great people that never leave you

Derek Allan and his girls.
Derek Allan and his girls.

have walked many thousands of miles around Northumberland.

I feel it is as big a part of me as I am of it, I miss it and the way it makes me feel when I am away on tour.

In April when I got really ill I thought I would have a fear of walking in the winter.

I can not tell you why I get these fears, they are part of my anxiety. I had to wait until now to see that I could do it.

The North East coast is a very cold place to be if you are on one foot, and as you near the sea you feel you are walking in winter from September onwards.

November 15

This was mostly film night. Mel and I are putting in the big hours through the day ready for the Christmas break.

From December 18 we do no work and have no gigs for 10 days. This is the only time that we switch off and not worry about all the backstage life of the music business.

November 16

Rebecca decided to try a winter walk with us. She wrapped up and tried a few outfits and then we set off into the darkness. Rebecca likes to talk and sing all day long so walks and being outdoors are good for her, but she does not like the cold so much. They hold hands and talk about life and I love to hear them. They cuddle in close when we stop for tea and hot chocolate. Melanie had sneaked in a cupcake from the day before.

Everything is a treat to them. They love life and I hope life loves them. They love talking about new charity work and new venues and where they like to be. They love talking about the performers they have met and will be meeting soon. People such as Barry Hyde of The Futureheads on Thursday. They do not know him of his chart hits, but they know he is special.

They want to get some darts practice in so they can throw some in January at the 24-hour mission with Sam. I had been a part of two 24-hour darts event around 15 years ago with some great people. I love being a part of great things, great people and great moments that never leave you.

November 17

Still hoping for a reply from lots of emails and sent more out today as requested.

Next year needs a good start and enough snow for the magic wishers but not enough to ruin the day for people.

There are simple things that take up time in life like getting the school uniforms ready, cooking, cleaning and being with the family and so on. All part of life.

Today we got to Newbiggin and set up for an event we organised with Sam Gibson, Daniel Laidler of The Lake Poets and Barry Hyde of The Futureheads.

Barry is a front man from Sunderland and he toured America 15 times, I did Texas for three weeks and that was mad enough. He toured with The Red Hot Chilli Peppers, The Foo Fighters and so on. His biggest crowd was 300,000, and here he was playing for us a couple of years later in Northumberland. He played his solo album on piano. His gigs have sold out all over the UK. He played to a full room of 50 people for us. He was great to talk too and had many stories. For Acoustic Magic it was a very successful night and all who were there liked or loved it.

November 18

Me and my musical partner Shaggy have been ill for a while with chest infections, sore throats and so on. We are going to be playing a few less gigs in the hope that this time we give ourselves a chance to fix properly. Some people when they are ill are stay in bed and some carry on with the struggle. It all depends on the person and how the illness effects them. Melanie is a battler, she has little sleep and just carries on with her day.

Shaggy is a battler too, tonight he had very little range with his illness, but still turned up for the gig.