Hello! As a re-introduction, my name is Liam, and I’m joining Steven’s UK tour which kicks off today. I play cajon for a few numbers in the show (it looks like a box… it is a box), I’ll sell merch to you, and if you’re a VIP or Patreon on this tour then apparently I have to give you a free foot rub.
The last time I was with the Steven Page Trio, I blubbed. I blubbed like a little bearded baby. I was leaving the 2019 US tour a few shows early (no scandal - just to get back to my day job), and I felt emotional, with a gig-free calendar, not to know when I’d see the guys again. When you’re having that much fun, you really don’t want it to stop. To top it off, the Trio met up with Ryan Reynolds, who I should imagine it’s not a total chore to meet, a few days later. I was sent that photo sat in the pissing rain in the arse-end of Wales.
And not to say my emotions were prescient - had I envisaged a global pandemic I’d have likely acted a little more urgently than closing “Brian Wilson” sobbing in front of three guys - but stop indeed it did. Everything did. We’d all have ‘gig-free calendars’ for over two years (excepting of course those with the imagination to cook up something as fabulous as Live From Home).
Kevin Fox remarked, as he wiped my snot bubble from his shoulder, that he was reminded that this isn’t any old band and these aren’t just any old songs. They’ve been part of my life since I was a kid and I sing every word, laugh at every gag, feel every note. Getting to play a handful of them with such great people is never something I took for granted and certainly after Covid, along with so many other things, I never will do. I flew back to the UK and I haven’t left these shores again since, and it has been a draining couple of years. I’m not sure if you heard but Plague Island’s handling of the virus wasn’t brilliantly efficient.
So, it’s energising and quite serendipitous that the first chance to hook up with these wonderful Canadians is because, this time, the tour comes to us Brits. Steven Page is coming to town and the Trio is going to rock across ol’ Blighty, snot bubbles and all. I’m armed with the cajon, a hideous selection of shirts, and some sugary treats for the guys to sample. I’m hoping Wagon Wheels are more of a hit than Jammie Dodgers, and I’m really hoping that my excellent auto-correct of ‘Jamie Dodgers’ is a genuine name for someone out there. Mr J Dodgers.
I write this sitting on a coach to London, to then head to Luton for the first gig at the lovely Bear Club. It’s a sold out show, just as it was last time. Maybe it’s the air conditioning, maybe it’s writing a blog that quickly became more sentimental than I anticipated, or maybe it’s just the guy sitting across from me with the dubious aroma, but I’m misty-eyed again that we’re kicking off another tour. So much has changed but so much has stayed the same. I dropped my dog off at a family member’s yesterday and from video updates I can see that she is unreasonably well-adjusted and care-free without me in such a short space of time - what a bitch.
OK, pulling into Heathrow shortly. I’m nervous for Paul to see the size of my bag. That’s a weird sentence. But really - I tried to pack light, and then I filled my case with biscuits. Bring on Luton and the sugar rush! This is going to be a lot of fun, and we head to Birmingham and London for shows before the weekend is out.
If you’re coming to a show, safe travels!