Saturday 28 August 2021

ArtPark Lewiston

I am beginning to find a rhythm on the tourbus. Go to bed just as the bus leaves the venue somewhere after 12.30, let it lull you to sleep as it cruises down the highway, accept that you will wake up each time the bus stops or the rhythm changes, admit by 8.30am or so that you really have had enough sleep, go for a half hour jog, search out the showers in the venue. Rinse and Repeat.

Artpark at Lewiston certainly wins the award for the most attractive jogging route – a path that runs alongside the Niagara river. Jogging machines often have accompanying video displays of an attractive outdoor trail to fool you that you are not really sweating away in the basement of a hotel. This time I had the trail for real. A real treat.

And during the day, some of us also found time for a quick visit to Niagara Falls, which I have never seen. Tony Levin, who didn’t come as he had been before, described it as “the best of nature surrounded by the worst of humanity”. For me, Nature won. As it tends to do in the end.

This proved to be a favourite gig for many of the Zappa band – and there is something special about sitting out on the grass with the crowd swaying to “The Court of the Crimson King”, or the opening phrases of “Starless” once the night has closed in. And Schizoid Man, both during the main piece and the drum solo visited a different dimension. Each show is unique, as we are reminded at the Royal Package.