First off, a trip to Great Yarmouth for Andy and me to play for diners at Angelo's 'Quayside Plaza' restaurant. It was our first time there and we were struck by all the artwork and 'ethnic' goods on display both in the restaurant and in a shop behind. Musically it was as if we hadn't had the long lay-off at all. We were tight and slick, helped in no small part by a responsive and enthusiastic crowd. Angelo chooses his patrons wisely.
On Sunday it was lunchtime jazz at The Sainsbury Centre for the Visual Arts at the University of East Anglia, Norwich. Here were were joined by Paul on double bass, making us a feel like real band again. We certainly enjoyed ourselves and, judging by all the applause and foot-tapping amongst the coffee-drinking art lovers visiting this exceptional gallery, our audience enjoyed it too.
You may wonder why I mention the audience response but in restaurants diners are often concentrating on their food and conversation. Many are seated with their backs to the band or in alcoves where we may as well be a CD for all they know. And visitors to the Sainsbury Centre are often awed by the building and are unsure whether or not expressions of appreciation are appropriate. But an audience takes its cue from the performers and our enthusiasm on each occasion was infectious.