February 23, 2012
Assembly Hall, Tunbridge Wells, UK
First show in Assembly Hall went well last night! It was my first time
teching, as well as seeing Joan Baez with her "band." Gabe Harris, her
son, on percussion added a very tasteful layer to each song, while Dirk
Powell, the multi talented man, played piano, banjo, violin and guitar
along side Joan's guitar and melodies. The whole performance felt very
organic. The crowd was in awe and many loomed about after the show
with flowers and cards and stories of how her music had changed their
life. It's such a joy to see how fans really appreciate Joan and her
February 25, 2012
Corn Exchange, Cambridge, UK
It's 2:00 pm, and the crew is headed to York after departing Cambridge.
Last night's Cambridge Corn Exchange performance was absolutely
magical. The audience was completely captivated all night by Joan's
humorous jokes about herself and her age. It was a very fun night, and
upon coming off stage before the big ending Joan had remarked "Gee, we
oughta take this crowd on the road with us!" After the show ended
dozens of fans were waiting out back for Joan. Many had books, posters, and pictures signed. One woman who was an artist made
a layered black and white cut out of Bob Dylan for Joan; another with a
t-shirt from the old high school she had went to. A woman wept and
fell to her knees saying, "Oh my god, I've hugged Joan Baez, you've
made my life!" It made me reflect on how many people Joan has inspired,
and it left me thinking of a great quote by Paula Underwood Spencer: "If you want to be truly
understood, you need to say everything three times in different
ways. Once for each ear...and once for the heart" This is exactly what Joan does with her music, and it truly
touches ears and hearts all over the world.
February 26, 2012
The Barbican, York, UK
Here we are in York! One of the cities where pieces of "The wall" are
left standing. Joan and I walked along a piece of the old wall that
would surround York, protecting it from other cities. There is a very
historic look to the town with the wall and gates used in the 1500s
still being walked along and under. It's amazing that many of it still
stands. Joan performed at The Barbican tonight. It was an amazing
night. She signed 25 copies of DVDs and box sets. It amazes me that
she will sign any amount of anything! How cool is that for the fans!
The show went smoothly, and the York crowd was by far the largest
cheering crowd in the end... YOU WIN! We're currently watching the
movie "Here After" in the bus on the way to Newcastle! It's a must see
by me, Joan and the rest of the crew!
February 29, 2012
Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow, UK
Glasgow! Lots of sheep and greeeeen land! The earth looked
exceptionally beautiful in Scotland! It sounded just as beautiful as
it looked in the Royal Concert Hall in Glasgow! Shout outs to the
chefs in the hall as Joan remarked it was the best soup she's had! It
was a very intimate night as the crowd seemed to take warmth to Joan's
stories of some of the songs she performed. This was the first night I
had witnessed Joan re-tell the story of her experience with the song "Swing Low." Joan remarked at how important this song was during the
period of the civil rights movement, and recalled a time when Dr.
Martin Luther King asked Joan to lead all the advocates for equality
in song. She said that it was a very unifying experience and that this
song brought people together and allowed everyone to sing for peace
and equality. It was amazing for me to stand off the side of the stage
and hear these words echo through the tiny crack in the door in the
side of the stage. (It's amazing how such big words can fit through such a small space). Again, Joan has proven tonight that song truly
brings people of all ages, genders, races and religions together. Such
a beautiful thing!
March 2, 2012
Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool, UK
In Liverpool - Home of The Beatles! THE LADS! Joan is occupying the
beautiful concert hall and home of the Liverpool Philharmonic
Orchestra. The crowd was intense, someone wins the award for best
This was a special night as Joan entranced the audience
with a sing a long called "Gracias a la Vida" in Spanish for the finale. Many
were dancing in their seats, and I could not keep still as well - haha. The
crowd was shouting more, more and more as Joan ended the night with a
second finale with songs like "Imagine" and "Dixie." It was a very fun
note to end on.
Fans were waiting out back where many were surprised
at how gracious Joan is with speaking to and greeting her fans with
hugs and kisses!
March 4, 2012
Bridgewater Hall, Manchester, UK
Manchester! The Bridgewater Hall performance was tonight. Another sold
out show as capacity was 2,271! The building is absolutely astounding
when it comes to sound.
Joan's voice lingered and echoed throughout
the walls so well it was something like a dream! The crowd was very
responsive as they screamed when Joan went into "Farewell, Angelina" and
softened to songs like "Swing Low." It was a wonderful show as many
remarked again at how wonderful the "band" was. Dirk Powell on banjo,
guitar, piano and more, as well as Joan's son Gabe Harris on percussion.
Many fans waited out back for an autograph and photo. Another great
night for fans of Joan Baez!
