Mushroom Tour Day 12: Aubervilliers – Saturday 20th April
Today is a new day!! We make it to Buttes Chaumont bright and early (well, before noon at any rate). We play right next to an exercise area where Parisians, used to cramped living quarters, are not bothered by our presence and continue to engage in all sorts of slightly bizarre forms of movement, which we attempt to accompany. Today we are lucky, we play for an hour in the sunlight and manage to sell 3 cds (more than on any of our gigs thus far!). Merci tout le monde! Playing Klezmer music we collectively cast a nostalgic thought to our friend Dave Shulman with whom we learnt to play this stuff and the days of the Flugger-Bulgars, Harringay kebabs and the night the ceiling in Blackstock rd sunk by 7cm thanks to some seriously enthusiastic dancing… ni hao ma Shulman?!
Tonight we play at the house/workshop/chill-pad of the coolest luthier in Paris, Mr. Bruno from Bretagne. In the Soundcheck Jiri displays one of his numerous talents: piano technician. He opens the piano up and fixes 3 faulty keys with a bit of soap and olive oil.
Zac is feeling sorry for himself today and the combination of hay-fever, constant and well-meant van jokes and suburban surrealism proves to be too much so he takes refuge in a sleeping bag. Only when he hears the band striking up ‘Nice Work’ does he revive somewhat and join them for what will be the party gig, French style.
In between sets of old jazz, with the most welcome guest vocals of Sophie on the Billie Holiday numbers, we are treated to performance by resident chanteurs, freestylers and even Bruno himself whose take on flamenco is is really something. There’s also a 7-year old girl who plays the piano by ear whenever she can find a space on the keyboard and Steve the Canadian trumpeter who blows his sweet magic.. best of all though is the crazed dancing of the mostly female crowd who seems as if they must have been suffering from jazz deprivation. Ironically, the band sells a record of 7 CDs tonight (ironic because we haven’t been playing much of our music.. hmmm)
The night ends with some a hang out back at Jiri/Lara’s with two of Lara’s sisters and few friends making a grand total of 10 people sitting the table and playing games, during which Jiri falls asleep in his chair and everyone gradually feels the pull of gravity…
P.S. BREAKING NEWS: FLY AGARIC to play AUBER JAZZ 2013 on JULY 21st (tbc.)