Had a fabulous afternoon and evening yesterday!! My love for Alfie has rocketed evermore skywards after both the soundcheck and the concert – the atmosphere was electric.
I was a little nervous when I arrived for the VIP as I didn’t see anyone I recognised among the crowd, but was soon rescued from the panic by the arrivals of Carole, Jane, Pam, Sylvia & Lyn. It was lovely to catch up with Carole after meeting her back at Ramin’s Bristol concert in October, and to meet everyone else in the flesh at last. (Thank you all for your kindness and humour and especially for looking after me so well!)
I sincerely hope I can meet up with some Arrows/Roses again very soon; I had a lot of fun and really felt at ease with all of them. Even though I’d never met most of them before it was like old friends reunited!
When we filed into the hall for the soundcheck, Alfie was already rehearsing and sounding fabulous! He stopped after a line and jokingly said: ‘You’re a bit early!’ before launching into a couple more tracks. Soon enough though, he stepped down and began working his way down the rows. I felt privileged because when he got to me as the last in the room, instead of shaking my hand like he had everyone else’s, I got a hug and a kiss (yes, this time I was prepared and returned the hug!)
‘Hello darling, nice to see you again!’
‘Hi Alfie, thanks! You too, you’re sounding great, by the way!’
‘Aww bless you, hope you enjoy!’
‘Sure I will!’
He eventually clambered back onstage and while the orchestra were going over a particular part, started swaying and shuffling his feet to the music with a cheeky smile: ‘I want you all doing this tonight, OK?’
After a few more songs, he jumped back down and addressed us: ‘So, who’s gonna sing the Impossible Dream with me?
A few brave hands (including mine) went up. He picked a young lady named Jo who did a most excellent job!
‘Righto, shall we go and take these pictures?’
When we went out into the corridor, I was joined by one of Alfie’s team, Freddie:
‘Right my lovely, I don’t know how you want to do this, we could get the guys to lift you?’ (There were a few steps)
Now, I have this theory that Alfie must have supersonic hearing: he was far enough away and engaged in conversation so I didn’t expect him to hear my quiet: It’s OK, I’ll wait and Alfie can come down to me afterwards’ but at the mere mention of his name, he turned on his heel and was straight over.
I felt a little self conscious with everybody watching and waiting for him: ‘Seriously Alfie, it’s fine I’ll wait!’
‘No no, you’re the important one! You first.’
‘Alfie, I’ve been thinking’
‘What’s that, darling?’
‘Next album, Bond theme tunes’
He just threw back his head and laughed
He noticed the T-shirt we were given earlier in the carrier I had:
‘Those t-shirts, can’t by them anywhere… you lot are special!’
‘I know, Limited Edition, eh? That’s us!!’
By this point, Neil wandered over just to let Alfie know that they’d sorted the stage etc for Jo to come on.
‘We’ve got the steps, but the forklift truck is on standby’
I joked, ‘That would’ve been ok for me then!
Alfie smiled, ‘Did you put your hand up?’
‘I did, but then I thought: ‘Oh. Stage. High. Not going to work!’
‘Oh darling, you should’ve said! I’d have come down to sing with you! Next time, OK?
I nodded, smiling. Then the lady in charge offered to take our picture we had a bit of trouble with technology and Alfie and I just grinned to each other: ‘Darn technology eh?’ The first one I blinked but the second turned out great which made Alfie happy: ‘Whey!! No blinking just then!’
I thanked him, completely oblivious to the fact I’d forgotten to ask Alfie for his signature as he wandered off to the waiting crowd Freddie went over and asked him for it. Alfie grinned as I mouthed ‘Sorry!’ He came over to say goodbye properly, drawing me into another hug and blowing me a kiss. The last thing I heard as I turned to leave: ‘Don’t go speeding, Ok Kerrie?’
Show wise, it was lovely seeing Alfie as Alfie… like everyone else I loved his humour and playful banter and absolutely loved the times when he got the giggles, particularly once where the orchestra stopped/ started a couple times and the conductor was also grinning, but attempting to look serious as if to say ‘Keep it together Alfie!’ who just clutched his mic stand for support and said, sheepishly,
‘I can’t!!’ before falling about laughing. He also ‘limbered up’ before singing Bring Him Home which was hilarious.
My particular favorite songs: ‘Wheels of a Dream’ (What a way to kick start the show!!), the James Bond and Rodgers & Hammerstein medlies, ‘It Was a Very Good Year, ‘In My Daughter’s Eyes’, O Sole Mio/It’s Now Or Never
The encore was awesome too; Alfie is a total rock star at heart which I adored!