We couldn’t do what we do without the support of these wonderful people
When the Roadhouse gig was announced I just had to be there. Having missed only one FM London gig in the last 20 odd years and being familiar with the venue I knew the intimacy would be amazing and the atmosphere electric.
Only problem was I now live in Hampshire having escaped the rat race of old London town – could I persuade Eve my good lady wife that a Sunday excursion would be a good thing and hey she could come with me (another desperate attempt to convert her to the FM army).
Well I took the bull by his proverbial horns and booked 2 tickets for the gig. Eve took on the duty of finding a hotel for the night – I knew only a good one was going to sway her coming along – quick Google search and we were booked in to no less than the Waldorf! Turns out they do cheap deals on Sunday as it’s a non-theatre night – total result and only a two minute walk to venue.
Anyway the day comes and we make our way up to London on the train, off at Waterloo and I insisted we get a black cab to the hotel just so I could lean through the window and utter the words “Waldorf please my good man” – it’s the little things that please!
A quick wander round our hotel room marvelling at the splendour and we were off to Covent Garden. A quick bite to eat in Pizza Hut (Eve trying to spot who else in there was going to the gig - and she was uncannily good as we spotted a few of the faces there later) and then it was into the Roadhouse. By now I was getting a bit giddy and schoolboy-like with pre-gig excitement, and was failing miserably in hiding it from Eve, trying to not frighten her as to what her husband is really like at an FM gig.
As we walked in and saw the posters on the walls and familiar t-shirts being worn from over the years it felt good, I was right about the intimacy.
Straight to the merchandise stand where cold hard cash was parted with for a mug, new t-shirt and album pre-order. Then to the bar for some lubrication – I knew it was expensive there but I still gasped at the price of the round. But no matter, FM were playing and as that doesn’t happen often the daylight robbery was put up with.
Before I knew it the lights were down and the band wandering on stage – woohoo. I’d like to describe the gig but it went past so quickly, me singing like a loon (along with the rest of the FM choir), all I can say is it was amazing. The sound superb, the new songs going down very well – Over You already standing out as a classic – and the roof very nearly being raised by the noise of the singing.
The gig was over, everyone beaming like Cheshire cats on and off stage. Then it was more bar propping up and raffle time – didn’t win a thing – bitter? No!
As Eve and I continued warming the bar and chatting to various nice fellow fans I
noticed in the corner of my eye what looked like a couple of the band milling around
at the other bar, I went even more schoolboy-like – if that were possible – and pointed
this out to Eve and asked if she’d mind meandering over there in case there was a
chance of a photo etc. with any of the guys. Bless her she said of course and humoured
Once there she could see I was dithering in my giddy state and took control of things – “Right who do you want a picture with?” and as I pointed out all the band in turn she strode up to each member with a “would you mind my husband having his pic taken with you?” and of course all the band were great and I could hardly believe it as there I was being marshalled in to photos by my wife with the guys.
Anyway with pictures now captured we wandered back to the bar (a recurring theme) and chatted about it all. The band were still hanging round being great with all the fans and with a few Coronas of Dutch courage I engaged Mr Overland and Mr Jupp in conversation. With all the will in the world I was trying to ask sensible questions and they were both very engaging and happy to talk all things FM. Pete Jupp especially was very kind with his time and I think a good 20 mins of pleasant chat was had. Thanks guys you made an old fan very happy.
With chat done I suddenly realised I’d left my wife at the bar and looking over I saw her laughing and having a good chin wag with a couple of other ladies. So I mooched over hoping she wasn’t too cross I’d just left her there but she was having a whale of a time.
She broke off conversation to say hi and said to me that she thinks she had put her foot in it. Why? I asked and she went on to say she was standing at the bar waiting for me and a woman was standing next to her and asked her how she enjoyed the gig. My wife’s reply was that is was ok but she was only here for her husband and she wasn’t a proper fan. She then asked the lady why she was here to which the reply came –
“Well I just happen to be married to the drummer!”
My wife then thought she had said the wrong thing but the pair of them just burst out laughing and from then on they got on like a house on fire. Well my wife introduced me to Suzanne Jupp and a right royal laugh was then had for quite a while in to the small hours – thanks Suzanne you’re a legend and you made my wife’s night.
Farewells were said and we headed off back to the hotel.
Well that’s the shortened version of my diary – I could have prattled on much more. But thanks guys for a great night, the new album sounds tremendous and hope to see more shows in the very near future – and my wife will come again but only if she knows Mrs Jupp will be there!
The pic is of me, Eve and Messrs Overland and Davis taken by the lovely Mrs Jupp.