The Miserable Rich – Tour-Diary Pt. 1 "A ferry nice time"

Die Tour der Eight Legs nähert sich dieser Tage dem Ende, damit ist natürlich auch bald das Tour-Diary vorbei. Damit ihr da nicht direkt auf kalten Entzug gesetzt wird, übernehmen nun die Kammper-Popper von The Miserable Rich die Aufgabe in unterhaltsamen Beiträgen ausführlich von ihrer Tour quer durch Deutschland zu berichten. Die Tour ist auch bereits angelaufen, deshalb geht’s direkt los:

Day -1: A ferry nice time

Excusing the all too predictable pun above…it’s funny how things turn out – despite not having arranged TMR’s transport to Frankfurt until two days before leaving, with a concerted effort from manager Howard Mills, Rhys’ mate Paul and Hazelwood devotee Fakhir, everything worked out fine.

If we’d have booked flights, of course, we’d still be holed up at Gatwick – damn that volcanic ash…

The day before setting off we played a daytime show at London’s beautiful and reverb-laden Union Chapel. A very nice show indeed – a lovely way to say goodbye to English shores… We rehearsed with guitarist Ricky who will take my place for the last 7 or 8 shows of the tour – he’ll join us in Vienna and I’ll fly home which will be emotional no doubt…

Sunday morning Paul drove Rhys + some equipment to Calais and dropped him off outside a pub called L’Hovercraft – that’s French for Hovercraft, yeah…yeah…

Meanwhile Sergeant Major Mills drove James and Will up to Gatwick to meet Mike and me to take us on to Calais to meet Rhys. Sound slightly elaborate bearing in mind our trusty manger would turn straight from Calais and drive back to Manchester? Yes it does doesn’t it… Me, I had no sleep having worked the previous night – I’m challenging the boundaries of conventional sleep necessities and posing the question would it better to be awake for the whole of you life living half as long? We’ll get back to you about that.

Sitting in the bar at Gatwick on Sunday morning waiting for the band to come I was accompanied by a strange sense of surreal apocalypse – refreshing to see no planes nonetheless – and buzzing with thoughts of what the tour might bring. Our first long German tour in a year – very exciting…

Although our plan was elaborate and last minute it was carried out with military precision – not sure the military drink us much as us while on duty but you know what I mean.

We played Nine Card Brag on the ferry with James’ slightly naughty “Crazy” Indian playing cards featuring lingerie-clad 80s and 90s ladies – including a young Gail Porter amongst others. I haven’t played cards with slightly naughty pictures for some time and well frankly they brighten up the tamest of card games.

French-side we met Rhys at L’Hovercraft – that’s French for…yeah, whatever Jim… Bless his heart – Rhys was sitting alone waiting patiently with a pint of Stella surrounded by equipment in the Calais sunshine.

We briefly discussed the pitfalls of generalising, amongst other things, and Howard “manager/label impresario/taxi driver” Mills then headed Manchester way to leave us to wait for several hours for our German connection Fakhir who would then drive us to Frankfurt.

It has to be mentioned we discovered something rather wonderful about Rhys and Mike’s names. Okay, so if you take to two last letters from their names and put them at the front of their names Rhys Lovell becomes LL Rhys Love and Mike Siddell becomes LL Mike Side – yeah, cool – I know!

Okay, I know what you’re thinking – “10 million years of evolution and that’s the best they can come up with – idiots…” Forgive me for presuming with you’re thinking – ever so rude, sorry…

Several pints and a French kebab later Fakhir arrived in the purple-tour-love-bus the sight of which filled my stomach with love. Man that van holds so many memories and is really our home when we’re here.
Driving at some speed Fakhir took us through the French/Belgium/German night to Hazelwood central in Frankfurt. The Hazelwood crew know us well having left pizza, red wine and beers for our arrival. Lovely to see Carsten “tour manager/merch boy/road-dog” Roth – we feel safe in his capable hands…oo er…

A You Tube mini-party ensued with particular favourite clips being Boston Goals, Christopher Walken cooking and Gap Ya – You Tube them and you will see…well, go on then – You Tube them…

Day 0: our Bach is worse than our Byte

We woke, we ate eggs, we said hello to and hugged Wolfgang, Gordon and Dennis – the mighty Hazelwood trio – and I went back to sleep so missed most of the day…

I was awoken for our interview with Claus – a German John Peel kinda guy. We recorded a session “Pegasus”, “Monkey” and “Chestnut Sunday” for his Byte FM show and then did a long interview with our very own song choices. James sat through the whole interview while we took it in turns to join him. During my stint Claus took us on a “blind date” where he plays a record we know nothing about and we just have to react to it – he played a mash up of Marvin Gaye and Nick Drake which at first sounded ridiculous but I rather warmed to it saying Marvin was perhaps everything Nick Drake wasn’t – maybe they were each others missing piece…

James rather cleverly commented on the Bach piece chosen by Mike and Will saying “our Bach is worse than our Byte…” It’s clever that because we were listening to Bach and we were on radio station called Byte FM. Do you understand? I will explain it again if you don’t fully understand the cleverness of that… right, it’s clever because…oh forget it…

Will was his naturally-amusing-reluctant-star-self during his stint causing much laughter in the control room, and Rhys and Mike were ever the consummate pros – not prostitutes, mind – professionals.
Claus was great and we look forward to hearing the edited thing this Sunday on Byte FM…

Post interview we did a quick booze run – don’t tell our manager if he’s listening, he wouldn’t appreciate it – to Lidl where wodka – that’s German for vodka – is only 5 Euros and a 3 litre box of ruttvine – that’s German for red wine – is only 5 Euros – I know, crazy!

Natasha arrived and interviewed James, Will and Mike while Rhys and me discussed the cosmos, brilliant TV show Wonders of the Solar System and universal laws of physics. Man, I wish I’d listened in science at school! Never mind. I’m just glad we all have a healthy appreciation for just how amazing the solar system/universe is – it’s very re-assuring…

Fakhir and Hazelwood intern only known as “the confused one”, named by Gordon, made us a lovely pasta, mushroom dish – right up my alley – and we drunk wine and talked of, er, stuff. I soon hit the sack and was in bed by ten. If you’ve been following this blog closely in answer to the previous hypothesis about never sleeping – it doesn’t work, yeah: humans need sleep. Oh, unless you’ve got two brains you can alternate between – which, it turns out, I haven’t.

The Miserable Rich auf Tour

22.04. DRESDEN | Beatpol
23.04. HALLE | Objekt 5
24.04. HANNOVER | Ballklang Junges Schauspiel
25.04. KÖLN | Gebäude 9
27.04. WÜRZBURG | Cairo
28.04. NÜRNBERG | MUZclub
29.04. MÜNCHEN | Rote Sonne
30.04. SALZBURG | ArgeKultur
01.05. STEYR | Röda
02.05. WIEN | Chelsea
03.05. GRAZ | Scherbe
05.05. VEVEY | Le Bout Du Monde
06.05. ZÜRICH | Papiersaal
07.05. STUTTGART | Wagenhallen
08.05. FRANKFURT | Brotfabrik
09.05. SCHAFFHAUSEN | TabTap

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