Richard Bennett
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Contrary Cocktail

Moderne Shellac, 2015

Contrary Cocktail

A hypnotic blend of rhythms, landscapes, tones, colors, styles and moods, with melodies leading the way to certain places that only songs without words can go.

-- Pieta Brown, 2015

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A quick correction to yesterday’s notes.  Attendance at the show in Sion was closer to 6,000 and not 16,000 as stated.  Sometimes the itinerary capacity, especially with outdoor venues are based on other factors and this was one of those times.  Still, I stand by my observation that you couldn’t slip an envelope between all the people jammed in there last night.

 

A lazy morning on the balcony of our chateau hotel, misty and mild.  In the light I can see how tall and rugged those mountains really are.  Breathtaking.  I walked down to the little village below just past noon for a pizza.  We checked out at three for the drive down the mountain to the Sion airport and a flight to Venice.

 

The heat in Venice was staggering, 37c.-98f.  We drove nearly an hour to get to Padova.  It was decided to forego sound check as the crew had arrived late this morning, fans were milling around everywhere and the heat.  This is another gig I remember from a couple of years ago… hot then too.  As usual with these outdoor shows, the backstage area is a series of makeshift cubicles, usually with inadequate cooling.  Catering was a block away in an exhibition hall and the temperature in there was beyond belief.  I can’t imagine what it was like for Chris, David and Steve in the kitchen!  I turned around and left.  There’s no way I could have sat in there for the time it took to eat dinner.  The shows are getting later now as we head into the last leg of the tour..Italy and Spain.  On stage at 9:45 tonight.  After spending 3+ hours in the backstage heat or airless dressing rooms, we all felt drained.  We hit the boards and by the second song I was soaked through.  Between the heat, humidity and fatigue it was a difficult show for everyone, but this band rises above any obstacles and it was a beauty of a gig.  Apparently, a record attendance for a show there, 8,000 and that figure is correct.  The real heroes of today and every day, are the crew.  They spent all day outside getting the show together, the first ones there and the last to leave long after we’ve split.  Also, our catering team mentioned above.  These are men’s men and they make it happen…. every time and not one complaint.  Our gratitude is always with them.

 

A well earned day off Sunday the 19th, then on to Barolo.

 

So long,

 

 

Richard