3rd/4th May, to Russia with love.

Moscow stage set, starry night.

I’m basically going to be in Russia on holiday, as there is no need for a van there, and we won’t be doing any merchandising either. So it’s just the musicians, the sound guy and the manager with me hanging around. I’ve not been to Russia before (in fact only one of our party has) and there’s quite a lot of music and sound equipment to get in and out, so we’re kind of curious how difficult it can be with the Russian bureaucracy. Will we be interrogated? Equipment impounded? Massive bribes change hands?

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1st/2nd May, on to Munich

I only need enough stuff for the Munich concert, so I can unpack much of the van and store it in the cellar, but I need to add some of the musical equipment, so the van isn’t exactly empty when I head off to Munich and I’ve shifted a lot of gear to and from the cellar. But it’s a lovely day for a drive and perfectly suited to Sarah McClaughlin’s ‘Rarities and B-Sides, Vol 2’ which I’d downloaded from Zunior.com last year It’s got a couple of duff tracks, but overall it’s a nice mix of unusual songs and collaborations. Being an odds and sods sort of album, one has to live with jumping from ‘Prayer of St Francis’ to a DJ Tiesto remix of ‘Silence’ (which is great driving music by the way). but overall, a good album. Stayed at the HOtello in Hohenzollentrasse, very nice with private parking.

Herkulessaal der Residenz

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running the marathon

Yesterday I was running to the sound of cheering and the (mostly good) music blaring from one or other of the 42 bands scattered around the course. It was the 6th Freiburg marathon (although only my first) and it was a lot of fun. Well, mostly… the last 7-8 km gave a slightly different meaning to the word fun and today, despite beautiful weather, I wasn’t quite up to a morning run. In fact, bed to couch is enough for now! But, about the music… well, Freiburg boasts 42 bands arranged around the course (which is 21km, so an average of two each km). They covered the whole gamut from traditional German Ooompah music, local Allemanisch bands, heavy metal, rap and hip-hop. Even a reggae band somewhere around the course. Super6 stood on top of their van and rapped over some blaring music. Some didn’t even boast any musicians at all, as with the fully automated Orgelbau from Waldkirch: Notruf 113 atop a baechle pumping out riffs: Last Minute got one of the prime spots, in front of the Stadt Theatre, although whenever I ran past they seemed to be either tuning up or warming up: So how was my run? Terrible to be honest. The first 20km were easy, too easy in fact, and I didn’t pay attention to pace, running ahead of myself. The next 10km, apart from being uphill, got progressively harder until for the last 7-8 km my legs starting cramping up and I was reduced to a sort of shuffling walk/run in order to finish. Not so much an epic journey, more of a tragedy then. But at least the soundtrack was good.