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Breathlessly Running Through London

The show went well. The Garage was pretty full. Mostly random twentysomethings mulling about. I met a couple of the other bands, The Lodgers, Bear Paw and Neighborhood Watch. Nice peeps. Good vibes (or, as we say in German, wibes). The Lodgers had the room dancing like mad at the end. It was an immensely pleasurable evening.

The last time I played in the UK was when I was in Edinburgh for the Fringe Festival two summers ago. Half of the audience (angry British “lads”) stormed out at the end (audience of 13 people, mind you). One of those rude bastards shouted “thank god the door’s not locked!” before he ran out.

This time was a world of difference. The venue was packed. The audience (British people with bad teeth) responded with love and laughter. They did all the gestures I asked them to do (obedient fuckers). They were awesome. A good audience can really make the performance, I find.

Anyway, it was a smashing success. I met an actress who plays primarily zombies. I met a songwriter who does exclusively sad songs (“too sad” she insisted. “Jeff Buckley’s dead. People don’t want to hear sad songs”). The drunken photographer kept hugging me and kissing my face. He also handed out my SPT buttons to most of the audience during my show.

The next day everything went nuts. I missed my flight to Tübingen because a woman working for the airline told me with confidence that my plane left from Gate 42. It didn’t. It left from Gate 36 but by the time I finally made it to the right gate (Stansted is a huge and complicated airport), the gate was closed. So I missed the show. No more flights to Karlsruhe.

The only chance I had of leaving to Germany was a Flixbus leaving at 9:30pm. So, I bought the ticket, wandered around near Buckingham Palace, drank a hot chocolate in Patisserie Valerie, ate blood sausages and eventually jumped on the bus.

I’ll be back in three months, thanks to Robert Stephenson (my London “manager”) to take over London. We’re planning a big show with 6 cameras and the works.

Here are photos taken with my shitty iphone:

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Fingerprinted, Searched and Interrogated… Why, Hello London!

I’m in London. Sitting in my friend’s flat. Relaxed after a hot bath and Paul Auster’s “Moon Palace”.

My day was rather adventurous. I arrived very fucking early at Stanstead. When I went through the Passport Check, the lovely woman asked what I was doing there. “Making music and seeing friends” I said.

“Where is your show?” She asked. “The Garage” I responded. It was a show mainly for “exposure”, so I didn’t think it would be an issue at all. Boy, I was wrong.

Within seconds I was hauled into the “waiting section”. Then I was brought to the back room. I kept my cool. Deep breaths. A tall, Alpha male with a bald head and red beard spoke in his baritone voice as he directed me to a small room “We’re just going to have a little talk and see whether we should let you into the country or not”.

I waited in this small room for a long time. Another friendly middle-aged woman came and explained to me that she would be taking my photo and fingerprints. She complained about the tight blue gloves: “Argh. My fat hands!” she said. She then took me into another room and fingerprinted me.

A nice fellow with a salt and pepper beard came into the room. He asked me to sign some papers and took me to the “holding room”. Thank god it wasn’t a “holding cell”, although they did lock me in.

However, they offered me hot food, chips, fruit and a variety of books. I pulled one out, read and ate as the TV blared.

The first woman reappeared and took me into the same small room. She asked me several questions. She then asked if I’m famous “Like Madonna or Bruce Springsteen … you can tell how old I am” she said. “Nope. I’m MORE famous than those bitches, muthafuckaaaa! Bow down!”

She explained that I can’t play music in London without certain papers. She asked if there’s a reason why I should be allowed in the country. “Because I love British bands!” I exclaimed. “Well, that’s not the most convincing reason” she said. “I was thinking more along the lines of if you had a sick grandmother in London or something”.

They took me back in the waiting room. I continued reading. The interrogator-woman returned after speaking with her superiors and said “It’s your lucky day, young man. You’re allowed in”.

I gave her a big hug and a smooch, grabbed my shit and voila! I’m HERE! In London! In fact, mere hours ago, I was trudging past London Bridge! No joke!

Tomorrow I will busk in the streets and tomorrow night I play my show. The following evening I will be in Tubingen, Germany. Ah, life… so many adventures…

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What the hell is up with me?

So for some reason, Every month or two I become obsessed with posting a lot on my website. I get more traffic, people pay attention and it grows in numbers.

And then life takes over and I forget to keep posting. And then weeks go by without a post. Then suddenly, I’m like, “damn, I haven’t posted anything in weeks”.

Anyway, that’s where I’m at now.

I’ve spent the last few weeks recording a shitload of music. I mean, TONS. Pretty much a song a day.

It’s awesome. I love this feeling. I feel on top of my creative powers. Recording is also a lot of fun. Writing is a lot of fun. When it starts to flow, it flows like honey and I cannot stop it. Nor would I want to.

Anyway, here is a new song I put together yesterday… just so you have a taste of what I’m doing. It’s called “I Love Children”.

For some effed up reason the embedded code won’t work. Therefore, I’ll just paste the link to the song.

Enjoy

 

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Last Day In Finland

It’s my last day in Finland. Tomorrow at 6:30am I’ll be on a plane soaring over the forgotten clouds, heading to B-town.

This trip has been truly amazing. Played 4 shows with great audiences, met, hung out with and opened for Beats and Styles and IMPPU, went on a day trip to Tampere where we watched ducks and made jokes:

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wrote two new songs, recorded a new song with IMPPU about driving through the city at night, hung out at a school with tons of tiny Finnish kids:

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Went to a flea market and bought new sexy clothes and many pairs of multi-coloured underwear, talked for 4 hours with a fascinating theater-girl/ singer about everything from Taoism to the joy of cults to fun facts about Moomin and much more.

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This trip was good for my soul. It was good to connect with my Finnish friends, make new ones and feel that burst of creative energy explode in my veins.

In general, there is something private about Finns in the sense that they don’t expose everything going on in the interior. They don’t necessarily talk to strangers (in fact, that often gives them panic attacks. I’m sure you’ve seen the picture of Finns waiting for the bus – 2 meters between each person waiting), but when you really get to know a Finn, there is so much going on beneath the surface. Every time I come here I end up having some pretty great conversations and a lot of laughs.

Needless to say, it was a lot of fun and I have a feeling I’ll be back soon.

Much love to all of my Finnish fans and for those of you who came out to the shows, partied, danced and celebrated life: Kiitos.

Now I’m off to make more music with IMPPU.

Love Stephen

Everything I Love Dies

Seeing as I’m in Finland, I thought it’d be cool to post a video that is more in line with the Finnish mentality: dark, brooding and pensive.

This is not my usual sound. This is more post-Folk/ Dreampop.

It’s a song I wrote and recorded six years ago. I was still in Trike at the time, but this is a solo song, pre-SPT. Hope you enjoy it.

Peace