In this Crazy Tour Stories segment, the classic rock band, Shiraz Lane, shares one of their stories from being on the road. You can check out the story, after the break.
’Twas the evening 4th of December and the ravaging coalition of three marauding groups of musicians – Shiraz Lane, H.E.A.T. & One Desire – had accomplished a successful Rock N’ Roll invasion in the heart of Paris, France. After all the loot was loaded on board of our mothership, we set forth to terrorize and raise havoc towards our next destination which was agreed to be Montbéliard – a small town located on the Eastern border of France and Switzerland. The property in target was called ‘’L’Atelier Des Môles’’ which roughly translates into ‘’The Workshop of Moles’’ – little did we know that the thought of these savage little critters would be the least of our problems that night. As we commenced on our 500 km overnight journey, the crew was all in high spirits and in a celebratory mood over the victorious conquest of the capital city. After a few hours of well-deserved barbaric carousing, the festivities were put to an end by the captain who commanded his crew to rest and gather strength for the raid of Montbéliard. Slowly but surely the squad scrambled themselves in their bunks and a calm nocturnal silence landed over the sleeping quarters, which was only interrupted by occasional grunts and snoring. The only person left awake was the steersman who was ordered to drive us safely to our destination.
Suddenly, the ship came to an unexpectedly fierce halt and the crew was forced to awake. The cabin was filled with thick black smoke and the whole crew was forced to abandon ship. Was this a malicious roadside assault by the enemy? Were we under attack? Turns out this was not the case. Our steersman had driven on roads unknown for hours without any sense of direction. After accepting the fact he was lost, his decision was to drive on reverse through narrow and elevating countryside roads for miles, which eventually demolished the clutch of the vehicle. This was also the cause of the smog-filled cabin and made the bus a health hazard to re-enter. The outcome was that the fellowship was stranded somewhere in the French countryside in the dead of the night without a town in sight. After a short re-grouping session, negotiations were made that our best option was to ventilate the bus so that we could spend the night in shelter rather than under the stars. This proved to be the right tactic (after a couple of hours shivering in the freezing cold).
As morning came to shed light on our surroundings, we contacted for helped and a replacement vehicle was promised to be sent our direction. This would take a good 7 hours though. Needless to say, the raid of Montbéliard was compromised. With a timeframe so out of schedule, it would be a challenge to pull off a professional night of entertainment. Meanwhile, our team decided to set out on foot to a nearby village in search of food and beverages. This plan did not work out for us since we were chased back to our home base by a local guard dog who seemed upset by our entry upon his territory. This unfortunate setback forced us to wait with empty stomachs, but at least we had our comrades to lift our spirits. Finally, after hours of wasted time, the replacing vehicle arrived. It was quickly loaded with our gear and we set on course to our destination. We were hours behind schedule and uncertainty was floating around the whole concept of managing to pull everything off before doors open for the public. Luckily, in the end, we made it in the nick of time and all three bands performed an excellent set of Rock N’ Roll music without the crowd ever knowing what had happened the previous night.
Turned out that another band from our entourage (H.E.A.T.) had actually managed to find some breakfast in the morning in a local farmhouse. This was the probable cause for their frontman Mr. Erik Grönwall to suffer from serious abdominal pain during the evening. Nonetheless, he pulled it off on stage as if nothing was wrong. Professionalism at its best. Although, I must wonder that maybe the lack of local village nutrition was not so unfortunate after all…