Tour Diary 7-26-22
We’ve arrived in Jacksonville, Florida. Sound-checked, meet-ed and greeted, signed some autographs, and I’ve even been followed a little too closely by a very curious and muscular hornet. Maybe my under-cleansed, salt air soaked hair is starting to smell something like a rotting flower, hence the company I’m starting to keep.
Tonight will be the second show of this US tour and everyone is in great spirits as this is the first real outing for us after the great pause that was Covid. I say “was” but we are in the midst of another outbreak here in the States with this Omicron variant, but four of the five of us are right on the heals of recovering from it so we (ourselves) aren’t as worried about getting sick. Though we’ll still be a touch more hypochondria-tic than usual. I am in full awareness that many people coming to our concerts this summer will be exposed and I just hope that everyone attending takes care to mitigate the risks and everyone in general does their civic and hygienic duty by staying home if and or when they become symptomatic, though as we’ve been learning, one doesn’t even need to feel sick to spread this all too clever virus. But I digress, back to being out on tour for the first time in a few years.
We’ve dipped our toes in here and there over the last year or so but only in short bursts, for all of the obvious reasons. Getting everyone together (band and crew) and gearing up to take this little circus on the road is a formidable task under the best of circumstances, let alone amidst a global pandemic and all the chaos that has ensued in its wake. Touring in the year 2022 is a new level of complex in that gear and transportation are in short supply, fuel prices are astronomical, we seem to be entering into a new recession, and the cherry on top is the strange fact that there is still a novel coronavirus creeping around and making lots of people sick. All of that being said, now that we are out here and things are up and running, you’d never know that the world was as chaotic as we’re being told it is. Everyone is smiling from ear to ear! Myself included. There is a LOVE that is palpable in the atmosphere and I am feeling a little like the mouse caught and happily adrift in the intoxicating scent of an apple pie cooling on someone’s window sill.
The audiences in Spain a couple weeks ago and the attendees of the first show here were resplendent. It really seems as if everyone is ready to commune again; sing, laugh, cry, dance and emote together, and open a new chapter in this often too strange and polarizing culture we are all awash in. So maybe it goes without saying but I am thrilled to be where I am today. I never thought I’d be so happy to be in Jacksonville, Florida. Nothing against this place at all, it seems like a pretty cool locale, but with the heroic dose of gratitude that is swimming in my veins, I may as well be smoking a joint with Buzz Aldrin, Gandalf and Bilbo Baggins under a tree in the Shire.
See you guys tonight for the rock show here in Florida then we are off to Atlanta for the ritual there tomorrow.
(Photographs by Christaan Felber)