The fourth gig at The Spirit of 66! An interesting one!
Oh, and what a great hotel it was! We slept really gooed, and after a great breakfast, and some nice talking with each other we hit the road to Verviers, Belgium. It was about 2,5 hours driving, but due to some roadwork it became more like 3 hours. Thanks to our KeesKees (or TomTom you might call it) we found the venue quickly. Verviers is a nice little town in the French speaking area of Belgium.
This inspired Wilco and Sruben to some hilarious French language lessons while they where waiting on diner:
The venue, Spirit of 66 is a small club, but a very famous one. A lot of great artist have played there, and this is our second time. Of course Neal has played there a few times with Spock’s Beard. It is a smaller venue, but very nice. Francis, the owner of the club is a very nice person, and took good care of us! Unfortunately times are difficult over there with not many people coming to his shows, due to the financial recession that Belgium is having. We had around 250 people showing up, and that was nice to see.
You really feel the vibe of all these bands and artist that have played at The Spirit of 66. Especially when you are in the dressingroom. Every band have written something on the walls, the ceiling, the furniture, everywhere. Nice things, interesting things, very dirty things, bad things… it is all there. I saw several drawings/remarks of Spock’s Beard, also from the time Neal was touring with them. It gives the whole experience another twist. You really feel blessed that we can do this, and playing on that stage where so many other great bands have been playing. When I write this, I regret not have taken some pictures of that. I hope to remember next time when we will be playing there.
edit: I found out that Berry de Snoo, our guitar-tech, made some pictures:
When I set up the drums, I noticed that I missed a few parts of my hardware. I tried to fix it with some spare parts, and hoped for the best. It is a very small stage, so everybody was crammed on it. Unfortunately the drums and keys of Henk where so intwined, that Neal could not do his drumming special during Stranger. But when playing this set, I really struggled. It was a tough gig to do. Why? I don’t know exactly, maybe being tired kicked in, but it had also a lot to do with my kit. Well, my hardware to be more precise.
I told you about the missing parts during the set up. Some how the holder that keeps my bass drum in place, was loose, so my bass drum and the toms attached to it started rocking from left to right, when I was playing. And that set the whole rack in a rocking motion from left to right, like 5 cm or more sometimes. Quite a few times when I wanted to hit a tom it was moving, and instead I hit the tom, I hit the rim or the stick ended up somewhere the space in between the toms. Very frustrating. Als because the bass drum was moving, my double bass pedal did not feel right. It bounced back and forth after every hit, so when playing right foot, it sounded okay, but the hit with the left foot did not, because the whole bass drum was still moving due to the first hit. So all the left foot hits where not as strong as they should have been. Oh, man did I miss my second bass drum that night!!! But I managed to keep playing, and hopefully people could still enjoy the set.
Although this problem, playing this gig felt really nice. The people there gave us a very warm welcome, and the audience where great. I do not have pictures yet, but as soon as I find them, I’ll post them here.