Subject: Fish 99 - US tour (more dates and confirmations) plus general other stuff!
Dear Fishheads, Freaks, Fans and the Company!
Hi there! been away a bit and in a lot of pain! I was reminded last week of my age and my footballing mortality. I arrived in Holland on the Wednesday night and had a great evening with the record company discussing new singles, cunning plans and touring ideas for later this year. Knowing that I would be hitting the football pitch in the morning, I was in bed sober and early! I was picked up in the morning and taken down to the sports park in Hilversum where I met up with the rest of the Roadrunner team. The competition was to be played on full sized pitches, 11 a-side teams with interchangeable substitutes and every game was to be 20 minutes long. There were 12 teams present including EMI, Universal, BMG, Jive as well as teams representing larger retail outlets in Holland. As a sign of the current times in the corporate record industry, there was a team from Island Records UK. Island Records ceased to exist this year as a record company this year and all the guys who were playing for the team had all been made redundant at some point in the last year. They decided that this year they would still come over for the tournament and I personally was very pleased to see them come in fourth. :-)))
The Roadrunner team consisted of mostly people from the Dutch and International office including the Firm's Lawyers and Accountants and Promotion staff amongst others. I was one of two artists appearing the other being a Dutch artist whose name for the life of me I cannot remember. We drew the first game nil - nil and I came close once with a volley from a corner. I surprised myself at my energy and was pleased to find that I hadn't forgotten how to play the bloody game! I did deliver a rather crunching tackle early on and I had to quickly remember that I was playing in mainland Europe where the game isn't quite so physical! Strangely enough I was kind of left alone after that . . . All in all we played 5 games with one draw, two wins and two losses. The wins were 3 - 1 and 1- 0 with Marcus Turner, the Lawyer, playing an outstanding game centre forward. The two games we lost were the final 2 which could have seen us qualify for the semi-finals. We were beaten 2- 1 by Universal who eventually won the tournament and 1 - 0 by BMG in the second to last game which effectively killed off our chances. I managed to get on the score sheet once! I scored the winning goal for BMG after putting the ball in my own net Tommy Boyd style after a corner rocketed into the box. The ball cannoned off my shoulder into the net and a very gutted Fish trudged off the park at full time. We played 5 games of 20 minutes each with half an hour break or so in between each match. By the time we got to our final game, I felt that my legs had been filled with concrete and my body as a whole was just seizing up. All in all it was a great day and the first time I'd had a real chance to meet up with the Roadrunner people on a personal rather than a business level. With none of the team being regular players, we did extremely well to finish seventh in the competition and I was asked to pick up our little trophy at the end of the afternoon!! I felt a wee bit embarrassed to say the least!! :-)))
I was in agony that night and was planning on going to bed early. I was staying in the hotel in Hilversum in which they filmed the Barendenvandorp show on which we'd played Incomplete a few weeks previously. Knowing that I was in the hotel ,Hank and Fritz, the Co-Hosts, invited me down to the show and I ended up making a cameo appearance at the end of the programme meeting the guys as they were making their exit from the show. The alcohol eased my suffering but in the morning when I woke up to catch the 'plane I felt that Paramedics would have been in order! I didn't get any feeling into my lower calf muscles until late Sunday.
I know some of you have been waiting on orders but due to a problem in Vienna the Raingods colour booklets didn't arrive until today so we will be working the rest of the week getting the packages out. On the subject of orders, will you please allow 28 days for delivery for any order placed as it becomes very difficult answering e's with enquiries on delivery etc while trying to process the orders. Could you please refrain from duplicating orders as we have found on occasion the same order on e-mail, fax and the phone line. All e-mail orders will be acknowledged with a reply, but we cannot practically answer faxes and credit card hotline orders. Thanks for your help on this.
RWZ is still doing well and entered the charts in Poland at number 14 this week. It is still in most other charts in mainland Europe and the release of the next single in early June should help stimulate the interest in sales of both the album and catalogue. Roadrunner are very pleased at the performance and sales so far are above their earliest expectations. The next single is a choice between Mission Statement, an edited Tumbledown, Faithhealer or a major edit on Diggin' Deep. Tilted Cross will definitely be a single this year but I feel that to go with a ballad on the second single would give a false impression of the album. Tilted Cross needs a strong set up period and we will be looking into getting involved with the Landmine Commission and the Kosovan Refugee Agencies with regards to a charity project. This obviously will take some time to put together and I honestly feel that with the current situation in Kosova that landmines will achieve a lot more prominence in the news items:-(((((
I would appreciate your input on which single you think would stand a chance this summer. What I would suggest is that if you could drop a short e-mail to Alain Verhave (Verhave at roadrunnerrecords.nl) with your first, second and third choices for the single it will help us come to a decision on which track to go with.
