Ratings: S - Sound, A - Audience, P - Personal, F - Food/Drink

  Datum   Ratings SAPF   Venue   Comments and Stories  
  13.01   SAPF8777   Cafe Bohne  

First time in this student town. Good time.

  20.01   8785   Cafe Klecks  

Wendtland boogie. This is almost cult here.

  24.01   5887   Desert Penguin**  

After three hours sitting in a traffic jam on the A9, B & T rolled up at 21.45h and did an unplugged thing. No complaints!

  25.01   8888   Hotel Walhalla**  

B & T in Switzerland. Snowed virtually the whole time. Audience very receptive, we'll be back next year!

  26.01   7676   Blarneys Irish Pub**  

This was a tricky one. Carnival was in the air, which did not help the audience figures.
The harp mike crapped out and then there was a hassle about an idiot standing about a metre in front of B, talking through the whole of the second set. .
As T put it 'Kein Freund der Künst'. Why on earth was he there? We left at 12.55 pm and drove an interesting route back to Berlin. Cyndi Lauper songs kept popping up: .
'Time After Time', 'True Colours' so by eight in the morning we were ready for 'I Drove All Night'.

  29.01   6379   Alte Nikolaischule  

Monday in Leipzig is obviously a bit slow. This was a non-event solo gig in a room with difficult acoustics.

  31.01   8788   Magnet Club  

This was an opener for a Norwegen guitarist called Björn Berge. B found his set too short to get into his stride
The young man following B sounded like Leo Kottke on speed. Years ago B did a lot of work with 12 string guitars, he owned a Hagstrom. The main reason for switching to 6 string
was the difficulty in controlling the sound, especially when fingerpicking. Listening to this guy made B glad that he made that decision a long time ago.

  09.02   8788   Bahnhof*  

Another one of those last minute dashes to the gig. Those two lane highways are somewhat slower than their three lane counterparts.
The set up took less than 35 minutes. Audience figures were not too hot. We have a standing joke where the promoter explains why more people have not turned up. 'Normal ist Voll' - normally it's full -
then comes football, television, pink floyd playing round the corner etc. However at this gig we got the most obstruse 'Normal ist Voll' excuse. It turns out that lots of firemen and their friends (firemen love blues)
were meant to turn up to the concert but - yes you've guessed it - there was a big fire in Straubing. The funny thing is that this is true and luckily nobody got hurt.

  10.02   6986   Finekeller*  

Good time in Dessau. We do not do ratings for sanitary facilities; if we did this place might scrape a 1.
As a notice reads on the way to the loo 'Wer bricht, wischt'. If you throw up, you mop up.

  15.02   7660   Villantis  

Funny to think of fans driving from Berlin to Strausberg to hear B but that's what happened!

MÄRZ 2007
  07.03   7775   Alter Gasometer  

Extraordinary acoustics inside this former liquid gas container.

  09.03   8777   Schwarze Sau  

Neat bar in Döbern with a young audience.

  10.03   8870   Rickenbackers*  

B's family back in the UK were able to follow this on the internet. Cool.

  11.03   8677   Zum Gerucht  

Keeping the rouble rolling in Dresden.

  23.03   8798   Savoy*  

Nice stage. Dancing in the cinema aisles.

  24.03   8877   Heidbarghof Osdorf*  

This is a cultural legacy brought by the will of a certain Elisabeth Gatgens. The house was almost full and the culture vultures enjoyed some blues.

  30.03   7650   jwd*  

Certain amount of routine playing here. Probably because of the fixed playing time - at midnight 'jwd' turns from a concert hall into a disco. There were apparently 40 guests but it felt more like 4. However, it was nice to dig out some bluesers in Spandau.

APRIL 2007
  07.04   8988   Kulturfabrik*  

Easter in Thuringen. Nice gig, lots of dancing & singing.

  08.04   7567   Carnaby*  

The shAnghAi blues gAng cultural program included a trip to Wartburg near Eisenach. Very pleasant too - amazingly untouristic. The gig was a bit of a non-event, although some young people really wanted to show their appreciation. Stayed at the promoters house just outside Gotha imbibing great russian vodka. The promoter himself (Micha Fleischmann) was on the way back from another gig in Worbis and the mobile telephone reports of the drivers progress made one feel uneasy - too many musician accidents lately!

