05 Feb 2008 - Nicko's back in the diary zone!

Hotel room Mumbai 1st February Time 7:30am.

Well, well, well, I hope that you are all in good health and spirits my friends?
Firstly, I would like to extend a warm salutation to you all and I hope that you all had a wonderful Christmas and have a very happy New Year.

I had a wonderful Christmas and a great New Years Eve, thank you very much, very quiet, not too crazy. Had a few friends over for New Year and Rebecca' pop was down for the holidays. We had fun

Well, were to start?.
I arrived in blighty on the 11th of Jan and went straight up to Chalfont to stay with my son Nick. On the Sunday afternoon I headed up to Milton Keynes to film me mate Jim Marshall. Jim and I are going to make a documentary about his wonderful and interesting life. I love Jim and miss him very much so it was a double bonus to be spending sometime together. I had a crew of 7 people to take care of. There was my mate Andy Matthews who is directing and producing the story, Mark Murray, he is the researcher, Kate Alton, she is the production co-ordinator, then there was the cameraman, lights and sound, we also had a lovely lass named Lisa that was doing Jim's makeup. We spent three days with Jim and it was a blast, got lots of great footage and some good stories from Terry, Jim's son. He is also an Executive producer with myself. What a great time. We started filming on Monday the 14th and on Tuesday evening we all went out for a smashing meal at the Cock pub just outside of Milton Keynes. Great food and even better company. Jim had a wonderful time as did we all.
We wrapped up filming around 3pm on the Wednesday and we all headed back to London.
I went back to Chalfont St Peters and had a nice time with Nick. In the evening we had a Chinese take away and hung out at the flat.

On Friday I headed back to Milton.
I was having a jam that evening at a pub called the Fox and Hounds in Stony Stratford.
Last time I was at this establishment was back last year when I had visited Terry and Leslie at their flat. They live just down the road from the pub.
Terry had told me that he liked to jam at the pub and so we decided that that might be a good idea for the two of us to do sometime, So, as I was in town that week it was decided that that was a good time to do it. Terry had set it up just before New Year and the pub and Terry had sold all 120 tickets for the night.
I called a couple of me mates to see if they would like to join Terry and I. It was with the greatest pleasure for me that Phil Hilborne, Andy Frost, Chris Teedder, Bennie Marsden, and Pete Eldridge accepted the invite.
Man we had such a good time, I mean a 'Kin good time.
Terry had thought up a name for us, The 'What are we going to do next' band but I thought we should call it The 'What the Kin ell' we doing next' band, it was literally a jam night we had no idea what we were going to do next. It was very cool. We played for a good two hours and there were lots of smiling faces at the end of the night. Not sure if they were smiling because we stopped or whether they truly had a great evening TEEHEE!!!!!

After the jam we had a few beers and then I headed back to the hotel with Andy M and Mark Murray They also came to the show and we were all staying over that evening at the Premier Lodge hotel in Milton
 The next morning I jumped a train back to London.

I had a very nice relax on the Saturday and on Sunday I was picked up at the flat by Jim and Terry Marshall. There was A Water Rat's Lodge meet scheduled for that evening kicking off at 6:30pm. We got there around 6 and had a wee dram before lodge was in order. What a great night it was Jim really had a blast as did all the Rats that were there that evening. I had not been to lodge for a very long time so it was with the greatest pleasure to be welcomed back.

After lodge Jim, Terry, Leslie, Steve the driver, Delilah, Jim's carer and I went to dinner at a smashing restaurant at the Lancaster hotel. It was very nice. After dinner Jim dropped me back at the flat before he headed back to Milton.

Monday we stared rehearsals. Man it was so good to be back with the boys. We kicked off at around 2pm and we blasted through some of the songs that we were playing in the new set, the ones that we knew, songs that we had been playing more recently, like Two Minutes and NOTB, after that we decided to attempt the older stuff that we hadn't played in over twenty years. It went 'Kin great, we really did enjoy ourselves reminiscing over these songs.

We rehearsed from Monday through Friday and then on the following Monday. It went really well and we are happy and ready for our first gig.
Our first trip on the tour was scheduled to depart from Stanstead on Wednesday the 30th of January at 9:30am.
My mate Dave picked me up at the flat at 7am and after saying farewell to my son Nick, we headed to the airport.
We arrived at 8am and there was a really nice vibe at the departure lounge, everybody was very excited and raring to go.

