My headline tour across Europe seems like a bit of a blur now; a little whirlwind gone by. How much can one person fit into eight days? Well, here's a little answer for you, it's part one of the tour story, just the first four days... part two will come later.
Saturday evening and I'm travelling to London. Like the genius I am, instead of getting an early night, I proceed to drink a few too many glasses of wine, and one too many Smirnoff Golds, at a house party.
A groggy Sunday morning followed, and slightly horse (that'll be the Smirnoff Gold) I made the trip across London to Heathrow Airport, where I was meeting Steve (guitarist) and Gunther (from my management team); Berlin Tegel airport was the destination. When we landed it was a quick stop over at the hotel then straight out again to Private Club Berlin. Still in a foggy whirlwind, we soundchecked, then ate; did an interview for a Berlin radio station, then a photo shoot, and suddenly it was show time. A room full of dry ice; lots of Berliners singing along; and an hour later - that's how instant it felt - I was behind the merchandise desk signing CDs. It was such a great start to the tour, it was just like playing a gig at home, to me this is still a surprise... some people know who I am!
Crawling away to the dressing room, after a bit of meeting and greeting, I slumped into the armchair and almost fell asleep. The rest of the night was a bit of a blur but it involved drinks with one of my new favourite people, Krisz a producer from a band called Brixton Boogie. We met on a previous trip to Hamburg for Reeperbahn Festival. Check Brixton Boogie out, they are blues and jazz and rap and all things funky. By bed time I was too tired to sleep and then it was the morning again.
Monday morning felt like waking from the dead... whatever that feels like. We all met in the reception area of the hotel at 7:30am. Befuddled (I hope that word isn't copy written by J.K. Rowling because I really need it right now), we walked over to the metro station. Amongst the grumpy commuters (they are the same everywhere), we sardined ourselves on a rush hour metro from Warschauer Strabe to Hauptbahnhof. From Hauptbahnhof we took a train to Munich, the journey was six hours and thirty-nine minutes long!
I think I know where the Halloween pumpkins come from, the landscape was full of them: flat land, lakes, perfect houses and lots and lots of pumpkins. I couldn't sleep on the train either, So I read and looked out of the window instead. The time passed surprisingly fast. When we arrived in Munich we stopped off at the hotel and then went to PULS Radio for a live session. I played a pretty speedy rendition of What A Day, and answered a few questions about Portrait. It's a bit weird at the moment, a strange crossover stage, because the album has been out for while in the UK but the rest of Europe is only just getting it, it feels like I'm starting all over again... in a good way.
The club in Munich reminded me a little of the Cavern Club in Liverpool (the place made famous by the Beatles); I used to play there on a Saturday afternoon sometimes, many years ago. The club was called Milla and like the Cavern it is deep, long and dark. It has comfy chairs and an arched stage. I had a chance to nap at the hotel after the radio show, so I felt slightly more awake this time. The Milla is a pretty big club so I was a little worried at first about how many people would actually turn up. But, luckily, the attendance was great and the Milla was full. I had a great time with the audience; it was a bit like a conversation with songs in between. Steve even had a heckler, who turned out to be the guy who was doing our catering (lively bunch).
After the show we sold and signed CDs on the steps of the stage. The next day there was a fairly long, much needed, lie-in and then it was time to make our way to Stuttgart.