Toil and Peaceful Life

Just finished an uber-stretch of shows and am now back in Winchester enjoying the first of a mammoth three days off. Thanks to everyone who came down to shows, as ever, it was fun, if tiring. Thanks also to Rachel, who accompanied me to a bunch of the shows filming for a little documentary piece thing. It should be great. And big up to PRE and SOFS for our little mini-tour… FREEDOM!

I’m off to Eastern Europe on Thursday, which I cannot wait for, it’s going to rule. Expect another diary report. Jamie’s coming with me again, possibly with a video camera this time. Mayhem awaits. Oh, and Room Thirteen have put up the next two installments of my French diary now, which you can find here. Enjoy.

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Writers Wanted

Always fancied yourself as a journo? Really? Christ. Want to get some stuff up online anyways? The good people at We Want The Airwaves Back are looking for new writers, reviewers and so on. Sample work should be sent to Ed (of Pizza Express fame, natch) at this email: thecaptain@airwavesback.com.

I am killing time in Birmingham, oh joy.

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My New Career Highlight

So there we were, Tiernan (off of TV’s Public Relations Exercise), Ed and myself, in Leicester, looking for somewhere to go eat. We decided to hit Pizza Express in the town centre, and walked in on them doing a photo shoot for a new publicity / advertizing drive. We enthusiastically offered our services, eager to prove our love for all things pizza express (and tempted by their offer to pay for lunch, as well as the general hilarity of it all). So the long and short of it is that we were the centrepiece models for their new advertising campaign. Look for us on a billboard near you soon.

In other news, part one of my French tour diary is now up online through the wonderful people at Roomthirteen.com. You can find it here. The rest will follow shortly. Also, for anyone planning on coming down to the Barfly show in Camden in August, I’d advise buying tickets as they’re starting to go pretty fast. Which is nice.

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The Day Of Rockoning

In Leicester chez Public Relations Exercise, preparing for the trip to Manchester today. I don’t know what it’s like where any of you lot are, but the hot weather just majorly broke here and it’s raining, lightning, thundering like crazy. Awesome. I feel like I’m in a Lordi video or something. Anyways, tour is going well, great shows in Salisbury, Bracknell, York (and NOT Leeds, sorry) and Nottingham (to name a few) recently. Many more to come, and let’s not forget the filming shenanigans that will be going on from Monday to Friday next week (Birmingham, Glasgow, Huddersfield and Exeter).

Two more quick things. Firstly… Underground music scenes survive through cooperation and communication. The whole principle of punk / hardcore was that we can’t and shouldn’t rely on other people to do things for us. But it is important to share information about venues, promoters, bands, labels and so on. If people do a good job then word should be shared, and if they suck then likewise, so that people can build reliable networks. So, for example, the guys who run Salisbury’s Dirty Boots night are great, they do things for the right reasons and are to be highly recommended. Conversely, the show in Nottingham last night went well despite the efforts of the promoter. He totally fucked the show around (because he was on holiday?!), and I’m reliably informed that this isn’t his first misdemeanour. So here’s me doing what I consider is right by “tha scene” and advising bands against working with Striking West in Nottingham.

Finally, after months of me giving him shit and badly covering his songs, my friend Jay, a.k.a. Beans On Toast, a.k.a. the finest songwriter in London, has finally got a myspace page. Listen and weep.

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Robb Maunoury

I received an email yesterday from a guy called Dan. Dan’s been down to a lot of my shows in the past, both solo and with MD, usually with his mates Tom and Robb as well. Robb was tragically killed in a car crash on 16th June this year. Dan mailed me to let me know that at his funeral, he was carried in to ‘Romantic Fatigue’ and carried out to ‘Living The Dream’.

I’m not going to try and make this my tragedy. I met Robb a few times and he seemed pretty cool, but I didn’t know him well. I just wanted to post this to say that I’m utterly blown away by this, it kind of makes everything worth it. And more importantly, that I’m sorry for his friends’ and family’s loss. May he rest in peace.

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Unintentional Haircut

Lexapalooza on Saturday was a great success. Everyone was cool (with one notable exception, who were utter cunts, but I won’t name names), I got to play some songs with Adam Killip, which was nice, and a good time was had by all. I was pretty out of it by time I left, I have vague memories of being in a taxi with Adam with some random guy, playing him songs together. Who knows. Even got my haircut, quite drastically, whilst wasted, which was a nice surprise. It doesn’t look to bad actually – there’s a photo floating around the forum for those who are interested.

More shows coming up around the UK, and my next Eastern European jaunt is getting firmed up too, which’ll be fun. The big news to talk about right now is the show at the Camden Barfly on 8th August. It’s going to be quite an important show for me, so gather your friends and head down. As an exra incentive, I’m going to be recording an album version of “The Ballad Of Me And My Friends” that night, so everyone needs to go to my Myspasm, learn the song (or at least the bit where people sing along) and then we’ll commit it to tape that night. Fun.

