the energy.
Tonight’s gig was only the second ever Bedroomdisco gig in Nuremberg. I have to say, if they continue as they are, their enthusiasm will translate into some excellent shows. It was great to be involved so early on in their development. Talking to some of the audience, it seems like people had travelled up to 20 kilometres to be there and few of them had experienced a house gig before. From an artist’s point of view, house gigs are amazing. For quieter bands, such as ourselves, it’s a perfect setting. Small, intimate and attentive. For the audience, it isn’t like a normal gig, you are far more involved in the whole experience being so close to the bands. When we have spoken to people after house gigs, the usual response is, “We’ve never experienced anything like that at a gig before” and that’s because you simply can’t recreate the same atmosphere in conventional venues. You should try them out for yourselves, they are something special.
Today was an earlier start than usual. Last night we had found out that somebody had invited us out for breakfast. Heinz, a guy we met in Darmstadt, wanted to buy us breakfast in hotel he stays at when he is in Nuremberg. With an act of kindness so amazing, we wholeheartedly obliged. Thank you Heinz. After feeling down yesterday, you most definitely raised my spirits and filled our stomachs. What a great start to the day and impeccable timing.
After stocking up on scrambled eggs, our next stop was Dresden, where we were playing a theatre/cinema. Playing in between films is a novel experience. Can we say Robert Redford has supported us? We weren’t sure what to expect from the place’s clientele; do people watch bands here normally? It turns out they do, in force. It still surprises me that in places where we don’t know a single person, people are still willingly turning out to support us. It’s incredible we’ve not played to a single empty room so far.
After finishing the set, we did the usual manning of the merch table. On a good day we may sell five or six EPs, but today’s audience seemed to all want to buy a copy (or three!). We sold around twenty. It’s a great opportunity to chat to the audience, but a bit overwhelming when you’re stuck in a corner and can’t get out.
It’s important for bands not to underestimate how much merchandise to bring on tour. In the end we brought every CD we had with us, when we were originally going to bring about fifty; which would have not even lasted us the first half of the tour. It’s always better to have more than you need, just in case.
Sometimes after gigs, you need to let your hair down for a bit too. Amos suggested a karaoke bar across the street from the venue. Let’s just say, apart from Sophie and maybe Amos, the rest of us picked the wrong song to sing. Sophie had ‘Changes’ by David Bowie, Amos did ‘Ghostbusters’, I chose ‘Roxanne’ by The Police, and Alex, ‘The Final Countdown’ by Europe. Only a tad out of Alex and I’s vocal ranges. With the locals groaning through disappointment; except one guy at the back, drunkenly loving it, we made a swift escape at the first opportunity. I’m sorry you had to witness that Dresden.
There’s only a certain amount of time you can spend with the same people before your politeness threshold lowers. Innocent sentences can be misconstrued and taken the wrong way and repeating something, when you think it wasn’t heard, can be seen as nagging. It happens to the best of us. We’re thirteen days in now and its surprising that its taken us most the tour the get to this stage; it’s a testament to our friendship within the band. I’ve spent more time in close proximity with these three people than anyone else.
Göttingen was today’s destination. It’s the first smaller place we’ve been too. It’s an old town, not too dissimilar to Winchester in my opinion; beautiful architecture. It is also heavily pedestrianised and therefore a complete bitch to navigate in a car. It felt like it took us just as long to find the venue as it did to drive from Dresden, it didn’t help our satnav was insisting on it being in a slightly different place.
Eventually finding the venue, we were a tad rushed for time as we had to squeeze in another video session before we sat down to eat. We could see our host, Friedrich, getting a little nervous that we were going to run over schedule, but we managed to finish up pretty quickly, much to his relief. Friedrich is a softly spoken man with an air of professionalism about him, but was an absolute pleasure to be around. It must have been frustrating for him when we kept going off on tangents to his questions, but he was always patient with us and often cracked a smile; probably thought we were crazy.