Friday 20 October 2017

Awesome time in Tartu…and great crowd at Pühaste Brewery 😉

A GOOD night’s sleep in a comfy bed helps restore things…physically, anyway!

We need some milk so I take a walk to the supermarket and find some croissants, fruit and milk and get back to our funky old town apartment for breakfast.

Our pal Merli drops by to say hello as we pack our gear then Madis comes to pick us up and drive us too the bus station where we board the bus to Tallinn – a big coach with comfy sets, good wifi and personal entertainment screens on every seat back. Very swanky.

I deal with some online stuff and emails and sleep the rest of two-and-a-half hour bus ride to Tartu where Andres and Siim are waiting to meet us.

Siim drives us to the Hektor ‘hostel’ where we seem to have an entire suite booked for us by the good folks at Pühaste Brewery where I play tonight.

We have some grub in the cafe and rest up for a while before Andres and Raul collect us to go to the brewery which is right on the edge of town.

Ivo has a nie PA rig already set up in what is otherwise a huge, empty room…Jeez…hope we mange to get enough folks in here!

I just finish my soundcheck and the power goes down. Something’s tripped a fuse, but the folks here have no access to the part of the building where the main board is. A few phone calls, a little stress and an hour later, power’s back on…just in time for doors. Andres, Raul and the Sawmill Roots Orchestra manage a quick soundcheck then we’re all good to go.

The place fills up and by the time the Sawmill Roots Orchestra kicks off the place is pretty full 🙂 The band is great…Andres and Raul playing fantastic instrumentals supplemented with trumpet and clarinet to create a really unique, original and sophisticated sound.

There’s a break for changeover and I finish the evening with swell-received 80-minute set. Like last night, the crowd is great and there’s lots of photos and chat round the merch table after the show.

We load out and Siim drives us back to our place where we have a snack, beer and bed. Another brilliant night 🙂

Andres and his latest project – the Sawmill Roots Orchestra. Fantastic!


Saturday 30 July 2016

Pre-gig session/'meet & greet' at World Clinic record store's deck

Pre-gig session/’meet & greet’ at World Clinic record store’s deck

AMAZING breakfast at the hotel in Tartu…then we begin the puzzle of packing things in some kind of manageable way that the two of us can manhandle everything to the bus station.

Luckily it’s just across the road, and we meet Andres outside the hotel then get everything on the Tallinn bus.

The bus is pretty swanky – free wifi, adjustable (in every direction!) seats and plane-style multimedia monitors on the back of every headrest. Sorted.

Andres has orangeades a taxi transfer form the bus station to our hotel in the old town – just five/ten minutes walk form tonight’s venue.

We check into the hotel, drag out bags down a spiral staircase and a few more flights of stairs to the tiny º but economic – room in the bowels of the building the take some of the gear to Von Krahl.

Next we meet up with Finnish pal and photographer Leif and we all get a taxi to the World Clinic record store where owner Aivar is hosting a wee pre-gig  ‘meet & greet’ event. We’re handed beers, chat, play a few songs each outside then do some interviews to camera.

Then, another cab to the venue where we set up and soundcheck…Von Krahl is a brilliant venue, even if the organisation sucks a little…first up, despite sending poster art etc, there’s no posters or anything outside, inside or anywhere to suggest there’s anything on at the venue! Margaret makes up a DIY poster/sign and we stick it up outside. We were told last week that the sound engineer was going to be on holiday…luckily our pal Mattias is a good sound engineer and steps in to solve the problem with helps from house tech guy Marko.

Them when trying to oder food after soundcheck, we’re told the kitchen is closed! Andres and I go next door where they’re happy to send some food through for us. Phew!

Lots of folks we know in the crowd…great to see our pals Silver and Anika, Madis, Krista, Hendrik and many other familiar faces.

Andres plays a fantastic opening set….during the changeover, though, I catch my wireless pack on a for handle and bust one of the connections. Hopefully some gaff tape will get it through the show.

Another fantastic audience…and the belt pack lasts until 2/3 of the way though before there’s some intermittent drop outs. Oh oh. I explain to the audience and grab a spare transmitter, drop in some batteries and hope for the best.Phew! It works 🙂

After the show there’s lots of chat and photographs. Once we’re ready to load out, Krista and Hendrik help us back to the hotel with all the gear then we find a late night bar too eat and chill with a beer.

Andres plays a stunning opening set at Von Krahl...

Andres plays a stunning opening set at Von Krahl…

...then yours truly takes the stage.

…then yours truly takes the stage.