It was wake up and get into Liverpool day for an afternoon’s essential shopping, the details of which might not be very interesting as it involved Marks & Sparks. We left Lisa and Mark at the house and walked around the corner up the street to Prescott Road where we got the bus into the centre of town. The bus was packed with Saturday shoppers but we managed to find a seat on the top deck which is just what you want when you are revisiting the city you grew up in and want to see what has become of it. The centre is unrecognisable but Bold St is still there, it’s where I remember seeing the cover of Tubular Bells (1973) in Virgin’s fledging business shop window before the world knew about it and Richard Branson and Mike Oldfield in an unlikely collaboration took over the world.
There’s a record store (Dig Vinyl) in a building shared with clothes shops in Bold St, it’s a place I really like, and they always have a small but always an interesting selection of second-hand records. I managed to find a reasonably priced original copy of Vivian Stanshall’s Men Opening Umbrellas Ahead (1974), he was of course the master of ceremonies on Tubular Bells. I also found three second-hand Shocking Blue reissues from the early seventies and one of my favourites, Pink Fairies – Kings Of Oblivion (1973). I’ve had this album for years but as it’s locked away in storage at the moment I bought it again. As it happened I’d mentioned it at one of the earlier shows.
Liverpool was packed, a busker ‘signing’ music he was playing, that’s original. Two separate hen parties with the girls vomiting early on in the street (before 5.30) as they enjoyed the celebration. We managed to escape to the venue in an Uber that took us to the venue. “Hello mate,” I said no response, probably due to the fact that he was playing some awful dance music loud in the car that he didn’t turn down when we got in. There was a part where the singer was singing completely out of key but he didn’t seem to mind as he banged the flat of his hand on his chest in time with the beat (at least he was in time). The windows were wide open, but he just ignored us, he drove too fast and when we got out of the car he said, “Take care” – haha.
The venue was a small cafe, we’d had two venues changed on us, the Penny Lane Church wouldn’t provide alcohol on the Saturday night and the St Bride’s Church fell through at the last minute, but rather than cancel we played this little place to some dedicated fans and a great time was had by all. As long as the music is working, we are enjoying playing and the fans are enjoying the show then what’s not to like? If we want to play a proper venue in Liverpool you have to book months and months in advance and if something falls through you are out of options. Despite all this, we had a great night.
Music today has been the second Teardrop Explodes album, Wilder (1981). I really liked this record when it came out and still do. Gotta go.