Last weekend we travelled to beautiful Paris to play one of the biggest european tattoo festivals: Le Mondial tatouage! It was an incredible experience, because usually you’re not surrounded by tattoo stands, buzzing tattoo needles and thousands of people that are looking forward to get their skin inked up!
After arriving one day earlier to the hotel right next to where the tattoo convention was about to happen, we went out to the Montmartre area to get some crêpes, some good french pastries and dinner. Unfortunately all the restaurants we wanted to visit did not open until 7pm, which made us go to an italian restaurant in the end.
Though being recommended by a friend of ours, the food turned out to be some of the worst italian food we had ever put into our bodies. Chris, our bassist, even refused to finish his pizza, because it tasted like rotten flesh. Yummy!
Robin had sorted out guest list spots for the Devin Townsend Project show, that was about to happen the same night. It was hardly more than two minutes by foot from where we were hanging out anyways, so we forced ourselves to finish up the plates and rushed over to Le Cigal. This venue is (by far) one of the most beautiful places i’ve ever seen a metal show take place in. It looks like a mixture of an ancient cathedral and a shakespearesque theatre, all in all very epic. In honor of the occasion we allowed ourselves a glas of wine and beer and left to get some rest for the next day quite early.
In the morning we had to get up super early to soundcheck. 9am is usually not the time you want to hang out in a venue, right? But to be honest, it turned out to be a VERY good decision, since we had all the time in the world to go check out Paris afterwards and enjoy one of the very first sunny spring days in 2015. We bought ourselves some Metropolitain tickets, the parisian underground, and got out at La Bastille to walk all along the Seine river to the Notre Dame cathedral.
Having absorbed some spring warmth, we took another underground to get to the infamous Eiffel Tower. Being kind of exhausted from all the long walks and rushing from street to street already, our plans to climb up all the stairs of the tower were cancelled before even getting there. The stupid amount of selfies being made was hilarious. The icing on the cake was a guy setting up his GoPro on the floor and triggering the selfie shots with his iPhone while jumping up in front of it. Alone. All by himself.
Avoiding the nonsene of self-portrayal, we rushed back “home” to the hotel to take some rest before the show, that was about to take place in the evening. The venue was really packed already and people were getting tattooed everywhere. Beautiful art in all colors imagninable, indeed. The sound and light setup on stage was high-end to say the least, so even after having not played live for about 3 months, it felt very intense and powerful to be back at it again!
Thanks to numerous drink- and foodtickets my friend Peter (who is a great drummer a as well and joined me in the studio in December) and me ended up sitting in front of the hotel until late in the night, drinking red wine and talking about creative progress, redefinition of oneself and the pros and cons of being a freelance musician.
Sometimes this lifestyle can eat your energy up in the twinkling of an eye, only to spew you out to be more confident and creative like never before seconds later.
Weekends like this always remind me of the plenty of great opportunities my life as a fulltime musician can offer. And even in the most exhausting situations, sometime you have to admit to yourself, that you’re living a life, that other people can only dream of.
Up next: Singapore, New Zealand and Australia!