Well, what an adventure those two festivals were! The drive to the festival in Portugal was annoyingly long. We brought our friend Pedro, who played electric guitar onstage for some of Dev's new songs. And Dev's Dad came, too. We also met 2 guys there who managed to talk therir way into the festival by saying they were playing with Dev. One of them was named Randy. I thought he was Portuguese at first, but it turned out he was from Baltimore and had been living there so long he had a Poretuguese accent. He's a private chef for some artists and a really nice guy. His friend was nice, too. We were invited to stay with them whenever we want and hang out at the beach!
The show was so much fun: I played percussion and sang, Pedro played on some songs, and Randy's friend did, too. It was so much fun to play because I was basically doing what I was doing offstage: singing along and clapping and stuff, only onstage! I hung out a bit with Paul and Lucas from Maximo Park. It's so funny,their band is all over British magazines and festivals and stuff, they are so ROCK! I like Paul a lot, though, he's really cool. Unfortunately I wasn't that into his band when they were playing...just not my thing, really.
So guess who else was playing that festival: O A S I S! We tried to get backstage and hang out with them but security was SUPER tight. I watched them later but they were so far away it looked like they were lip-synching. They were OK.
The next day was BRUTAL for travelling. After getting back to the hotel super late because of the drive, we had to leave at 7:15 a.m.!! It wasn't even a direct flight from Lisbon to Spain, we had a layover. When we got there, we even had an hour drive to the hotel and an half hour drive to the Benicassim festival, and then the show was early. The good part about that was that we had the rest of the night off. I played percussion and sang again, but honestly it was not a very good show for everyone, especially Andy, who got his cord knocked out by the cameraman. It was so pro that there were 3 cameramen onstage but they were getting in the way! After the show Dev convinced one of the festival drivers to drive us to the beach, which was only about 10 minutes away, and we got to jump in the beautiful, warm Mediterranean again. We rinsed ourselves off at the showers there and headed back to the festival for dinner. I saw J Mascis at dinner and made the mistake of going up and trying to say hello to him. He was not having it and I felt like an idiot. Then after dinner Jona and I went to go see !!! and ran into his French friend Marie, who is super cool. We danced to !!! together, who were awesome, and them headed for...yes...the VIP POOL! Benicassim is know for having a POOL backstage for the artists, and a free bar! So we got to splash around in the pool while listening to the Lemonheads from the stage about 100 feet away and see Ladytron (on the other stage) on TV's next to the pool. It was crazy, I really felt like I was living the rock star lifestyle! We were also swimming with this nice girl Carolee, who plays with Jamie in Xiu Xiu. I hadn't seen him in years. After swimming I hung around a bit longer and talked to Paul from MP a bit and some of the guys in !!!, who were all pretty nice. Then back to the hotel. I gotta say, Benicassim is pretty amazing to play!
Another flight the next day and we were back in the UK. Fortunately it was actually sunny for once here. We drove to Cardiff, Wales, to stay at the Future Inn (?). After a restful sleep in their extremely comfy beds, Andy & I went for a walk around downtown Cardiff. The Welsh language is weird, all the words look like this:
gylllmp ar whrghllp mrthlpth
How the heck do you even pronounce that?!
We got awesome vegetarian Quorn sandwiches, Andy went record shopping and bought shoes, and we went to Cardiff Castle.
The gig was at this amazing venue called The Point that used to be a church. Josephine Foster played first...her voice is SO beautiful, I had never seen her play live before. She's a trained opera singer, so she's doing all this crazy stuff with her voice but makes it look SO easy. Then Espers, who played and sounded great. Then Hairy Fairy! Greg Weeks (from Espers) hung out with me at the merch table during their set. He rules!
So today we're in Brighton, which is a lovely, cute beach town in Southern England. The beach is about 20 feet from the venue. I think I'm going to go back there to lay in the sun a bit more!