Back home yesterday evening and will be here for a few days, principally to wash or burn all the clothes I’ve been wearing in the heat of the past week. I have concerts in Freiburg, Thun and Schaffhausen next week and in between a drive down to Italy to buy teaspoons. Yep.
Back to wrap up my time at the Folk Festival in Arbogast and the Sunday found me scheduled to play a concert in the Dunkelkammer, or the photography darkroom. Taped up windows and no light getting in and sure enough pitch black and couldn’t even see my hands. I was set to play at 3pm and by quarter past I had an audience of 2. The sun was high and hot and other music being played outside and really no surprise that most people wouldn’t want to shut themselves in a black room with me and listen to me in my element. It was dark, somehow it went darker.
After ten minutes one of my audience had to leave (she did well to last that long) and so I gather it was me playing to one lady. It was like playing alone, but with a purpose. I lost myself a little and had such strange fun. Felt my way through everything, tripping up from moment to moment but no matter and it’s really just the shape changing all the time.
Shortly after this the heat got to me so I took a nap in my room. When I woke two hours later the audience had completely changed, most of everyone that I had got to know over the previous two days had left and there was a string group playing lovely African music in the sunshine in front of the stage. Backstage was deserted, the fridge empty and catering nowhere to be seen. I missed something for sure.
To be honest over the weekend I had sometimes felt that I was missing out on playing and on a couple of occasions my slot just vanished. When I had been scheduled to play 6 concerts over two days I had only played 3. It was a bit weird to not be able to play to people as often as I had liked to or as often as had been planned, but of course I understand that festival programs have a habit of changing and there are always casualties.
But I was conscious of being invited to be in residence there so it was important for me that I really made something of my time. That I was productive if not giving a concert. So at around midnight I took my things into the chapel up the hill and set up at the altar. Deathly silent outside and full of warm, fat echo within I recorded in it’s own particular darkness for two hours. I was anything but quiet and I do believe I have another album out of that time. This will have to wait.
Anyway if anyone connected is reading this then I’d like to say thanks to all who made me feel welcome and in good company. Particularly Johannes for the invitation of course - will visit you next year if not before.
Have a nice evening all
ps - seems like I appeared on Austrian television which you can see here. I’m told that’s something.