It took me longer to cycle the 8 miles to Carlisle than it took Ellie to drive from Macclesfield, 150+ miles away, the recent heavy snow fall had made cycling difficult. When I got to Swanny’s house, the Red Aligatorz rehearsal was into the 2nd song.
It has been 31 years since Swanny, Ellie, Wotto and myself had played together, but again, it seemed to me, like it only was last week. The music was tight, lively and enjoyable, as what I remembered it.
We played acoustically except for a microphone and Swanny’s lead guitar, and the echo from the kitchen rebounded off the tiled walls…why are the best gigs always in kitchens?
We played an hour of music, one song after the other, just like 31 years ago, before stopping for tea (how very British). No messing about, except for laughing…that had not changed either, the songs were still in our hands and brains, which is not surprising really as we had played them so many times in the past. After that hour the windows were steaming up, the heat from our voices, sweat from our bodies, and having 4 blokes in a small kitchen was a nice contrast to the snow and icy air outside.
Into this sweaty male energetic atmosphere walked Louise Porter, a photographer from The Cumberland News who had come to take a few photos for an article that is going to be published this week. We trotted outside to get the photos done then when Louise had gone, we rehearsed the set once more.
It was great to see the 4 of us back together, time had changed us physically but not the banter and the music we played. If anything, we sounded a lot better, more rhythmic, more steady and just as unpredictable.
(L-R: Me, Ellie, Swanny, Wotto)
Here is an edited demo recording from that day:0