March 5, 2012
City Hall, Sheffield, UK
It was a scenic drive through the Moors. WOW! Green grass, blue skis, serene
streams! What a beautiful trip. We arrived at the Sheffield venue and
I indulged in my very frst Great Yorkshire pudding for dinner! Joan gave a
memorable performance and it was the loudest choir YET! Dixie was a grrrrreat sing along!
Also, today was my 23rd birthday. Upon the beginning of the show the setlist had
a new song listed - "BG" it was called...I asked all around frantically to Blair Woods, the
tour manager, and Dirk Powell and Gabe Harris (bandmates) for an answer to
what song this was! I had to make sure I had the guitar tuned properly and the
capo on the right fret. Everyone said "don't worry about it, just bring an open
guitar." So I did, only to find out that "BG" meant one of two things - birthday
gift OR baby G -haha. I walked out on stage and Joan introduced me as she usually
does, but then goes on to say it's my birthday, and Blair showed up with a cake
with candles lit onstage for me to blow out as the crowd of 2,000 sang happy birthday! (video here) WHAT
A DAY I WILL NEVER FORGET! How gracious of Joan (no pun intended) to wish me a
happy birthday in this way.
The crowd was very pleased to hear songs like "Farewell, Angelina" and
"Blowin' in the Wind," which I heard many still singing on their way out.
Joan again signed EVERYONE'S posters, CDs, and books and even taught a little
babe how to shake hands! It was a successful night here - OFF TO
March 7, 2012
Colston Hall, Bristol, UK
March 6th was a travel day. We headed out to Bristol. What a beautiful drive yet
again. Lots of wonderful graffiti on the walls of Bristol and local
independently owned shops, which is always great to see. We ate at Khatmandu, an
Indian restaurant. It was heaven, we all agreed. The next night Joan performed at Colston
Hall in Bristol. It was a very lively night. Joan was called out on stage for
two encores! The acoustics of the room were absolutely to die for! Many fans
hung around after the show remarking how Joan and her band mates sounded
together. After the show, many fans ran up to the stage begging me for set
lists. I had just 3 to pass out and there were about 15 people all around. SORRY IF I MISSED
YOU!! It's all love :) A few fans also came backstage to give Joan beautiful
flowers which she took to her hotel room to green it up! It was yet again another
brilliant night here in the UK!
March 9, 2012
City Hall, Salisbury, UK
Tonight was the performance at City Hall in Salisbury. It was a smaller venue
but boy did it pack a punch. We arrived from Bristol at about 2:30pm. Joan and
I headed to the soup where we indulged in some fine minestrone! Compliments to
The crowd began filing in. When the show began, the room was so quiet
you could hear a pin drop! Ian, our lighting man, made the stage look brilliant
with a nice blue glow. There was a certain magic in the air - although the
audience was quiet, they were wonderful. Joan remarked, "how sweet they are." As
always, many were waiting out back to meet and greet the one and only Joan Baez!
We are now headed to our hotel where we will rest up for the show tomorrow.
March 10, 2012
The Anvil, Basingstoke, UK
We arrived in Basingstoke around 4:00pm in time for soundcheck at the wonderful hall. It was
beautiful and BIG. Lovely beef and stew with seafood potatoes for dinner!
Showtime came to pass in NO time. I felt like a secret detective on my guitar
tuning mission, as there was a secret short and thin small passageway for me
to enter to the stage. Perfect for my 4'11" self :) (Joan's nickname for me is
Baby G after all!) The crowd was all around - literally - the seats behind Joan,
known as the "choir" seats, even sold out! It was wonderful. Loudest crowd yet,
as it was so large. One woman shouted out, "Thank you for the music, Joan!" while
we were swapping out guitars for the next song. Joan replied, "Well, thank you
for liking it!" Goes to show that artists wouldn't be who they are without the
fans. So this one goes out to all of you Joan Baez lovers - She loves you back!
Off to Ipswich! :)
March 12, 2012
Regent Theatre, Ipswich, UK
Tonight was the Ipswich performance! The Regent Theatre was Joan's home for
the night. And "homey" it felt, thanks to her new couch and lamp she got for the
performances from here on out! People remarked on how comfy it looked, and comfy
it was (I took a seat). (That's Ian Lyles setting up lights next to the couch.)
The crowd was very genuine, applauding at Joan's silly
joke of Dylan and herself. She ended the night with John Lennon's "Imagine" to
spread peace and love! Now I'm off to the back for Joan to sign books and posters :)
Next stop - Birmingham.
March 13, 2012
Symphony Hall, Birmingham, UK
It was a great show in Birmingham tonight. Joan played Symphony Hall for 2,200 people! It was amazing. A huge venue in which some of the crew before soundcheck were flying a remote controlled helicopter around the stage and into the seats. :) Very fun. Tonight was also the first performance of a song Joan has introduced into her set. It's a very bluesy song called "Stagger Lee." Joan makes use of her vocal skills on this one while sitting on her new couch that greets the stage!
