Sunday, 13 September 2015

Edinburgh, The Isle of Wight and back again……...

Well the Edinburgh Festival was marvellous. We all arrived in various states of jet lag form all over the world and lived in a flat in Leith, my brother in law Tim, Mirek my nephew, Vasily Senin the Russian director and John McDaniel my glorious collaborator on Come Together (The Beatles collaboration). We did a radio show together after he got off the plane, and amazingly he managed to play and sing, which is more than I would have done straight off a transatlantic flight. We saw a bunch of fabulous shows including Penny Arcade, David Benson's Boris World King, Todd Gordon's Sinatra show, some brilliant acrobats called Cirque La Roux and a truly hideous thing cavilled Velvet I think, I might have blanked the title we loathed it so much. If by chance I go to hell I am pretty certain they'll be showing shows like that. Here's some Edinburgh fun photos.

With Dillie Keane, Warren Lakin and Ronnie Golden after a show

With Michael Parker and legendary comedian Arnold Brown, with whom I won The Perrier Award in  the 1980s
It was absolutely great to do the Come Together set 3 times, and after each show to hang out with such fabulous friends, many of whom I've worked with over a 40 year period. Just gorgeous. Our apartment in Leith was near my old collaborator and fellow song writer and musician and dear friend, Michael Parker, and he found time for us to catch up, for which I was dearly grateful. We made this together years ago, the album's available here now at last for download

and the video is here

And there was the doing of the new show. John and I found so much in it, and thank you again to the glorious Vasily for this wonderful photograph of us taking a bow together.

John McDaniel and I taking our bow in Edinburgh after Come Together at the Old Assembly Rooms.
We performed at the Old Assembly Rooms. Well, memory lane. They've made a mess of the refurb, trashing the old supper room and turning it into a Jamie's. The old Music Hall and Ballroom are shadows of their former selves and the studio that Todd played in was in one of those formats that prompt the question "Are you havin' a laugh?". Then came the news that the officialdom of Edinburgh is going to - not being content with the above - bring in "a variety of promoters" to programme the venue next year. What a rubbish idea. So they really are killing one of the most legendary of the old venues. It used to be the only performers' bar to be seen in, that Assembly Bar. The deals that were done there. Gone. I despair at the idiocy of some planning and council decisions when it comes to the arts. Why not consult us? We know. Don't get me started.

For something much nicer here are some people I love.

Mirek my beloved nephew, Tim my brother in law, the gorgeous Earl Dax and Joey Arias's friend in a selfie of great joy after the show.

And if you forgot what the Come Together show is about……here's a taster, and there'll be a lot of chances to see it in the autumn in New York, San Francisco, LA and London. All dates are on my website at

Here's the taster…..Vasily Senin's fabulous film…..

And then I went on my family holiday. The Isle of Wight is a little island off the south coast of England. Rolling hills, cliffs and downs, heather heaths and headlands. We saw badgers at night eating from the waste bins on the sea front beside our apartment (I did take a photo but its so dark there's no point showing it to you, I know there's a badger there but digital photography failed me and I couldn't use a flash for fear of frightening the little fellow), bats danced over heads on dusk walks, foxes slunk across our paths, salamanders lounged on the wooden steps from the beach to the headland. It was alive! We visited a donkey sanctuary that was truly magical. We fell in love with donkeys. Who wouldn't? There was a falconry display, with kites soaring over us and falcons swooping down to grab tiny pieces of meat from the hilarious joke man and handler. We wandered around Queen Victoria's rural hideaway Osborne House wondering how you could have so much money and buy such hideous paintings, and ate seafood in Ventnor in the sunshine. Heavenly.

And every day I ran up to the headland and back, and watched the Needles change under the varying skies.

The Needles from my headland daily run
At night we walked the beach and watched the waves.

Dusk at Totland
Perfect holiday Totland Bay dusk at low tide
Now its back, and shows are looming. I'm at St George's Hall Bristol

and Chiddingly Festival with Hard Rain,

 and then to the US to film the new album live at The Kate.

and after that there'll be a new blog, with any luck!

Come see us somewhere, we are all over the country and in October in Berlin. The USA this autumn and more.

Till then, happy autumn. Jeremy Corbyn elected leader of the Labour Party gives me hope for the future, as do the many people giving of their time and money to help those less fortunate on the move in mass migrations from the rest of the world to Europe. Its, I hope, a new dawn and a new day for more people, everywhere.

From the Queen's Hall, thank you Billy for filming this in 2012, sound not great but feeling good is the watchword.

and lest I forget a wonderful review by Alex Ramon of the Crazy Coqs Stockport To Memphis show last weekend on Boycotting Trends website.

So a brilliant Namaste - which I say as a yoga practitioner and not as a noodle!


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