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Mike Randle


July 4, 2003

Friday, Day 9, July 4th

Woke up on Independence Day not really feeling celebratory, in the ‘Bar B Q’ way American usually carry on about the fourth of July. I walked a bit into town, grabbed some breakfast and then went for a nap. Walked to the festival around 7 pm and bumped into Arthur Brown in the street. He’s a great person, by the way, I like the guy. The bus rolled to the festival at 7pm and our dressing room was next door to Alice Cooper’s. ‘The Darkness’ had just finished their set when we arrived. A friend, Ian JOHNSTON, had originally discovered them on his ‘Poptones’ label. Ian used to work for ALAN MCGEE at Poptones and the Radio 4 Club. Now The Darkness are becoming the ‘next big thing’ (I’ll let you make up your won mind on The Darkness).

We went on stage after our techs, Vince (drums) and peter (guitar) had sussed some stuff out, although, shit always seems to go wrong at festivals; you halfway expect it really. I thought the show was OK, even saw Martyn filming the show, being the bootlegger that he is! Afterwards, we met up with Ringo, Richard Michan, Steve and Su Edmond under the food tent. Granny’s cousin, Clara, wanted to meet Alice Cooper, I made no promises but did get Clara outside his dressing room door. But there we were met by Paul, the guitarist of (EMI artists) VICE SQUAD, who is one entertaining chap. He asked Clara were she was from. When she said ‘Kent’, Paul followed with, ‘There’s no reason to curse! You called me a whut?’ Funny, that Paul. Clara finally gave up, which was sad, as she was 13 and I know that would have been cool.

I walked back to my hotel, dropping Clara, Granny and Granny’s brother, John, off at their tent, but not before chatting with Bez (Happy Mondays) after watching his show at one of the smaller tents. It was Bez and two ‘laptop’ DJs… From there I walked into the Hotel bar and in one corner; The Singer, Chapple, Vince and Peter and tour manager, Glenn Povey, in the other Daddyo, Rusty and Numbers 62. One of the 62s, Steph bought me a pint for attempting to get them free tix to the festival (failed miserably.) After finishing off that pint I inquired from the Bartender, Bylon, if she could make a Dirty Stoli Martini. She replied in the negative, which prompted Rusty’s play-by-play description and led to a spot-on -perfect Stoli. Bylon was of Chinese descent and with a nice British accent. She had a lot of cleavage (for a bartender) and when she shook the martini up you could imagine your mum covering your eyes on the tub overflowing, if that paints the picture enough.

I was on my 3rd martini when everyone else bid farewell; there was a 9am wake-up call on the horizon, or so I was warned. I drank till around 3am and was then off to bed, where I was sharing a room with Chapple, feeling a little insecure without my martini, I decided to bring it along to the room. Chapple was fast asleep and after draining most of the Stoli, I showered, washed my teeth and was off and snoring in no time.

Sometime around 4.30 am, I was awoken by the burning of my eyes and a wet shirt, I couldn’t see and had no idea what was going on. I bolted to the loo to wash my face. As it turned out, Chapple had tossed a pillow in an attempt to curb my snoring, but instead knocked the martini glass right onto my face. I changed my shirt, crawled back in bed and was out in no time.

(Side bar; if sometime have nightmares that ex-girlfriends get together and write a book on me snoring)

Mike Randle


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