Tour Blog - Chicago

Ok ok I know it's scary and yet the photo next to it is beautiful so forgive me. The reson for the contrast is your looking at the drum tech Steve up on the left. It was the singer from Berlin's birthday. At one point she has people from the audience join her on stage. Steve decided he would do so only wearing a towl wrapped around him in the style of an adult nappy. Very funny but you had to be there otherwise he just looks very scary. The picture to the right was taken that afternoon when I went into Chicago to explore. I was in an old book shop which was 4 storey's high and was so beautiful I had to take a picture.It's strange with America because the minute you arrivein a town it has it's own style or feel. So different from the last. Chicago felt like Boston. It's an old town which I like, the rail service was built after most of the buildings so it has to be elevated through the city as you can see from the picture below.

Here is a picture of the drummer Pete and guitarist Matt, I think I'm getting on their nerves now as I keep insiting on that 'tourist shot' wherever I go. I also keep making members of the band try on my 'geek chic' glasses, hence Pete's turn in the picture below. As you can see it did get to some members of the crew who decided to tape me up in sound check! The gig went really well (still no picks sorry!) The day finished with Pete and I sharing a large Pizza which as you can see was LARGE!


Tour Blog - Grand Rapids

We played a good gig but there is nothing else to say as the day was overcast for me by the passing of Jackson.

chicago 2

Tour Blog - Wolf Trap

The next gig was at the Wolf Trap Amphitheater near Vienna. It's one of the largest wooden structures in America. As you can see from the pictures it's stunning. I managed to get a couple of cool pictures from the sound check and from my walking around and exploring. The cheaper tickets are at the top where people can bring a picnic. I think this is cooler than sitting in the actual theatre.

Below is a pic of the guitarist Matt Backer, at this point as you can see we all had our cameras out. There's also a cool shot taken from a Sax point of view and me standing behind the keyboard with blurred hands, believe they don't play that fast!.The gig was really fun as I've never played outside before at such a huge venue.


Tour Blog - Baltimore

After Atlantic City we picked up a tour bus to take us on for the rest of the dates. In a way I am looking forward to getting onto the bus as it means all your stuff is in one place. It also means you have internet which in some hotels can be tricky to get. The picture above is of our amazing bus driver Sam. he's a real new yorker with such a positive outlook on life. He drove us on the first stint for over 10 hours straight! This would be against the law in the UK of course, but that aside I don't know how he does it. His bus has something called a slide out which means when parked the front lounge can extend out making the bus really roomy. I've been told by many people to watch the TV series 'The Wire' which is a police drama set in Baltimore.  A friend lent me the first series but I haven't started yet however the venue in Baltimore was next to the Police station so we were surrounded by police cars I thought I'd grab a shot in adavance to make it look like I knew all about 'The Wire' Baltimore was such a breath of fresh air after AC, the first thing I did was go and sit in a cool bar and get some proper food. Everything in AC tasted bad!


Tour Blog - Atlantic City

Our next stop was Atlantic City where we had a show and a couple of days off. Atlantic City was a bit / a lot, of a shock after staying in New York and Boston. Tacky is not the word, the whole place was like a terrible version of Vegas. We were staying in a hotel on the sea front where all the tourist resorts were. All the hotels had huge casinos where it seemed not very wealthy people went to loose all their money! The pictures you can see above are of the casino in our hotel and the boardwalk outside of it. I did however get to do some practise in my room for a couple of days.This involed sticking a sock down my sax to dull the sound and playing really softly so as not to disturb my neighbours. I brought my flute so that I can keep my sound together because I"m not using it on the gig.  You know a City is run down when film crews come to film gangster movies in it. I caught this shot (below right) from my room window. They were filming a guy staggering down a road after being shot. The middle picture below is of the unspoilt beach found further away from the dreadfull built up areas.


