JULY | SEPTEMBER >>
U G U S T 2 0 0 7
The 3 B's,
As Roy and I walked round the promenade
and amusement area of Bridlington, we agreed that there
was something really quite appealing about the tackiness
of the place. Like all the splendid Victorian
seaside resorts, Brid' has had to move with the times
and introduce modern attractions to draw it's discerning
visitors. A couple of miles of sands, a glorious
promenade and the bustling harbour, would no longer be
sufficient to satisfy our reduced attention span, so the
promenade is now full of kitschy fairground rides and
enough fast food outlets to satisfy the most greedy
The 3 B's was opened in July 1937 and I guess that in
that time it must have looked spectacularly
modern. The ceiling was the architectural
highlight for me, but I'm not sure that it did the sound
Coming off stage after the first half,
all of thought that we had played well. The band
gelled as well as ever, there were no problems with
voices and the whole performance had the right amount of
gusto. The theatre was nearly at capacity and had
sold better than any of it's previous summer
shows. In spite of all this, we all felt a little
deflated by the audience reaction.
The collection of vintage trucks and a
fire engine parked up in Birch Services lorry park,
proved an irresistible attraction for Roy after we
dropped Derek off, and a good 10 minutes was spent
oooing at the paintwork on these immaculately preserved
Number 2, of 3 performances at The
The Robin 2,
We've done 3 gigs a year at the
Robin for the past few years, and it is the one in August which is usually the
less well attended. It was our impression that this one was was better in
terms of numbers than previous summer dates. Being a Friday sort of cocked
up our travel plans. On Saturdays, you can normally guarantee a
straight-forward journey with little traffic...on Fridays, the M6 is much more
of a lottery. Anyway, as it turned out, we had no particular issues with
the traffic and we all made the sound check.
As a band, we rarely agree on anything unanimously. Tonight, three of us
felt that this gig was probably one of, if not the best, we had done here.
Whatever...we all had a good gig from an enjoyment point of view and the Robin
crowd were really up for it as usual. I say it every time, but this is the
most enthusiastic audience on our calendar and remains one of our favourite
Royal Hippodrome Theatre,
No one has particularly good memories of Eastbourne. Last
time we were in town, we had a horrendous journey which caused us to be a little
late for the show at the Congress Theatre down the road. We were in plenty
of time today, but the 300 mile trip was never going to be pleasant.
The Hippodrome has clearly been a magnificent Theatre in its day, but there is
much evidence of it being slightly run down these days. The steep rake on
the smallish stage, coupled with the venue's lack of a drum riser made the band
feel a bit cramped and claustrophobic.....but we've had worse. The theatre
was set out for another show which was currently playing, so we did have some
fun with a few props that were knocking about, but Eddie refused to don a daft
It was quite a disappointing turn-out, and although the band played and
performed pretty well, it was hard to summon the adrenaline that had been free
flowing last night.
Probably one of the worst days on the roads we can
remember. The traffic on the M5 was horrendous all the way from Birmingham
to Exeter, with all three lanes full and slow moving. The jack-knifed,
over-turned caravan didn't help much around Tewkesbury, and by the time we got
south of Bristol, we were all pretty pissed off. A little Peugeot slowly
passed us in the outside lane and it's rear window brandished the sign..
"Don't Worry - Be Happy!" Roy expressed his desire to get out
and smear it with dog dirt.
Arriving at the Theatre at 6.45, we found Ade and Paul still unloading the
van. Evidently, their journey had been no better than our own. The
theatre staff didn't want to hold the doors past 7.30, so there was frantic
times setting the front of house system before everything else was finished
behind the curtains with the audience in situ. Paul did manage to find
time to begin an enquiry as to who had run off with his pop at the Bridlington
gig a couple of weeks ago, but had to face the fact that it was all an innocent
misunderstanding with no malicious intent to deny him his thirst quencher.
As the intro was playing, the scene on stage behind that curtain was one of
total panic. Dirks bass amp wasn't set up, the monitoring system wasn't on
and there were a few flys down and skew-whiff hair pieces adding to the general
In spite of it all, as the curtain went up, we must have looked as though we
were completely prepared and apart from that problem with the monitor, we had a
good gig. The audience was one of the warmest we've had from the seaside
towns this month and the whole band enjoyed themselves.
The show must go on.
Just recently, there have been many problems affecting
this group. Some of them get described on these
pages, some of them not, but it seems that there are
more and more obstacles to overcome in order to put some
sort of show on.
On Monday afternoon, Dirk called to tell me one of his
best friends had died in his sleep that morning.
Adam was 42 and probably as nice a bloke as you would
choose to meet. The news shocked and upset me, but
devastated Derek and it puts a lot of other trivial
things into perspective.
As far as I was concerned, there was no question of Dirk
travelling down to do this show, so I gave our old
mucker Karl Lornie a call, who was able to step in at
very short notice and keep the boat afloat. Our
agent would tell you that it may have suited us better
to have cancelled the performance, but that's just not
what we do. If we ever cancel a show, it is when
all the possibilities have been exhausted.
Karl, who still refuses to be drawn into a syrup wearing
scenario, had a nice day with his Uncle Beatles and
seemed to relish the Ringo/George feud which began in
earnest on the road to Coombe Martin.
Lydney Town Hall,
Exactly 45 years ago on Friday 31st
August 1962, The Beatles performed on this very stage, to a smaller and less
enthusiastic audience. Ringo had been with the group a fortnight, and 4 days
later the band went into Abbey Road to record "How Do You Do It" and
"Love Me Do"
Apart from some plastic chairs and an electrical re-wire, I doubt that much has
changed in this venue.
JULY | SEPTEMBER >>
© Fab Productions 2007