July 13, 2003
Written by Robert Fripp
Hotel Posh With A Stunning View, Montreux, Switzerland.
This room on the sixth floor has an ace view over Lake Geneva.
Lobby call this morning in Hotel Professionally Very Acceptable, Amsterdam airport, at 09.00. A walk over to check-in: very long lines, passengers queuing to get their stowed baggage x-rayed prior to check-in. A notice claimed that security equipment is currently being installed in the basement. Then, a full but uneventful flight to Geneva & an hour's drive to Montreux.
The sun is shining, the sky is blue.
00.04 Another show spoilt, and in such a way that got Pat off the stage at the end of the show and was into the hall after the photographer. A fuller report tomorrow, when my spirits have recovered.
July 14, 2003
Written by Robert Fripp
Hotel Most Acceptable Of The Kempinski Kind, Budapest;
When life is hard, eat the best meal you can afford. This is very good advice. I am not actually in search of a best meal, neither the best I can afford. But I am very much in need of an overall view of my current professional life; how to approach the sad fact that the cornerstone of this life, for 42 years semi & fully pro, has been live performance; and live performance is now threatened by a premature demise.
An early lobby call, drive to Geneva airport, a flight on a small airplane without reclining seats & a tired team. Arriving in a room with classical music playing, even Classical Chestnuts, was a treat indeed.
14.02 Sitting on the restaurant terrace, enjoying some excellent buffet treats mainly of the salad variety, and now backtracking --
Sunday Evening, 13th. July: this was Crimson's first appearance at the Montreux Festival. Its musical origins, as with the North Sea Festival, are jazz-based. Today, its performance brief is very wide. Joao Gilberto was the other performer this evening.
Part of the deal for the festival is to film the show, with tv & internet rights for a year. The film then reverts to KC and, in the fullness of time, will likely become a DVD in the available DGM KC archive.
I note, whenever cameras appear, the show goes downhill. This is a truism, because it is true. There is no rational connection between Adrian's equipment malfunctioning to an astonishing degree and the appearance of several cameras in front of him. Kengineer's assessment is that dust from the Dour Festival on Friday was a large contributory factor. So there: a reasonable explanation for those who need one. Ade considered this his worst KC show in 10 years. I pointed out that we were not working 10 years ago. So, 9 years then.
The announcement re: cameras & smoking was applauded. An evening of clams, clunkers, recoveries - all on film. One classic flub from Greg FOH - bass feedback Thrush.
A flash right at the end. Then, returning for Red: one character decided to really go for it, knowing it to be disruptive: this was a large part of his intent. He set up a multiple series of flashes & fired them off. Forget Grumpy Old Fripp - Pat eyeballed him & was off the front of the stage after him as the last notes died. And the last notes died. It took a lot to hold myself on stage, but something died with those last notes.
For all the difficulties of this tour, and the dread that preceded it, I have nevertheless gone on stage mostly in good cheer, once or twice in self-protecting good cheer, but nevertheless persisting in good faith. Now, I have to accept: no more like this.
I find myself in a comparable position to 30 years ago, when I was unable to see any external solution to the future: personally, professionally, politically, economically, nationally, globally. Then the butterfly's wings flapped & the collapse of the status quo in the West moved further east: the USSR, Yugoslavia, Croatia, Bosnia & down a bit to Israel, Palestine, Iran, Iraq. This is all part of a massive change, the short present moment of which is 200 years. The details are unpredictable, the overall view more so.
One person, with a camera or a gun, can cause disruption far beyond the quantitative scale. Small mobile units, of varying degrees of intelligence, are able to do damage to larger, unwieldy units that are inevitably vulnerable. A small act can cause repercussions that spread far beyond its original target and, where this act is violent, has a knack of turning round and inflicting all manner of damage to those parties nominally represented/defended by that act of violence. One act of violence is a reaction to another, and generates another in turn. This is gravity working. We all lose, although the ways of loss are different.
So, the only solution I am able to see, now as thirty years ago, is an internal action.
There are significant actions that take place which, mostly, we never get to see. Occasionally, I read a small something in a newspaper and I have a sense: this is not attracting publicity, this is not exciting, something is happening here. But this kind of internal action is not, and cannot in its nature, be institutionalised. It cannot get fixed in this way, or it serves something other than its founding conception intended.
When something real, authentic, genuine takes place, it takes place for a while. A specific aim is served. The, the spirit moves on to another external situation, where another action is initiated. Sometimes there are records left of particular pieces of work, or schools in action. Sometimes these are pieces of architecture, such as those that give me hope when touring Europe. Sometimes pieces of literature have an echo of something more distant. Yet all these external pieces of work, however real, however "objective", are only fingers pointing to the moon. It is not enough to take photos of these buildings, put them on the wall or use them as screen-savers, and marvel at the wonders of an earlier age. The architecture is internal, the building external.
And here/there I am again: the only future I see is the construction of an interior architecture.
00.14 The Crims, crew & management are having dinner with the promoter. I have been mainly practising.
As I returned at 19.50 from doing the block, the management & production team were winding up a meeting: they had been discussing various options for future KC touring. At last! interesting alternatives to the brain-dead, unimaginative, stultifying thinking that conventionally sets up tours.
Pat tells me that Warren Beatty & Annette Bening are in this hotel.
Audio Source: Board Recording
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