Tour Blog - New York

We had an rough 5 hour drive from Boston to New York  because it didn't stop raining all the way. The band were all in 2 cars for this drive which meant it was tight for space, plus the weather made it really dangerous on the roads.However when we arrived the rain stopped and Manhatten looked as cool as I remember it. I managed to get to have a quick walk around before the sound check. I love of the buildings in Manhatten. Most of the high rise buildings were built very quickly at the time because of the massive need for living space during the boom period. As a result they used steel fronts for the buildings which were then painted to look like brick work! The result is amazing. I also love the signs used in America, it's all very iconic comared to the signs used in the UK.

The gig was at the Filmore in Manhatten, which is a much smaller club than the House Of Blues. The place was packed and it was so hot on stage. The silly picture below is of the Keyboard player Steve and I wearing our 'Geek Chic' glasses. I'm finding it difficult to get any shots of the gigs so I will try to ammend that. I managed to take this one with the camera laid on the keyboard during a song I have very little to do in (naughty!).


Tour Blog - Boston

I took these shots on the first gig of the tour at the House Of Blues in Boston. The venue is next to the Red Sox baseball ground which had a game on that day. I really wanted to go and watch but I ran out of time. Soundchecking always lasts longer than you expect. The House Of Blues venues are a chain across the US and are really vibey places to play. I'm playing Keyboards and Saxophone on this tour which is interesting because the physical nature of playing a keyboard does not compare to the Sax, however playing keyboards brings it's own challenges too! I didn't manage to get any shots of the gig which was a shame but it went well. We are travelling to New York tomorrow where we will be plaing the Filmore in Manhatten which I'm really looking forward to. Below are some shots from the soundcheck.


Tour Blog

stairs customs boston - me

I'm currently in Boston rehearsing for the start of a tour with the 80's group ABC. I thought I'd try and keep a short blog on the fourthcoming events (good and bad!). I have a great camera on my phone so I'm going to try and post plenty of pictures. We started out at Heathrow, hence the long escalator pic which kind of sums up air travel for me, long! When you arrive in America you have to go through Homeland Security. This is never fun for anyone but I do find that they always like to get to know me a little better! This normally involves me being held back for an hour or two. As it turned out they held myself and my good friend Andy Carr. I had a 'one to one' chat with one of the dudes and Andy had his bags re-packed! However all the hassle was worth it as Boston is beautiful. I woke on the 1st day at 5am which is really 10am UK time. I started this blog and then went for a walk. As you can see from the picture the streets are really interesting, they have an 'old English' feel and look to them which could be one of the 'blondest' statements I'm going to make today considering the English founded the place! Later that day I had to start rehearsing which was cool but I did start to feel really tired by 5pm. I've included pictures of the 'arty' guitars which were on the walls in the studios. Boston is a very artistic city and the people love to show this. After the rehearsal I found an amazing pizza place called Pizza Riaregina. I have to say I had forgotten what real pizza tastes like after the uniformity of the pizza resturants we have on offer in the UK. I may start a campaign against them.

pizza git

Albert Hall Concert

albert hallI had a great experience performing with ABC and the BBC Concert Orchestra at the Albert Hall last month. The concert was anniversary of their classic album 'Lexicon Of love'. This show was something of a reunion for the makers of the album.  Anne Dudley, who arranged the strings on the album was conducting the BBC Concert Orchestra. Original drummer  David Palmer was back behind the kit. Gary Langan, the album's engineer, was doing the sound. Tessa Niles had come out of semi-retirement and flown from South Africa to provide backing vocals. And finally, producer Trevor Horn was on hand to introduce the album.

Performing with Beata Aleksandrowicz

dsc01423 2I will soon to be performing with Beata Aleksandrowicz (Voice) and Rick Laughlin (Piano) at Grand Auditorium POSK. Performing material written by Beata as well other artists. The concerts are

  • Wednesday 22nd April @ 7.30pm
  • Thursday 30th April @ 7.30pm
  • Thursday 7th May @ 7.30pm

@ Grand Auditorium POSK, 238-246 King Street Hammersmith London W6 0RF, London,

Beata is very passionate about music and this really comes across when she sings her compositions. To book tickets or hear some of her material log onto.


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