Not sure why, but unable to sleep more than four hours at a time over here. Neil is sleeping far more than me, which is unheard of at home. There is no reason I can think of. Anyway having gone to bed at 2am, I am up again at 6 and thanking all the powers that be that there are various coffee shops and delis open at that time. I wander out into the humid morning air and make my way over to Starbucks for lattes, then to a small deli for melon and bagels. Then back. Unfortunately Neil is always asleep, so he is getting used to cold coffee. Tom and JJ arrive at 10 and we work our way over to XM radio with a double bass and various bits of drum kit, plus a guitar etc etc. Bill Kates is there to meet us and we are taken into the oldest still functioning studio in New York. The list of famous names who recorded there is endless Ella Fitzgerald, Errol Garner to name but two. Neil decides to play’ Eye Candy’, ‘Never Alone’, ‘All Alone’, ‘Friends’ and ‘Idiot’ with a few Bonzo stories to liven things up a bit. His voice has been unreliable recently, so much so that he could’nt manage ‘Eine Kleine’ last night – substituting ‘Cats Don’t Like the Rain’. However I wonder if the inclusion of so many melancholy songs is a reflection of the way he is feeling about the way things are going at the moment.
It is a good session lasting about an hour – Bill asks the right questions and everyone enjoys it.
Tom, JJ, John (part owner of the studio), Neil and Bill line up for cheesy photograph
Later he takes us to lunch in an Italian place almost next door to the studio. I think this morning has cheered everyone up – Bill is definitely one of the good guys. We take the instruments back to Dillons and head for hotels and zizz’s, apart from Tom who stays for a beer at the bar.
Join Tom at Dillons later. Have about 5 reservations so we know 5 will come. Also Martin Lewis – long time supporter of Neil- is bringing some friends to see the show. Then unexpectedly some people who have already seen the show come back for more so by the time the show starts we are one third full. One guy brings his eight year old son who is delightful and a fan. When, during the show, Neil asks if anyone has ever heard of the the Rutles – his hand shoots straight into the air and he is completely absorbed throughout the set. How come there are no pictures of him? Because after the show what with one thing and another and instruments to be cleared up etc etc I missed a photo opportunity. So if dad is reading this, please email the photo of you, your lovely son and Neil that I took with your camera and I will put it into the diary and thank you so much for coming – it was great to see you both. This is a happy show. Neil’s gloom has lifted and the audience is responsive. It is so good to watch people laughing so much they almost keel over. As always Tom and JJ are noteable additions to Neil’s one-man show. After the show we go and talk with Bill Shea and a publicist called Amy to see, basically how we can move things up a notch and prevent a repeat of the Dillon experience. Tom and JJ sample a few cocktails and then …………who knows?
another of Toms inspired ideas !!!!!