Tuesday, 27 March 2007

Ice on Fire

Hey Ho the army is coming
People dancing children running
Cardboard boots in the snow
Shirts wide open let it all go
Girls cry - Hello soldier
Come closer – let’s get bolder
I fall like ice on fire
Caught in a spot light
A frozen border
A deadly crossfire
Some refugee

Hey Ho the army s going
Farewell fathers cold winds blowing
Hardened hearts turned away
Burned the place where children play
I die every time
I see the mail man bringing news
to our street
a bitter harvest
Those waiting widows
no one comes home
The empty air waves
no one is there

Girls cry hello soldier
Come closer – lets get bolder
Hard times
with out some closure
or consummation
the endless seeking
some sweet approval
why do we do this
are these things written
this time is shortening
these days are counted
like ice on fire
like ice on fire
a scarf on barbed wire
a rain filled shoe
the light is changing
this feels like fading
can’t feel a thing now
like ice on fire
like ice on fire
no one is listening
transmission ended

So two arch enemies sit down to speak with each other for the first time in their less than honourable associations. Neither of them got what they want but they have learned about compromise some thing they would have both described as capitulation not so many years ago. Paisley and Adams are over and this farcical attempt at reconciliation for the greater good of the group is forced upon them. They are icons of the past and we will be all the better for their demise and eventual passing. I remember listening to Paisley’s ranting back in the seventies at a huge open air meeting in Belfast. We were one of the only bands interested or mad enough to go there to play then. I hated the sound of his bullying dogma then and I still do. I always thought the term Rev when applied to him must surely be seen by all as a concrete sign of his hypocrisy but he survived all manner of opposition and remains to this day a belligerent, intransigent bigot to all but the saddest of democrats. Adams is a swift and slippery mind with a solid criminal streak who has as much blood on his hands as any protagonist during the so called Troubles.
So to their respective hells with both of them but if their compliance helps effect the re-affirmation of a workable Assembly then they will have achieved some thing. A revolutionary freedom fighter knows how to lay down his weapon and adapt himself when the time is right. Many still cling to the way of life they are used to regardless of the cost in human suffering. These two were dragged kicking and screaming into the now and about time too.

Gordon Brown does a slippery with the budget. Brown is the guy who forgot about the VAT bill for the Olympic Games in Britain. Brown almost mumbled his announcement that he was going to remove the 10p starting rate so few realised that he'd announced, in effect, an £8.5bn pound tax rise. So some who cheered his £9bn tax cut felt deflated when they learnt what had really happened. Is there any one left in the labour Party with any integrity who still has a job where they can effect any positive influence. I suppose it is far too late in the day to expect any one who is fundamentally honest to step forward. Blair has culled most of the likely candidates ages ago or they have left on matters of principle.

Last year the government paid out benefits to 57 million dead people. Are they practising for some thing BIGGER?

The war rages on as though it was always meant to. The British government was advised against publicly criticising a report estimating that 655,000 Iraqis had died due to the war. It was decided that the report was accurate and so it would not be a good move to criticise it. Gosh! Those chaps at the Foreign Office Know how things should be done, don’t they?
Bush still maintains the figures are not credible. Now there is a man who knows how to rubbish anything that does not fit into his born again, end timer religious perspective. He probably isn’t too bothered about the 655,000 Iraqis who died as it’s all grist to the mill that grinds towards the end of other civilisations as the USA End Timers have it scripted. Even though they accept there must be chaos before the Rapture Bush's gang won’t take any personal responsibility for causing it.
People who saw the EBB over the past weeks will have heard my joking about the End Timers and The Rapture.'The Rapture' – the belief held by huge numbers of American Christians that Jesus is due imminently to come down from heaven and collect all 'true believers', who will then be transported to paradise. It is estimated that some 50 million Americans are followers of 'The Rapture' movement, while many more believe in the New Testament's Book of Revelations, with its prophecy of the tumultuous Last Days and the end of the world, when Jesus saves the godly and damns the sinners. I shall probably miss it due to rehearsal committments.