  14.04   8878   Honky Tonk*  

First time working for this outfit. We did a five set, five CD show. Presenting a different CD every set, starting with 'Live & Guilty, then 'Trouble In Love', 'Shanghai Rainbow', '100 Years Tampa Red' and the last set was of course the new CD 'shAnghAi blues'. B managed to play the Tampa set without using the Dobro - strange! The last set was the least concentrated. The audience was sometimes great, sometimes almost non-existant. The big plus from this gig was B meeting up with an old buddy and musician from the SWitzerland days of yore. Tommy Gallagher was playing with 'Murphys Lawyers' right next to the joint where we were (Esels Brücke). Wow. unfortunately we could not catch each others music because the sets were always at the same time (why don't the organisers stagger the playing times?). however, we did have enough time to swap a few stories about all the characters we know.

  19.04   6677   Wirtshaus Taglaching  

This is a neat place in the middle of nowhere - well that's what it feels like to a city boy. One table was a bit loud, but you have to make exceptions for birthdays, otherwise the gig was pretty cool with Manfred taking over the cashiers role!

MAI 2007
  02/03.05   7686   New Orleans Music Festival  

B checked out this festival. Went to the 'John Lee Hooker Jnr.' concert. The musical heritage sounded more like Cab Calloway than the man's dad. The band, although pretty tight, played a couple of big cucumbers (Gurken); the overall impression was disappointing. Alternatively Geoff Muldaur was a minor revelation. Unfortunately, this concert was not too well attended, a fact that B attributes to the mediocre press material. The 'intellectual outsider' tag just does not sell concert tickets. The fact that the Martin Guitar company had honoured Mr Muldaur by naming a guitar after him, was nowhere to be read. Unlike Gibson guitars, Martin have very few custom versions.

  04.05   7979   Gleis 1  

Good concert, nice people - foto in the gallery.

  05.05   8788   Schrääg Rüber  

Third year in this Falkensee cult scene. Clientel seem to enjoy anything as long as it's authentic.

  06.05   8788   Liliput*  

Touching base with 'shanghAi blues gAng' in Bernie's Ballroom - a revamped and extended 'Liliput'. The day was just too warm to make any real waves. Although, by three in the afternoon we had managed to get a few people dancing.

  17 - 20.05   7987   Baden Blues Festival - Pickwick/Schwyzerhüsli  

B checked out this festival. however the only act he caught was Coco Montoya. Good west coast stuff. This guy plays guitar the way B did as a kid - left-handed with the strings in the right-handed position, upside down so to speak. This is not as unusual as one might think - Jimi Hendrix and Albert King are the most famous examples. Technically, for plectrum players it's ok, but problems occur with finger-picking, which is why B changed to playing real lefty after six years of strumming. This festival was somewhat grander than the Wendelstein affair although the main event hall, 'Nordpol', was just as soulless as 'Löhlein's'.

  03. 06   7477   Birkenried e.V.  

This is the cultural home of a guy who booked the band for a 'Messe' a few years ago. Very pleasant part of the countryside with an emphasis on sculpture and horticulture. Blues almost worked.

  23. 06   7989   Eventschiff  

Good fun for a birthday party - people singing and clapping along.

JULI 2007
  06. 07   4850   Frankfurt a.d. Oder, Stadtfest*  

Tricky gig. The technicians for the band after us were very uncool. Firstly they wanted V to play a right-handed drum set, then they were running all over us as we tried to set up and got very upset when we suggested moving the drum stand so that V could be seen. As T kept saying 'who do they think they are 'The Beatles''! 'The Beatles' would have been somewhat friendlier. Without naming names, such bands are helping maintaining the identity of the former GDR - they are part of that country's cutural heritage. Unfortunately, the quality of the musicianship is sometimes miserable. Our short set went down quite well - didn't even rain!

  14.07   7387   Treff & Talk Inn  

Second time this year in the Heilbronn area. Extremely hot day, hence the poor attendence. Luckily Klaus Reischle came along and shot a bunch of photos, which gave the evening some meaning. Thanks Klaus. Check out the Gallery for more.

