UK Tour Blog 2

We’re at sea in the the middle of travel to the Isle of Man after a fantastic show at The Atkinson in Southport last night. The venue is housed in a beautiful old clock tower-topped building that also holds an art gallery, library, cafe as well as a larger theatre. We had been warned that the crowds here would be good, but wouldn’t be demonstrative during the show. Happily that turned out not to be the case! The Southport crowd erupted during our songs and made sure that we didn’t feel like we were playing there for the first time. It was a spectacular way to start the tour.

Leif and I were left to our own devices for after-gig eats. Most restaurants and pubs stop serving food early but kebab shops open late and stay open until early in the morning. So, kebabs it was. We found our way to a shop run by a Turkish man who immediately asked what we were doing in Southport. He hadn’t heard of the venue where we had just played, even though it was practically across the street from his shop, but as soon as we told him we were musicians he pulled out his phone and started playing a video of himself singing in Turkish. I have no idea how Turkish songs are supposed to sound, but I told him I thought it sounded good. The words hadn’t gotten out of my mouth before he said “Hang on, I’ll play you a better one!”. Several videos of heart-rending Turkish love songs later we had our kebabs.

We had been settling in back at our hotel room for a few minutes when our driver, Gerry, arrived. We’d been watching Mitchell and Webb videos on YouTube, so Gerry, being Scottish, naturally suggested we take in a bit of Scot’s humor (…humour? Whatever.) We watched a few clips before Gerry told us to listen to a particular Billy Collins bit. I’m a fan of Billy Collins, so I thought it would be great. As it turned out, this was from an early album and Billy’s accent was…let’s call it challenging. Gerry began to chuckle immediately while Leif and I sat quietly and awkwardly. It took Gerry a couple of minutes to notice we weren’t laughing. He asked if we were having trouble with the accent and we admitted that we had barely understood a word, Gerry said something about listening to it several times in a row to get it in our ears. That was never going to happen, so we called it a night. The Scotland gigs should be interesting.

Centenary Centre on the Isle of Man tonight, I can’t wait!

Thanks for reading.

JD

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