Nuns, anchovies and a rhythmic genius

Lars and Heinz hangin' at rehersalI had a very pleasant Air Canada flight from Calgary to Frankfurt. Got three seats to myself. I had to race down the plane to get them, and in fairness, after all the pushing and shoving, the three elderly nuns took it quite well. Bless ‘em! Not once did that ugly turbulence monster appear. Throw in the Lego Movie and you've got yourself a darn fine evening in a metal tube flying over the earth at 500 miles an hour, with horrible food. From Frankfurt I took a train to Hamburg, my base camp for the tour. I completely missed my welcoming party and ended up having to get to my friend's place on my Jack Jones (own).

Tuesday I slept (how’s that for an interesting and revealing fact from my tour!), but I did eventually surface to head out and meet Christoph and Martin from the Schalloch Guitar store. A moderately interesting fact for guitarists: in German ‘schalloch’ means ‘soundhole’. Okay, moderately was pushing it a little!

Manu Katche concert ticketWednesday was the first rehearsal day and it was so wonderful to team up with my friends who just happen to be the most supportive of players. I also managed to catch some German footy on the auld TV — Dortmund hammered St Pauli.

Thursday was the second rehearsal day. We dined in an industrial Italian restaurant. I’m not joking. I had pizza with anchovies (this really isn't interesting me, let alone the possibility of it entertaining you), almost bought a cake (are you proud, Lou?) called an Ox Eye, and capped off the evening seeing Peter Gabriel's drummer, Manu Katche, in concert with his band. The man is a rhythmic genius and it won't be the only time we hang out on this tour. I am going to see a Gabriel concert in Switzerland, courtesy of my friends Romy and Martha, and I’m sure he'll recognize me and invite me backstage for a cuppa. 

I'm off to bed now to wrestle with the jet lag, up in the morning and off to Gadenstedt, for the first show of my tour. I wonder if Manu will be there?

Paul O'Brien

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