The Company Scandinavia have been putting in efforts well above the call of duty in Denmark. I received this e-mail from Claus Nygaard. Karsten who is the baker mentioned in this e-mail makes the most outrageous cakes I have ever eaten in my life. The cakes are the confectionery version of Medusa in that rather than turning you to stone on catching a glimpse of one, you immediately start gaining pounds and expanding at a horrific rate. They are the size of small bungalows and are crammed with fresh cream, strawberries, marzipan and other ingredients, most of which are guaranteed to take your cholesterol count to galactic levels! Karsten and Claus have been giving them away to DJs in Denmark as presents and for prizes on their radio shows. The cakes have the album cover from RWZ printed on them in edible ink and to show the power of this kind of promotion and the addictiveness of the cakes, have a look at this e-mail for the results:-))
"Just a quick note to tell you that yesterday RWZ was chosen as "Album of the Night" at the NATIONAL DANISH RADIO, P3. One song from the album of the night is played every hour, and we got Incomplete, Faith Healer, Wake Up Call and Tilted Cross. Elisabeth Antwi was suggested as one of the vocalists of the future on the British scene. Tonight the DJ has promised to play selections from RWZ again."
I hope he doesn't eat them on the premises because they'll have to remove the building from around him to get him out!! :-)
I received this on an e-mail and I know none of us really like getting involved in chain letters, but I thought this was really cute. You may already know that I am playing a gig in Halifax, Nova Scotia in July so I decided to send a reply back telling them about the album and the gig :-)) If you fancy giving a bunch of wee boys and girls some help in their project and putting some big smiles on faces, drop them and e to say where you are.
"Hi I received this from a friend. Please help these kids with this project
We are in Grade 5 at Mill Cove District School, which is about 1/2 hours west of Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. We have 7 girls and 10 boys in our class. We have decided to map an email project. We are curious to see where in the world our email will travel by Internet, between the period of April 8 -June 7, 1999. We would like your help. If you receive this message, we ask that you:
1) email back and tell us your location so we can plot it on our world map AND 2) send our class letter on to more people. Thank you for any help you can give. Our email address is millcove at glinx.com
From Gr 5 at MCDS"
The US Tour is virtually complete. I will be sending all the addresses and phone numbers of the venues confirmed so far to all the various Companies and to the Perception site. It will take a couple of days but here are the dates and venues officially confirmed so far:
30 Toronto, ONT Lee's Palace Confirmed
2 Trois-Riviere, QUE Le Maquistart Confirmed
3 tba (this date will be off if we do 2 shows in Montreal. If not we will do another city)
4 Montreal, QUE The Cabaret Confirmed
5 off or 2nd Montreal date
6 Quebec City, QUE Albert Rousseau Theatre Confirmed
7 Sherbrook, QUE Cafe Du Palais Confirmed
9 Edmunston, NB O'Costigans Confirmed
10 Halifax, NS The Marquee Confirmed
12 New Haven, CT Toad's Place Confirmed
13 Philadelphia, PA Theatre Of The Living Arts Confirmed (T.L.A. for short)
14 Boston, MA Paradise Rock Club Confirmed
16 Poughkeepsie, NY The Chance Confirmed
17 New York, NY Irving Plaza Confirmed
18 Washington, DC 9:30 Club Confirmed
20 St. Petersburg, FL State Theatre Confirmed
21 Atlanta, GA Variety Playhouse Confirmed
23 Cleveland, OH The Odeon Confirmed
24 Pittsburgh, PA Graffiti Showcase Confirmed
25 Buffalo, NY The Tralf Confirmed
27 Cincinnati, OH Annie's Confirmed
28 Pontiac, MI 7th House Confirmed
30 Chicago, IL Park West Confirmed
31 Milwaukee, WI Shank Hall Confirmed
1 Minneapolis, MN Fine Line Music Cafe Confirmed
3 Denver, CO Bluebird Theatre Confirmed
4 Salt Lake City, UT tba - waiting on offers
6 San Diego, CA Brick By Brick Confirmed
8 West Hollywood, CA House Of Blues Confirmed
9 San Francisco, CA Slim's Confirmed
11 Seattle, WA The Fenix Confirmed
12 Portland, OR Crystal Ballroom Confirmed
14 Mexico City, MEX Metropolitan Theatre Confirmed
15 Guadalahara, MEX Hard Rock Live Confirmed
Some of you have asked about age limits on the venues. I will try to discover this information and post it as soon as I have it but at the moment, here is an answer from Larry Webman who is my agent in North America to an enquiry about the Californian shows:
"Fish will be playing San Diego, Los Angeles and San Francisco in August. The show in San Diego is a 21+ show but the other two are open to all ages."
I really hate the idea that there are age limits and there is nothing I can do if the promoters are working restrictions on the venue. I regret to say that I am not in a position to change these age restrictions and when playing clubs this is always one of the major hassles for both fans and artists. Sorry.
After long discussions with Wes, I have decided to take on Tracy La Barbara as backing vocalist on the tour. She worked with Wes on the Emperor Falls album and has also contributed a track to the Marillion tribute CD where she did a cover of Beautiful. She will be joining me to start rehearsals in the first week of June here at the Farm and is flying over from Florida soon after the Swiss shows.
May seems to have disappeared. I thought I would have plenty of time this month to get on with all the various activities including promotion, rehearsing, bookwork and all the other pressures surrounding setting up an American tour and preparing a house for sale! We are all coping well but I could honestly do with another extra couple of weeks in May to deal with the overwhelming demands on my time. I'll e you in a couple of days with some more news as it comes in. Until then, take care, stay alive.
Lots of love
Email 19th May 1999