Tomorrow I will begin to try to assist a seventeen year old young man I know to get the support he needs to begin to determine the way he lives his life. Soon his father will send him to “the homeland” where he will be forced to marry a young girl who must be impregnated with his baby asap. This is to save him from a life of degradation in the west. His family fled here as refugees and are now UK citizens. There is no doubt his father is a victim himself and extremely damaged. He has declared his son must live in his image and if he refuses he “ will become as a slave to them”, "them" meaning his family. He will be cast out to fend for himself. He will effectively lose his family if he refuses to comply. He has decided not to comply and now needs an agency to support him in his decision, a decision not taken lightly. Some times I despair at this world but more so at the impositions and abuse rained on children by the people who should love them best of all. I am reminded of the story about walking in a mans moccasins before making any judgements. It seems that some times the coming together of cultures with out mutual comprehension and acquiescence will inevitably lead to hard ship. I hope my young friend can find what he needs to live his life freely. I know that with support it is possible. A young man who I know of, and who made a contribution to an earlier post on the subject of his freedom, had suffered extreme privations in his own country and was then subjected to the indignities of the UK asylum system as a refugee. How ever, he is now a free man and has a roof over his head here among his own community, in London. He has the opportunity to realise his dream and his right - to be educated.

I shall be fishing again at the weekend on a private lake. It is close season otherwise and I need what I call a hydro fix or some time spent by water with rod in hand and an imminent cup of tea if I can just stop casting long enough to drink it while still hot. Old Pikey has eluded me for some weeks now mainly because I have been hanging out with a bunch of complete nutters who play musical instruments. In a week or two we are back touring in Germany where you need to pass an exam to get a fishing permit. So that will be a fish less, experience again. Bloody touring! All that adulation (lol)! 'Ain’t life tough?

copyright e d g a r b r o u g h t o n 2007

Monday, 19 March 2007

This photo of the EBB guitars was taken by Tony Smith at the Musician Leicester

Lo smeegen. R asks me to tell you this 'cos ees a busy wiv tick tocks, no -tactix or summat. Summat boot Blabber n Smoke. So ere goes en -

We are all safely home after the UK leg of the 2007 Tour. The 100 Club was a great gig to end on last night and I think in some ways it was one of our best, if not the best. It was lovely to see you all at various points on our travels. You know if you see us in the street or any where else it is always ok to come and say hello. Special thanks goes out to those First Supperists who helped with advertising, took photos, welcomed us on our arrival at venues. Special big up to Lincyshire Tony and Lamerie, Connie and crew, Phil, Neil and yahoo group, Chrissy, Jenny, R M Dave R and all who helped. Thanks for all your good stuff. Biggest thanks to Kris, Spadge ( Andrew ), Tom and Ric with out whom none of this would have worked.

The winner of the caption competition is chosen. The Drum Meister and father of the little girl has spoken. He has chosen "C'mon lads, if we can look silly enough we could end up as a digitised image on a caption competition on a, yet to be invented, worldwide network of computers viewable by billions of people in every corner of the globe". From Jim of Bristol.

So Jim e mail me at : edgar.broughton@btinternet.com and we'll send the goodies. I can't leave it there with out thanking every one for their contributions. What a clever lot you all are! The EBB had a good few laughs so here's to the next comp.

The guys are getting back to their various every day tasks and pieces of work. I was back in the Youth project this evening and I was surprised how easily the transition was. I am sure this was helped by the fact that I spent most of the time setting up and managing a recording of a delightful young female singer who was making unaccompanied vocal demos. Wait til the paperwork kicks in again. I'll want to be back on the road. Actually I do now but we've got a gig in Belgium and the last German leg of the tour to look forward to in a couple of weeks.

