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When the circus comes to town

Once upon a time, the idea of a famous rock band playing in Niceland was about as far flung as Denise Richards’ wedding ring. Between, say, 1970 and 1990, you could basically count the number of famous acts that stopped here on the fingers of one hand. There was Led Zeppelin in 1972 and then there was Jethro Tull at one point, and Ella Fitzgerald, and that was about it.

Those were the days. Today you can’t seem to turn around without someone thrusting a concert in your face. Iceland, apparently, is the IT girl on the concert circuit. If it’s financially viable [a nation of 300,000 doesn’t exactly support stadium-sized spectacles] they’ll come and they’ll play.

Which obviously is a Very Good Thing. In the past we’d have to chase concerts to some country or another; now they come to us. Last week it was John Fogerty. Last Saturday it was Wayne Shorter. Last night it was Bob Dylan. In a couple of weeks it will be Paul Simon. And in a couple of months Eric Clapton. – I’ll say it again: we’re the size of a London suburb; we’re freaking Ealing. Can we support this kind of activity? ~ Apparently.

EPI went to see Dylan last night; admittedly at the last minute because he’s already spent a fair amount of dosh on concerts this summer and wasn’t sure he wanted to afford it. YT gave it a miss because I’m a not a huge Dylan fan [although I do know the lyrics of Like a Rolling Stone by heart, do not ask me how] but when EPI came home gushing about it I gave myself a couple swift kicks in the butt for not mustering up the pep to go. I have now decided to take my cue from EPI’s brother and sister-in-law, who are resolved to hit all the major concerts this summer – because when the circus comes to town, you should go.

Plus, just think of all the dosh I’ll save by not having to go to another country.


… to get out from behind the clouds, but never really made it. Went out for a long walk at lunchtime with a friend and it kept threatening to shine the entire time. Meanwhile, it was pretty windy, but not cold, so bearable. Out by the golf course the arctic tern* is gearing up for nesting season [they fly halfway around the fricking globe to nest on a golf course, how misguided is that?] and it’s hard to know which is more life-threatening: getting walloped in the head by a golf ball or attacked by a tern. It’s currently 9°C [48F] and our sun came up at 3.35 am, went down at 11.16 pm.

* Factoid: In Icelandic the arctic tern is called kría, which is almost an exact replication of the sound they make when they’re attacking you. Kría is also an offhand term for a nap, don’t ask me why because I don’t know.



Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Bluegrass Mama May 28, 2008, 2:11 am

    Enjoy those concerts! I”m not a huge Dylan fan, either, but I’m still jealous of those Clapton tickets.

  • Rozanne May 28, 2008, 4:26 am

    Yeah, carpe diem and all that.

    I think we all let too many opportunities pass us by.

  • Jon May 28, 2008, 2:37 pm

    Mr. Dylan is from nearby and only comes back to do concerts every 10 or 20 years, it seems. Yours was a rare opportunity. The reason you know all the words is probably because it was played every other song for years. You couldn’t help but remember, even if you didn’t want to.

  • TheMonkeyMan May 28, 2008, 3:03 pm

    Ealing and Iceland mentioned in the same post? My Dad will be happy as an Icelander living in Ealing.

  • andrea May 28, 2008, 3:41 pm

    Touring is definitely not dead. In a city that attracts all the major acts, I was thrilled to see a concert that attracted maybe 60 people a few weeks ago. For an act that fills stadiums in the American southwest I was pretty touched that they’d make the effort to go where no one knows them and put on a really professional show. Iceland may be just a bit too far from the tequila-drinking, barstool-flying southwest, though.

  • alda May 28, 2008, 8:27 pm

    Cat – thank you. And don’t worry, I’ll be sure to give a full Clapton report.

    Rozanne – amen to that!

    Jon – well, then we must be especially privileged, because he played here about 18 years ago.

    MonkeyMan – I hope I made his day! 🙂

    Andrea – what’s the act? Have I missed something on your blog?

  • luigi May 29, 2008, 3:42 pm

    vedere della gente in concerto credo sia bello , per quanto mi riguarda ai concerti mi scoccio mi viene voglia di andare via cosi evito di andarci , di solito c’è troppa gente , troppo rumore , troppo caos e volume altissimo . c’è poi da dire che non tutto il concerto di chiunque può essere bello perche i tempi morti fatti da canzoni brutte sono da mettere in conto …allora è sempre meglio per me fare dell’altro piuttosto che rincitrullirmi in mezzo a decine di migliaia di persone che d’abitudine seguono i concerti dopo che hanno fatto il pieno di alcool o di droghe per poi abbondonarsi esausti in un’angolo qualsiasi o nel letto di un partner che neanche conoscono…

  • andrea May 29, 2008, 11:44 pm

    I didn’t post about the concert. Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers. They make redneck literate and alt-country/rock an art form. Sounds like a pair of oxymorons, but I love ’em to death.

  • Sonja May 30, 2008, 5:39 pm

    What I remember is that taking a ‘kría’ comes from the bird flying all the time and hardly ever sitting down for a rest. When they do it is very quick and then they are off again. So when you want a quick nap you call is ‘að fá sér kríu’.

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