23rd October 2007 – London 93 Feet East
Or “The End”
We had talked up the last show of the tour for the last couple of dates. One particular night, SohoDolls guitarist Toni had drunkenly plotted a massive end-of-tour blow-out. We would join them onstage for an extra-special extended version of their set-closer, their recent single Stripper. 586 would play percussion and together we would perform a massive extended intro, building on the song’s glam stomp with tribal rhythms bashed out on congas and tom-toms. He and I would play duelling guitar solos. Encouraged by Deborah and Simon, Toni’s ideas for the last show became increasingly extravagant, building into a crescendo where he triumphantly decreed we would get some ‘Zulu dancers’. It would be a massive party, the celebration to end all celebrations.
We spent the following days mocking this, repeatedly saying “We’ll get some Zulu dancers” in approximations of a thick Yorkshire accent. Toni wasn’t from Yorkshire. He was Finnish. It was hilarious. Honest. No? Hmm. You probably had to be there.
On the actual day itself, I rocked up for soundcheck late. We had been touring with SohoDolls for six weeks. I had no interest in getting there early and spending time bored out of my skull in Brick Lane waiting for them to finish. I’d probably end up drinking, and I didn’t want to drink. Not tonight. I didn’t really feel like I needed to drink before going onstage any more. At the beginning of the tour, I absolutely had to have a drink before going onstage, but I would play this show totally sober. Still, this was the last date of the tour. It felt like it should be a massive Event. It felt like there should be emotional goodbyes, an exchanging of records perhaps, promises to keep in touch and maybe some form of party, either backstage or in a nearby pub. Maybe someone should cry. In reality? SohoDolls soundchecked. Then 586 soundchecked. Around 9pm-ish 586 played a 25 minute set. At 10pm SohoDolls played a slightly longer set. We didn’t join them for Stripper. There were no Zulu dancers, no duelling guitar solos, no end of tour back slap. Once it was all over, the venue lights came on and Sam went back to her flat, Deb, Simon and Grant went back to The George and I went home and to bed, probably checking our MySpace account before I went to sleep. On Wednesday 24th October 2007, I went back to work.
I am still there.