Yesterday I arrived in Berlin and checked into the hotel at around 6 pm.
I find that travelling is always exhausting, even if you’re just sitting on a plane or in a waiting hall for the most part of the day.
I needed to chill and had a beer in the lobby of the beautiful Ellington hotel. It’s a place with history and class. Bowie and Lou Reed used to hang out here. And before that, it had been graced with Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald and of course Duke Ellington, who all performed here. Each room has a photograph of a different jazz great on the wall.
As I soak in the atmosphere of this place, I noticed a sign at one of the conference rooms of to the side. It read: Music and Media Conference
The door was open, so I decided to check it out. There a few people setting up and I walked up to a gentlemen asking about the event this evening. He told me it was a networking meeting of various industry professionals. I told him that I was a recording artist and producer from LA and he gave me a wristband and said I should join in tonight. Cool. So I went up to my room got changed and attended the event. It was a bit strange at first, since I did not know anybody. But I’m generally not afraid to talk to people I don’t know. So I just went around and introduced myself, trying to find out what everybody does. I met a publisher, a concert promoter, a songwriter a couple of producers and some musicians. After three beers and two glasses of wine we became all good friends, and somebody suggested we should visit the “Roots” bar across the street. I tagged along.
Conversations ranged from music, to American politics, problems in Germany, to life, philosophy and back. I had an excellent time, and 3 mojitos and a few tequila shots later it was 4:30 am. I sure was glad, that my hotel was just across the street, made it up to my room and fell into bed. Berlin is always good for a party, even on a Monday night.
I woke up this morning just in time for breakfast. I counteracted my hangover with a couple of cappuccinos, before carefully adding some OJ, a nice omelet and some fruit and yogurt. The Ellington has a fantastic breakfast buffet. Everything you could ask for, so I wasn’t going to miss that. Fortunately I had a day off.
Later I visited JazzRadio Berlin, which had brought me to Berlin to present me in concert and we talked about a couple of logistics for the show tomorrow. Then I went back to my room and restrung my guitar and practiced a bit, putting the set list together and just relaxed. This evening I met up with my buddy Carsten, who played bass on a couple of my songs. So I gave him a copy of the new CD “Alley Cat”. We had a nice dinner and I got back before midnight. After all, tomorrow is show time…..