Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Melbourne - 1

Today is a day off and we have had a spectacular view of a thunder storm from up here in our hotel room on the 42nd floor in Melbourne this afternoon.
We did manage to go out earlier in the day, looked around the shops by the hotel including one shop with men's socks that cost $80.00 a pair! No thanks.

Tommy, Toby and Cesare took us to an amazing little Italian restaurant at lunchtime where we sat in the kitchen to eat!
On the way back we found a coffee shop named after our tour manager Toby!

Below are some pics of today and a couple of pics that were on Tommy's camera from the Leno show.

Outside the Italian place, they even had a scooter on hand in case Steve ate too much and couldn't walk back to the hotel!

The lady stood by Tommy is the cook and definitely wore the trousers there! In her hand is a huge bowl of meatballs! She was so proud!

Toby's place, he was so proud.

Steve acting up! 

Tommy acting up backstage at the Leno show (:

Me and Tommy backstage at the Leno show:

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


I did not get to see the Sidney opera house ): Maybe next time.
It was raining cats and dogs and my man was coughing so we stayed close to the hotel.

The theatre was interesting here, all nooks and crannies and pretty old plus apparently there was a ghost! Didn't see it or feel it. 
I was worried that the balcony looked a little rickety.
The crowd on the other hand were far from rickety, they had a lot of fun and so did the band.

We had 30 VIP's here so I was busy getting the gift bags and envelopes together during sound check. 
During the show I was almost underneath the stage on a concrete step sitting with a camera director and his gear as the show was being filmed. I was freezing and couldn't wait to get back to the warm hotel room.

I met some of the guys from the band Anthrax backstage, they were so nice.

Evening view from the hotel room

Backstage, Glen warming up, note the arty tablecloth and table:

Glen still warming up:

Friday, September 23, 2011

Coincidence or what!!!

In 1981 I had a single signed to a label called 'Cheapskate Records', it was owned by The Animals bass player Chas Chandler who also managed Jimmy Hendrix.
I had written a bunch of quirky pop songs and with the help of a producer called Doug Taylor (who by coincidence was also blind) I had recorded them at Atmosphere Studio's in Soho, Central London. I was familiar with the studio as I had been doing vocal sessions there for TV and radio adverts for a while.

There had been lots of discussion about whether to release a single under my own name or under a made up 'pop' name and in the end I came up with the name 'Yuka' (spoken like Yooka) and that is what we went with.
The song was called 'Who Would Believe The Young Man' and was chosen as record of the week on BBC Radio One fairly soon after it's release, which meant it was getting played about six times a day!  Unfortunately, due to technical changes made by the label, the single got lost in a re shuffle of distribution company and that was the end of that.

So, fast forward nearly 30 years and here I am in Brisbane, Australia, on a world tour with my gorgeous man. We had decided to go out for something to eat and found a Japanese restaurant close to the hotel.
It was very authentic with waitresses dressed in traditional Japanese Kimono and the food was delicious.

The young lady that looked after us was so delightful and personable. She made sure we ordered a good selection and even persuaded me to try green tea ice cream which turned out to be yummy! She  brought us our check at the end of the meal and there at the bottom was her name.........Yuka!!!!  
I told her about using the same name all those years ago, well before she was even born and she was so excited and bowing profusely she said "It is lovely to meet you".  

How cool was that!!!!  

 'Yuka' 1981

And here is the bill with the waitresses name at the bottom: 

Auckland - September 22nd 2011

It was a long day with a run through and sound check starting at 1pm for a few hours then the show at 9pm.
The building was so darned cold we were dressed like Eskimo's but the crowd warmed us all up for the show. It was not packed but it was a big arena and the main area was full of lively, encouraging fans.

It was the bands first gig with Orianthi and it went well, James got a great sound out front and I enjoyed watching the show from his desk.
Glen did a fantastic job last night despite have a rotten cold and his drum solo was still amazing. We are wondering who will be next to get sick but of course the show must go on.

Not a lot more to say other than Auckland was friendly but chilly! And still no jet lag!!!!!


Tommy and Steve backstage during the day, it's all rock and roll!

View from the hotel window:

Next stop Brisbane, Australia.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Across the sea to Auckland

We had a really easy flight to Auckland, at LAX the Air New Zealand staff were great and despite there being so many of us it all went very smoothly.
The plane was huge, a Triple 7 Steve informed me. I am normally very nervous during take off but as this huge house sized airplane lumbered down the runway and lifted off I hardly felt it leave the ground.

