Schnitzel, The Knife and a holiday in Valencia

A story of the new album, family, food and ferocious furballs

Schnitzel, The Knife and a holiday in Valencia - A story of the new album, family, food and ferocious furballs - by Simon Campbell

Joe and and his wonderful partner Christina came to holiday with us for a week. We performed a lovely intimate gig at Bigornia, my new album 'The Knife' was mastered and Bobby ate my Lehle manual. Good times...

Joe and Christina

We have been anticipating the arrival of my son and his partner since our wedding in May. They were thinking of going to Berlin but Valencia seemed to be a warmer option and a great place to spend Joe's 23rd birthday. They are great company and even clear up after meals :)))

It was of course the beginning of the world cup and Christina bought him a German team shirt as a birthday present! My mother would not be amused...

Football was watched, much food was cooked and the beach visited. We didn't realise that Christina had not been to the sea since she was a kid!

Fantastic time was had by all and so sad when they had to leave!

Schnitzel

Joe currently works as a chef at the Steinbock restaurant in Stein-Bockenheim, Germany.

It's a region known for its excellent wine (yes, the Germans do make brilliant wine, but drink it all themselves :) and Schnitzel, which is consumed in copious amounts, hence he spends a lot of time 'beating the meat' so to say.

Of course whilst he was over we asked him to demonstrate his skill! Rather than doing the same old same old we decided to come up with a recipe inspired by the late, great Brunhilde Kalougin. It tasted fantastic and let's put it this way, we are in no danger of being attacked by vampires...

Bobby

Having a new puppy can be indeed troublesome. Our new Valencian friends Fabiano and Valero from ace hair stylists El Atelier also have had the same problem. They are out all day and usually return to an apartment in turmoil.

We are around home most of the time but it doesn't prevent Bob from snurgling (stealing) and savaging stuff.

Fortunately, she doesn't 'do' shoes, preferring underpants, the little tool for moving the drive belt on the turntable, the HDMI remote controller and more recently, this manual...

Bigornia

Unfortunately Joe and Christina missed our really great show at Bigornia in Valencia. It's a friendly, intimate venue and a real supporter of live music. You will find a wide variety of artists and bands here, including a weekly jazz session.

Fitting the full band in was a bit of a struggle but we made it work; Danilo reduced his kit to a two piece and still sounded just as good - proper drummer :)

It's rare that you play to such an engaged and attentive audience. We really enjoyed the gig and met some cool people after the show.

Again the Spanish hospitality was fantastic - Pedro and his wife furnished us with vino tinto and mucho cerveza. I love gigging in this country!

The Waiters Friend

There is a lot of bullshit talked about bottle openers and Screwpull have made a fortune out of their devices. Go into any restaurant in the world and you will find the 'Waiters Friend'. It's cheap, very effective and just works.

The Knife

Extending the culinary theme probably one step too far, my new album 'The Knife' was mastered on the last day of June by the very talented Jon Astley of Close to the Edge Mastering.

Andy and I chose him on recommendation from our ace drummer and studio owner Keith Angel, who couldn't speak highly enough of him.

Jon worked with the legendary Glyn Johns at Olympic Studios, engineering on projects with The Eagles, Joan Armatrading, Eric Clapton, and David Bowie. He moved on to Production work (The Who - Who's Next :) and was also signed to Atlantic as an artist in his own right. The name seemed very familiar...

When we received the DPP masters back, there naturally were a few tweaks so I called him up quickly realising that I knew him through my early work at Revolution Studios and my mate, ace guitar slinger, Michael Byron-Hehir.

It now sounds amazing and we are so excited!

Thanks Jon, grand job.

Ice Plant

I have eaten lots of stuff in my time and love trying new things, so when we were shopping in the excellent  Mercat de Russafa, we found this badger...

After a little research my pals on facebook - specifically the mysterious Leo Stratos - identified it as Mesembryanthemum Crystallinum (Common Ice Plant).

From what we can gather, raw in a salad is the right thing to do. Delicious...

Finally...

Thanks for reading and looking forward to next month's article as hopefully we will have received the test pressing from the vinyl record plant in Germany!!

Enjoy the sunshine wherever you are!

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