Nuremburg, Germany

A few months ago when I heard that we were going to Nuremburg, I couldn’t help thinking and hoping that by some small chance we might be playing in that same cozy garden-like place where I sang before, probably 10 years ago.

At that time, the location was made wonderfully special in my mind because my young friend, a German tenor, joined me on stage to sing, “Smile.”

My wish came true. I did not recognize the approach as we arrived for sound check, but “Wow this is it,” I said.

There were red brick walls on either side, and behind there was an enclosed churchish-like setting that might have been a chapel in an old cathedral. It had a tent roof and lots of sunlight poured through. I was pinching myself all afternoon and evening.

Our first date in Germany and we were sold out. The band played with a mastery, technical fire, and expertise that just sparkled and crackled. This new program is really adventurous and daring the audience. Oh to be sure we have our well known hits and crowd-pleasers like, “Were,” “Mornin’,” and interspersed are journeys into other territories like “Jacaranda Bougainvillea”, “Double Face,” “Come Rain, Come Shine”… this music needs to be played and listened to, so ready or not, here it comes. And I bet you’ll dance if you’re backbone is connected to your hipbone. So we played our hearts out. John Calderon came out from behind his setup on “Scootchabooty,” and played, “Fire and Lightning” so captivating for me that I truly wanted it to go on. Suddenly, there were kids standing and dancing in the side aisles; 16-year olds to 20-year olds who could not be denied. Their unheard voices said, “I’m going to dance. You can sit there if you want to but I’m going to dance.” We close with “Boogie Down” with the audience on their feet screaming for more.

We go back and do an acapella version of “Puddit,” and “Spain.” And everyone surely feels full and content. And we do too.

I didn’t know that this is the home of the Nuremburg Symphony Orchestra. Over 100 performances a year! And you’ve been listening to me since a young teenager. I just love it. He still looks like a teenager. I’ll bet he heard me on the radio right after Madonna, and just before Sting and Milli Vanilli.

We say a quick goodbye and thank everyone and hurry home to bed. 6am wakeup. Early morning flight to Barcelona. Tschüss.

Love, Al

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