  28.07   7773   Manitu*  

Played here a few times over the years. Good fun although the set was once again a bit short but we managed to play most of the new songs we practised - stuff from Johnny Winter, Hound Dog Taylor, Warren Zevon and of course B. The newest version of 'Pater Noster Boogie' has a 'swamp' feel and the wah-wah comes through just like a crocodile.

  26.08   6607   US Car Classics  

Quite liked the pink Chevrolet with the liquid gas tanks.

  22.09   8897   Alte Zollstation  

Deja vue with the didgeridoo. Avid readers of this blog will know that Franz (the landlord) jammed along last year with his long thing. Guess what, he did it again! Same player, same instrument but the key of the instrument was a pitch higher!!! Last year the blow was in D, this year in Eb. Wracking my physics brain cells I concluded the didgi had shrunk. Franz kept goading the performance with recordings of his favorite players, that was until I produced my new cover 'a la' Rory Gallagher of Tony Joe White's 'As The Crow Flies'.

  28.09   7899   RESTAURANT FRIEDRICH*  

Back on the Honky Tonk scene with shAnghAi blues gAng. Schwerin rocks - at least for this evening.

  30.09   7788   Zum Gerucht  

This is what americans call a neat place. Monty, the cuban barman, keeps people happy and the music flows.

  7988   Seefeld   Schloss Seefeld*  

This was good stuff. Full house, singing, dancing, good business, even some controversy. At the end we were probably too loud but on stage you could not really notice - the acoustics of this bell shaped room were somewhat difficult.

  7787   Hildburghausen   Route 66*  

Tricky gig with a suspicious audience which we won around about 01.00h in the morning. This weekend was the virgin tour with the new car and hitch system. Yes, the old Volvo 760 has finally taken it's last bow on the blues scene after 506,000 km. Like to think that it is still running out in Afghanistan or someplace. We now have a 'Klau Fix' closed trailer, which is just about big enough for our gear.

  7887   Berlin   Bahnhofshalle Friedenau**  

B and T stretching out in downtown Friedenau for the kulture vultures. Good stuff.

  6796   München   Sendlinger Kulturschmiede  

This gig was more like a vernissage but it went down well with the dobro.

  8788   Straubing   Bahnhof*  

Well maybe Straubing is not cut out for the blues although the thirteen paying guests had a good time.

  7877   Wartenberg   Zum Hinterhof-Zache*  

This was more like the bavarian blues scene, although there were still some sound problems from playing in the corner of a 30m x 30m room.

  6788   Dresden  

Tir na nog


Back in one of my regular haunts. Uwe (landlord) has been having problems with a neighbour regarding volume of the music. So the last set was unplugged. No not MTV-unplugged with all those amplifiers but just me, the dobro and the harmonica. Worked oput fine.

  7888   Falkensee  



Always manage to loose my way to the nearest gigs. Those venues in Switzerland or NRW no problem, but just around the corner - tricky. Quite a neat evening in a re-vamped Falkenkrug. Tried a new National killer - 'Peggy Sue' from the great Buddy Holly.

By the way, in view of the fact that the old-Volvo gained almost as much notoriety as the Guzzi, just have to tell the last old-Volvo story. After the gig on the 30.09 B drove across from Dresden to Pirmasens to change cars and on this last run, when the TUV had just run out, brakes were shot and 505 tkm had been driven, the Thuringia police took one more snapshot at 01.53h on the 1st of October, BAB 4, direction Frankfurt at km 171. Nice souvenir, pity about the €20.

  7988   Chemnitz  



Enthusiastic audience.
The christmas market was very impressive with a forgery and various medieval displays. Unfortunately the search for a good 'stolle' did not go smoothly. Also checked out the gallery with Bob Dylan's pictures, So so. T bought a coffee table book of Crainich paintings.

  7799   Grünhainichen  



Neat scene. This part of the world - 'Erzgebirge' - is blessed with all the right attributes for christmas.


*Pete Gavin & shAnghAi blues gAng.

** Pete Gavin & Pick Stevens aus Shanghai.

Blues Blog 2006