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Pussy Wimps

Just back from Ireland, and it was fun. Hi to everyone I met, thanks to everyone at the shows, and apologies to anyone I encountered the morning after hitting the town with Fighting With Wire, I can’t really account for my actions. I did, however, amply prove my suggestion in that Alternative Ulster interview that FWW were “pussy fucking wimps”, with the exception of Jamie, who wins international prizes for (a) staggering around like a wino fucked out of his brains at about 1pm on Saturday, (b) not stopping until he was naked on stage at Sandino’s that night, and (c) constantly vomiting all through Sunday, before playing a show! Well done that man. Big thanks to Gogs too for sorting the minitour. Happy days.

I have a comparitively empty couple of weeks right now, which I feel is a well-deserved break. Two inportant gigs coming up tho. Firstly, I’m playing with Jonah at the Kingston Peel on June 14th (as well as doing an afternoon instore…). It’ll be cool to share a stage with the man again, and there are copies of our split to be bought there, so get your arse down to the gig and rock out (in a suitably relaxed, folky kind of way).

Secondly, my friend Lexy is organizing a show – Lexapaloooza – which is taking place this Saturday (June 17th) in Colliers Wood. Aside from me playing a set and compering the evening (Christ) there’s also action from such luminaries as PRE, 5000 Killer Diseases, Adam Killip (the Tailors) and so forth. And to top it all, it’s a benefit for Breast Cancer. So no excuses. More info here.

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Note To Self: Sleep

Hey people, well, I’m back from France / Belgium, and I had an ace time. There’s going to be this full diary-style update as soon as I get the photos and get round to writing it up, but in the meantime, just a brief note to say thanks a million to Chamoule for everything. Thanks, “mec”. I also had a great time at Coleford Music Festival, thanks everyone there too.

A few days off for me now, catching up on sleep and food and all that kind of thing. Coming up soon we have more shows, and the split with Jonah, which is now scheduled for a late June release. I’m also hitting Ireland for the first time solo next week. Cahir from Fighting With Wire (who are doing some of the shows) called me at 5am the other day, from a trampoline in Manchester, to tell me he was going to fuck me up when I get over there. How I’m looking forward to it. There’s also more festivals getting confirmed here and there, and an big ol’ Eastern European trip between July 20th and August 5th, which currently looks set to take in Latvia, Lithuania, Russia, Estonia and Finland, if not more.

Finally, some musings… The ‘folk’ genre is, much like punk rock, very diasporic these days. In the same way that the initial canon of Ramones, Pistols and Clash was superceded by a massive explosion of different punk rock scenes in the 80’s and beyond (making it hard for anyone to be on the money with every single ‘punk’ band), there’s a shitload of folk music out there, beyond the original greats, and it’s not easy to be completely familiar with it all (and have a life). This is made harder for me by the fact that, while I’m something of punk nerd, folk is still relatively new pastures for me. So what I’m really trying to say here is that it’s only recently, on the recommendation of a few talented friends, that I’ve discovered the pure, unadulterated joy of Townes Van Zandt. If you already knew all about him, bully for you. If you don’t, check him out.

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It’s “Frank” Not “Fronk”, For God’s Sake

Apologies about that last post. It was actually for real (at least to the extent that it wasn’t me posting when drunk, it actually was Chamoule, who’s the promoter for this tour). Anyways, waking up in the Alps right now and forgive me for gloating, my English chums, but it’s fucking gorgeous. Not so many French dates left now, but I’ll be doing a full diary Latvia-stylee at the end of it all which is going to be hosted on roomthirteen.com, so look out for that.

The other things to mention today: my friend Johno is raising some sponsorship money for his Cross-Mongolia Charity effort. Information and donation here. Also been checking out some killer French bands of late – particularly The Pookies, who I played with the other day. Check it.

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Bande de batards

Hey, you bastards! I am Chamoule, the french organizer of your little beloved singer.
I have kidnapped him and he is now in a room, naked, with James Blunt and Johnny Halliday coming out of a real loud speaker!!! If you want to have back this Gandalf-like english guy, you’ll have to do some things in the UK…

First, give a call to your girl/boyfriend to tell him/her “YOU ARE A STUPID JERK, AND THAT’S WHY I HAD SEX WITH FRANK TURNER”!
Second, learn one song of the EP and scream it in a police station dressed like a lamantin!
And Third, send a love letter to Frank’s adress and the best one (or the worst…) will be sang by Frank in a special surprise show day!!!

You better begin now because a i have spies everywhere in the UK, watching and reporting me the facts. If not, i will put Frank in a room with naked one-bra girls with a moustache, a baguette, a stripped pull, a beret and a garlic collar; and they will all begin to sing “My Humps” of Black Eyed Peas!!!

Now stop playing to World of Warcraft and go do all i wrote you bunch of little brats.

Le Chamoule

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