A day in morpeth by Olivia Vare

Monday 27th June 2016 in Morpeth

Me , nana , macey and grandad went to feed the ducks on the bridge.Then we went and met daddy he had just got off the bus and then we went to the charity shop to buy some records and Cds

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Fish n Chip time!

After that we went to get our lunch at the fish and chip shop I had sausage and chips with tomato sauce macey had fish and chips tomato sauce. after we had our lunch grandad took us to the park but daddy and nana were realy slow and they were still drinking their tee while we were on the round about with grandad pushing us MY HEAD NEARLY CAME OFF. Then I had to get off because I felt sick then when macey finely got off we went and had a boat ride for half an hour.

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it was £4 there were me , daddy and macey in one boat and nana and grandad in the other daddy flicked nana with his oar and nana was soaking wet but we were all laughing me and macey were draging our hands in the water and daddy said that he used to jump off the bridge into the river and swim in the river when he was little but now your not aloud to jump off the bridge . After we got out the boat we came home and I wrote this story on daddys computer for his blog.

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This is me writing todays adventure

By Olivia V

#AMAZINGADVENTURESALWAYS

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Off to play in Whitley Bay!

Bank Holiday Monday in Whitley Bay!

This weekend has just passed by pretty nicely. Unfortunately Derek was still unable to get himself ready for the gigs so I had Mike Slaughter coming along with me to help out and play alongside me for the shows but we still managed to have two fantastic gigs! The lovely seaside Smugglers Bar in Sunderland was on Friday and then one of the friendliest places you could ever play is the Billingham Catholic Club.

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Setting up with Mike at Billingham Catholic Club

The Curly one has been away all weekend in Norfolk on her own musical adventures performing at a festival with the band and my little smily ones have been on a brilliant little break with my parents on the farm up in Belford so I had Sunday all to myself. Curly was heading back up around 10pm on Sunday night and I managed to catch up with Daz & Sav (two quarters of Growing Robots) at Morpeth Rugby Club for a few cheeky beers and a chinwag.

It was a lovely sunny Bank Holiday Monday and after a lazy lie in after our busy weekend it was time to get up and get ready for the little ones coming back with my parents and make some adventure time. The kids were full of life as always when they tipped up and after a few cuppas we decided to head over to Whitley Bay with the halflings, Curly and my parents in search of some fun.

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The wind swept but wonderful Whitley Bay!

Whitley Bay is a little seaside town along the North East coast of Northumberland and home to Spanish City, a big dome in the centre which as a kid was part of the theme park, rides and lots of amusement arcades. I used to head over there every couple of weeks when I was in high school and play on the arcade machines and all the lastest games for a few hours or until my money ran out.

Whitley Bay is about fifteen minutes from my home and has been undergoing a lot of regeneration for a quite some time now. There is still lots of amusement arcades, fish and chip shops, bowling alley and ice cream shops around the Spanish City area and a lovely promenade which walks all the way along the coast of Tynemouth.

We headed down for in two cars and got parked up in no time and headed to the little bowling alley. The kids love it.. you can stick little barriers up too, so the bowls can bounce off the sides for some cool spinney sideways blaster shots. Curly & Olivia was playing against Mam & Macey whilst I took on Big-daddy Vare on another lane… I was hammering him until the very last shot when he over took me and beat me by one point! I wasn’t impressed… I thought I had it in the bag and I was gonna blackmail him into buying the fish ‘n’ chips later.

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Girls vs Girls while the men battled it out!

After that we headed into the amusements to win loads of tickets and spend them on lots of goodies at the ticket bar. We filled our cups up with change from the machines and off we went looking for some flashy games to spend our lovely pennies on. We got a heap of tickets out the machines and Olly spent her winnings on a teddy bear munsta ball and some glow in the dark bracelets whilst Macey spent her tickets on a Shopkins Sticker book and more glow in the dark bracelets.

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After that we headed for food along at the Coastline Chippy at South-beach. There was a kite festival on as we drove along the coast and there was some pretty impressive kites up in the air as we turned up at South Beach. The Coastline chippy has just been all done out and extended. I used to come here quite a bit with my Grandma & Grandad as they loved they’re fish & chips and it doesn’t get much better than at Coastline. I got myself a Coastline Haddock special with chips & mushy peas and I was well and truly ready for some nomnom! The food was lovely and the fish is always good! The work they had done inside had completely changed the place and it even had a bar in there in the middle to buy beers. The Ice cream side of the cafe was completely rammed with people queuing for they’re yummy ice cream fix. Olly was pulling funny faces and taking photo’s of everyone.

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Swapping bits n bobs for Olivias photo!

We had a lovely slow drive back with really full, rounded belly’s and smiles all around! We dropped the little half-pints off before heading home and heading out for some cheeky drinkys with Stevie & Kat to finish the day off in the bank holiday sunshine.