OK that's an over and out from me for a while. Normal service will be resumed asap. FIRST SUPPER postings will return over the next few days.

copyright e d g a r b r o u g h t o n 2007

Monday, 12 March 2007

Here is a photo of Steve modelling the new EBB T-Shirt

We are enjoying the competition entries so much we have decided to let it all run on until we finish the UK leg of the tour, next Sunday at the 100 Club. We will announce the winner on Monday the 19th of March.

Statue at Liverpool St station. This is a gift from Israel to the Uk to commemorate the saving of 10,000 Jewish children during World War Two who arrived from Europe to the UK by rail - an evocative and poignant sight as Luke and I began our journey from Liverpool St Station to Stansted airport from where flew to a Germany.

Life in the bus is actually very convivial. We become connected and exist in a kind of bubble. There is clear purpose in the spirit of one for all and all for one. It even feels strange to me when one of our number is out of sight which happens from time to time. We all need a little time on our own. We don't always know where we are going next or where we are most of the time. We always look forward hopefully to the next gig where ever it is.

In the bus. Steve and Art engaged in their usual banter. It's a rythm section thing.

A view from a hotel room. The modern face of Germany. A backdrop to a Kraftwerk tune?

Self portrait - in the back of the bus.

Aschaffenburg on the river Maine

We were well received and well treated by every one we came into contact with in Germany. Earlier today I suggested to Art that perhaps as older travellers we are less intimidating than the younger EBB which might account for what appears to be a more benevolent change in peoples attitudes to minstrels like us travelling through Germany. I also assume that the concept of a united Europe has had a broadening effect and has impacted on peoples of the E.E.C. in a positive way. I hope the average young German citizen is more secure in their modern national identity and own the fact that "the war" was not their fault and that we are brothers and sisters in peace and should remain so.
Germany is a very interesting place. Many of their practices could be emulated in the UK to our advantage and the quality of environments and service for musicians shames the shabby and neglectful attitude of many UK clubs / venues by comparison. On one occasion in a less than perfect environment one of our number commented that " we were back in the UK for the night".
Almost every one tried their best to make sure we all had what we needed technically and we were well provided for in all other areas of importance. Catering compared to the shabby UK norm was lavish. So come on UK clubs - get it together - we are coming your way. It is no longer o.k. to bash out the British is best line and it is a fact that quality venues and conditions for bands like ourselves in the UK are rare while in Germany they exist everywhere.
We made new friends and rekindled some old friendships. Audiences were mostly very warm and responsive. We met lots of EBB fans who reminded us of past exploits in Germany some of which we had forgotten. Mean while we are looking forward to playing for you guys in the UK even if the catering is out to lunch.

Special thanks to Connie and to Karen, Rosie and Ruth who drove us to and from the airport on our arrival and on our way home. A special thank you to every one in Osnabruck who shared their space with us and looked after us with their usual abundant hospitality.

copyright e d g a r b r o u g h t o n 2007

Sunday, 4 March 2007

Hi Folks - Here we are again on the road in Germany. We have just finished a couple of gigs at Hamburg and Oldenburg. Things are going well and we are being well looked after. The following photos were taken by Dave Cox our guitarist.

sat nav our friend the 8th wonder of the world
I know I had a little piece some where

Kris Gray - our man in Germany

Connie of Connie Tours - our gracious hostess in Osnabruck

Luke and ectoplasmic father

Luke again

Art and Edgar

Andrew ( Spadge -nav ) road angel

Steve and Art - at the board meeting

Dave the photographer

Band is on fire and will be burning as bright as ever was when we return to see you all in the UK. Don't forget to look at the gigs page on the EBB site for the latest updates. We are in the middle of an on road publicity drive at this time so if any Firsts Supperists know how we can increase the effectiveness of this then email me and let us have the details.

We'll keep you updated over the next days here in Germany. Meanwhile I am sure the Yahoo group will enjoy Tony's photos of the Hamburg gig. I am sure we'll be meeting up with him again in the UK.

Keep on making those competition entries on the comments section - there are some very amusing ones there already. Oh well! Must dash - time for some goulash and chocolate.

copyright e d g a r b r o u g h t o n 2007