Sat, Aug 23, 08

“If you think I’m going to sit here and look for words of complaint about the rapid passing of time, you’d be right. I realize that the precious time spent with my mother before she passed away took a large chunk out of the year but even so, I find myself looking at September coming around when I had barely kissed goodbye to January.

“Anyway, it was great to get back on tour with the band again. Despite the unfortunate storm that washed out the Zaragoza concert, we have had a wonderfully successful time travelling around Europe, meeting old and new friends, and we’ve been made welcome everywhere. For this I could never complain. Apart from sold-out shows practically every night, the overriding observation I can make from the stage is the tender age of the audience. Along with the occasional silver hairs there have been hordes of twenty-somethings, teenagers and even younger. And they know how to rock. Most gratifying.

“The 42nd Montreux Jazz Festival was a particularly good time and I’m grateful to Claude Nobs for the superb gift he presented to each member of the band — a massive four-volume book tracing his history with the festival, fascinating stuff.

“I also receive many gifts from fans and how I manage to pack my suitcase is a challenge I face every day. Anyway, thank you all. Perfect Strangers of Finland always make a great effort to support us and regularly come up with interesting gifts, much appreciated. Talking of Perfect Strangers, I was given a calligraphic design of the words to that song from Catarina, whose email address I have unfortunately lost — but I thank you.

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