Hopefully you had a great weekend too and if you get a chance, stop off at Coastline Chippy for some lovely fish ‘n’ chips and let me know what you think! Jason

#amazingadventuresalways

Delaval Hall & Seaton Sluice

13. 3. 2016 – The Delaval Hall Adventure with Olly & Curly

For Christmas gone, Curly and I got a great gift from her mam Anne. She bought us both family passes for the National Trust which gives you access to over 500 special heritage places across the UK from the coastline, castles, countryside and historic buildings which are preserved by the National Trust. A really thoughtful gift meaning we can have some great adventures together and also the little ones too.

We hadn’t managed to use the cards yet but Olivia had written down a list of all the places she would like to visit from the handbook they send you in the post for free. One of the places on that list was Seaton Delaval Hall which was less than 10 minutes drive from my home near the coast.

The sun was shining and we had a spur of the moment idea to make the most of it while I was home and actually had a day of nothing planned together. I rang to see if the little ones wanted to come along with us, but Macey was heading to a Star Wars party dressed as Princess Leia. Olivia was at her grandmas and she was excited to come along with us though so we grabbed a few things and picked her up on the way. She was waiting outside dancing around in her pink tracksuit and new trainers full of smiles as always. I had never been to Deleval Hall either, even though I had drove past the impressive building thousands of times, so it was just as exciting for me. Hahaha

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Main Courtyard of Delaval Hall

Driving into the entrance you get a great view of the main hall. You head out to the left of the main place to a car park where you pass through a little shop and we got to show off our little National Trust cards. The lovely girl behind the counter gave Olly a little sheet of paper with birds and a pen and we had to spot the different kinds of birds around the castle. Hopefully we get to tick them all off and Olly gets a sticker on the way back out. We had a few jokes about looking for tits (blue tits and grey tits) in the trees as we looked at the sheet and headed out to the hall. Hahaha

There was a crazy little home made park made from trees and tunnels on the walk to the hall. We stopped as Olly spotted a big hill with a door in and wanted to go explore. It was the Ice Room with a huge stone pit inside. A bit like having a hugeeeeee fridge where they kept they’re game and fish away from the house.

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Olly & Curly working out the names of the horses in the stables area

After that we headed for a look at the picnic area and then into the stables. All the names of the horses were above each stable and you had to guess from clues which one went with which horse. Olly and Curly had a good spoach around and worked out all the names in no time.

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We then headed to the main courtyard. As you walk through the front of the building its quite an impressive site inside with a huge fireplace and all open so you can see up to the roof. Olly ran off as she seen some stairs and wanted to get upstairs as there was little viewing points but it was closed off unfortunately. Then she realised the stairs went downstairs , and started shouted “Dad…. the dungeonsssssss” Maria and Olly headed down and I followed downstairs into the gloomy underneath of the Hall. There was a huge wine cellar, perfect for Maria, and a lovely beer cellar about three times the size of my kitchen. The pantry and a few other rooms, also with barely any light. We headed back up after having a look about and headed out front to get some photos of the outside and the statue in the courtyard.

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Looking up the staircase from the bottom floor

We then headed to the west wing which was full of suits of armour and huge tables set for banquets. Upstairs was all the paintings of the Delaval family and someone showing you each one. Olly loved the huge magic paintings when the knees pointed at you no matter where you were and the eyes of them following you down the corridors. She spent a little time asking questions about a painting of a little boy and girl. We found out one of them died very young because he tried to be a little naughty with one of the kitchen staff and she gave him a swift kick to the groin which ended his life. Oooooooochas!!! Not a nice way to go huh?

We headed to the little cafe for some refreshments and a little giggle before we left to find somewhere for our dinner. Olly had my crazy pound shop glasses that made your eyes look funny on and we had a right laugh while I supped my lovely coffee. Olly took some photos of me and Curly with the glasses on too.

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Ollys photo of me in the poundshop crazy specs and Curly in the cafe

From there we headed five minutes along the road to the Waterford Arms, where I run a monthly buskers & open mic night with Derek, on the coast for some food and a little look around. I ordered a lamb Sunday lunch with half a Guinness, Olly ordered sausage, mash and peas and Curly had a salad as she was feeling a little under the weather. My dinner was absolutely amazing and the lamb was spot on. Olly was in a right giggly fettle and we had a right laugh at the table while we had our dinners. The Waterford is in such a great location too. Once we finished up our dinners and me and Olly had puddings we headed outside across the road to where all the boats are and took some photos as the sun was coming down. We hung around and wandered about for a little until the temperature started to drop then it was time to head home.Here is some of the photos I managed to grab on the walk.

