Why is it that every time I go anywhere, same airline, same airport, same check in ladies and guys, same dude who takes my guitar to the bowels of baggage hell... the authorities feel they have to go rooting around in my poor battered case? You'd think by now they'd recognize the shredded white fiberglass, missing latches, and think, 'oh, it's her again, she's ok.' And don't get me started on how many pig-nosed pliers I've forfeited along the way. Every time they leave me this annoying little note. Of course irony of all ironies, last night, my guitar arrived fine from Heathrow... but no suitcase. The one time where I actually checked my microphones, my guitar gismos, my favorite toys through, trusting the universe, the honesty of good folk.
Anyway, I do love London. It still feels familiar. I lived there as a kid, and never wanted to leave. I'm always falling right back into the accent, the humor. I just wish i could keep up with the vivid language that only the brits have. Chuffed, Knocking Shop (more on that later!) Stowey Bottom....
I had a lovely time in Milton Keynes. As ever, I have to adjust to the pin-drop quiet between songs. Long ago, after my very first gig in London, i had to ask the audience if they were ok. The silence after each applause was really disconcerting. God Bless one woman in the front who piped up, "No worries, love, you're SMASHING, we're just British." I've been prepared since then! Steve Lawson showed up, and this picture confirms that i do indeed have the smallest skull in history.
The Best Western in Milton Keynes? Not just your every day affair. Towel heating racks and full on hot breakfast. Deep tub. Luxury on a budget.
On to Bristol where I got to stay with my hero/promoter/entrepreneur Kim Heath at, yes, it's true, "Stowey Bottom."
Kim Heath, of "Dead Men Don't Ski" productions.
Stowey Bottom, it turns out, is right near "Chew Magna."
On the way we passed a place called "Lady Farm" so of course I asked Kim if that was local parlance for brothel. There was a really strange guy lurking at the entrance, so it didn't seem such a stretch. But, no, apparently the real red dress destination is "The Honey Pot" near "Wootten Bassett" (town not a dog.) The sign out front says, "Welcome, always looking for new, friendly staff. Open from 10am til LATE."
Onto St. Georges. What a gorgeous place. Again, it's such a treat to be coming back to these lovely halls, Kim has really created an audience for me here just for the love of it.
It's just stunning in here, the acoustics are beyond sublime, the concert steinway doesn't suck either. Very uncharacteristically, a guy in the front piped up as I was going off about McCain and Palin. He said he thought that Levi, you know "sex on skates" -- the kid that hooked up with Palin's daughter, wasn't even the real dad! There's an older guy who refused to take responsibility as he already had a wife and kids!! Oh gosh, is Levi the beard?? Poor kid. I mean, ok, it could be a brit conspiracy theory, but wow. He also said that you could make contributions to 'Planned Parenthood' in Palin's name, and each one would mean a postcard is sent to her. I just want to find a "FREE LEVI" t-shirt.
I've started singing "the Choice" again at gigs. I just feel like it's getting more and more imperative to speak up. I don't think anyone is PRO abortion. It's a devastating choice to have to make. But it's a choice we have to have.
In lighter news, we have found a label partner in the UK called Wrasse. they will also help us release the new record in Germany and perhaps Holland, Belgium, Denmark... We plan a release around the end of january before I come back for the extended UK tour!! Good on them.
And for the troops in Seattle and environs. Come on down to the Shoreline gig this Saturday. I know times are hard, but that means we have to sing louder. Sing together. Music helps. God knows where I'd be without it!
my new stowey bottom pal, bubba