Good Morning CHICAGO !!! Good to be back in your epic city. It always gives me a charge.
This clip posted by Cindy Nance caught my eye. I don’t often post videos of me playing in our show – because usually I find it hard to look at them, seeing the imperfections. This is actually no different, except that it’s a good video capture, with a crackin’ sound quality (indicating how great our Front of House sound mixer is) (💥 I now realise it’s been double-squished on this post) and it’s interesting …
This was the night we had trouble with our Black Tracks. These are devices which enable the spotlights to follow us automatically as we range around the stage, freeing up the lighting team’s hands to do other things. It’s a great system and seldom gives trouble – but every system (including us as performers) has the occasional gremlin. So the result was that in this clip you can see it takes a long time for the front follow-spot to find me. It makes for an interesting dramatically dark face, but it also means that, especially in all that smoky stuff, I can’t see my fingers, making things just a little more difficult than usual !
It’s a high pressure moment anyway, because I perform it as a set piece, and just like “God Save the Queen” on top of Buckingham Palace, pretty much everybody knows what it should sound like !! Although the ‘tune’ is more or less prescribed, it works out vastly different every night, depending on how well I can hear myself, what my mood is like, and how the wind blows ! It’s also a mad scramble underneath the stage on wheels to get into that trap to rise up in smoke at that precise moment. It’s fun, for sure – a kind of magic trick that entails a lightning-quick change of clothes too.
On this particular night, time was too tight to don the “human mirror ball” suit I’ve been sporting … so here I’m in a simple shirt to make the change happen in time. I look at this and feel very critical – of both me and what I’m doing … but at this time of life I’ve come to an acceptance of what it is. I just know I give it my best shot every night.
See you there tonight Chicagoans. Now you’ll know what’s going through my mind. Maybe !!