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It was a lovely little day of adventure and so close to home. The hall is a great local place to visit and I cant wait for the summer to come around so we can head back and chill in the picnic area if we ever get any sunshine. It would also be a fantastic venue for an intimate little acoustic gig. The prices usually without a National Trust card aren’t so bad either at £6.30 entry for Adults and £3.15 for kids. There was a lot more we didn’t get to see too as you can wander around the gardens and pretty much any of the land to the rear of the Hall. So I’m looking forward to taking the little one with us too and Olly can be the tour guide next time!

Take care and catch you for the next adventure and ……. don’t forget to make plenty of  your own!

Jason, Amazing Adventures Always

Join me on instagram for more photos of my adventures HERE

Spiderman & T-rex

March 11th – The Crown , Scissett, Yorkshire

I woke up on the 11th of March, early doors to get my clothes and equipment packed for the little Yorkshire tour ahead. We were only away for two We Steal Flyers gigs so I didn’t need much for the trip. Mel (Derek’s wife) was picking me up around 11.30am to drive back up to her house and then we could leave from there. One of the gigs was in Scissett, Yorkshire and the other in Birstall, Yorkshire and are both repeat venues.

Mel grabbed me and my gear from Bedlington after a pit-stop to the yummy ‘Seahorse Chip shop’ and we headed back to her house and Derek and I had our lovely chip buttys before heading off on our drive. The chippy is an awesome way to set you up for the day!

We got the car packed up with the PA system and guitars and then we set off on our sunny drive from Broomhill, down the A1 to Yorkshire, with the ‘Hollywood Vampires’ album keeping us company for most of the journey.

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Derek watching TV after his furniture move about!

We turned up to our hotel for the night after two and a half hours drive, The Fairway in Barnsley which we have stayed in many times before on our musical travels around the country. A great little hotel with a nice bar and food downstairs and Derek’s favourite little mini beds in the family rooms. Hahah. We pulled up outside and parked right outside the doors of the reception and there was a huge man mountain of a guy walking in holding his clothes in one hand and on the back of his neck a huge tattoo of some darts with the name Kong above it. Derek loves his darts on Sky and with a quick google we found he was a professional Darts player with a bit of a crazy history thanks to the Wikipedia World telling on him. We tried to catch up with him for a photo opportunity but he was offski to his room and nowhere to be found anywhere.So we headed up to our room and Derek shoved his bed into the corner near the window so I couldn’t tickle his feet while he was sleeping.

After we had a hotel room yucky coffee I headed downstairs to feed my greed while Derek chilled in his room with a peanut butter sandwich. Before we left Mel had been talking about a Fajitas party she was having while we were away and I think I had been secretly fantasizing about them ever since she said the words. So…… ‘Spicy Cajun Chicken Fajitas’ in the bar was my choice and they was lurverly…. and spicy!

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Setting up the Pa for the gig!

The Crown in Scissett was twenty minutes drive from the hotel and we have played here many times before. It’s always a regular gig on our tours and always a fun gig with lots of friends and fans turning out for us what ever day of the week it is. I like the gig as the first half of the show everyone is quite quiet and we get to play more chilled and original songs and then when we play the second half of the show after the break they are all up for a good sing song and have some fun with the set. We had a star tambourine player this time who decided to join us on stage for a song and sat between Derek and I banging away looking at the floor. I think he may have been a little intoxicated. We finished up the second set and after seven encores later the land lady was still asking for us to play more but you have to stop somewhere and sometimes the show needs to stop in a certain place to leave the bar when its right. The gig was great fun as always though and we headed back to our hotel room with some lovely cheese and pickle sarnies, courtesy of the bar,  for an early morning snack before sleep time.

March 12th – The Black Bull, Birstall , Yorkshire

I woke up pretty early in the hotel and had a quick spoach around in the online world before rising completely. I needed a proper coffee so I headed downstairs for a quick chat with the Curly one and ordered myself a full English breakfast and coffee, I couldn’t help myself once I walked into the restaurant and smelt the yummy coffee and bacon aromas floating around my nostrils. Derek got packed up and joined me for a coffee a little while after and we sat and chilled in the bar for a couple of hours as we were officially homeless without a hotel room from midday.

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After chilling and chatting we headed to Barnsley to see if we could find any second hand shops around the town with goodies in. Its part of our little tour routine now when we are away to go wandering around towns and villages and find some decent second hand CD’s for the car or great books lying around in the charity shops without a home.

We managed to find lots of outdoor market stalls going on in the town centre and stumbled on an awesome comic stall with lots of great books, comics and DVDs. Derek got some great Spiderman comics as a little present for his little daughter Rebecca as she loves her comics and I managed to find an awesome score ‘The Black Crowes – Shake your money maker’ CD for the car journey to the gig. A great little wander around buying other bits and pieces and then we headed back to the car and drove thirty minutes to Birstall to the Black Bull which was the next gig.

