Subject: Fish 2003 - Berlin and "a single fish" supper!
Dear Freaks, Fishheads, Fans and the Company,
I think I should start to write scripts for "Eastenders" as the dramas in my Life need some release other than in an album lyric!
First night in Berlin was strictly Fellini. A Japanese dinner with Tara and Tammi was followed by a jaunt to a small club called "Quasimodo's" after Tammi had announced that John Rech and T42 - our friends from Luxembourg - would be performing there later that night as support act to our other great friends Ezio and Booger!
The last time I had been in Quasimodo's was to perform "A Gentleman's Excuse Me" with Mickey Simmonds as a playback piece for a Berlin TV Show. A famous piece of filming where we both kept cracking up and "corpsing" after only a few notes of a long series of takes! That was in '89. The other time I remember being in the club was to see a Peter Hammill concert in '85 soon after meeting Tammi for the first time. We retired to a bar on a corner near Kantstrasse where I babbled as a newly love-struck victim over a crowd of drinks to a tired singer on a run of 5 gigs in a row!
Never proven, but I always thought that the song "After the Show" on the '86 "Skin" album was a lyrical frame of that night.
So it's "Quasimodos" and vodka chasing beers in my head as Tara had a bit of a cry seeing her Mum and Dad together and not at each others throats. I found myself on-stage as a backing vocalist and tambourine player with T42 on an extremely dodgy performance of a Bob Geldorf song! I left the club soon after with badly bruised hands and thighs from the tambourine playing which I had been banned from playing on-stage for at least 20 years or so! The ban has been renewed btw!
Taz stayed with me in a hotel in Fasanenstrasse in Wilmersdorf and her Mum went back to the flat. We were a trifle merry!
Next day a stunning meal in an award-winning Italian restaurant (we didn't realise it had been voted one of the best Italian restaurants in Germany for about 3 years running until Sunday lunchtime!) and a planned visit to a fun-fair was sidetracked and sidelined in favour of a street party in the Ku Dam by the Gedachtsnichtskirche!
A couple of Brazilian cocktails later and I was dancing with Tara and her friends (including the new boyfriend :-) to the beats bouncing round the streets! News of Scotland beating Iceland at the football and Italy on the rugby park added to the width of the smile! At a plant stall in the market area I got a couple of great plants for the house and garden - a Venus Fly Trap, a pitcher plant, a Ginko tree and a Metasequoia, later added to the kitchen utensils (small frying pan and sauce pot! :-) and a decent leather jacket that was in a sale and reached my wrists! A zappy afternoon and the night awaited!
We all went out with Tara's best friend Jessica and her parents to yet another Italian assault on the waistline. Jessica's Dad (Martin) worked in movie special effects and was in the middle of the new Jackie Chan film "Around the World In 80 Days". I also discovered he had put together most of the models and the designs on "Thomas the Tank Engine"! Martin and I locked off at the end of the table! :-)
A small family vineyard and a large mortgage of a bill later everyone retired and Tammi and I were left on a park bench as Tara went home with Jessica and her parents. After 15 years of marriage and 2 years of separation the discussion that took place between us was long overdue and both Tammi and I finally accepted the reality of our situation. As Tammi left in a taxi for her flat and I climbed the heavy stairs to my room we both knew we had taken a huge step in our relationship and reached a new understanding as parents of a wonderful daughter. The catharsis was painful but both of us had hoped to reach this place for a long time.
Sunday was a brand new day. Lunch at my now favourite Italian restaurant and an afternoon at the fun-fair was followed by a crash-out at the hotel before a final night at a Thai restaurant which had taken over the premises that once was Guido's, the restaurant where Tammi worked when I first knew her in 1985. A weekend of waltzing with memories!
Tara was so pleased I had made the effort to come over to Berlin as she wanted to "show me off" to her friends who's only perception of Taz's dad was on recordings! Just to be part of her Berlin life, if only for a moment, made the German to Scottish distance just a little bit less. We had a brilliant time together!
But in everything lies the power of Yin and Yang and - although the weekend was appreciated in Berlin - in Wokingham the taste was not so sweet. Just before I left for dinner with Tara and Tammi I took a call on my mobile from Louise who was phoning to say that she was leaving me! It had been tough for quite a few months as my work and her career combined to create very few opportunities to see each other. My schedule for the album and the touring throughout the summer was eating away at any major chunks of time where we could be together and Tara's summer holidays would also mean that time alone with Louise was near impossible to find. My attention and my energies were focused on my activities. There wasn't much to say in answer or argument, it had become impossible to find time for a relationship that was already having to deal with a lot of distance.
So as I approach the lift-off for "Field of Crows" I resign myself to remaining single for the imaginable future! How Fellini that a weekend in Berlin which has proven such a catalyst in my emotional experiences should offer such a "cleansing" in a way I could never have envisaged. In one way I felt proud of what Tammi and I had achieved and where we had reached in our relationship and, on the other hand, sad that a call on my mobile would end another relationship. I'm not happy about it, I will not forget the good times but now I have to concentrate on my future and the creative process. Music has always been my first love!
and that in itself is a rare double Fellini moment! :-)
in fact nearly a triple! :-))))))
lots of love
Onkel Fish xx
Subject: Fish 2003 - A Scottish Play!
Dear Freaks, Fishheads, Fans and the Company,
So back to work!
Gigs for May and June are as follows:
May 3rd - Irvine, Magnum Centre (West coast of Scotland)- confirmed and on sale, details to follow this week.
May 9th - Dundee, Cotton Club- confirmed and as above.
May 10th - Jedburgh, Town Hall- confirmed and as above.
May 15th - SAS Charity Gig with Roger Taylor, venue to be announced.
May 22nd / 25th - in negotiation for 2 or 3 Swiss shows with Feast of Hope in Geneva on Saturday 24th. Details to be announced!
May 30th - Edinburgh Venue, confirmed
May 31st -Tranent Loch Centre: tickets are 12.50 pounds sterling and available from F.I.S.H. through the merchandise service. We can also reserve tickets for the Edinburgh Venue show (also 12.50 sterling). There is no booking charge for tickets ordered through F.I.S.H.! An unofficial fan club meet is arranged for the Tyneside tavern in Haddington on Sunday afternoon 1st June!
13th June - Glasgow, George Square. -private party for Scottish Claymores Fanclub.
14th June - Glasgow, Hampden Park Stadium- Performing "Caledonia" as part of the pre match entertainment for the NFL Worldbowl. Event to be beamed live Worldwide!
21st June - Genoa, Open Air stage in the Harbour - this was confirmed by the city promoters but put on hold awaiting sponsorship confirmation this week :-(
27th June - Dunfermline, Carnegie Hall - confirmed. Details on tickets etc will be announced this week.
Highlands tour scheduled for July 14th - 30th to take in Perth / Fort William / Skye / Ullapool / Thurso / Orkney / Tain / Inverness / Elgin and the Shetland Isles! This tour is being arranged in the next few weeks so please do not make arrangements until it is fully confirmed!
More info will be provided as I get more facts and ideas together on all of this. Please appreciate that this is a major piece of logistical work and that news will be presented as soon as we get confirmations on sponsorships and other elements that are required to make this work! It is however looking very positive! :-)
I am expecting confirmations on a number of shows this week as I hope to book every weekend in May, June and July with either UK or mainland European dates while we put the album together. Details on venues, tickets, geography and other information will be made available as soon as we get it in here at the Studio!
Please do not make arrangements on information unless gigs and venues are notified as being "confirmed".
lots of love
Onkel Fish xx
Email 6th April 2003