Many fans stuck around after the show to meet Joan and take pictures. Another successful night. Also, shout-out to George who sent the beautiful card to Joan mentioning that he's been following the blog! Thank you :) Off to London!!!
March 16, 2012
Royal Festival Hall, London, UK
Here we are! We had the past couple days off in London during which Joan spent time with her son Gabe and family member Alex checking into the Chandos family history, and the rest of the crew scattered about. I visited some great antique shops and took care of laundry. Got lost while taking the Tube and ended up at The Borderline, which was a great club!
Next day off to the Royal Festival Hall where joan performed in front of 2,900+ people! She's playing again tomorrow, two sold out shows in a row! Great fans came to greet Joan after the show - one woman was 106 years old! Upon arriving she was offered a seat and said, "I'm fine, thank you," and she went on to thank Joan for her uplifting music, explaining that she had survived through two world wars.
Among the fans was one that I had the pleasure to meet - 22-year-old London folk star Laura Marling. Joan was a huge inspiration on Laura who was also performing there that evening!
It was a great night. Time to do it all again tomorrow!
March 19, 2012
New Theatre, Oxford, UK
Oxford is a great town! We stayed in a hotel, the Malmaison, that used to be a jail! Joan was vey pleased with her room as it was bigger than a cell - haha! A lot of history here, including the Oxford Castle.
The show went very well tonight. Everyone was in a silly mood just before the show. Tour Manager Blair Woods put on a Joan Baez mask and fooled the cook by opening the door just a crack and saying "hello!" Haha! FUN! - as was the crowd. The song the audience went bananas over was "Diamonds & Rust." Many fans came back to meet and greet Joan. One woman who suffered from a stroke made it back to shake Joan's hand - truly amazing. Upon departure we got outside and there were even MORE fans. Some didn't have anything for Joan to sign; they just came to say hello. (photo at right is Joan and one of her admirers outside the New Theatre)
For me it was great to visit the wonderful town of Oxford. Would love to come back! Next stop is Nottingham. :)
March 20, 2012
Royal Concert Hall, Nottingham, UK
We arrived in the early afternoon after heading out of Oxford. Joan performed
at the Royal Concert Hall. Onstage this night, Joan brought out a loud pink and purple
hat that she had bought to bring home to her mum. She put it on head during the
performance and told the story of how she could be a duchess (based on her Chandos family genealogy)!
There were at least 45 people waiting for her after the show, the biggest crowd yet! Joan was kind enough
to meet and greet them all after working hard on stage. Another terrific night
with Joan and great fans :)
(Joan and her hat with our truck driver, Angus!)
March 22, 2012
Millennium Center, Wales, UK
What a beautiful city! :)
First time I learned what Welsh was, after
asking why there were letters on the front of the venue. Haha. It was a fabulous
culture and fun town. The guys and I ate amazing brick oven pizza in a fabulous
place called Cwetch.
Joan performed at the Wales Millennium Centre. Many of the
audience members were somewhat reserved, but in the end gave Joan a huge thanks.
Audience members were shouting "I love you Joan!" It was a great looking stage and
Joan enjoyed performing there and learning a bit of Welsh herself!
March 25, 2012
Lighthouse, Poole, UK
Getting towards the end of the tour we entered Poole, UK. The Lighthouse was the venue of the night! Poole was absolutely BEAUTIFUL. The water was wide and yachts were present. Joan and I went walking along the yachts to find my future husband....but had no luck! ;)
Joan had a great crowd and performance in Poole. One woman gave us a bottle of champagne for the end of the tour celebration. The crowd was very wonderful and many stuck around for autographs. When we packed up there was a new excitement/final destination energy as tomorrow was the last show, in Brighton!
March 26, 2012
Dome, Brighton, UK
Brighton was a bustling city! Lots of neat shops and a gorgeous beach that made me miss sweet summertime. Joan, Angus and I sat in the sun for a while outside of the venue. So nice!
Upon show time everyone was super excited to give one last hoorah. I had quite a run to get Joan's guitar to her on stage but it was fun! Joan gave 3 encores and on the last one people were actually banging on the seats to get her to come back out! How cool is that!? A good way to end the tour. There were many fans waiting out back for Joan. She met and thanked each and every one of them, taking pictures and giving goodbye hugs. It was off the airport hotel after that!
The tour was absolutely amazing. Joan's crew works very hard in aiding Joan to put on the best show possible. It was a pleasure getting to know the team and Joan. She is a wonderful, sweet person that puts on a heck of a show! I was honored to aid her in her travels so that she can still inspire the world with her gift of music. Farewell to the UK for now - CHEERS! Time go home to Buffalo, NY and get used to driving on the other side of the road again! Keep your eyes and ears open for the blogs on the tour of Germany, France, and Italy, coming up in a couple of months! Love to all JB fans!