Noel one week, Bobby the next!
S and I are fans of British (now NY-based) singer/songwriter Bobby Long since exactly September 29, 2009 when we saw him perform in Hamburg for the first time. I won’t go into detail all too much right here and now, but just let me say that he’s part of the so called BritPack (a name that fans came up with). Other musicians of that group – who are all friends – are e.g. Sam Bradley, Marcus Foster, Johnny Flynn… and even Lee, although I don’t think he belongs to that group so closely anymore.
Whatever… that’s not really important. What IS important: we saw Bobby back then at the LOGO in Hamburg (awesome live club!) and we liked him enough to check out more shows. What followed was a good number of shows (must be more than 30) with the highlight being the tour in January 2013 where we saw 11 shows and when I returned home after an EPIC time on the road, I broke out in tears and couldn’t catch myself for a while. What a most awsome ride it was! I still hold it high as one of the … if not THE best tour I’ve ever been on with a favorite artist of mine.
Those who know me, also know that I was a huge Bon Jovi fan (shut! up! they were really great for a long time… until they weren’t anymore). 90+ shows in countless cities, several countries and all in all two continents. It’s because of them that I’ve been to the USA 5 times altogether (and then a 6th time not directly because of them). It’s because of them that I met my fave American: my dear friend Jinjer. Hello Jinjer! *waving*. (I think she’s fine with mentioning her full name here… at least I have directed you to one of her blogs at some point. If not, let me know, Jinjer!)
Where was I? Oh yeah… Bon Jovi. It began in 1990 and ended in 2006 with two shows that we went to for nostalgia reasons only. The highlight for me at least was the 10 or 11 show tour in 2003. Best thing ever… we (S and I) even became TV famous. Sort of. At least a fan recognized us from TV later in 2005 at a show.
Why am I telling all this? So there was that epic tour in 2003 where we had the times of our lives! Will never forget the last show at the Giants Stadium in Rutherford/New Jersey (R.I.P. dear Giant Stadium!! 😦 ) which was such an emotional experience… even thinking about about it, brings a tear to my eye after all these years.
And then… it slowly faded. We had been on tour with these guys for 20 years straight. And then the music started to become… well… not so good. In fact we straight up disliked it. We didn’t enjoy the 2005 shows anymore… and Bon Jovi was buried forever in 2006. Figuratively speaking.
Back to Bobby Long and his epic 2013 tour. Back at the time I felt like it was the absolute highlight. It was the first time that I thought about joining a Street Team. We were on a total high.
And then came February 2013 and we saw Lee as a support. It was more or less accidently. We hadn’t planned to see him and hadn’t planned to like him. But there was something about his performance… his songs… his charming way with the audience…
And it was a bit like history repeating itself. Something builds up, reaches a certain mark, andt then it either wanes for whatever reason or something/someone else comes along. This was never planned though. It just happened.
One thing is different from Bon Jovi though: we still love Bobby and his music. We still enjoy to see his shows, even if we don’t go on big tours anymore. He didn’t tour for 2.5 years after 2013 and came back last October. It was such a warm welcome he gave us at the first show in Mettmann. It really was like seeing old friends again rather than artist meets fans.
And now he’s back again because he loves touring in Germany so much and because his German fans love HIM so much. As support he brought fellow BritPacker and one of his best friends: Sam Bradley. Also singer/songwriter, just British/Canadian. He has released his debut album shortly before the tour began. We know Sam’s music for as long as we know Bobby’s, but so far it was only EPs or live videos from performances. We were thrilled to hear that he’ll join Bobby. But then it turned out that we can only see one show. Bummer! Yes we said we wouldn’t do big tours again but we still had hoped for maybe 2 or 3 shows. Doesn’t happen though.
But on this evening we saw the two at RiO’s in Mettmann (which is 20 minutes from here). Both of their sets were really really great, although I gotta say that I missed some of Bobby’s older songs. He very much concentrated on his latest album Ode To Thinking. Which I like very much!! Don’t get me wrong. It’s just that I love me some Penance Fire Blues or In The Frost…
After the show we went over to the merch table, of course. As soon as he saw us he came over from behind the table and gave us such a warm and heartfelt hug!! And he said he was so glad to see us and had already wondered where we had been… 5 or 6 shows and we hadn’t shown up yet… he’s not used to that 😉
“I thought I had done something wrong”. Awwww… no Bobby… you didn’t! 😀 He even told Sam “these are the guys I told you about today!” OMG… :-D. And a few minutes later he came again from behind the table and said “Jesus… I have to hug you again! You guys have no idea how happy I am to see you!”
Wow. Just … wow! That made US very happy. A friendly hello… ok. That much was probably clear. But not that joy and … yeah… relief that we hadn’t abandoned him :-D. And that very very warm way of greeting us. I was a tad bit overwhelmed, I must say.
I apologized that we’d only be able to see one show and he was like “no no, it’s okay, I totally understand… I’m just so glad that you’re here ” and thanked us for coming about 150 times. I told him we’d try to come to a private show that a friend of us will be hosting on May 1st. Normally it would be a given thing, but certain circumstances make it difficult right now. He said he’d be hoping to see us and we said we’d try. We really do.
We might not go on a 11 show tour anymore with Bobby, but he’ll always always be something special to us and we’ll always love him and his music, no matter what. He’s just one of the nicest guys on the planet. If he’s ever playing near you, don’t miss out.
One word about Sam: what an awfully nice chap he’s too!! I hope he’ll come back in October because… yes, Bobby will be back in October again. He really loves it here 😉
Bobby Long – Kill Someone (Album: Ode To Thinking)
I just love the way he plays that bloody guitar!
Have I ever mentioned that I hate YouTube videos? No? Guess that’s a topic for another time then. Yes I don’t like them because I always feel they can never ever show the real deal. The sound is often bad, the visual not always good, and I HATE to judge people from YT videos. But you also cannot live without them and I’m the only one of two people with that issue.
One fine day I’ll explain. For now enjoy Bobby. He deserves it.
And now please check out this awesome version of one of my fave songs of Bobby: Penance Fire Blues. Beautifully filmed and with great sound. Love it so much!
Oh, and someone in the coments said that this was better than the album version and that the studio takes away from the guy’s soulful sound. As someone who knows all Bobby albums and has seen him life numerous times, I can’t agree more. Don’t listen to his albums. Do yourself a favor and see him life.