And so to the last gig of the tour. Picking up Sadie in West London, driving up through Acton, around the North Circular and on to the M1, heading north to Milton Keynes. A bright, sunlit day but very cold. Listening to Gretchen Peters’ wonderful new CD ‘Hello Cruel World’. 

The Stables was founded by jazz greats Sir John Dankworth and Dame Cleo Laine in 1970 in the old stables block in the grounds of their home in Wavendon, a small village on the south-east edge of Milton Keynes. The village name is an Old English language word, and means 'Wafa's hill'. In the Anglo Saxon Chronicle  in 969 the village was recorded as Wafandun.

Load-in. Soundcheck. Run a few numbers. Tea and sandwiches in the Green Room. Then it’s time to change. Terl, flamboyant as ever, regaling us with more extraordinary tales, Nick donning the pink trousers at the last minute. Then we’re on …

It’s the best selling night of the tour, and our best performance so far. As we drift off stage after the encore, Terl announces “If it was any tighter … it’d be tight!”

Scraping frost off the car. Rolling South on the M1, a detour around the M25 and in on the M40. Home by 1am. Until the next time …

Steve

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