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The awesome Comic book stall at Barnsley Market

We were there by 4:30pm so it was a long time before our gig at 9:00pm. We got the equipment in and I had a cheeky half of Doombar then we headed upstairs to the old courtroom above the pub where they hold a few different music nights. It still has the old judge boxes in and we thought we would quickly make a little video whilst we had the place to ourselves. Here it is!

We had a little back room area near where we played in the bar and when we came out to start at 9:00pm, all the tables and chairs in front of us were full of familiar faces and the lights were turned out. I loved the first set and the quietness while we performed but then we came out for the second set and plugged in and there was no guitar coming through the PA system and after a few channel changes, some crazy noises and lead changes it wasn’t going to happen. Its a nightmare sometimes when things go wrong and you can’t find a solution or a fault anywhere. After I tried everything I could think of we asked the crowd if they would mind us doing the second set unplugged and told them what was happening. They were all fine with it and we left the vocal mics on pushed back a little, gathering some of the acoustic sound for the PA. It worked out great as the crowd were well behaved and there to see us live. It was a totally different gig to our usual second set but the challenge is always accepted and everyone loved it! We nailed it and had a great time with everyone and its always another experience of playing unplugged incase anything happens in the future!.

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An hour after the gig finished and people were still hanging around!

At the end of the show, we were nearly packed up and a lovely lady asked us to play a complete unplugged song for the bar before we left and she would stick a contribution in our little merchandise funds before we headed off. We played ‘My Girl’ unplugged and the bar was completely silent for us and it was a great little few minutes in the Black Bull.

We hit the road around midnight with ‘Tenacious D’ in the CD player for most of the journey home and landed at Derek’s house around 2:30am where Curly was waiting to pick me up and take me back to Bedlington for sleepy time after our little mini tour of two days!

I hope your still enjoying the reading and stories of my journeys through out the year! Thanks for all the continued support and taking a little time from your busy lives to delve into mine a little. See you somewhere soon!

Jason – Amazing Adventures Always

..last show & goodbyes!

Day 11 – Last gig of the Tour, Shamrocks

The last gig of the We Steal Flyers winter tour was back at Shamrocks Irish Bar in Lucerne. A five minute walk around the corner from the great Hotel Schweizerhof we were staying in. Derek and I didn’t really make it up in time and missed out on an amazing feast for breakfast at the Hotel Schweizerhof. I woke up at 10am ish and Derek messaged me not long after. Unfortunately the breakfast finished at 10am so without a time machine and a flux capacitor we weren’t going to make it. Sad times!

We had to meet Mark at 1pm at Shamrocks to load in and get set-up as there was a few rugby games on through out the day and the bar was going to be jam packed. We landed and got the gear and and marked our territory in the corner of the pub with speakers, mic stands and chairs, hoping that no one would cross the sacred musicians line.

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Shamrocks Irish Bar , Lucerne

As I said, sadly we missed out on the breakfast, so we ordered some food to keep us alive at the Irish bar. Derek had a mahoosive plate full of chilli, chips and chicken nuggets on the side and I went for a full Irish breakfast. We then headed back to the rooms to jump in our muckle massive baths again (not together) and then relax until gig time. I pretty much played guitar all afternoon, working on a new original song and playing around with a few covers too. I also managed to give my new little blogging camera a try again and recorded some footage while I was playing around with Tom Petty s ‘Free Fallin’. I used to play this alongside Mike Slaughter at the Open Mic and add some harmony’s with him and lately my little daughter Macey has been singing it a lot with me too. So here is a little video of me playing around with it unplugged in the Keb’ Mo’ room of the Hotel Schweizerhof.

We left for the gig around 9:00pm and had a little wander along the front of the lake outside the hotel and took some photos. The swans were floating around in the darkness with the Railway Station all lit up behind them in the distance on the other side of the lake. I could of stayed out there a lot longer but we had to get to Shamrocks for the last gig of the tour.

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The Railway Station and KKL Music venue, Lucerne Lake

When we turned up the place was already full and we managed to squeeze over into our corner near the bar. Shamrocks is a pretty small bar and when its full it can be quite wild. Most of our friends and fans through-out the tour had turned back out for our last show and we had a brilliant night. A good way to end the tour with lots of people enjoying the music together and me enjoying my lovely Guinness without even having to move to order one. Hahahah

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The view from our musical corner before we started the gig!

We finished up at 12:50am with our last song and I headed out for a few more sneaky beers in Lucerne before heading home to my hotel room. I had my alarm set and I wasn’t missing breakfast this time around.

Day 12 – Time to head for home!

