it’s mid june 2011. the summer has begun in the north east. i’m preparing for a perfect trilogy of summer music festivals next month SEE SUMMER FESTIVAL NEWS but first i must recap the sweet spring holiday tour of fun we experienced with some of you.
it started, back in my homeland of schwyz switerland. the small town in the alps, that my grandfather and our line of Auf der Maurs have been born and bread for 100′s of years. i first became acquainted with the town and some of my distant relatives during my the tour for my first album. it was very brief day trip and walk through the Auf der Maur family tree book and town but it left an impression. so i planned my return last november during the OOOM 2010 tour, we had a day off, so we made the bus and band take a detour to the picture perfect land again…. 2010 Schwyz Day Off
NOW it’s 2011 and we returned to celebrate an Auf der Maur love union: my second cousin Fred married Nicole, a local musician and music journalist – they met during my visit last year. we joined them for their wedding party, then they organized a show for us to play in neighboring town of Brunnen. a beautiful 90 year old female Auf der Maur was in the crowd and came to meet me after the show with photos of her and my grandfather to prove the relation. cousin veronika! very very sweet indeed.
next stop ROMA! we had the luxury of having 2 ays off to walk the streets and endless churches of rome…..
back to the music. rome show was at beautiful venue circle degli artisti, it was only our second show of this experimental set stripped down to just bass, guitar & synths. we were still finding our musical footing, but as always the roman open hearted, expressive passionate ones, made us feel great. gratzie my roman clan of lovers of sound. there was an honorary polish lover of sound there, przemyslaw! same video man who made the BEHIND THE OOOM IN POLAND tour report in 2010. this time he flew to ROMA and made MAdMRome document for us!
next! sardinia! this was the most southern and isolated parts place i’ve played in a long time…. getting there was old fashioned and surreal: 17 hour ferry ride, each way! there and back! amazing late 80′s kind of Shining-esque boat. we went a bit loopy, watched a polish thriller POSSESSION (isabelle adjiani’s fist film, holy fuck!!!!) anyhow – the people of sardinia were warm and appreciative and we played a brand new modern community performance space . great facility. gratzie!
please imagine what a week in italia means, primarily! amazing food, pasta up to three times a day and lots of jokes about their absurd president’s sex life. it was my first time in TUSCANY too! wow. livorno is an interesting port town. within an hour of being there we went for a walk on the beach, and a young man recognized me, welcomed us and said “you will like it here, the history is all pirates and prostitutes” i do love a freaky transient place! the venue “THE CAGE” was amazing, an old art deco era theater on the grounds of an abandoned fancy old tuberculosis hospital. toto was the fun promoter, who filled us with delicious food and wine and told us about the left wing socialist history of the city. shellac was playing there the following week….
next stop! italian swiss land! ascona, lovely community theater: teatro de gatto. hosted by not a concert promoter, but a music fan architect! ALEX CROW & JEFF LOUCH joined me on this experimental sound spring vacation. they were perfecto blond twins with great chops, good attitudes and matching slick hair! thanks guys for coming on the trip x
next! germanic zig zag. in and out of austria and germany before you could even stop us from getting ticketed on the austrian freeway for not having a “highway pass”… oh no actually they did stop and fine us for that. too bad. VIENNA was a grand highlight of the tour. we played a classy jazz club called “porgy & bess (not sure what that means…) and the crowd was as intense and fantastic as we remembered them from the OOOM TOUR – VIENNA danke! i also learned that fleischer means butcher in german! also, very talented rock photographer RENE HUEMER joined us to document the show. this black & whites are thanks to him that night x
BACK INTO SWISSLAND! yes this was a swiss heavy tour, very very interesting for the family roots research… x in st gallen we played switzerland’s first punk club. still funded by government arts & culture grants, but looking more like a perfect high end music venue by north american standards… amazing organic foods, juices, gear and all that a musician can want. we learned that the sweet bartender next door came from a town that did not grant women the right to vote til the 1990′s…. excuse me??????????????????? ouch. conflicting feelings in my swiss blood right now.
the next day was DAY OFF W/ HR GIGER & QOTSA! what would your redhead writer call a dream day off? picturesque french switzerland countryside, intimate 1500 person outdoor festival with Queens headlining (with perfect loud drone of the SWANS playing before them) – playing their first album head to toe, then an hour of diverse other songs from their catalogue – all happening 40 minutes away from my favorite sci fi fantastical visual mastermind HR GIGER’s (see ” i need i want i will” from my first album) museum in a small castle in the historic town of Gruyere. 24 hours of perfect sound & visual inspiration affirmation.
(i love giger’s BABY MACHINES above)
leading us to the last of the swiss shows – to carry us over to the end of the mini tour: LONDON. our show ended up being the same day as the BIG deal final football match (ever heard of manchester united? well they got beat by barcelona that night) not far from BUSH HALL, the beautiful baroque small theater we were playing. this did not affect or penetrate the intimacy and sweetness of this show. london town, you felt like even more of a home coming than a tiny town in switzerland. so open. so receptive and attentive. aren’t brits supposed to be highly intelligent, emotionally chilly, really clever funny pup dwellers, with little time for romanticism and emotional stuff? not this crowd… after i sang “father’s grave” a woman from the crowd said “your father would be proud”. thank you for sharing the intimacy of music with me.
end of the spring tour………
next icelandic 3 day detour of amazing landscapes, people, lambs & horses. within the first 6 hours of being in reykjavik, i got me an icelandic wool poncho and had a bjork AND jonsi sightings! we rented a car, saw baby spring lamps everywhere, small fishing villages with nothing but a dock and church. rented a car to visit the small, but the most “cosmic” of the glaciers : snaefellsnes. day light for 23 hours. we are seduced to return for more one day.
while flying over greenland, i had time to reflect on my first time alive and playing music with a second heartbeat inside…. i am building a creature child in my center! mother to be, just in time for October Rust… Libra / Scorpio cusp.
happy to expand and ready to love x but FIRST ….
JULY SUMMER FESTIVALS to embrace!