Stick Men 2018 Europe Tour

France and Finland shows

Driving early from England through the Chunnel and into France, we arrived in Savigny Le Temple, outside Paris, just in time to set up and soundcheck before our 6:30pm show.

The venue, called L’Empreinte, is one we haven’t been to before. It’s less unique looking than the 3 UK venues we just visited - seems like a standard rock room - but in soundcheck we could tell it has very good sound. My personal peeve at a lot of rock clubs is that the subwoofers are put under the stage, where they make the sound awful for whoever has to stand on top of them - but here the stage was built solid enough that there was no low feedback happening.

I couldn't get much light onto the audience for shots at the end of show, but you can see that the vibe was great. Probably the best audience we've had in France.

Late that night, I’ll admit being glad to see the hotel room, after having left the last one at 6:30am. But before long, it was another early morning leave to drive through snow and traffic to Charles de Gaulle Airport for our flight to Helsinki, Finland, and show there.

Happily we made it on time.

Tavastia is a rock club with a lot of history.

I’m sure we’re not the first band to take photos backstage here - it’s got quite a look.

After soundcheck, a visit from Jaakko, one of our dear Campers, who lives near here.

and then it's showtime.

Great time at that show.

The next morning, a relatively easy plan: a few hours drive to Pori, and a show there.

and a very different kind of venue: a government building, I think, that’s used as a school.

You know, when you’re travelling every day there’s not much time for personal connections… you’re in, you’re out, meeting folks every day. But sometimes I’m reminded how our brief encounters can resonate in ways that are pretty special.

One of the men helping us out with this show, on the right in the picture above, reminded me of when I played in Helsinki in 2014 with Peter Gabriel, and in my web diary I mentioned a “lady in white” who started dancing to the music, and inspired the whole arena to join in. (Here’s a link to that page- but you’ll have to hit return to get back to this one!)

He’s now married to her, they have four kids, and though she couldn’t make it to tonight’s show, they both wanted me know know how thrilled they were with that road diary. I don’t often think about who sees the diaries or whether they’re the people in the photos… but this was a very nice moment of connection, for them and for me.

After sound check, a nice meal, then our show… first time we’ve played in Pori, and it was nice to see these people who came out to the show.

So, just like that, our Finland tour leg has ended, and we’re heading out tomorrow. It was fun coming here, and we can only hope we’ll be back (and perhaps for more than two shows.)

Next up for us, we fly to Macedonia, which will take a whole day - then our show in Skopje will be the following night.

More soon, from there.