We madeeeeeeeeeeee it!! Derek and I both got up and managed to get down stairs in time for breakfast and it was definitely worth waiting for. The Hotel Schweizerhof pretty much had everything you could think of , laid out for breakfast. It was all amazing too! We both had a bellyful of all sorts and then headed back to our rooms to pack up and get ready to meet Mark and Stefi downstairs to say our Goodbyes. We had a quick coffee and before we knew it, we were heading to the airport in Stefis car. She was driving this time after my little speeding incident although I think she was a little rough from the night before and I probably would have been a safer bet. Hahha.

We got stuck in traffic from an accident on the motorway ahead of us on the way and weren’t sure we were going to make our flight for a little while but Stefi managed to get us there safely and in good time to check in our bags. We said our little goodbyes again to Switzerland and Stefi and took a quick photo before we headed back to the UK. The mission was well and truly accomplished again. We nailed another tour and made a whole new We Steal Flyers story to leave behind with the help of great people in a great country. Thank you for reading Amazing Adventures Always, taking part in our winter tour through Switzerland and of course for supporting us in what we love to do!

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Our final photo with Stefi in the airport before we set off for the UK

Jason, Amazing Adventures Always

www.westealflyers.co.uk

…The Blaydon races

Day 10 – Schweizerhoff, Lucerne

It was time to get out of my little cosy Pickwicks , Lucerne hotel room and head off to another hotel which was about 10mins walk. I headed to the Hotel Schweizerhoff which is right on the main drag of Lucerne. Its a 5 star beautiful hotel and the Schweizerhof is backed by five generations of family tradition and has been standing in the centre of Lucerne for over 170 years. Each of their amazing new award-winning rooms tells a story featuring some of the musical guests which have performed or stayed there and We Steal Flyers were performing and staying for the last two nights of the tour here.

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Hotel Schweizerhoff in Lucerne

Its always exciting when we arrive at the hotel and I’m always excited to see what my room theme is too. This time I arrived in the Keb’ Mo’ room. On the glass writing desk there is a book which has all the descriptions of each artist and then there is a small glass case lit up with some items the artist left behind! Keb’ Mo’s cool spirally hat, some photos of himself and a signed piece of paper saying he enjoyed his stay. He also signed the bathroom wall. Hahahha….

The first thing I did when I got to my room was throw my stuff in, got out my laptop and put on some of Keb’ Mo’ on spotify while I slipped into the huge bath tub to relax with some lurrverly blues guitar and vocals. The muckle bath-tub is definitely one of my favourite ‘looking forward to moments’ of the Switzerland tours and I was in there for a good couple of hours pretending to be a dolphin and drinking coffee.

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The Keb’ Mo’ Room

The gig tonight was in the hotel bar area. We have played here many times before on previous tours and its always nice to be looked after before, during and after the show. The room has a big kind of ballroom feel too it with a big grand piano standing in the corner and we have lots of room to move about and shake our little legs about.

We headed down for a brilliant feast in the restaurant with Mark before gig time and I still have no idea what I was eating. We had some kind of soup for starter, then some kind of meat that seemed to be wrapped in omelette and weird floury, potato little things with herbs and some amazing apple pie for pudding. We pretty much had the place to ourselves and the date went well! Aha.

Mark was doing his Whisky tasting alongside the show and we were doing three sets tonight. There was lots of our buddy’s and fans turned up again for the gig and we had a bunch of English people sitting right in front of us who at one point was shouting out “singggg the Blaydon Races” and before we knew it Mr. Bill Wier was up and took over the sing along for us while we fumbled our way through it. Bill was right up for it and the lads out front loved the little on the spot rendition.

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Bill joining us for his rendition of The Blaydon Races

The rest of the gig was finished off and I sneaked another quick whisky in! As you doooo! A few of us headed out for a couple of cheeky beers after the gig and ended up in down-town. A great little rock venue hidden around the cobbled streets of the old town. After that it was back to my lovely 5 star bed to sleep like a log and get up for an amazing full on breakfast from the restaurant in the morning and one more gig to go.

Jason – Amazing Adventures Always

www.westealflyers.co.uk

…a snowy swan lake!

Day 9 – Lucerne to Immensee and back

I woke up to day nine of the tour and opened my little red hotel room curtains to the view of Lucerne lake being scattered in heavy snow. The lake looks stunning no matter what time or what is happening outside with the weather and this tour it has went from a dark gloomy lake to sparkling in the sunshine, heavy rain bouncing off the water and now snow. It was perfect. The swans outside were acting like they had never seen snow before and they we’re doing crazy fast circles round and round as the snow landed on them by the bridge. It was like watching children playing and they looked like they were having lots of fun together in their tight little groups of paddling buddys.

