I have moved back to England after many years living in Turkey and my younger brother, Mark, decided to get me back in the swing of things by suggesting I went with him to a live concert by Nick Mulvey.
At first, I thought this was a great idea until I found out it was a ‘standing only’ gig and Mark always likes to be on the front barrier!
I thought long and hard and finally decided that I was just too old to be standing for hours on end, apart from being crushed at the front. I suggested to Mark that he ask my son, James, to go with him.
James was really pleased to take my place as he loves Nick’s music, so all was well. Then James got the date for an operation he had been waiting for…and it was for the day after the gig.
Everything got complicated, with James trying to decide if he could manage the concert and still be at the hospital early the next morning. It was getting so stressful that we all decided we would go back to Plan A, I would go to the gig with my brother, Mark.
He and I set off early on the day of the gig, which was being held at the ‘Cambridge Junction’. On arriving in Cambridge (which is actually Nick’s hometown so the evening was going to be extra special for him as well) we parked near the venue had lunch, then with quite a few hours to kill (Mark was very keen to get there early!) we caught a bus into Cambridge town and mooched around.
On arrival back at the venue, Mark was surprised to see no queues as he had always encountered them before. We found ourselves first in the queue not long before the doors opened…not a good sign!
On being let in, I was dragged by Mark to the barrier, this is the point of ‘No Return’, I am thinking…or not until the place empties at least! We had at least an hour before the support band would appear so got chatting to a young couple standing next to us. Jade and Aaron loved Nick Mulvey’s music and were so excited to be there.
I was so impressed with Jade, she had given birth to her second child just three weeks earlier, and by Cesarean, no less, and it was the first time she had left her new baby. They were such a sweet, fun couple and really made the evening even more special for me.
The support band appeared and did their thing for half an hour, which, if I am honest, was quite enough. Then another 45 minutes of waiting while the stage was set up for Nick Mulvey, his support musicians and singers.
Then there was the man himself coming on stage to rapturous applause..suddenly I was quite happy to be right at the front as not being very tall, I would not have seen a thing. Sorry, forgot to tell you, by this time, there are nearly nine hundred people in the audience!
The music was fantastic, he plays his guitars and sings the most wonderful meaningful songs, the lyrics are magical. On stage with him were his wife and another talented lady, they sang and added musical ‘extras’, his drummer, another guitarist and a lovely guy on keyboard and sometimes also guitar.
Oh, something I was really impressed with, after every song, a smiling man quickly approached Nick with a ready tuned guitar for the next one, this went on all through the concert. At one point, about half-way through the gig, Nick beamed out at us between songs and said ”I fu….g love my job”. Well, who wouldn’t!
All in all, it was amazing, especially as it was the first live gig I had been too for many years. I was so happy that I was there. After they had all disappeared off stage, Mark said that Nick Mulvey would be out to sign merchandise etc, so we then went and queued along with our new friends, Jade and Aaron. While waiting, I bough my son, James, one of Nick’s book of lyrics for his album...I thought that would at least cheer him up after his operation!
Of course I had my photo taken with Nick and he said ‘you were standing at the barrier’. I told him that my brother never stands anywhere else when he has a choice and also how James was meant to be there, but had to have an operation and I took his place. So Nick signed James lyric book, adding a little message to him, which was great.
Mark and I stood aside after thanking Nick for a wonderful evening to let Jade and Aaron have their turn. They were so excited to meet their hero, telling him that their recent baby had come into this world hearing his music, they had played it in the delivery room!
Then they asked him if he ever played at weddings (they are getting married in the near future) and he amazingly said he did, and told them who to contact. I later told Jade and Aaron that if that worked out, Mark and I definitely wanted an invite to their wedding!
We said goodbye to them and made our way back to the car-park where I have to say, I was quite happy to sit down and let Mark drive us home. It was a wonderful evening for so many reasons, making new friends, listening to some great ‘live’ music but especially spending some ‘quality’ time with my wonderful brother.
He is already planning who we are going to see next but I have asked for it to be a sitting venue next time. Honestly, my legs ached for about three days after Cambridge!