25 Mar 2008 - Rod - New Jersey


Up early to get some work done with the clear advantage of a clear head. Then off to airport for a standard noon departure for Newark. Vans straight onto the tarmac by the plane with a more effective police escort cutting through the heavy traffic and put through security checks right there. Fox had come down earlier to interview Bruce on the plane and they did some other stuff after take off. I couldn't bring myself to open the laptop -- it is becoming the enemy! --  and just chatted to various of our gang and cat napped. Flight a bit over 3 hours to Newark and we had ABC News filming our arrival for a news feature next week -- they are also coming to the NJ show. Bruce stayed behind for a while with them and Todd for interviews. We have known the producer Jason for some years from his CNN days -- the last time we were doing something for CNN and Bruce and I were in the car on the way to the studio stuck in traffic when they called to cancel it as a small plane had just crashed into a building in the Bronx, I think it was, and at the time all news staff were of course caught up in this as at first it was naturally treated as a possible terrorism attack. Fortunately it wasn't but sadly it was a well known NY sports star who had apparently lost control flying his single engine plane. Very tragic, a young fit guy with everything going for him.

So on arrival we were whisked off to hotel in Manhatten. A couple of dodgy looking "fans" were there with 2 brand new guitars to sign which we didn't as I am sure on the back it would have stamped "destiny ebay" -- we are very careful about that now. Its really not something genuine fans ask on the street outside our hotel! There seem to be a lot of ebay merchants around nowadays and it can sometimes be difficult to distinguish from regular fans, except that quite often they carry the albums in the bag from the shop where they had just bought the albums for (hopeful) signature

I had avoided making any arrangements for that evening with any pals in NY as I figured that by this stage of the tour I would just want to have a quiet night which is exactly what I did. After going out for a walk and to buy some supplies -- much too tight to pay NY hotel prices for stuff like water and fruit -- and I enjoy walking around NY.  Evening in -- sport on TV and a movie " American Gangster". Both Russell Crowe and Denzil Washington are very good in it but although the film was good it did not live up to the great reviews I had seen. Jan tells me the original book is excellent -- the film is based on a true story. So did this, read a bit and crashed ready for another big show tomorrow.

Had a bit of a lie in to gain energy and out for breakfast to catch up and plan the eve with Todd who does our PA for the label. I love NY breakfast diners, always so full of energy and character and so many questions about how to have your eggs and anything else. Almost an interrogation compared to England where you tend to get what you get!  All these questions takes a while to get used to but I do think that over here breakfast is a big part of the day which is fine by me when I can order corned beef hash with eggs over easy! I limit this to one morning a stay but it can be a great pleasure being so unhealthy (I think corned beef hash is banned in Hollywood!)
Back at hotel for more catch up and then off to gig with Bruce. Just realised that tour fever has now really hit and I do not know what is going on. My Puerto Rico diary talked about Patrick from Revolver joining us -- well that wasn't in PR it was in NJ, with Bruce doing interview at gig NJ and Steve on flight NJ -- Toronto. I have sent that diary off so no point changing it, but no big deal, put is down to touring  delusion. Any way back to what I hope happened in reality not in my increasingly warped mind.

So at the show Bruce talked to Patrick then old friend Eddie Trunk. Eddie we have known for years as a fan and supporter of the band and he has become a big feature at Q104 and with a national metal show. We usually take time to talk to him for his show and also this time for MSG news network, talking about upcoming summer US tour and life in general in the Maiden camp. Usual chaotic scenes backstage so tried to stick to my room seeing various friends who came along for the show and to say hello, including old mate from XFM London Ian Camfield who is now with K-Rock in NY and John Scher, our longtime NY promoter.

This show at the Izod, capacity about 14,000, sold out last December. As it had been sold out for some three months I thought it would be a loud as hell NY audience but in fact they were rather subdued -- maybe we have been spoilt a bit on this tour though with our audiences!!! Anyway went fine and everyone seemed to think it was great so I guess all is relative. Maybe NY audiences get a bit spoilt as everyone always plays there on tour. Or maybe it was us - though I thought the sound was terrific which it usually is there. You will have to ask the people who went.

Afterwards rest of band left after show to meet up with various friends and family in the city but Bruce and I stayed for a while chatting to some mates over a few beers in the dressing room. By the time we got back the hotel bar was closed so a fairly tame night after a NY area show, but we are near the end!! And Bruce had a bit of a bender with Todd the night before so all was not lost.

I am finishing this day on hols getting reacquainted with Kathy and the kids -- only one more diary to go -- the last show, Toronto. So more when I get out of the sun/pool/bar!!!!

- Rod

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