The Red House

4th Saturday October, 2003 in Osaka

The Red House is one the most two most famous venues for the Blues. The owner of this live house, Sato Osamu san, is also the owner of Sam's Records, a famous CD and LP shop for Blues and R & Blues music. The whole place reeks of Blues. You can smell it in the air. Korean Joe was to play bass for me for the three Osaka shows.

Pachi Pachi Boogies were to start off the show at the Red House before we play.

On the Bullet Train from Tokyo to Osaka.

 

By the time we got to Esaka station in Osaka in the evening, Stephane's condition was really not good at all. As soon as we arrived at hotel, I knew Stephane was in trouble, he was having a fever and could not even speak at all. The first priority was to get him to a doctor. But it was late at night and all the clinics were closed. My friend Kenji san immeidately obtained a list of hospitals from the hotel and we e went straight to Sakai where The Red House was situtated. When we arrived at The Red House, Kenji san and Masato san lost no time in asking the staff at The Red House for directions to the nearest hospital.

Kenji san and Masato san asking for directions to the nearest hospital.

 

Once directions were obtained, Kenji san and my wife Connie took Stephane to the hospital by taxi immediagely. In the meantime, Korean Joe and I were left without a drummer and the show was to start in an hour's time. I talked to the owner Sato san and explained the situation and Sato san was sympathetic. He somehow managed to find us a drummer, Tagaki san. We had 15 minutes on stage to explain to Tagaki san the structure of the songs and tried out the endings. Then we had to leave the stage as the audience were coming in and the first band was due to play. I was very worried about Stephane and also very worried about the show. We went to an isakaya for some food and then returned to the dressing room of The Red House anxious for any news on the telephone about Stephane's condition.

Me, Tagaki san and Korean Joe

I was worried sick about the show and worried sick about Stephane. Shortly before we went on stage, I received a telephone call from Connie telling that Stephane was in poor condition and surgery would be required required. A picture was taken in the dressing room of The Red House with me and Takagi san and Korean Joe. I tried my best to smile but I was so worried about Stephane and equally worried about the show. I knew it would be a very difficult show as I did not even have enough time to run through the intros and endings of the songs with Tagaki san. It turned out to be the most difficult show I had ever played. I would like to thank Tagaki san for playing with us and helping us out at the last minute. I can imagine how hard it was for him to play with us with just 15 minutes of rehearsal when most of my songs have definitely intros and endings and and not all of them are standard 12 bar Blues songs.

Me and Korean Joe were worried sick about the show.

Before I went I on stage, I closed my eyes and said to myself I would do my best and I crossed my fingers for Stpehane. I actually said a prayer for Stephane before I went on stage. When I got on stage, I just closed my eyes and just played my heart out. I really had the Blues.

We managed to finish the show but not without difficulty. After the show I went to the dressing room immeidately. Stephane was bcak form the hospital and was lying on a sofa, apparantly asleep. My heart was heavy as lead.

 

Before I left, the owner Sato san asked me to sign my name on the wall

 

With Sato san

To the next show : The Howling Bar

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