Well that was fantastic. After a lot of stress (thanks, Piccadilly line, I’ll be sending you the bill for my blood pressure medication…) I made it to Ludgwigshafen am Rhein in one piece, via Frankfurt and Mannheim – only to be greeted by streets lined with this poster:
The cabbie taking me from Mannheim station to the venue was more than a bit confused when I started jumping up and down in the back of his cab squealing “Ich!! Iiiiich!!!!! On der poster!!!”. And, probably thinking I was someone actually famous, he took me the wrong way and charged me double…
(By the way, the positioning of the staples in this poster was particularly amusing:)
The Inselsommer festival was lovely, set in a park right on the Rhein. Here’s what the stage looked like during the daytime:
And here’s what it looked like at night (this is Rose, who came along for this gig to do backing vocals and djembe, not Chandy singing):
We played a brilliant gig – two sets of 45 mins, which was a bit of a marathon for us. It was also a great start for Goshi, our new tabla player (actually our old tabla player, who has rejoined the band). We were also extremely grateful for the superb bass skills of TK, our stand-in bassist, and Rose. People cheered, they whooped, they even danced! And we sold loads of CDs, meaning I could pay for a cab back to Mannheim the next day.
Things not to do at a gig in Germany
Leave fruit unattended in the dressing room:
Get drunk and attempt to do poi:
I resisted the temptation to go out clubbing in Mannheim with the band and a fabulously camp sculptor, and skulked off to bed far too late. Got up far too early and made the trek back to London, with an hour to unpack and repack for this:
More about that in another post – suffice to say it was an absolutely blinding night, and I’m now very, very tired.