31/03/16 - The moment I saw this giant of a man step out from the sleek Audi, I knew exactly who it was. Adorned with an Emerald Top hat and a vest to match, his signature white pony tail rolling down the back of his head and the low rolling British voice, drew instant recognition. It was the man of the hour, Mick Fleetwood. It was a ..fleeting glimpse one might say, for he strode off, sauntering down the backstage hallway to his dressing room. To put it simply, for us, this was a genuine "Holy shit!, this is real!" moment. Reality kicks in and we begin loading our gear in and one by one the rest of the boys turn up. Our time to "saunter" down the backstage hallway arrives and Liam and I take it all in, a new experience for us. The vigilant security, the stage crew, past Mick's dressing room, trying so hard to play it cool. It was almost too good to be true, a beer in the dressing room listening to The Blues Band sound check. Surreal.
Sitting in our dressing room, we were often greeted to the hellos of The Mick man, or soft smiles as he walked by to talk to his awesome Hawaiian crew. Alohas were the customary welcomes we received on numerous occasions and we couldn't help but beam goofy smiles, or me anyway.. We get on stage, run our sound check and wait until 8:20pm, showtime.
Nerves are flying and the next thing we know, it's time. We're playing on stage to Mick Fleetwood fans! Old and new. Our set flew by, before we knew it we were hustling off the stage pulling our gear out of the way, absolutely buzzing and congratulating each other. Auckland's crowd was enthusiastic and receptive for which we are so grateful! We play around eight songs and then boom, we're off! Which welcomes the most exciting part of the night, watching the pioneers!
Now, for an old boy I didn't expect him to be such a bad ass when it came to playing.. Never ever underestimate the ability of anybody ladies and gentlemen because this man still has it. From the trademark wild eyes and Rick Vito's alluring licks, to Black Magic woman and spontaneous shouts from behind his gigantic kit, we were awestruck. Standing side of stage and watching these legends spin tales of their musical beginnings in The 'Peter Green' era to the musical giant that became Fleetwood Mac was a magical experience. Ending on the beautiful 1968 single, 'Albatross', my heart was stolen by the band. The night ended and we left fulfilled and ready for the next show at the beautiful Wellington Opera House.
Words can't describe how much fun we had opening for these legends and I'm sure this is going to be something that the band remembers for a very, very long time. Never in a billion years did Liam and I ever think that we would get such an opportunity! The experience was phenomenal and we certainly learned a lot about what goes on behind the scenes! Now you all need to know that you must always, always, dig the dream! xxxxxxxxxx