Friday, August 04, 2006

The perfect night off

The perfect antidote to too much Greenbelt stess? Free tickets to a gig courtesy of a certain very wonderful "muddled-ginger-headed" person. A Random Act of kindness if you will.

The gig was actually the filming of a TV show for Channel 4 and kicked off at 6.30pm. That would ordinarily have been a bit of a rush, but in a happy piece of serendipity, our client, who nine months previously insisted we had to relocate to their offices, insisted a couple of weeks back that we move back to our own offices by the close of today, resulting in a half day off.

The eviction came as the result of yet another reorganisation and rethink on their side. Usually we'd do the actual physical move of crates and IT on the weekend to avoid losing staff time. However, our client is adamant we must be gone by close of play today and the team currently located in our own office, won't vacate, until the end of today.

So, as of 12 noon we had to have everything including computers all packed up, ready for the movers. Nothing else to do therefore but send everyone home.

So after a bit more emailing at home, I meet T (who enjoys the flexibility of the self-employed) in town, for early drinks and some Tapas at Dimitri's.

Looking round who should we spot at a nearby table, by Damon Gough aka Badly Drawn Boy. More of him later.

Heading to Granada Studios location it's all a bit chaotic, but we pick up our VIP passes and get given drinks vouchers. The main audience members have obviously arrived a little earlier and the runners are desperately trying to get them out the area next to the bar and into the studios. Accordingly we have to fight our way through a throng moving in the opposite direction to make it into the actual bar area. Emeging out of the crowd, I look up see some backwards writing on a frosted window and remark "Fuck me, we're in the Rovers Return!".

After a leisurely drink we get escorted down to the studio and take up our posts behind the cameras as the proceedings kick off with The View taking to the stage. The sound mix is appalling, but then I guess the priority is to record it for TV, not for the live audience. However, even with that mitigation in mind, there didn't seem to be anything in the band's performance to suggestion they'll be going much further.

Performances and links get repeated and various people are interviewed (including Bez and Jon Simms). Worn down by the heat, we escape for some air.

Next The Longcut demonstrated that it just might be possible to redeem the concept of a lead singer who doubles as the drummer.

Badly Drawn Boy was wonderful as expected; hearing him play Silent Sigh is always a highlight.

By the time Orson bring their brand of bland rock and stupid hats to the stage for one number (repeated a second time for the cameras), most of the audience have given up with the waiting around for hours and hours. They didn't miss much. The small collection of about 30 folk left huddled in front of the stage is a bit of an embarassment really - I'm predicting some tight camera angles...

With everything completed we're ushered back to the Rovers and into a cordoned off VIP area, where we're served complementary cocktails.

Anyway, the whole thing will be on TV next Friday, but don't expect to see us, we hid behind the cameras.

Having had our fill of ligging, T and I don't stop long at the aftershow, and head on to Atlas bar. En route on Deansgate a voice calls me and lo and behold it's J and I who I haven't seen for over a year. J and I started work together 13 years ago, but have kind of lost touch. Last time I saw her was, as she points out, in another bar on another night out, on the other side of town. Having caught up on news we go our separate ways, joking that we'll meet up (in a year or so) at some bar or other in the Northern Quarter.

After drinks in Atlas T and I call it a night and I'm home to write my review over a nightcap. Not sure that it's a good idea to write it after having been drinking for a good 10 hours, but I am at least sober enough to realise that calling Orson 'twats in hats' probably isn't what the BBC are after...

A top night all in all. J you're a legend missus, and the planned pre-festival curry's on me ;-)

1 comment:

stuart said...

I should have been there, it could have been me!