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Ginger Wildheart Band Tour 2016 – Day 6 Newcastle

NEWCASTLE, Trillians – 17th July – Day 6

Copyright Toshi 2016

Ginger, Danny & Stidi in Newcastle. Photo by Toshi

It was always going to be a special one, my hometown gig and all that, but Newcastle surpassed all expectations. And then some.

The day started with Ryan and I whooshing off to Viking tattoo studio to be inked by Chris and Lee from Crashed Out, who will open up tonight’s bill. Both great guys, great band and great tattoos. It’s a sterling start to any day, and I leave with a new tattoo of the ‘shit ice cream cone’ design from G*A*S*S* (a beautiful bit of artwork by Harry Waine), and Chris does him proud.

With fresh ink and deepening bromance, Ryan and I leave for the venue to be greeted by ever cheerful Main Grains, with Danny on good form seemingly laughing for the entire day.

Copyright Toshi 2016

Ginger’s new tattoo – artwork by Harry Waine, photo by Toshi

With soundcheck in the bag it’s back to the bus where a very drunk Stidi stops by to say hello. It’s great to hang out with Danny and Stidi, being reminded of how far we go back and how much we achieved for three South Shields lads making a name in the smoke. London was a different place back then, and genuinely thrilling in a way that seems absent these days. Right now, Newcastle is a more exciting place to be.

Old friends, new friends and family turn up throughout the day, until all I’m able to do is give a few minutes to people I’d love to spend the evening chatting with. That’s the nature of being in a touring band, there is seldom the time that you’d ideally like to give to people. I can only hope they understand.

The show is amazing, with a stuffed to capacity Trillians lending a rousing response to rival Glasgow itself. There’s nothing quite like an amazing Newcastle show to raise the spirits and make all the years of work totally worthwhile and slightly surreal, especially when the set is largely solo material but still gets the audience singing along like they’ve known the songs forever. But it’s the encore that really sees the audience explode into a joyous frenzy, as Danny and Stidi perform with me for the first time since 2004. It’s beautifully raucous and ramshackle, and all the better for it.
The show finishes with the crowd and band mingled in song as celebrations are carried on to the bus, and through the night.

Copyright @This_Is_Kit 2016

Toshi & Danny. Photo by Toshi

Newcastle, you have been amazing. And I couldn’t have been more proud to be a Geordie. It’s been a very long road from writing songs in my mother’s house to playing to a local audience of familiar faces. Some I recognise from going to gigs as a kid, and now they’re paying to see me.

It’s impossible to fully explain the feeling of accomplishment. Suffice to simply say that every shred of effort was totally worthwhile, and serves as a potent lesson to any young musicians out there that see the road ahead as a desolate and endless trawl. It’s important to remember that no amount of effort is ever wasted.

Success, whatever that means to you, is a result of every hours work you put in throughout the years. Every time you pick yourself up from another defeat is a signal to the future, and a statement that you have the mustard needed to stay strong and determined.

Tonight punk rock won, and the victory tasted like Newcastle Broon.

Gx

The Ginger Wildheart Band is still out on tour for the following remaining shows:

– Tue 19th July, Wolverhampton Slade Rooms (support from Ryan Hamilton & The Traitors and Massive Wagons)
– Wed 20th July, Cambridge Portland Arms (support from Ryan Hamilton & The Traitors and Massive Wagons)
– Thu 21st July, Cambridge Portland Arms (support from Ryan Hamilton & The Traitors and The Main Grains)
– Fri 22nd July, London Brooklyn Bowl (support from Ryan Hamilton & The Traitors and Hey! Hello!)

Tickets for all shows are available from thewildhearts.probitymerch.com/listings

Ginger Wildheart Band Tour 2016 – Day 2 Leicester & Day 3 Leeds

LEICESTER, Musician – 13th July – Day 2
LEEDS, Brudenell Social Club – 14th July – Day 3

Copyright Lynsey Markinson 2016

Ginger & Danny backstage in Leeds
Photo by Lynsey Markinson

With first day gremlins out of the way, the second show, in Leicester, went ahead without even the slightest a hint of a hitch. Guitars maintained their tuning, ear-pieces stayed firmly in place and the audience, once again, proved to be the most warm and well voiced bunch that a chap could ever hope for. The Musician is rammed and I finally get to see Massive Wagons and Ryan Hamilton doing their thing, and receiving a heroes welcome in the bargain. It’s warming stuff indeed.

The Musician is an amazing venue, once again sporting numerous paintings with musical luminaries sharing wall space. Lemmy is hanging out with Richard Thompson in one area, while John Peel and David Bowie enjoy a spot elsewhere. After the brisk removal from yesterday’s venue, we opt for a swift exit once the show is done, vacating through the cheering crowd and into the comfort of the bus.
I’m drained and fairly winded after a 90 minute set in similar conditions to a pizza oven, and decide to lay in my bunk until the bus fills with people. I won’t wake up until 3pm the next day. Holy shit. Guess I needed the sleep, huh?

Ryan and his band are sharing the bus from this point in. I didn’t even see them to greet the first night of their stay, so it’s a welcome relief to have them sharing the dressing room the next day in Leeds.

And what a show this turned out to be. Complete with backstage tattooing by the lovely Chris Jenko, who tattooed my Dolly Parton tattoo a while ago. It is fitting that his next work should be directly below Dolly’s signature, and depicts a scene of Newcastle Bridge and the Tyne below, in Chris’s distinct artistic style. It’s only fitting that I tattoo him in return, whereupon I give him the quickest tattoo he’s ever seen or had done. He is visibly relieved.

Copyright Chris Jenko 2016

Ginger’s new tattoo

Copyright Chris Jenko 2016

Chris’s new tattoo!

The Main Grains are opening the bill tonight, and it’s a joy to hang out with Danny again, having briefly made our peace at Camden Rocks earlier in the year.

My little boy, Taylor, is here too, and will be staying on the bus for the next few days. What a circus for an 8 year old boy to hitch a ride with. I’m getting a contact buzz just living vicariously through him, as he helps all three bands sell swag at the merchandesk (a word I made up onstage in Leicester, completely by accident). He also makes a small mint by employing a swear-jar scheme around The Main Grains, who – credit to them – pay him a pound for ever swear word he hears them say. He’d have made less money charging the bands a pound for every note they play.

Getting to watch the bands from backstage in the legendary Brudenell (Chris Catalyst’s favourite venue in the world, and with good reason) is a pleasure. The Main Grains play to a rapturous reception by the packed out venue, while Ryan Hamilton enjoys mass sing-a-longs from the crowd.

It’s my first time ever playing this amazing venue, and I hope to come back many times to come. A great onstage sound, and a very animated crowd see us playing a very comfortable set. We seem to have found our swagger three shows in, and are playing like a band who have been playing for decades, not just three shows!

Gx

The Ginger Wildheart Band is still out on tour for the following remaining shows:

– Mon 18th July, Manchester Deaf Institute (support from Ryan Hamilton & The Traitors and Massive Wagons)
– Tue 19th July, Wolverhampton Slade Rooms (support from Ryan Hamilton & The Traitors and Massive Wagons)
– Wed 20th July, Cambridge Portland Arms (support from Ryan Hamilton & The Traitors and Massive Wagons)
– Thu 21st July, Cambridge Portland Arms (support from Ryan Hamilton & The Traitors and The Main Grains)
– Fri 22nd July, London Brooklyn Bowl (support from Ryan Hamilton & The Traitors and Hey! Hello!)

Tickets for all shows are available from thewildhearts.probitymerch.com/listings