Norway. Spectacular hardly does it justice.
I am very pleased to say that we play there often. It is an expensive country, even for the natives. But that might be all that’s imperfect with it.
We started a good way north of the Arctic Circle, in Bodo. After the show – in a 450-seat concert hall, ideal for the acoustic sets – the local lighting engineer came backstage while were having dinner, and offered to take us to see the world’s fastest maelstrom, that’s an eddy or whirlpool to most of us. We went next lunchtime, and it was spectacular.
A biting wind made the 2C seem like -5, but the sight was stupendous, as black deep water rushed in on the high tide and whirled beneath us, standing on a long-span iron bridge, in, well, in a maelstrom. But there was also the night before, after dinner, to ponder on. Our driver (we travelled here and there in a splitter-bus) was halfway back to our hotel when he asked if we’d like a detour, to see the Northern Lights. What! I don’t go in for modern idiom as a rule, and much of it I don’t understand, but I think this was what is commonly known as a no-brainer. On he powered, up and up, reaching a few thousand feet above sea level, stopping on the side of a mountain, at a laid-out spot for tourists, and we stepped out, waited, waited and waited some more, stamping and slapping ourselves in the freezing night air, and then it came towards us, this soft, green arc, three parts of a horse-shoe, and hovered, hanging there glinting, and we were all pretty amazed. It was not the great spectacular sight you’d get in January and February, apparently, during the months of complete, 24 hour darkness, but it was a first for us all, and we were pretty amazed. People pay a lot of money to see that; on cruises around the north of this vast country, or taking planes and cars and holidays, but we there to work, and as tourists-on-the-road, we get lucky like that every now and then. They ask me, don’t you get tired of touring. And I say, no! Think about where I go, what I see and the people I meet. It’s a special life, that of the touring musician. Sometimes spectacular. Then on to Trondheim, Kristiansand and the great Oslo again. Played there many times, but never in so fine a setting. The Culture Centre, a 1500-seat concert hall. Some place. Some audience. Some reception. Some country. Norway. Spectacular in so many ways. I am very glad to feel like a friend of Norway. Now packing again for another two weeks away: Belgium (best food in all Europe), Holland and, somewhere squeezed in there, to Luxemburg. Been several times to the old RTL studios, but never played there. What adventures await us this time? Barry and James are the best of tourist-company. They seem to lap up the tasty galleries, riverboat rides and sights as much as myself. If they didn’t, I’d be out there doing it alone. But it’s good to have company. As Dashiell Hammett had Sidney Greenstreet say to Humphrey Bogart as Sam Spade in The Maltese Falcon, “I like to talk to a man who likes talking…”
written by Billy Lane , October 31, 2012
Ha! That picture, talk about Spectacular!!
Was SH suitably attited???
written by John Medd , November 01, 2012
Message for Steve Harley:
I'm recording a 5 track EP with all profits going to charity - Yorkshire Air Ambulance.
Three and a half songs are original compositions and one is a Slade cover. I say three and a half because Walk A Mile In These Shoes 'borrows' the chorus from Come Up And See Me. I'd be very grateful if you could give me your blessing to put this on my little record; Jim Lea kindly gave me copyright clearance to use 'I Won't Let It 'Appen Agen' and if you could do the same that would be great. We're only pressing 200 copies and I'll gladly let you have one when it comes out (first week in December, hopefully).
And it goes without saying that you (and Jim) will be name checked in any publicity we do for Yorkshire Air Ambulance: a real emergency service where I live in North Yorkshire.
You can contact me at john(at)johnmedd(dot)com
I look fwd to hearing from you.
written by Watson , November 20, 2012
I am very proud to say that in 1975 you were my hero and I met my first boyfriend and had my first snog to your song. So I have followed you about and more recently seen you at the IOW Pop festival and twice at the Apex in BSE, which is where I live these days.
I am involved with a national charity (Action Medical Research)who are planning a 'gig in the garden' at a prestigious venue in Mendlesham, Suffolk. We just would love you there even if it is just for half an hour!!! We start at 1pm and will finish at 10pm,on Sunday 14th July. How can we contact you properly. Please help in some way. many Thanks Miriam