The Company Europe Newsletter September 2005
Dear Company members,
Only days before the release of the new "best of" double CD, "Bouillabaisse" and already the impact of Snapper Music has been very noticeable and very positive. My interview schedule has been impressive with everyone who has heard the albums so far commenting on how good the compilation is. Classic Rock magazine have already conducted two interviews, one to go with the review which looks like being a glowing piece, and a two page scheduled piece for next month to go with a planned review of the Paradiso Amsterdam show in November. There is also talk of a potential front cover on the release of the "Return to Childhood" DVD and album in March next year. Articles in various press and media have been very supportive and radio is beginning to pay attention to the release. Added to that Snapper have taken poster sites on 30 stations across the UK and are taking out adverts in various magazines. It is so different having a press agency and a radio plugger promoting my career and the atmosphere around the "Bouillabaisse" project is very uplifting and exciting.
The album is released as a double CD in a digipak with a fold out poster booklet. This is initially a 20,000 limited edition which will be replaced by a standard double CD. We are selling this through our mail order system at £14.99 plus postage and it will be available as of the 26th September. We will also have the album available on the merchandise stall at the forthcoming gigs.
The dates confirmed so far on the tour are as follows -
October 5th - Music Jam 2005 Festival: National Palace of Culture, Sofia, Bulgaria
October 7th - Cafe Drummond: Aberdeen, Scotland. Box office +44 (0)1224 619931. Tickets available from One-Up Records, 17 Belmont Street, Aberdeen +44 (0)1224 642662
October 8th - The Garage: 490 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, Scotland. CPL tickets. Ticketweb: +44 (0)870 333 1123, See Tickets: +44 (0)871 220 0260, Tickets Scotland: +44 (0)870 220 1116 or in person from Ripping Records, Edinburgh and Grouchos, Dundee
October 10th - Albert Halls: Bolton, England. Box Office +44 (0)1204 334400. Support: Anne-Marie Helder
October 11th - Birdwell Club: Barnsley, England. Box Office +44 (0)870 060 0100. Tickets. Support: Anne-Marie Helder
October 12th - Limelight: Crewe, England. Box Office +44 (0)1270 251929. Support: Anne-Marie Helder
October 14th - NCLA: Newport, Wales. Box Office +44 (0)8700 667799. Support: Anne-Marie Helder
October 15th - Carnglaze Caverns: Liskeard, England. Box Office +44 (0)1579 320251. Support: Anne-Marie Helder
October 16th - Corn Hall: Cirencester, England. Box Office +44 (0)1285 654180. Support: Anne-Marie Helder
October 18th - JB's: Dudley, England. Phone +44 (0)1384 833556, +44 (0)1902 552121
October 19th - Waterfront: Norwich, England
November 12th - Mean Fiddler: London, England
November 13th - 013: Tilburg, Netherlands
November 15th - Paradiso: Amsterdam, Netherlands
November 16th - Tivoli: Utrecht, Netherlands
November 18th - E-Werk: Koln, Germany
And my SAS Christmas gigs this year have moved from their home in Chiddingfold and will now be on
December 16th - The Bisley Pavilion Hotel: Queens Road, Brookwood, Surrey, England (SAS band)
December 17th - The Bisley Pavilion Hotel: Queens Road, Brookwood, Surrey, England (SAS band)
These will be the only shows this year. More gigs will be booked as from the beginning of 2006.
We will be recording and filming the "Return to Childhood" show at the Paradiso and recording other shows for the live album at other venues on the tour. Mark Wilkinson will be taking his artwork exhibition out on the road on the London - Koln part of the tour. He was with us on the recent highly successful Scandinavian tour and enjoyed himself so much he has decided to get on the tour bus and experience the road for real! :) He will have prints of the "Bouillabaisse" and "Return to Childhood" album covers as well as other pieces of artwork for sale at the shows.
The Norwegian and Danish shows made for a wonderful and memorable experience. We sold out Bergen with tickets being touted and bought outside for around £200 each! A magnificent night that drew rave reviews. Trondheim and Stavanger were both great shows and attendances were up on our last visit. Oslo was stunning! We sold out the Rockefeller (1350) on the Tuesday night and then played to 750 at the Sentrum on the Thursday in the same city. This was my best figures there ever! And just to make the Oslo experience truly magical we watched Scotland beat Norway 2-1 in a World cup qualifier on Wednesday :) On the Tuesday night I was piped through the streets of Oslo from the bar where the Tartan Army had pitched up to the venue by the Oslo Caledonian Pipe band. As one of the 200 or so Tartan Army members chirped up as we sauntered through the streets "this is better than a limo!" :) A perfect way to start a night's entertainment!
The gig in Copenhagen was also very special and as with all the reactions to the "Childhood" shows the audience were incredible and highly enthusiastic. Everyone has been so positive about the performances and many think that this is the best touring band I have had for years.
The break up of the touring patterns has proved beneficial as we all look forward to getting together for the shows and having the breaks in between. It means the energy levels are high and no-one gets jaded by the performances. My commitment to my daughter has meant that I have to take my responsibilities as a single parent seriously and as such I have had to cut back on touring for long periods of time in order to provide her with the parenting and support she needs. This has also meant that my general workload outside my home is affected and just recently had to turn down a role in "The Last Legion", a Dino de Laurentis production starring Colin Frith and Ben Kingsley which was shooting in Slovakia. This would have meant three weeks shooting there and then direct to Bulgaria and the UK tour dates, in total 6 weeks away from Tara. I was disappointed to lose the role but accept there are more important things in Life to deal with and I am sure something else will come along when the time is right. Tara is settling in well in Haddington and at school and these next two years are very important for her.
Elspeth is doing a great job in the office and it is very noticeable that since she arrived here to take over the mail order operation that complaints have dramatically decreased and the outstanding orders she has been dealing with are finally getting through to fans. Since Elspeth took over the fan club in July we have had no missing orders and no complaints about our service. I understand that there are still outstanding orders from the period prior to her appointment and she has been dealing with those fans and sending out replacement orders that were ignored and not dealt with by the previous member of staff. I am sure those of you who have ordered recently have found a vast difference in our operation. I hope this is replacing the confidence that was lost in the last year or so and that you continue to support our mail order service especially as we approach the release of the "Bouillabaisse" project and the new range of t-shirts and other merchandise around the "Return to Childhood" tour. Your orders are greatly appreciated. Anyone who still has outstanding issues please get in touch with us and you can be assured your problems will be addressed and dealt with. We are a small business and you are important to us!
Apart from the total reorganisation of the office and the business end of my activities I have had the opportunity in recent months to re evaluate my career on a number of levels and to plan well into the next year. It has been a period of intense disruption but we are coming out of it a far more professional unit and in control of our destiny. Plans for an orchestral album next year as well as a new studio album sometime in the latter part of the year are in hand together with the elusive novel and other projects including a potential string of stand up/acoustic gigs. With Snapper behind me and a new perspective on my Life and career it is once again positive and exciting times. I am feeling very "up" and confident and looking forward to the future. Your help and support with the "Bouillabaisse" project is greatly appreciated and anything you can do to spread the message through your local radio or media is extremely welcomed by us all both here at the Studio and on the road!
I hope you enjoy the new compilation and hope to see most of you on the tour,
Until then, take care and stay alive, all the best as always,
Email 21st September 2005