TUESDAY AND WEDNESDAY, MARCH 15 & 16, 2016 – NASHVILLE TO AALBORG, DENMARK:
Leaving today for a two week tour of Europe (Denmark, Switzerland and Sweden) with the Bellamy Brothers. We met at the airport at noon and check in was a “breeze”. We were able to check in outside and the skycap was great, as usual. Howard, David, Wally and I had our “omelets” at Noshville and then it was time to board. The flight from Nashville to Atlanta was uneventful and quick. We had time for a very short visit to the Delta Lounge in Atlanta where we were advised that our flight was departing 10 minutes early. That was a surprise.
Just as Delta started boarding the flight, an attendant came out and said that they were going to “suspend” ground service in order to accommodate an early departure. She said the flight had to depart early because of “high winds in Amsterdam”. THAT was something I did not want to hear. We boarded and after settling in, the purser came by and I quizzed him about the winds. He said we were leaving early because there was no “tail wind” and we were going to be flying “slow”. So, we needed to depart early in order to arrive on time. Strange that 10 minutes would make that much of a difference but I was delighted to know it wasn’t due to “high winds”!
I watched a movie and ate and slept for 2 hours – sort of – couldn’t really sleep. I’m still on Japan time, I think. Was able to work on the internet for 2 hours before landing on time in Amsterdam.
We had to walk through lots of construction at the Amsterdam airport (which has been the case for a couple of years now) and then there was a very long line for Immigration. Fortunately, we did not have to go through another security scan which was a nice surprise.
Flight to Aalborg departed on time and once again, Delta had moved me to a Window Seat! Not happy with them but it was only a 1 ½ hour flight. Landed on time and all our luggage and baggage arrived. Our bus driver was waiting for us and the hotel was only about 10 minutes away. We are staying at a Radisson where we have stayed a couple of other times when the Bellamys performed in Aalborg. Radisson is my “hotel of choice” overseas. They had all our keys waiting for us so check in was a breeze.
I walked into the center of town with a couple of the guys. They went looking for lunch and Galen and I went looking for “water and fruit”. After a couple of wrong turns and lots of asking for directions, we found a “Kiwi”. Then his credit card wouldn’t work because it didn’t have a chip in it. Fortunately I was able to use mine.
Went back to the hotel and worked for hours, then slept for 1 hour (big mistake) and went down to join the group for dinner. There was a HUGE group of men walking into the restaurant as we entered but they were in a “private section” and had pre-ordered their meals. We all opted for the buffet which was great. I remember how good the food was at this restaurant from previous visits.
I’ve been working since 7:30 pm and it’s 1 am now so going to bed soon so I can get up and go for a run before sound check. This is a beautiful town with lots of shops, restaurants, bars, and a scenic waterfront. Oh, and the kamikaze bicycle riders who will run you over in a heartbeat (yes, Denmark is the site of my famous bike wreck).
THURSDAY, MARCH 17TH – PERFORMANCE IN AALBORG, DENMARK:
Got 5 hours of sleep and was going to run along the waterfront this morning. But upon opening the curtains, it was “wet” outside. Not really raining but a “mist” and when I opened the window, it was COLD. So I opted for the little hotel fitness room. It was just “okay”. Had one cardio machine, elliptical, treadmill, bike, rowing machine and a “mat”. I got creative and managed a 45 minute workout.
Met some of the boys in the restaurant for breakfast then showered and left for the sound check. Our bus driver was late because he had a passenger prior to us who took longer than anticipated. The production company at the venue is good but had the “old” information on the band for setup. Bellamys had a change in one of their musicians just a few weeks ago and we sent out all new info. No big deal and Tim worked through it. I checked out the backstage area, got the boys some drinks for the stage and then walked back to the hotel. It’s only a little over a half mile walk. Except for the bone-chilling, WET, cold, it was a nice walk.
Was able to print all the boarding passes on the hotel printer. We still have to be there at 4:30 am for our 6:05 pm flight tomorrow morning. Going to be “brutal” as they have sound check and a show as soon as we arrive Zurich.
I skipped lunch today and just ate a piece of my fruit. Had to meet Stig and David for dinner at 5 pm tonight. Stig is a great promoter and dear friend and it’s always nice to work with him and spend time with him. We had a really nice meal and “chat” before leaving for the venue.
Had several people come backstage for photos with the Bellamys and Jytte and Snif from Silkeborg made the trip over to see the show. They are wonderful people and promoters as well and I’ll be seeing them in August when Dale Watson headlines their event this year.
At sound check, I noticed that there was a drum shield up around the drum kit and I had never seen that before. I asked Rocky (drummer) about it and he said he preferred not to have it. I told him to tell the production company and I felt sure they would remove it. Rocky had surgery on his neck/spine recently and can’t “lift” anything heavy! When I got back over to the venue tonight, I walked on stage and couldn’t believe my eyes – the drum shield had been removed and in its place was a white picket fence with artificial marijuana plants placed along the front of it! Now that’s some stage decorations I have NEVER seen. LOL. Of course, the view from my hotel window is the “Club Red Light”. If you are on Facebook, go online and look at the photos from today or they will be up on my website at the end of March.
The show was completely sold out and all the cds were sold as well. It’s a listening room so was a great audience. The Bellamys were presented flowers onstage after the show which is also a tradition in Denmark. Since we can’t take plants on the flight, we gave them to Stig to give to his wife and daughter.
It’s after midnight and I have to get up at 3 am. Not sure I’m even going to attempt to go to bed tonight. Will probably just shower, pack and go to the lobby!