The power of Three tour Italy
April 4th 2012:
After a (feel)good movie with Carol Wednesday night, I had to get up at 3:00 in the morning to catch my flight to Napoli where I was to meet up with Juan van Emmerloot (www.drummingsecrets.com) who’s doing The power of Three tour with Stef Burns (www.stefburns.com) and Billy Sheehan (www.billysheehan.com) through Italy. The travel went smooth, everything on time, no problems. From Napoli airport I took a taxi to the hotel where the band and I were to meet later that day as their gig is in Goodfellas. I had lots of time to explore the city, so I took the cable train down to the city centre only to be amazed by the contradictions in this place! I officially declare Napoli the city where one can expect the unexpected. For instance standing on a four way corner, look to your left, you’ll see a beautiful wide lane with well taken care of buildings and trees, then look to your right and you’ll see a small steep alley with washing hanging out on the balconies, garbage on every corner etc. This place has only one rule, there are no rules! Hardly any traffic light works although there are plenty… I took a walk through the alley’s and found the most interesting little shops, like musical instruments, shops full of instruments in one alley for about 200 metres! Go around the corner, you see a shop with the most variety of pasta’s in all colours, shapes and sizes. I I wouldn’t recommend this place to people who are suffering from claustrofobia. I enjoyed myself I must say. Well, enough about the city, what I came here for was to capture the gig in Napoli and Rome on my camera.
I went to the club to meet the musicians and crew, but due to traffic they arrived almost two hours later. During that time there were two Stef Burns fans waiting and waiting in the rain. Young guys, loyal to their heroes. The club itself was really small and reminded me of pictures I saw of the clubs the Beatles used to play in back in the early 60’s when they started. When the band finally arrived I was back at the hotel as this was only two minutes walking from the club, so I met up with Juan there while the crew was setting up the instruments. It’s always good hanging out with my good friend Juan, projecting an ever so positive vibe. We went to the club for the sound check where I met the legends Stef Burns and Billy Sheehan. During the soundcheck you could smell the beautiful food being prepared for us in the kitchen. I can only say the warmth and hospitality of the people from the club, the band and the crew is amazing, I blended in straight away and had some nice conversations with Alberto, the tour manager whom I met on one of Juan’s previous tours with Snowy White in Italy. What I love about this environment is that everybody is so relaxed and full of humor. Would that be typical Italian mentality or the kind of people I get involved with during these tours? I wonder… Anyway after the wonderful meal we went back to the hotel to chill before the gig. At 22:30 it was showtime in a packed little club that normally could only hold about 50 people, but I guess there were double the amount of people. The power of Three (the bands name) played covers of Hendirx, Cobham and more from that era and style and the crowd went crazy. So much energy from the band and being returned from the audience, a musicians dream. What a band!!! After the gig and a few beers we went back to the hotel at about 3:00 in the morning, which meant that I was up for 24 hours. Juan and I shared a room and of course after all the energy still flowing we couldn’t sleep straight away and had conversations about the conservatory, future projects we’re working on, life in general, so it must have been about 4:00 when we finally fell asleep.
The next morning at 8:00 I was up and about as Juan and I planned to walk around in the city before we leave for Rome at 12:00 by car. Today the weather was much better than yesterday and we enjoyed a nice walk on the boulevard with a cool breeze. Back at the hotel Stef was already waiting outside with his gear. We quickly checked out, hopped in the van off we were. First we made stop at one of Stef’s sponsors to check out some clothing for the band. Then on to Rome, which normally is a two and a half hour drive, but again traffic added at least another hour.
Arriving at the club the first thing that came to mind was the Tarantino movie “From dusk till Dawn”, only without the zombies. It was a club outside of Rome, kind of in the middle of nowhere. Even inside it had a kind of American bar and grill vibe, but the sound- and lighting system they have was superb. Midas 2000 front of house desk, Midas monitor desk etc. A sound engineers dream. This was the last gig of the tour so ending this way could only leave the band and crew with good memories. Again excellent food, good vibes before, during and after the show, What a job as a photographer I have, I consider myself living a very lucky life in that respect… Stef’s magical playing of well balanced sound and solo’s and Billy’s extraordinary style and virtuosity supported by the typical solid grooves and unlimited energy Juan produces, the band blew the crowd completely of their feet and not only the crowd! If there ever was to be another Woodstock, these guys would steal the show. After the show it was back to the hotel with a very satisfied feeling and again Juan and I had to talk ourselves to sleep and again. Again it was about 4:00 in the morning when we went shut-eye. Only again I had to catch the train to Rome airport at 6:45 in the morning. Well two hours of sleep seemed to be enough as the trip back home went without any hazzardness again. Now at home I end this week with yet another great experience and memories, all captured on my camera.
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