09 Jun 2003 - Nicko - Rock Am Ring & Rock Im Park

On board jet flying to Vienna from Nurnberg. Time 3-30pm.

Well, well well.

I’ve just started my next diary and we’re about to land in Vienna. I was going to start it as soon as I got on board but I started to watch 24, the first season. I managed to see the first two episodes last night. It is a very addictive show. The only problem trying to watch it on the plane is the volume. I couldn’t hear some of the more subtle dialogue so I decided to put it to bed and start on this diary. I’ll get to watch it when I get home tomorrow.

At home. 6 o-clock 9-6-03

Well we played a couple of festivals over the last few days. It has been incredible boys and girls. The first gig was the Rock AM Ring show out in Nuremberg. It was a furious event. The site was massive. There must have been close to 75,000 billies at the show.
The festival was spread over the whole weekend from the 6th to the 8th of June. Three days of pumping metal and a little milder stuff thrown in for good measure.

Well let’s step back a couple of days. I left off with the old Budapest show didn’t I?

Well on the Thursday the 5th I had arranged to meet my friends Phil Hilborne, Jaz Lochrie, and Dave ‘Bucket’ Colwell at the old Embassy club in London. We were getting together to discuss the possibility of putting a Jam band together for a few events up and coming, starting around September. But as some of you may know it was also my birthday. So there we are having a wee libation as one does at a club and Mark ‘Kin Fuller the owner comes over and gives it the big HAPPY BIRTHDAY NICKO. To which Phil and Dave go ‘we didn’t know it was your birthday, you didn’t say anything Geez' Well I wanted to keep it schtum didn’t I. So they insisted that we have a bottle or two of champagne. Oh my I’m thinking I’ve got to play a ‘Kin very big gig tomorrow and so I shouldn’t really be have so much fun TEE HEE NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!

We left London at 1-30pm on Friday and went to Nuremberg. We arrived and had about an hour drive to the hotel, which was on site at the Rock Am Ring. The German Formula One takes place here. Great vibe. I love festivals. All the different people and the stalls and stuff set up on the outside.
We had the usual interviews to do and I then had a chance to grab something to eat. I had a small salad as it was getting close to show time. I have to have at least two hours minimum before the show to digest the old grub or else I pay severely on stage if I don’t.

It was just over 90 minutes before show time. We got on stage at around 9 0-clock and had a most splendid time. The crowd had swelled to capacity over the first hour or so and we were playing to around 76,000 people. They weren’t all Maiden fans either as there was a lot of different types of music being played on the day. There was for instance; Billy Corgan's band ‘Zwan’ and The ‘Cardigans’ to name a few. So we had a pretty diverse audience going. They all seemed to love it. At the end of the show they gave us such an overwhelming response it brought a tear to me eye. When we came back on stage for the encore they just kept on shouting and clapping it was really moving.

After the show there was a party in the hotel bar. I had to decline, as I was still feeling a bit worse for wear from the night before. I had an early night and then woke up and hit the road back to the airport for the short trip over to Nurnberg. We were due to play the sister show to the one in Nurenberg. The Rock Im Park. It was presented by the same promoter, Marek Lieberberg. He had done a splendid job let me tell you.

We arrived at the hotel in Nurberg at around 3 in the afternoon. I decided to go for a stroll with Gaddzy and Ian Day. We met in the lobby and went into the old town for a while. I had a great time and after about an hour we run into Steve, H and Janick doing the same. Gaddzy and Ian went back to the hotel and Steve, Jan and I went and had a bite to eat. H had disappeared. Steve and I both had a bratwurst sausage sandwich, which was lovely.

We got back to the hotel at around 6 and got ready to go to the gig. It wasn’t very far from the hotel about a fifteen-minute drive. When we got there we did some interviews and then got ready for stage time. I had a chance to see Billy Corgan’s band. They were really cool. Its quite laid back stuff but I enjoyed it.

So stage time was around 9 o clock again and we slammed into the set like an escaped convict on heat. It was a blinding gig. The crowd again were just amazing and we all thought it was a great night. After the show I had the best ever massage that I have ever had, STEADY boys and girls not that kind of massage OK. It was really good, sorted me old bones right out I can tell you. I watched the first two episodes of 24 and then slumber took over and I turned off the light. I had a great nights sleep and in the morning we were due to fly over to Vienna.

The flight was due to depart Nurnberg at 4 in the afternoon. We checked out of the hotel at 3pm and made our way to the airport. The flight was on time departing and we were airborne for a short 40 minutes. When we arrived we went straight to the venue. It was a 30-minute ride from the airport. It was a beautiful day so the journey was very pleasant. When we arrived at the gig I sorted me tubs out and then went to sample, yet again, our wonderful caterers delights. Steady boys and girls you know what I mean don’t you!
There was roast beef and yorkie puds on the menu with a wonderful selection of vegetables. No need to guess what I had then? Yes I did. I had the roast beef. It was gorgeous. Our caterers are really good at their job. We have Head Chef Joel Ridely, second in command Richard Huggins and the lovely ladies Bonnie Campbell and Heather Crewsdon. Bonnie just left us this week as she had some other arrangements to attend back in Blighty.

After dinner I went and found a quiet room to set up my computer and watch the third episode of 24. This series is brilliant. I love the story so far and I like Kiefer Sutherland’s character Jack Bauer. Great stuff. So after the episode I had a few minutes left to make a cup of Rosie Lee [That’s Tea boys and girls]. Then Ian, [I don’t feel left out any more] Day, popped in the dressing room and informed us that the Murder Dolls had left the stage 10 minutes early so when we are ready we can go on stage a little early ourselves if we so wished. Well we were going back home to Blighty after the show so we jumped at the idea. We took to the stage at the Vienna Stadhalle and knocked everyone’s shoes off. We are definitely finding our form and had a rocking show. The capacity crowd all had a great time and so did we. Vienna you always make us feel so welcome. Thanks to all of you!

Well, after the gig we did a runner. We’re all getting changed on the bus going to the airport. Gaddzy opened a few Coronas. H had one Davey, Jan and myself had one, which is unusual for me, as I will normally take a glass of red wine. I went to get changed and laid me beer in the cup holder on the table. I put my running bag on the seat and proceeded to get undressed. All of a sudden the driver puts the old anchor out the door and skids to a halt very abruptly. Well you guessed it didn’t you. Yes the beer does a triple somersault with a half reverse pike straight into me running bag. The beer went all over everything in the bag. I was not very pleased. My behaviour was not very Christian like at all. I was furious. So with not having anything to change into I had to wrap a towel around my self and fortunately my shirt missed most of the beer shower and so I had at least something to wear on top. So I get off of the bus and fortunately the Captain had brought my bag to the arrival hall and so I found some thing to wear and changed in the restroom. We got on board and I had a couple of glasses of lovely red wine which I shared with Jan, H, and Davey.

We got back to London after a flight of close to 2 hours. We had a nice couple of days and I was looking forward to having a couple off. Monday I had planned to go golfing and guess what for Tuesday? Yes you guessed it GOLF again. More in the next instalment boys and girls.

God Bless you all.
Stay safe and well.

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