Other than the obvious health issues, the thing which has annoyed me most about my current condition is the amount of nights out that I’ve missed.
It was my office Christmas night out this week, and despite assurances from Kay that senior management had said it was okay for me to go, I didn’t think it appropriate for someone who hasn’t been to work since late October and who’s been signed off work until early January to attend it.
More than that, my group of best buddies here in London traditionally have a night out every year, where we drink, sing and occsionally dance. This annual event used to be held in The Dublin Castle in
Cardiff (ooops!) Camden, but over the past couple of years has moved to The Effra in Brixton. Despite the appearance I may have given by writing lots of posts on here in the past couple of weeks, I’m by no means fully recovered yet (I’ll explain in one of my hospital-related posts shortly) and just not up to it (note: as opposed to up for it, which I definitely am), and so I’ll sadly be missing out this year. Guys, girls: I love you all, and hope you have a blast without me, implausible as that may seem.
But much as I love my friends, even worse than that is missing a load of gigs I had tickets for.
For a start, a few months ago, before I was taken ill, my longest serving (30+ years and still going strong) friend Richie got in touch to see if I fancied going to see Johnny Marr at The Roundhouse. I’d seen Johnny a few years ago at Brixton Academy and loved every minute of it, so I of course agreed. Richie bought tickets, but around a week before the gig, reality kicked in and, extremely reluctantly,I had to let him know my attendance was not going to be possible.
This, lifted from a 6Music performace back in 2014, seems appropriate to post:
When Richie bought the tickets for Johnny, rather than paying him for them, I suggested a gig which I’d pay for. That gig happens tonight in Islington’s O2 Academy, and is long-time beloved of us both The Wedding Present, performing their 1988 album Tommy. Again, I had to let Richie know at the weekend that I couldn’t go, but, nice guy that I am, I insisted that was no reason for him and +1 not to go, so I forwarded the tickets on to him this week. Richie: Merry Christmas – I hope they get to you in time, and if so, that you have ruddy swell old time.
Tommy, according to Wikipedia, is a compilation album “gathering the band’s first four singles, their B-sides and selected tracks from two early radio sessions.”
It includes this piece of majestic anguish:
Galling as it is is missing out on those two gigs, they pale into comparison with my not being able to go a three-night stand at Camden’s Electric Ballroom by Teenage Fanclub.
The gigs had been arranged in support of the release of the remastered versions of the albums they released…well, this explains it nicely:
To make matter worse, it turned out that the gigs woud also mark the end of original member and significant song-writer Gerard Love’s involvement with the band. So, here’s a Love-penned tune from each of those remastered albums:
If you’d like to read a review of the Glasgow gigs from this tour, I’d thoroughly recommend visiting the ever-wonderful Plain or Pan. It made me sick, not just about what I’d missed out on, but how well written it is, neither of which should have surprised me in the slightest.