It has been an interesting few days passed. I played a FDPFAFDW gig in Westbyfleet in Surrey last Saturday at the home of Steve and Nicky, on a lovely summers day. It was July 4th and so on arrival I enquired why the garden was bedecked with Union jack flags. I was told it was to celebrate getting England back from the yanks. That is certainly true for the the people of Mildenhall in Suffolk, where the huge US air base is being closed down, though whether this is a positive for local employment and local people is debatable.
The sun shone brightly and it was a joy to be outside in an English country garden, well almost. It is a lovely garden attached to a very nice house in town. I knew everyone there except Dave who missed the gig I played in St Albans for Andy Palmer so it was a happy little reunion.
I had asked for the use of an amplifier for this gig and a couple of the guys bought a very nice, small amp for acoustic guitar and microphone. It sounded lovely in the garden. The amp even had a little spring reverb unit so I could simulate my little chapel vocal effect. Loved it! We all signed the amp which is now called "Edgar's amp". I feel sure I shall be plugging in to it again.
There is not much to say about this event except to say it was a delightful time with lovely people on a lovely summers day. Lots of tale telling and good humour. I enjoyed it very much.
After the gig I shared a taxi with Andy and when we got out at the station we had a chat about what might be on for next summer. I had already said that if I came back to play for these folks I would rather do a fund raising thing than a paid gig. Subsequently Andy has chatted with Steve and Nicky who are up for the idea. Nicky has promotional skills and music biz experience so I am sure she will have good ideas for this. I envisage a garden party fund raiser for a specially invited audience including previous FDPFAFDW hosts and others. Of course this is early days but it is something I would love to do.
Yesterday I did an interview for the BBC production Psychedelic Britannia. Some of you might remember the EBB appeared in the BBC film Metal Britannia. I always enjoy this kind of thing. It focuses the mind and it was interesting to explore a part of yesteryear through the questions of a film director who wasn't born then . The crew were nearly at the end of filming with a couple of remaining shoots to do. They told me it would take about five weeks to edit. I will let you know when it is due to be aired.
At this time I feel for the people of Greece. When I was last in Athens I could see the damage done by the austerity policy they were forced to adopt. I had been in Athens a year before that and the downward slide into dangerous poverty was evident every where. For years the people have been ruled by corrupt government and weakened by ridiculous tax law and many other idiosyncratic policies that would be untenable anywhere else in Europe. This is a dangerous time for them and I hope that their burden might be eased. Personally I doubt that European fiscal policy and market forces will allow whatever Greece does to undermine their own interests. We shall see as we wait for what will be an historic outcome, whatever is decided in Germany.
Nearer home, I was very interested to hear a spokesperson for the striking Tube workers saying that this is not a strike about pay but is about work/life balance. Let us have more of that thinking please.