We were travelling to Immensee in Zug for tonight’s gig at the Sprue & Weisen Bar. Mark was driving us and Steffi had been messaging already saying she was cooking chilli for us at the bar and had been a little generous with a bottle of red wine. Not to the chilli but to herself as she cooked us up our meal. We have played at this venue on quite a few other tours and this place had connections with Steffi’s family. Its a great, moody, low lit bar and its also a smoking bar. I’ve been off the cigarettes for 15 months now but when I see people smoking , I still miss it! I doubt that will ever go away though when I spend such a lot of my time in bars, clubs and venues.

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There is always time for a quick selfie before the gig!

We loaded in and set up the PA system and had a quick sound check, then it was time for our food. Steffi sat us down in the bar and came out with her amazing feast for us all. A great big pan of yummy chilli and fresh roasted potatoes to fill us up. She did an amazing job on the food and we pretty much demolished all of it. Lots of her friends and family had turned up to the bar and Christoph the owner of the place. We got caught up with everyone and met some newbies and before we knew it, it was time to get started even though I think we all felt like we needed a lie down after all the great food.

The first set flew by and was nice and chilled , in the break Steffi asked if she could get up and play a song before we started again and if I would join her. Christoph joined us too and Steffi got through her first time on a microphone playing and singing a song to an audience. We had a great laugh and Steffi could hardly get up off the chair at the end of her song. I’m not sure if that was the nerves or the red wine from the cooking or a mix of both. Hahaha.

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Steffi, Christoph singing Wagon Wheel @ Spreu & Weisen

We finished off the second set and after the gig we said our goodbyes and headed back to Lucerne. Mark and I headed to Shamrocks for a couple of cheeky Guinness where we met a lovely Swiss guy who was so full of beans. He had a big guitar badge on his jacket and we got talking about a few things at the bar while his wife and friends sat behind us chatting away.

He asked us if we would head to Wonderbar with them for a drink. Mark had to head back but I’m not one to pass up on a beer and a bit banter so I headed to Tschuppis Wonderbar with three complete strangers to the other side of town. The music is always great in Wonderbar and there was a rock DJ on in the corner playing all sorts of great stuff. We had a few beers, giggles and danced around the bar with beer mats stuck everywhere. When it was time to head back we said our goodbyes and I headed back to the hotel ready for some shut eye! On day 10 we have to move hotels to the wonderful Schweizerhof for our last two days. Two more gigs to go!

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My new buddy & partner in crime for the night!

Jason , Amazing Adventures Always

www.facebook.com/westealflyers

..the lady’s of the night!

Day 8 – Lucerne, Switzerland

We were over half way of the We Steal Flyers swiss tour! We had two days off to relax and get ourselves ready for the next four gigs. We made it back safely the day after Grindelwald in Patrick Shumakers rocket ship, and somehow lived to tell the tale. The two days flew by pretty quickly and after eating chicken, lots of YouTube songs, Noblesse coffe and some more writing, before I knew it, it was time to meet Mark at Shamrocks Irish Bar in Lucerne to get set up for our Wednesday gig.

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Time off with half a chicken and some Rivella!

Shamrocks was 5 minutes walk from our hotel in central Lucerne and we met Mark there to load in the equipment at 4.30pm. We quickly stuffed our gear and guitars into our little corner of the Irish Bar and I grabbed a little early beer and Derek had a lovely fresh glass of Orange Juice as he does!

Its unusual to be playing the Irish Bar on a Wednesday for us and usually its on a Saturday or Sunday at the end of the tour and it can get a bit wild for sure. I started setting up and I had half a PA system to set-up for the room then linking into another in-house system as well. Leads and cables everywhere and no electric points anywhere near us to be seen. I changed three mic cables on my pedal as they weren’t working whilst trying to disco step around our little corner. I doubt my buddy back in the UK Mr. Rob Saddler doesn’t have these problems. He has just won an award for “FOH Engineer of the year” and has been on tour with James Bay for quite a while now. Its great to see a lovely local lad and buddy doing so well at something they love.

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Great plateful at Shamrocks Irish Bar in Lucerne

We managed to get set up and sound checked by 5.30pm and I ordered myself a lovely plate of nachos, chilli and cheese, with guacamole and salsa! OOOOOOOshhhh!!! It was a hell of a portion and went down lovely with my beer on the side! Derek headed back to the hotel while I hung around in the bar feeding my greed and chin-wagging and he returned 20 mins before gig time at 8pm ready for our show.

We had some lovely buddy’s turn up to listen again which I hadn’t seen since the October tour and Legend Bill came in with a Cahjon drum for Mike Marshall. He said he would join us for a few songs later on in the sets. Unfortunately Bill was feeling a little under the weather and could only stay for a short time. It was also Mike Marshall’s 50th birthday at midnight so he was in celebrating mode and was passing birthday cake around the bar.

