Aug 072011
 
Kent, UK

Just returned after more than 4 weeks abroad. The Lou Reed tour took us to UK, France and Italy and then I spent 4 days in Norway at the Sommerfesten music festival (more about that in a later post).

The tour went great and we had a fantastic crew which made it so much better and more fun.

I want say thank you to all the people I worked it, had fun with and learnt from on this tour. It was great to travel with my old crew mates Stewart Hurwood (don’t worry baby, it ain’t nothing new!), Matt Brown (you will rule the world someday!), Aaron Havill (napkin please?), Bill Berger, Kerri Welsh (did she just say poop???) and my new friends Joey Crifo (like a brother!), Bungee Kovacs (yes we do have a bungee!), John Simpson, Gary Hood, Jesse Lucerne (thanks for the rubs!), Dave McPhee (zen out buddy! …and don’t worry baby, it ain’t nothing new!!!), Giles Floodgate, James Brown (…don’t worry baby, it ain’t nothing new!!!), Chris Bailey, Kartsen, Brie and everyone else involved!

A special hello and thank you to my day-off traveling buddies. You know who you are and I saw your true colors (and loved them!!!). Great to hang and glad you came along for the rides.

I did my best to show the whole crew a great time while we were in Italy (since I knew people, good restaurants and the language) and the parts of the tour I’ll carry with me are certainly the ones that involved water, chairs, skis, amazing meals, great ice cream, day trips etc… I think that’s what we will all remember from this tour. ;-)

I really didn’t have much time for taking pictures but I snapped some iPhone shots here and there.
Here are some of the most beautiful places we played at (iPhone pics don’t do these places justice).

And here are some gory tour injury pictures at the end there, for those who love that kind of stuff… Flying road cases? Involuntary stage diving? Pulley ropes? There are stories behind a these injuries, and they are hilarious, but we won’t tell anyone how these happened because what happens on tour stays on tour! ;-)

Dec 122010
 

They are just making travel harder with every day that goes by and they are the ones that take the fun out of traveling!

First laptops, then shoes, then liquids… It just goes on and on… When will it stop? My guess is never!

I bought a travel belt (all fabric with plastic buckle, no metal parts at all) specifically to speed up going through security and now they want me to remove it citing a “new procedure”! What new procedure? One they just invented today to annoy the hell out of me?

And check this out! These new body scanners they installed? I went through it today and they STILL padded me down!!! What the fuck?!?!$?!&?!?@?!

TSA has been checking people at airports for decades and yet we had terrorist attacks anyway. So what is the point? Terrorist have always and will always outsmart them.

If we fired ALL ground TSA personnel in every airport in the world and we put those people on planes with weapons and in incognito (just like Air Israel does, who coincidentally has NEVER had a terrorist attack on a plane!) then traveling through an airport would be a breeze and flying would be safer!

Nov 222010
 

I spent four days in Sao Paulo working with Lou Reed and in the weekend I’ve been here Paul McCartney, Smashing Pumpkins, Scissor Sisters, Pavement and others were playing in different venues across this megalopolis. Next week Jeff Beck, Twisted Sister, Stone Temple Pilots and more. In my hotel a copy of Time Out Sao Paulo with tons of suggestions on things to do.
I must say I am impressed. Is there really always this much going on here? Or none of the promoters are smart enough to plan around each other and end up overlapping all the major festivals in the course of a few weeks? And how many Paulistas can afford a $400 ticket to McCartney anyway? Obviously enough to sell out two nights in an arena… But is that really a good representation of Sao Paulo?
Even downtown at night cars don’t stop at intersections for fear of being mugged while idling the engine at a red light.
And in the morning the skies are filled with helicopters of rich people going to work and dropping their children off on the roofs of their private schools…
Walking around looking for a bar to have a drink in after a concert is almost impossible in the neighborhood of our hotel where every venue has an ongoing party with a cover
charge between $50 and $100. Parties everywhere!
I feel bad I didn’t get to see live music places like O Do Borogodo in Vila Madalena/Pinheros or their East Village (Rua Augusta)…
City of contradictions, even more so than New York, which for the first time ever felt small in comparison.
Still, NYC rules above all!

Nov 062010
 

In less than 5 hours I’ll be sitting in a big bird on my way to the old continent for a big John Zorn Masada Marathon festival. It’s going to be a phenomenal concert in Milan, with 12 bands in a row (Masada Quartet, Sylvie Curvosier & Mark Feldman duo, Cyro Baptista’s new band Banquet of the Spirits, the acappella quartet Mycale, Medeski Martin & Wood, Bar Kokhba, The Dreamers, Erik Friedlander solo, Bester Quartet, New Klezmer trio, Masada String Trio, Electric Masada).

Doing Front of House sound for such a gigantic concert is obviously no easy task (12 bands, 15 minutes each, 11 quick stage changes, 60 channels of audio on the board) but I am really looking forward to doing it and I have a blast every time. Except for MMW and Bester Quartet I have done sound for all of these cats before so I know it’s gonna be a killer show.

I love going on the road to do these shows but I love being in NYC as well and I love NYC with all my heart… If you love (or hate) NYC you should read this article I was just sent called “50 Reasons to Be Pretty Damn Euphoric You Live in New York City”. It’s pretty hilarious, let me know what you think: http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2010/11/50_reasons_to_b.php

Feb 262010
 

I love snow. Maybe because it reminds me of my native Switzerland.
After the 15″ overnight snowfall, here’s a picture I just took this morning of a fellow NYer excited about snow: he’s cross-country skiing (or more like cross-neighborhood skiing) through Brooklyn!
I would do the same with my snowboard if I had a friend towing me with an SUV butmy buddy Roman is kitesurfing in the carribeans and so I decided to head to the alps… if planes are taking off that is… Cross country… I mean, cross fingers!