Do you use a credit card? Yeah, I do too, but I only have one for emergencies like being stuck somewhere with no money. Or if I need something like a hotel room at short notice. Or a CD from Amazon. That type of thing. Lots of people use them in guitar shops to buy things like, well, guitars. Or amplifiers. Or strings. That type of thing. But they couldn't use them in our shop on Saturday because the credit card machine wasn't working. It wasn't our fault, honest, the bloke from the credit card company's coming out on Tuesday to have a look at it ('they can't come out Monday 'cos it's a bank holiday. Yes we've phoned them and everything...') but until then it's THE END OF THE WORLD. Well actually it's not- it's a shop with a malfunctioning credit card machine which, if you think about it, isn't really that bad in the global scheme of things. And there's a cash point 2 doors down (count 'em!) which, if you'd be good enough to go down to, might even means that you'll be able to wring some more discount out of us- after all, it might be raining and you'll get wet which wouldn't happen if our credit card machine had been working. Maybe it was the end of the world after all... all of which made for a rather fraught Saturday in the shop, which ended on a somewhat brighter note with Paul the guv'nor and myself recording a rough demo of one of the songs we've written for an upcoming project (more about this another time but it should be an interesting, if rather bluesy summer).
Sunday saw another 'Big-Tel's-big-gig' rehearsal, this time at Iver Heath Village Hall. Things are taking shape- myself, Andy and Dave are starting to sound like a band! We've recruited old mate Simon Thompson (he, Andy and me were The Reservoir Ducks- I was always better at naming bands than playing in them; which reminds me, I really must get around to forming Nat West and The Fat Cheques, my Eastern European jump jive combo) on various acoustic instruments- I was beginning to wonder just how big the boot of his car was given the amount of stuff he produced from it. Jo and Chloe sounded excellent on their songs, and we've worked in a few surprises of our own- a fine night in prospect methinks.
And it was a fine night at The Old Hall Tavern in Chingford last night where I joined Austin in his duo Liquid Lunch (he calls it Liquid when he goes upmarket!). This is one his occasional 'rock' gigs- although his definition of what constitutes 'rock' is somewhat different to mine it's rare for me to see a projected set list that contains 'Still Got The Blues', 'White Room' and 'Free Bird' (really!) amongst others 'though we ended up playing none of these numbers in the end. All good fun though my left hand fingers were tiring a bit by the encore ('Crossroads' since you ask)- mind you I'd been playing on and off for about 11 hours by then... good job we didn't play 'Free Bird' eh? But we couldn't have played it anyway- I'd forgotten my slide. No, really, I had. Honest. We'd have played 'Rocky Mountain Way' as well if I'd had it with me. And I'm supposed to be professional. I don't know, you can't get the staff these days can you?
Actually I'd meant to pick up a couple from the shop on Saturday but it slipped my mind. You see, the credit card machine wasn't working, and...