Sunday, February 04, 2007

Live at Leeds

Saturday morning and, to quote the philosophical sage that is Edmund Blackadder, my head feels like it's got a Frenchman living in it. That'll be last night's drinking then. After at least one false start I remember that we're playing in Leeds tonight and manage to leap into action in time to meet the lads in Joe's van. Before you can say 'deja vu' we're in Toddington to meet Dave- no sign of Elvis (he's back on the 10th!) but everything else seems more-or-less as we left it. Then it's the long haul up the M1. We're playing at Karen & Trevor's wedding in the Palmcourt room at The Queen's Hotel in the city centre. Richard went to college in Leeds so knows his way around and we find our venue easily (for once!). Phil's already got the P.A. set up so we squeeze our gear onto the t-shaped stage (just) and do a quick soundcheck.
There's some food available later but people are getting hungry so we decide to go out for a look around. The lure of Spicemania across the road proves too much for many though if I was getting some food I think I'd have gone for Wokmania next door. However for me, Squirrel, Ian and Joe it's pubtime- there's plenty to choose from although there's already bouncers on the door for most of them and it's only 6.30. And there's a lot of people about, and a lot of police. Eventually we find The Prince of Wales- as Ian puts it 'that looks like an old boys pub- that'll do for us then'. Actually the jukebox is playing Blondie and The Stones, though I guess that is 'old boys music' to many. A bewildering array of real ales are on sale- I take the only possible course of action and order lager. They've got a real till- one of those one's that goes 'ker-ching' as the cost pop's up in a window at the top. If only it had been in old money. After a couple of drinks we walk back through town- there's even more people about, many of them scantily clad young ladies causing Ian to remark 'if I had some money I think I'd spend it on a facelift'. An evocative thought.
Back to the venue and 'Fawlty Towers' is on Dave's portable DVD player and there's much jollity all round. Outside the room we're using as a base there's a signed photo of Leeds footballing legend John Charles- indeed there's actually quite a few rooms there named after him. We go on just after 9.30 to the predictable indifference of many but, thankfully, not everyone. There's quite a few people up and dancing which leads to a peculiar version of 'Rawhide' which somehow includes 'Oops upside your head' (or whatever it's called). Strange days indeed.

2.30a.m. and, somewhat inevitably, we're in Toddington. It's quieter than last week- but I guess without Elvis it would be.

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