We boarded the plane, (which by the way looks amazing) and settled in for the long journey to India. We had to stop off for fuel as this old bus could not make it all the way in one hop. We stopped off in a place called Baku in Azerbaijan. After a while on the ground we took off for the rest of the leg arriving into Mumbai at 3am. It was a very long day. I hit the hay at around 5 in the morning.
Later that day we had a press conference scheduled for 6:30pm.
It took us about 45 minutes to do and then there was a buffet spread laid on which was very nice indeed. Lots of finger foods and stuff like that very tasty it was too!!!!
After that I headed back for a wee rest. I must admit that I was feeling a little under the weather. I had to start a course of antibiotics on the Monday as I fell pray to the McBrain curse, the dreaded Bronchitis. Get it every year at about this time. YUUKKK!!!!!!!
Anyway, got a spot of rest and then the next day was show day.

We headed down to the venue to do a very rare sound check and then I went back to the hotel.
We were due on stage at 8:30pm and man was it hot and dusty at the gig. Yes it was outdoors I know but man it was crazy.
We had a blast, 'Kin man it was fun but I've got to tell you the set is brutal, I mean it is all up tempo and it's like I have to run the 'Kin grand national each time with this set. I'm not complaining, no really I'm not but all I can say is that guys half my age would have a 'Kin chore keeping up with this set. It's 'Kin amazing. Playing the old stuff that hasn't seen the likes of day for over twenty years is a true joy I can tell you!!!
Rhyme, Powerslave and Moonchild, "kin blow me away. I had forgotten how immense these songs are.
We had a wonderful show, there were a few woopsies as one would expect but all in all a very successful night.

I am so looking forward to the next show.

Well, it's that time now.
I'm off.

Stay safe and well.
God Bless you all.

Love and Respect.



On board flight from Perth to Melbourne
Time: 2pm 5th February 2008

Well, well, well, what a 'Kin fantastic show we had last night.
We played to a packed, Burswood dome, in Perth and it was a very cool gig. I was on fire as were the rest of the band, for only our second show it was 'Kin brilliant if I say so meself.

We hit the stage at 8: 30pm and rocked the house down. There were a few really big mistakes but we swerved around them with no problems as we got down to business. The fans were brilliant and they made us feel so very welcome. It was really nice to be back in OZ mind you it was so 'Kin hot up there even more so than India and I swear you could have fried and egg on one of me cymbals it was that hot.

We arrived into Perth after 'Kin what seemed like an eternity on the plane. We left India after a long wait in Mumbai, getting through security was a 'Kin fiasco and the they kept us waiting on the tarmac for what seemed like another eternity, this charter flying aint all it's cracked up to be believe me!!!!!!!!!!!!!
So, we got airborne and made our way to Indonesia for a pit stop which also took "kin forever, some problem with Astreus not setting up the payment for the jubbly, wonder what went wrong there then??????
After a couple of hours on the ground in Jakarta we were finally on our way to Australia. The flying time from India including the fuel stop was supposed to be ten hours and fifteen minuets but it ended up with us arriving at the hotel at 6:30am, 4 hours later than planned. Oh well!!!!!!

Later that day I had decided that I would go for a round of golf and make myself get up and do something. I didn't want to stay in bed for the whole day so made plans through our promoters rep, Peter Mcrindle, to get me off at a local course for 1:30pm. He had sorted a place called, Joodalup, just outside the city and what a great track it was too.
Barry Drinkwater, Rod and Davey decided that they would join me, so it made for an even better day out. We were all up on time after only a few hours rest and we made our way to the course.
It was a 30 minute drive and we were on the first tee for our tee time at 1:35pm
I played with Rod as my partner against Dave and Barry.
Unfortunately we were not victorious. We lost by two holes and so had to part company with a few Aussie dollars.
Oh well, can't win em all!!!!!!

We had a fun time. Thank you to our promoter, Paul Dainty and to Peter for setting things up for me!!!!!!!!

In the evening there was a fantastic dinner arranged by Paul and his company of folks that work with him.
We went to a restaurant called, Matilda's, what a great place it was I can tell you!!!!
We had copious amounts of wine and fantastic seafood. Everyone had a great time.
Again 'THANK YOU' to Paul and the gang for a wonderful night out.

I can honestly say that I slept really well that night and was refreshed and ready for the show the next day.

Well, I am felling a wee bit sore today as last nights show has taken its toll on me especially me hands. As it was so hot in the gig I guess the humidity made me grip me sticks tighter or something, coz I've got 'Kin big poxy blisters on me fingers. OUCH!!
Well, all part of the deal aint it.

It's my son's birthday today, well yesterday here but the 4th in London England. That's today!! Isn't it??

Happy Birthday Nicholas,
Love you!!!!!

Toddle OOhh!!!

Stay safe and well.
God Bless you all!!!!!

Love and respect.




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