Stockholm-Gothenburg-Herning June 11, 12, 13

A perfect day off in Stockholm began with a 90 minute push in the gym. It was a beautifully clear and warm 70 degree day that called me out to walk. I found a small, sidewalk cafe near the harbour for lunch… steak frittes and a couple of local beers. I walked for a couple of hours before returning to the hotel, took another late afternoon walk for some coffee and finally one more hour walk around 8:30. The hotel’s large, dark wood bar was calling when I returned. A couple of martinis, made with Sweden’s own Henro gin were just what the close of the day called for. Henro is a great gin and it turns out that it’s the most awarded European gin from 2013-2017. I hope they export and will look for it when I get back to the States. A chicken Caesar salad balanced out the martinis after which I retired for a rare early evening. Great day.

June 11

Don’t know ha many times we’ve played Ericsson Globe, once again our venue in Stockholm. We arrived and everybody to a man made a bolt for catering, devouring bowls of delicious, piping hot minestrone soup, bread and butter. Sated for the time being we did a sound check followed by…. dinner. One of several entrees tonight was pan fried chicken breast in lemon sauce with mushrooms. No down side to anything on that plate. A quick bit of practising to warm up the hands before the show, change clothes and on stage. The Globe filled to capacity, MK & Co. to a man could do no wrong, which ever direction the music took us. Relaxed, sure footed and well played. Back at the hotel bar we ran into several musicians in town with Phil Collins, who will play The Globe tomorrow night.

June 12

A quick flight to Sweden’s second largest city Gothenburg this afternoon for tonight’s show at Scandanavium Arena. Among the several entrees offered up at catering tonight was Swedish meatballs, gravy and lingonberries over broad egg noodles that tasted like a miracle on a plate. The show didn’t suffer from all the over eating and the capacity 7,500 audience was wonderful to us. It was a runner as the last note was still reverberating in the Arena and a flight to Copenhagen. It was very stormy as we approached the city and there was talk of going back to Gothenburg. Instead we circled for nearly 30 minutes, lightening flashing, then made our approach. Safely landed, it was a short drive from the airport to our hotel where we’ll base for several days.

June 13

An afternoon flight from Copenhagen to the centre of Denmark and tonight’s show in Herning. Our drivers delivered us directly to the waiting plane but first we had to clear a bumbling, hysterical security check. A temporary screening device for bags with miles of extension cord attached had been rolled out. It took several fellows to find power to plug it in, mind you this is all on the tarmac next to the airplane. Once that was sorted each of us had to stand on a step-up bench to be frisked. This bench is very much the same as the kind in a gym where the height can be adjusted by adding extension footings to either side. Problem was one of the footing didn’t fit properly so the whole thing was in danger of collapsing at any moment. A couple of security chaps finally came around to take a look at that and after a bit of dithering the step up was stabilised. They were all very kind and patient but the whole thing was so inept we could only laugh. Guy Fletcher will no doubt have captured this escapade on video. Off at last for Herning. I may be wrong but I don’t recall having played here before. Herning is an industrial city of 50,000 and produces textiles and furniture among other things. The new arena is Jylke Bank Boxen and seats over 12,000. It was a 9 o’clock show tonight and that extra hour hanging around backstage seemed like an eternity. We hit the boards at 9 sharp for another spectacular crowd and well played show. A runner back to the Copenhagen hotel where a clutch of us hit the pavement, well past 1 in the morning and braving a rain storm to find a pub for a couple of beers to close the evening. This has been a great three day run and tomorrow’s a day off in Copenhagen. It doesn’t get much better than this.

Richard Bennett