A Mad Mental Musical Cultural Week in October

If you’ve been reading my weekly posts of late you’ll know that “Rock Mum” has been out to play once or twice.

Well, last week, she escaped several times to attend some quite diverse musical events.

I’ve been looking at the last week of October in my diary with a mix of eager anticipation and silent dread for several months. How would I make it from Saturday to Friday in one piece?

Ok, I’ll start at the beginning –

Saturday 25 October – up at the crack of dawn to catch a flight from Glasgow to London, Heathrow for a day out with the Big Green Gummi Bear. He had bought me tickets to the West End musical Miss Saigon for my birthday back in June. Secret confession – I love musicals! I’ve been desperate to see Miss Saigon for a long time. We arrived in London to a beautiful autumn day – a total contrast to the cold wet windy day we had left in Glasgow. By now it was late morning, so we enjoyed a leisurely stroll through Hyde Park, Mayfair, down Regent Street and eventually made our way to SoHo and theatre land. I say leisurely – the Big Green Gummi Bear does not know how to take a leisurely stroll. Military style route march is closer to the truth! (Only kidding, darling).Our tickets were for the matinee, so after a well-earned caffeine fix and a bun, we walked round to the Prince Edward theatre. I’ll not give away any spoilers regarding the show in case you haven’t seen it and want to. It was fantastic! The performance was breath-taking and emotional. By the closing scenes, the tears were flowing freely down my cheeks. A rapturous standing ovation. Loved it! Cue return route march to Paddington then on to Heathrow airport for dinner, some vino and our return flight home. Fabulous day! Thank you, Big Green Gummi Bear.

London Collage

Sunday 26 October- another eagerly awaited event was upon me. This time it was Black Stone Cherry, a rock band from Edmonton, Kentucky, at the SSE Hydro in Glasgow. Yes, Rock Mum and Rock Friend was out to play! Having rounded everyone up, we headed off into the rainy dark night towards Glasgow. (Huge thanks to my friend who drove us there and sincere apologies again for the contraband Mars Bar that was left in the car) Among the group (there were seven of us) we had a “Rock Concert Virgin”. Lady Luck was shining on us and we managed to secure a good spot in the standing arena near to the front of the stage. The four older teenagers escaped into the centre, hoping for and ultimately finding, a mosh pit or two. Yes, Rock Mum’s heart was in her mouth as she silently fretted over Boy Child’s safety. (He eventually emerged slightly damaged around the shoulder area) Black Stone Cherry were supported by Theory of a Deadman and Aussie rockers Airbourne. Quite a diverse choice of support bands but both excellent. I had thought that I’d prefer Theory of a Deadman but Airbourne were great fun- total RnFnR! After their set, I turned to the “Rock Concert Virgin” to ask what they’d thought. “That guy’s fucking mental,” came the immediate reply. Comment of the night! Black Stone Cherry were fabulous and it was a privilege to be there to enjoy their first ever UK arena outing. They played a blinding set that included all my favourites. “Hollywood In Kentucky” played live was every bit as good if not better than I had hoped it would be. I loved Ben Wells’s hat! The night ended with the Glasgow choir helping front man Chris Robertson with “Peace Is Free”. An awesome gig to lose your concert virginity at! Hurry back, boys! Missing y’all already!

BSC collage

Monday 27 October- almost glad to be at work! The day was powered by caffeine and magic beans!

Tuesday 28 October – a half day at the salt mine then out to play again at night as Rock Mum and Rock Friend. This was not my gig of choice I hasten to add. Girl Child had pleaded to be taken so, in good Rock Mum fashion, I agreed. I must be insane! Accompanied by a close friend and her teenage daughter (another concert virgin), we headed back to Glasgow to a small city centre venue called The Garage. And the headline act this time? – post hardcore heavy metal band Escape The Fate. One look at the crowd and I could tell we were in for a rowdy night! A couple of songs into the first support band, New Year’s Day’s set and the girl children bailed out to the far side of the room. Both in agreement that this was not the place to be seen with their Rock Mum’s. Their loss! Trying not to panic about the girls’ whereabouts as the circle pit opened and closed repeatedly, my friend and I genuinely enjoyed the gig. All three bands (second on the bill were Glamour of the Kill) were brilliant. Not my music genre of choice, a bit too heavy for me, and I’ll never be a fan of growling but a great and memorable evening all round!

ETF collage

Wednesday 29 October- a muffled day at work as I was deaf as a post! My ears rang and hissed merrily til bedtime. Another day highly caffeine fuelled with the additional support of multiple handfuls of magic beans.

Thursday 30 October- final outing of the week! This time it was neither Rock Mum nor Rock Friend who went out to play. Instead it was Proud Mum. Accompanied by my folks (Parents 1&2) and the same friend from Tuesday night, we headed along to the school for the annual Jazz Night. Watching Boy Child playing his trumpet with the Jazz Band and playing his solos with confidence made me glow with pride. Jazz certainly is not my favourite genre of music but it was a fabulously entertaining evening as staff and pupils shared the stage. Jethro Tull will never be the same again after a memorable performance by one music teacher. Loved it!

Friday 31 October – I’d survived! Four nights out in six days and I was still standing.

West End musical, rock, metal, jazz – I’d seen and done it all and loved every note of it!

Suddenly a Halloween sleepover for half a dozen fancy dressed teenage girls seemed like it was going to be a walk in the park….. but that’s perhaps a story for another day. My poor Boy Child may never be the same again!

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