DEREK’S DIARY: New album is coming along well

Derek Allan with his daughter Ellie.
Derek Allan with his daughter Ellie.

In 2013, the Gazette published excerpts from the diary of Derek Allan, one half of the acoustic duo We Steal Flyers. After taking 2014 off from being a diarist, Derek, from Broomhill, is back again.

FEBRUARY 2

It was a nice day leading up to the gig. We are all just dealing with the cold/flu thing, but I am not sure how Melanie managed five gigs in a row, driving and sound and simply being there all night and the usual home works and family missions. One of our plans is to help social clubs from being closed and knocked down. Dinnington took us up on the plan to host a music event. We do a Monday when nothing else is going on at the venue or in most places around. Music lovers and musicians can all be together and share the magic. This works very well but there have not been many people turning up. The nights are still loved by all involved and the stages in these places are awesome. Hannah Brown, Tinny Bennett of Peterlee, Jasmine Davies only 15 years old! and Berry Burgess all played a 30-minute set and it was a great night as always. Getting to hear music and see how well these players play when given the chance is special.

It is a lonely, tough and misunderstood business and they all need help. Inspirational people need inspired.

FEBRUARY 3

Two good days of booking gigs and the ‘all-dayers’ are on the way now. Ten performers in a day. It takes some organising and promoting, but these days are shared days that some people will never forget and it brings so many good people together. 100 emails went out for the offers and 50 calls were made. The cricket trials with Ellie were amazing. They are all doing so well. I am looking forward to following the team. Even if Ellie is too young this will be her team one day and we can all stick together. Kids and parents, a team.

FEBRUARY 4

The new album is coming on well and Shaggy has been adding more to the songs. I am looking forward to touring this album more than any album I have toured before. It feels right and we have only just started it. Tour dates are coming in now and I am putting them all together. Once January is over, venues make up their minds if they want music or not. Because we tour we can easily play 200 dates a year as our choice of venues is the world.

FEBRUARY 5

I finally got to go for a walk. Ellie is way too ill with fevers and Melanie is tired so Rebecca walked with me today. I love our Karrimor walking gear, but her boots, coat and so on are so cool with her being only six.

FEBRUARY 6

I need to prepare the poetry book for Melanie to proof-read. I am getting messaged for poetry now daily and I have no idea what will happen once the book is published and if we skip a publisher how many to make? Sam Gibson is doing well with his second full season as a musical touring artist, sadly too many venues have ended music so cancelled him last-minute and this is very tough on us all. Once he has done a gig, he always gets booked back and that means he will be okay.

FEBRUARY 7

This was a Pindrop event in Hartlepool and it was tremendous. We played in a bar, three acts and everyone there for the music. Meeting people is a magical part to life. A great friendly night and shared music night. We made good friends and fans and the promoter Brian is a great person refusing to end live music and believing it will make it. These nights give hope and a We Steal Flyers gig with seven future new venue bookings from it from Wakefield, York, Hartlepool and more. An inspirational night. Our albums are flying out live and online.

Read the previous installment of Derek’s Diary, if you missed it.