Locarno, Switzerland 11 July 2013
A short trip this afternoon to the Milan train station where we boarded the car heading north to Locarno, Switzerland. Located on Lake Maggiore at the foot of the Alps, this is beautiful country, grape growing country surrounded by the mountains. Clear, sunny and hot.
This is our second time to play the Moon and Stars Festival, a yearly 10-night outdoor event held in the Grand Plaza of Locarno. The plaza is surrounded by stucco apartments and business all painted in those great Mediterranean colours, blue, light green, peach, rust, cream. When the sun goes down the buildings are lit and the floor of the piazza is nothing but a sea of people. Hard to say how many people, but it would have been 11,000 or more... as far as the eye could see from the stage. This link, http://www.moonandstars.ch/ shows the piazza from the audiences perspective looking toward the stage, but you'll get the idea.
We took the stage a little past 8:30, still daylight and warm though not as hot as it'd been all afternoon. What a crowd and in the apartments to the side of the plaza, folks were sitting out on their verandas, dancing along, hanging out of windows. I spotted one rooftop way down with a guy barbecuing, he'd turn whatever it was on the grill, close the lid then come back to the edge of his veranda and watch the show. There were several hang gliders floating in the sky as we began. Light gave way to dusk then dark and the temps dropped comfortably. Of course all this lead to a remarkably fun and relaxed gig for us, everyone playing great and having a good time. The hardest thing about it was maintaining some kind of focus on what I was doing, it's just too easy to start gawking around and loosing track of where you are in the music. A fantastic crowd of folks. The Moon and Stars festival, we had a wonderful time and look forward to returning again.
Drivers and Rovers at the ready, we left the stage after the final song to tumultuous cheers, jumped in to the cars and settled in for an hour and a half drive south, back to Milano arriving a little past midnight.