Smoke Fairies tour diary part 2

We arrived at The Sage last night to be greeted at load-in by a plethora of helpful chaps that seemingly love putting things on trolleys, which made the arduous daily task of carrying a million and one things into the venue easy as pie. Is pie easy? I guess so. It's such a pleasingly professional venue. We've played The Sage before but in the larger room supporting Richard Hawley, I remember someone saying to us at the time that they've had support acts here before who've gone on to headline the smaller room and it's heartening to actually make the transition. What's more, we very nearly sold out the 400 capacity venue. In Gateshead. In January; surely the quietest of months for gigs. Ridiculous.

The previous night we played the Lancaster Library which seemed like an odd place to house a live gig considering the usual mode of conduct in a library is to be as quiet as humanly possible, but it turned out to be a marvellous setting with book cases framing the audience. The show was performed in the Sci-Fi and Fantasy section and the sound desk was aptly in the Audio Book section.

We had a day off in Lancaster the day before the library show and were planning on having a nice meal for my birthday, followed by the inevitable booze fest, after the long drive from Nottingham. We turned up at this gastro pub and I was lead into this dark room and was hit by a roar of "surprise" by friends and family. It was flabbergasting, completely unexpected and bizarrely disorientating having all these people I've known for years in this room in Lancaster. It was such a lovely surprise. Fun times.

The shows on the 19th and 20th were at Glee. Luba in Birmingham and Nottingham respectively. The Birmingham show ended in disaster when drummer Rob fell down a hole when we were loading out resulting in a tenis ball sized swollen ankle and he spent the rest of the evening with buckets full of ice round his ankle. The Nottingham show would have proved an impossibility had it not been for copious amounts of painkillers a foot strap and Rob's unflappable demeanour of "it'll be fine". If it had happened to me I'd be constantly crying like a little boy who's just witnessed his new bike being crushed by a freak incident with a steam roller.

The show must go on, and it has. Hat's off to Rob.


Smoke Fairies tour diary part uno

I'm sitting back stage three days into the tour listening to the luscious sounds of Sea of Bees who are supporting us on this tour, she has a voice that would turn even the sternest of men into cuddly teddy bears.

Brighton Jam was most enjoyable on Monday. The venue itself is clearly built for vertically challenged folk but luckily I didn't knock myself out on the low flying beams. Due to the low ceilings it made viewing from the stage pretty odd cos you could only see the front row but judging by the voluminous applause you could tell there were a lot of appreciative people out there. It was a smashing turn out considering it was a Monday night and in January, the miserable month where people mainly stay at home and sob into their empty wallets.

I've discovered that sushi is literally the best food to have before a gig cos it's light and tasty. We made a bit of an error in Brighton cos we had Italian which was lovely but I wanted a sleep after eating that and not play a gig. It was seriously good risotto though.

"who are the band" was shouted out from the audience last night at the wedgewood rooms in Southsea. It always feels like a proper rock n' roll gig when Kaf and Jess introduce us: "aaaand on the bass is..."

I shouldn't miss out the first night at the shabby but strangely charming venue that is the Forum, a converted toilet in Tunbridge wells. What more can I say about that place? Dodgy are playing there soon, remember them?

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