I watched a few episodes of the Alan Partridge TV show, the one where he is a local radio presenter, the lady across from me was smiling as I laughed out loud with my headphones on. It must be an English humor thing cos Steve just does not find Steve Coogan funny at all although I think he would if he would listen for more than a minute!
Then I watched the new movie with Kate Hudson called 'Something Borrowed' which was very entertaining.
The plane, the crew and the food was excellent plus I managed to sleep for about 7 hours, had a bit of help from my 'happy' pill but never the less it was one of the easiest long haul flights I have ever been on.

Auckland is COLD! We went shopping and bought ourselves a scarf each, the wool is part Marino and part Opossum!! They are taking over the country apparently so people found a good use for the wool. I have to say it is one of the softest scarves I have ever owned and I had better not lose it on this tour!  The only people who wont be cold will be all the rugby players running around hugging a weird shaped ball, as we are here at the same time as the Rugby World Cup.
Auckland is a bustling, clean city and we will look around a bit more tomorrow. There seems to be a preoccupation with bungy jumping going on here and in case you are wondering, NO, I will not be leaping off a building on the end of a bit of elastic!!

We lost Monday! But seem to be feeling ok although I am waiting for jet lag to kick in at any moment.

Friday, September 16, 2011

LA Rehearsals and more

Its been a crazy time with rehearsals, the Jay Leno show, more rehearsals and The Whisky A Go Go.

Screen shot from The Tonight Show

There has been intense preparation to get Orianthi up to speed with the set. She is a sweet and talented young lady who is in great demand so learning the AC set list on top of that would be a challenge for anybody.
We spent the week at a rehearsal room in Los Angeles. All the band  have worked hard and it was great to see Damon again. There are still a few hours back there before we leave for New Zealand on Sunday.

The Jay Leno show was amazing, how cool that I got to see that famous set. The band were fantastic and we were all happy with the night. Steve couldn't find his leather biker hat in the suitcase so went hatless for the performance, luckily he found it tucked away in the lid of the case so don't worry folks all will be well for New Zealand!

Robby Krieger came by rehearsals to go over the couple of songs he would do at The Whisky, he and Steve have known each other for many years after touring together in the 80's so it was a joy to see them on the same stage again. We were all mesmerized by him and I could have listened to those wonderful Doors songs all day. It took me back to my hippy youth, those carefree days when my biggest decision of the day was what time to get up in the morning!

We arrived at The Whisky A Go Go yesterday afternoon, it was such an unassuming little building from the outside but I knew how much history was there including the fact that the boss was coming back after about 42 years!!!
Steve has played there a few times in the past, once with The Chambers Brothers.
It was so small inside, not as small as The 100 Club in London but still I could not imagine how all the musicians were going to fit on that little stage. My man was to the far right as usual but was dangerously close to a set of steps so I was grateful for the huge wads of bright green tape on the floor marking the edge.

What a night! There was Rob Zombi, Ke$ha and many more luminaries. The band were like a train at top speed, the set was tight and powerful and the boss looked relaxed as he performed without his Alice persona.
Everybody had a great night although Steve battled a bit with the low club lighting and smoke machine on stage but as always he was fantastic and played his *** off!

I am not too comfortable with Hollywood Hoopla, Steve is always my rock in such situations and takes it all in his stride so I think we did ok last night. Although one woman nearly got a slap from me after she had been rather condescending towards me all day then said 'goodbye girlie' as she passed by me on the stairs at the end of the night. I am very placid but don't push your luck!

Not long to go now and we will be on our way to New Zealand and Australia, new adventures are on the horizon. 

The new Welcome 2 My Nightmare album is out!!!!!!

My gorgeous man has a credit on the cover, yay!!! He played on most of the basic tracks plus
performed some truly wonderful solo's on this record and I am hugely proud of him as always.
My favorite solo is on 'I Am Made Of You' with 'Something To Remember Me By' a close second.
I saw the fan pack this week and I must say it has been done really well, I think the album, the artwork and the photography is brilliant. 

Steve and Orianthi during rehearsals:

Steve and Robby Krieger at rehearsal

Before the Jay Leno Show

Here we are backstage at The Whisky with Robby and Carl Caprioglio of Oglio Records

The Whisky A Go Go show from my vantage point

With Ke$ha