CPB U.S. Tour 2006, Day 23 – 18th Gig, The Warehouse, Springfield, IL

The Warehouse looked uncannily like… well… a warehouse!

Apparently there had just been a tornado there. When we were driving to the venue we saw chimneys lying destroyed on the roofs of houses and other general signs of destruction.

The sound at this gig was pretty bad! We played ok but, due to the fact that we were playing in a warehouse, I’m pretty sure there was a massive amount of reverb which probably took away any clarity from the sound… I could be wrong though… I wasn’t out front. On stage I could hear two drummers… the Carl onstage and the Carl being reflected off the back wall!

Despite the adverse sound conditions I remember this gig well, and perhaps always will, as a great experience. It was at this gig that I had my reason for being on stage challenged. I’m sorry to say that, in most musical situations I had found myself in before this gig, being on-stage was about ME showing people what I could do. However, the fact that the town had just been hit by a tornado coupled with the fact that the acoustics were not great at the venue, inspired a new perspective on performing. Whilst I was playing I had a realisation that some people in the audience had probably suffered a great deal due to the tornado and so I really wanted to give them something… I really wanted to give them a good performance, a lift and (pardon the cheese) an evening of light to lift them away from the dark situation that they had found themselves in. I remember “Fanfare for the Common Man” being a particularly reflective moment in the evening… the intro music made me feel emotional (well, almost, I am British you know!).

Throughout the rest of the tour Fanfare, in particular the intro music (solo trumpet played from a CD), has had the same effect on me. I’ve often taken the time to just look round the audience, taking in all we have in common.

For exclusive content please join Paul in his Patreon Community