DEREK’S DIARY: Another string of brilliant days

Derek Allan
Derek Allan

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.

March 14

The 24-hour Acoustic Magic charity night is looking like an October date as this is the only time we can all be together. Last year it was a magical time and loads of players turned up, shared happiness, made friends, felt good and made a difference. Sam Gibson ran it with us in Dinnington and he did the whole 24 hours with the amazing Melanie and myself. Sam Gibson has had a great year and he too is selling albums in many places. He has some nice tours to come and is doing well in Yorkshire. Melanie, Ellie and Rebecca went with me to Newcastle Dog Races, our Acoustic Magic sponsors. It was a good time and as cold as the north is, but still plenty in short skirts and T-shirts telling me I should not be in shorts...I should.

MArch 15

This was a day for Melanie. I think this is one of her only days off. We walked the lake and the little ones took bikes. We ate and watched some films that Melanie chose, one was Wayne’s World. Haven’t seen it in years...Excellent.

MArch 16

Another day of calls, I put in the hours then afterwards went for a great walk and cricket practice with Ellie. She would like to be like Andrew Flintoff in the women’s game. Sadly women’s cricket has no major websites, and old Facebook and Twitter pages that are not updated. It is not on TV even though it has a World Cup. It is a struggle to find any live matches to take her to. The walk was brilliant. I like the lake they left for us and the people that we see walking it. An hour of catching and bowling today.

March 17

Same calls as yesterday. Today I feel a bit tired of all the calls with nothing back. I am ready to write novels again. A gig cancelled today, one for Sam and one for We Steal Flyers. I got a text saying ‘music is not working, don’t come’. The gig was too close to replace so sadly we lose out this time.

March 18

The ticket gigs with Acoustic Magic are becoming easier to set up. As long as people want the nights, we can do it. Be it here or anywhere, there are always enough people wanting to hear music to get by, the players are grateful and the crowd are nice so it is always rewarding. I walked another great walk with Ellie up the side of the sea. Nice place to be.

MArch 19

Newbiggin gig is here again and once again it was a great night. We are working on a lot of new places and faces. I have also not forgotten about my charity missions.

I am thinking of many things from walking the English coast to walking the country.

I have always wanted to do this and I think by next year I can do it.


I am looking forward to the new album being done and in our hands.

Messages from many places are coming in asking about the album now. We need it finished.

We need some album time together do Shaggy and I.We have some good tours coming up and I am looking forward to new countries.

Germany dates for March 2016 are pretty much sorted now. There is a lot of world to see.


This was an amazing day, like most days but better. Rebecca wanted to go for a walk and Ellie did not. A switch-around and it was exciting.

I took her through the amazing Warkworth where I used to live and may end up one day.

A magical place with a castle and Rebecca loved it.

We spent five hours on our adventure. Sam played his first gig in Alnwick, Tanners with Acoustic Lush. Another great place with great people.

March 22

The all-dayer with ten players. This was a perfect day and ran as well as they all do. So many people coming together, this time Chillingham Arms in Heaton. Well done to everyone as always. It is always great to share life with people. Music all day and happy people.

march 23

A whole new day/week to be in. The fresh feeling of a new week means people are looking forward to a new week or a new weekend.

It also means they have the poster that Melanie writes and posts out weekly. Another cancellation today. I walked many miles once again and let the Nortumberland winds clear my mind.


This was a way better day. The gigs come and they go. Acoustic Magic have been asked to put on music for some new venues,

Now this is more like it, As always, if people want a music night to happen we make it so. I will be touring more with Shaggy, We have a new album on the way and we love touring and people love us touring. Learning not to worry is important. Like I say always, it is not what we make or lose on a night but if we are still going at the end of the year then we can make it through another. I am learning to worry worry away.

March 25

The feeling of touring is here now. I feel it and I know all around me do too. It is always a great sense of achievement, We do what not many we know can do, We do so much to get where we are and here is where we enjoy it. I have sorted the most realistic charity mission out too. I cannot say a lot right now, but I am pleased. It will take 12 months to sort out, but it will be worth it.

march 26

Walk, curry and films day and night. The bags are packed and we are ready to tour. Melanie is getting the computer ready for my return so I can start the new novel and get this poetry book out. I have walked every day this week. I have walked many steps through Northumberland and I never tire of it. Should I have to leave here I would always miss it.