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Birthday cake time for Mike

We played through our three sets and it was a pretty relaxed gig in the bar for most of it. Mike got up and played four songs with us on the cahjon and we finished off on a spur of the moment take on “Show me the wayyyyyyyyyy to go homeeeeeeeeeee” with a bit of a sing along. We finished up and had a bit crack with everyone in the bar and I sang Mike ‘Happy Birthday’ unplugged while he sat on his drum with a beer looking a little drunk. Hahha. Derek spotted a picture on the wall of an old bearded fella and said it was me, so we took our photo with it too. haha

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After the show I decided to head out with Mike and a few others as he was going for that world famous ‘one last drink’ and the Irish bar had stopped serving by this time and was ready to close. We attempted to get in three other bars but they were all closing and the staff at Downtown suggested going next door. We headed into the bar which was open till late but they didn’t only sell alcohol. You could still have a normal drink in there while the ‘lady’s of the night’ did they’re thing though! We had a couple of beers and tried not to stare too much at what was going on. Hahah.I always find myself somewhere I shouldn’t be on tour for some reason .Haha. I got back to the hotel and Derek was still up who had took my backpack of stuff to his room for me. I managed to grab it and had a bit crack and giggle about the night in the corridor of the hotel before heading off to peeps.

The next gig coming up is The Sprue & Wiesen in Immensee, Zug. See you there.

Jason. Amazing Adventures Always

www.facebook.com/westealfyers

..cliff hanging Schumacker

Day 5 – Lucerne to Grindelwald in 50 seconds, Switzerland

It was time to head up to one of our regular Switzerland gigs. Espresso Bar up in the Grindelwald, a village in Switzerland’s Bernese Alps, popular for its Jungfrau region skiing in winter and hiking in summer. Climbers also use it as a home base for ascents up the iconic and stunning Eiger mountain. We have stayed up at Grindelwald in the Switzerland in winter and summer in past tours and both times of the year the views and surroundings are an amazing thing to behold.

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Our stop off on the way up the mountain pass

This time we had Formula 1 driver and Mr. Rock n Roll himself Patrick Archer from San Francisco taking us up in the tour bus as Mark was at home watching ‘Transylvania 2’ with the family. Somehow the Mercedes Van turned into some kind of magical rocket ship when Patrick is in the driver seat. Travelling over the mountain passes can be scary enough but when your zooming around corners and have someone else in control its a little bit of an uneasy feeling to say the least. We managed to stop off for a few quick photos from a look out point on the way up one of the passes and then before we knew it, we were off in warp speed mode again with Patrick’s ‘Beatles – Number ones’ CD playing away in the background of the race.

It doesn’t matter how many times I have been up to Grindelwald, it’s like my noodle has always forgotten how astounding it is as you drive up and you see the views of the Eiger and mountains surrounding this beautiful little place in Switzerland.

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Grindelwald main street with a view of the Eiger

We turned up to Espresso Bar and loaded in what we needed for the gig. We all grabbed a coffee then Patrick Schumacher dissapeared off into the distance and was coming back to pick us up the next day. We quickly set up our gear and sound checked nice and early. The PA system is an in-house system again and you just link into they’re system with your mixer then we pretty much cant move a millimetre with no space to move once we start playing which restricts your playing and being able to interact easily. It’s not so bad when you know what to expect though as we have played here lots of times before. The Espresso Bar gig was originally going to be a week later but there was a mix up of dates somewhere and we were flying back on that original date so they managed to swap our dates around. This also meant that the hotel rooms weren’t available and we ended up in two single staff rooms. I thought mine was tiny but when I saw Derek sitting on his bed behind the door it reminded me of Bilbo Baggins sitting in a hobbit hole. Hahahahha.

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Dereks Hobbit Hole in Grindelwald

Tonight was three full sets, starting at 10pm and as usual there was plenty of friends and fans from past gigs that turned up to see us play, even with the late date change. It’s always a bit of a loud and wild crowd in Espresso and they’re always up for a good sing-along when we start to get to that point of the sets. Jens was working behind the bar tonight and kept the Apenseller coming through out the gig to keep me alive and kicking.

‘No Secret’ from our first We Steal Flyers album is one the crowds favourite songs here in Grindelwald and everyone sings along with us. The highlight of the show had to be the last song. Jens asked us to play “One of Us” by Joan Osbourne to finish off and I asked him to come and sing it with Derek. This meant I pretty much had to stand in the middle of the bar, playing guitar, so that Jens could replace my spot on the microphone. It went from Derek singing and then both of them together, then Jens seemed to be singing some in German or Swiss-German and then to Derek singing and Jens beat-boxing! Hahahhahaha. It was hilarious and the whole bar was singing along with them.

We got packed up and Jens asked us if we could sing an unplugged versions of Hallelujah while there was just a few people in the bar. Derek flipped up the lyrics on his phone and I fumbled through some chords and the next thing was Jens is crying at the bar. Its his favourite song of all and he ended up a little emotional by it all, so … he had another drink and then got some pizzas out for us all on the bar to nom-nom up before we headed off to bed in our tinchy Hobbit holes.

