So I am awake, jet lagged and a little out of sorts, not sure whether to get out of this bed, a borrowed bed, as all touring musicians can understand, and possibly get something to eat, in the house or maybe at a little shop that is probably open down the block. What does the Bavarian order when he goes "out" for breakfast? Does he go out, or should he just stay in bed because he's got a long night ahead of him in Schwabach and a longer night behind him here in Ingolstadt. It's around 8:30am, German time, and what to do? Try, and most likely fail, getting more sleep, or get up.
The first gig of this little "Back to Europe" run of shows has come and gone, and it went wonderfully in ways and a bit rough in other ways. Despite what anyone from this town will say, there are a lot of cool, progressive people and a handful of hip places for them to congregate here. Swept Away (www.swept-away.de), a vegetarian restaurant/bar and sometimes intimate music venue, is just the place with African-inspired fixtures and furniture, and pictures of Bob Marley everywhere, including a little chill out area in the back with big pillows, mats and a huge "Uprising" mural that stared at me all through my two sets.
When I woke yesterday or, at least, when I decided to get out of bed (same jet lagging problem) there was some snow in the air and a crispness to the nose that was comforting. Not that I minded the extreme warm temperatures that accompanied me to Newark Airport the other day (which already feels so long ago), but it meant to me that the season was, in fact, changing. Winter is coming.
So Marc Siemoneit, the dude that helped me put last night's show together, is someone deserving of thanks. He's involved in the reggae scene here (a town which is home to three serious reggae bands. Who knew?) and who now, hopefully, will continue with this sort of thing in the future, and by that I mean, helping independent artists come through. Those people looking for a rewarding stop off between Munich and the north of Germany would do well here. Last night, I had a great crowd of enthusiastic listeners, I ate a nice Chinese peanut soup with coconut milk and a tomato mozzarella salad (perhaps not my best pairing, but whatever, they were both good) made some tips, sold some CDs, and I had a great time.
Some of the locals in town normally spend their Wednesdays at another place in a big drum jam, so a handful of them, including some of the town's reggae elite, came by with djembes and a cajone and helped lively up my last set. It was something.
This morning, on the other hand, I am feeling a bit off. Some of you readers may remember me discussing my voice and it's "tenderness" (see Worries, Travels, And Some Bands To Catch). I had gone to my doctor, and she cleared me for take off, but we did decide that I needed to take care of myself. Work every night before I fly over here without much sleep, land and don't sleep much, get to the gig jet lagged, and push it. Not a good recipe. Anyway, I am awake with a rough voice, on my way, I have decided, to the kitchen for some food because I am truly not going to fall back to sleep and I have no idea what the Bavarian orders at the diner (probably not a pork roll, egg and cheese sandwich with runny eggs). My voice is making me a little nervous. All I can do is try to treat myself right, take it easy, not talk to much (and if you knew me, you'd know how difficult that is) do little exercises and be confident. Fear, it's still a killer, I guess.
I know this will be a beautiful day. I am headed to Schwabach and Nurnberg, and while all the people back home are sitting down to turkey and gravy, American Football, and awkward moments with the family, I'll be getting ready to throw down at Blumen Jungeggers, as hard as I can allow myself to, but how does one give all his heart and soul in a performance, when they are not at full capacity? But what is full capacity anyway and what am I supposed to be thankful for?
Oh, yeah, I'm doing it.