Subject: Fish 99 - LIve album, CD Issue 30 of the fanzine, Inspector Rebus and the Death Threats
Dear Fishheads, freaks, Fans and the Company
Where do I start?
I've been a bit quiet of late but as you read on you will probably understand why!
The death threats continued for another 4 e mails after I "announced" that the perpetrator had been caught. Your help on this was invaluable and the pointer to the De Montfort University in Leicester was spot on. The following e mails all came from different sources at the Uni and I had to give the impression that we had the situation under control. Far from it.
The following e mails all contained the same info - that my family and myself were to be murdered on the 30th November in a very brutal fashion. I had started to learn the ropes on tracing by this time and after the 4th e-mail on the Saturday both the Criminal Investigation Department and the Computer forensic science labs at Edinburgh and Leicester were working with me.
I took it all very seriously and had arranged 2 armed bodyguards to be at the farm on the weekend and days leading up to the deadline. The wording of the e-mails was sinister and Tammi and I had to talk to the headmaster at Tara's school to put them on extra vigilance just in case a snatch was attempted. Every morning I checked the van for devices as one of the mails suggested an explosion. I didn't sleep that much during the week and racked my brain trying to catch a lead. It was suggested in the mails that I knew the guy and that I had a past experience with him and that the date was significant. It was said that "if I sat back and thought about it that all would become crystal". Every moment of every day I tried to figure it out and tried to avoid getting too paranoid. On the Thursday I received a call from the CID who were 99% sure that they had the person involved. I sat through the weekend with the news that he would be arrested on Monday morning.
What if it wasn't him and the real threat came from somewhere else? I had to be on set for the Rebus filming on Monday and Tuesday and having cancelled the security people on Thursday I was wide open both at home and on set.
Monday am the call came from Leicester saying that they had the guy, an 18 year old first year student that had burst into tears on his arrest and confessed everything. He was held in jail overnight and next morning at 7am they arrested two further students who were accomplices. This explained the different terminals used. They were held for over 8 hours at the station and questioned. Their rooms were raided and the story finally came to light.
It seemed that their pseudonym came from a 5 a side football team named after their dorms - KBlock with the "killer" tag put on as part of the "joke". They had been sending similar e-mails to each other and after one of them got RWZ from a mail order company and sent off for info from us here at the farm they decided to extend the "joke". Tumbledown had become a favourite in their halls of residence and an "anthem" for their wee gang. I was chosen as the "target".
Their first e mail got a short response from me saying "look forward to meeting you". That prompted the main attack.
They had no idea they were being traced but after the first e to them and then silence they got worried when receiving no answers to the next 3 e's. The terminals were identified on the Monday after their last e-mail. They were then watched.
The final story is that they now have a full police caution on their records and have been fingerprinted and photographed for police files. If they are caught with so much as a roach in future they face a full prosecution.
The University will be making their own punishment on the trio.
In the end they were kids with a very bad sense of humour. They had no previous and all came from good families and had straight backgrounds. Their crime mainly is being infinitely stupid. If I'd charged them they would have been thrown out of UNI and had a criminal record for the rest of their lives. If they went to court there was a good chance that the judge on seeing all the evidence and their heart-felt apologies would let them go with a caution. I decided to save public money and a lot of police paperwork and let them off with the caution. I was told by the Leicester police that they were all in tears and were all deeply sorry for what they did. They all want to apologise in person and one of them turns out to be a huge fan and wants an autograph!
If they had turned up at the farm that weekend or on the day in question I would have carved it on him with a machete.
I'm getting softer in my old age!!
The filming went really well and as I said before it's a small part which only involved me on the set for 2 days. John Hannah is a brilliant guy. Really helpful and supportive and always good for a laugh between takes. It's due for screening on STV and I think all ITV regions in March. Also had a scene with Steve McCole who was the drummer in "Young Persons...". In all my scenes I was either surreptitiously accepting packages of drugs, snorting coke from a vial while on the telephone, accepting more drugs and handing over wedges of cash to Steve at the club door who arrives in the scene after battling to drive a Porsche Speedster, or being threatening either at an interview or with Rebus in the bar!
Typecast again! ;-)
It's going to look great and as I said to Tammi it's better to get a small role in a major drama than a big role in a small one at this stage in my developing acting career. I must admit to loving my time on set and relished getting back in front of the camera again. It was just as well that the threats situation went away as it would have been terminally embarrassing walking onto set as a small part actor with my own personal armed bodyguard.
Tammi and I had a talk about the fanzine situation. Although we have finished issue 29 for December (it's a special bumper one with around 80 pages including a full tour diary from Tony with full day to day anecdotes from myself) and will deliver the 3 fanzines as promised this year we have drifted behind overall. I have decided to make ISSUE 30 a CD. This will be given free to all of you with a subscription in place of a fanzine and will be taken into account as such on your subscriptions. Any new subscriptions will receive the CD as their first fanzine due.
The CD will be offered to Company Members ONLY for 5 pounds sterling including postage and packaging to anywhere in the world. The CD will contain live material from the Haddington Convention and some shows on the European tour as well as hopefully a couple of radio acoustic sessions. Tony Turrell and Mark Daghorn are mixing this and we hope to include the entire Plague of Ghosts from Haddington. It'll be a full CD with around 70 minutes of material and will be in a cardboard case with a design by Mark Wilkinson.
This is by means of a thankyou to all the fanzine subscribers for their patience over the years and a very special offer to all the Company members that have helped us out in recent times.
It will be available in late January as the Christmas period is causing delays. Any member who doesn't have a fanzine subscription can order this now through The Company by the usual methods. Early orders are appreciated so we can organise the production runs up front. The catalogue number is FS 041 and the title is "Issue 30 - live 1999 CD"
I have decided strangely enough to call the next official bootleg "Candlelight in Fog". This will be the title of the double live CD we intend to record across the 5 American shows in January. The catalogue number for this is FS 042 and will be titled "Candlelight in Fog" live 2000. The price is 14 pounds sterling for non Company members and 12 pounds for Company members (including postage and packaging) and as this is directly supporting the US mini tour early orders would again be appreciated. It won't be available until early March as we get back from the tour at the beginning of February and will have to review and mix straight away. I know the delivery on orders will be a long way off but any help that can be provided to front the costs of the US tour are greatly appreciated.
With the "Candlelight" title moving to the live CD I have another working title for the new album which we are tentatively scheduling for release at the end of May. It now has the working title of "Fellini Days". If you read the fanzine in December all will become clear. Tony's Tour Diary from Fanzine 29 will be posted to the web site in January.
I talked with Mark Wilkinson last week and we are also scheduling "Masque" for release in May.
I'm off to Edinburgh now for a night out with Steve Vantsis to celebrate finishing the last fanzine of the century!
Tammi gave me the night off after doing a good job as family earner with the acting earlier this week!
Talk to you all again soon
lots of love
Onkel Fish X
PS Just a BIG public thankyou to Mo, Jeroen and Don especially and to all the others who helped me out in the last week!
PPS Thanks also for the photos you sent in! We have all we need and more now! Cheers!
Email 2nd December 1999