We then headed back to Lucerne in the morning and have two days off to catch up and rejuvenate our body’s and voices ready for the next four gigs. I will continue with the diary after our time off and hopefully you are all still enjoying the stories of our tour. See you after the break.

Jason. Amazing Adventures Always

Here is the next half of the tour dates.

24th Shamrock Pub Luzern,
25th Spreu & Weizen Immensee

26th Schweizerhof Luzern
27th Shamrock Pub Luzern

28th BACK TO UK!

….chandelier swingers!

Day 4 – Pickwicks Bar – Baden, Switzerland

I woke up on day four of the tour to my usual routine of this trip. I checked my phone for anything of importance,  messages or new ladsbible videos, made a cup of coffee and opened up the curtains and shutters of room 101 to the view of Lucerne lake. It looked very different this morning however. There was millions of little circles forming all over the surface from the heavy rain pour that was happening. The promenade outside where people are usually sitting drinking coffee and beers was completely empty and there was no one around, just the swans and ducks bobbing up and down on the lake with the odd character all wrapped up, wandering across the wooden bridge.

There was no point in heading out anywhere in the crazy weather outside, but it was still a nice view to watch rom inside. Even as a kid I’ve always enjoyed being indoors when the weather is bad and you can see outdoors or hear the wind howling away. I used to love sleeping over at my grandmas when she lived onto the back of Dr. Pit Park in Bedlington. The back bedroom window looked over the park and you could see it all light up when we had lightning storms, then sitting looking out the window and counting between the thunder and lightning so we could try and work out how close it was to us.

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Mark having a laugh with the Sat-Nav

I got caught up on the tour diary and before I knew it, it was time to meet Mark at 3.30pm to head to Baden for tonight’s show. Derek and I headed off with backpacks once again to the meet up point in the rain where we found Steffi. The four of us were heading to Pickwicks in Baden tonight. It was dark when we arrived there and Steffi saved the day being Navigator as Marks Sat-Nav was having none of it. I’m sure sometimes they just have bad days and think “that’s it!! I’m gonna take you everywhere but where you want to be today” but luckily we had Super Steffi-Nav and she got us into Baden and found our way to the back of Pickwicks ready to load in for the gig.

After we got set up and said our hello to some of our buddy’s we aint seen since October it was time for a little drink and some food! I had myself an awesome ‘Pickwicks Special bacon Salad’ but no… I aint trying to get rid of the churb! I can’t really eat much before a gig and sometimes I feel like not eating anything at all as it really can effect how I sing,  play and perform when I’m full to the beans! Hahah. The salad was awesome though and it was covered in yummy balsamic vinegar!

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Unrotunately these were Steffis and Marks Platefulls!

Tonight’s gig was two , one hour sets and Derek was still struggling with his ear since the flight. He battled on though through the sets like a champ as always. We really do go through lots of illness through out our gigs and shows. Pretty much everything can cause some kind of troubles when you are singing 3 or 4 times a week and a simple cold or sore throat can really make a gig a lot more hard work for us. That said, it has to be pretty bad for us to not play a show and of course we still enjoy it. It is just one of the challenges of a being a full time musician. The first set flew over and we always have a great crowd of nice people when we land at Pickwicks, Baden twice per year. Just before the end of the set we got a lovely Australian guy Ryan up to help us sing out the last song of the first set and got everyone singing along to finish up for our break.

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Before we went back on Ryan asked if he could play a song with me before the start of the next set. He had a great big warm voice on him, and was looking to head down a musical solo career. We jumped into Little Lion Man by Mumford & Sons which I’d never played before but I love the challenge of having to jump in, watch and listen to everything and add something to songs I’ve never performed live before. He went down brilliantly with everyone in the bar and I hope he really does give his music a go, it’s nice to see nice people do well with something they love.

Derek and I jumped straight in and raced through an hour long second set with a couple of encores for all the happy music loving folk that were wanting to hear more. The gig went down great and Steffi even ended up swinging off the chandeliers after a few beers because she loved it that much!

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Super Steffi-Nav hanging around after the gig!

After the gig I had another sneaky whisky and Mark did an awesome job of making the equipment dissapear into the van. We hit the road back to Lucerne with an awesome Burger King treat on the way back to make up for my salad earlier. We sat around a table talking about comics, marvel, DC comics and aqua-man for a good half an hour while Steffi just sat there drunk and yawning, confused at three grown men talking about cartoons, comics and movies.

We headed back to the hotel across our little wooden bridge once again and it was time to hit the snoozy pit for a kip. Tomorrow’s gig is up in Grindelwald, home of the 13,020 ft Eiger Mountain.

Thanks for reading! Jason

Amazing Adventures Always

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