Week two is already over and we’ve done more than a third of our gigs. It’s really satisfying to be able to give people such a pleasure. Hundreds of rehearsals, a lot of heart and sweat have gone into our preparation for the performance and we are rewarded for this with the terrific applause (including a lot of scene applause, which of course makes us happy) from the audience. It is an indescribable and probably also unique experience, which I may make here with the TSDC in Edinburgh.
The duration of the tattoo is also not to be underestimated! We have no replacements and always rely on all members. This means that during our performance we also have to be all ready and focused at all times, it is our most important job to perform. We have to keep our level steady, show after show. Keeping rhythm and routine high! And this week we even have to raise the quality a little bit, because the BBC is coming for the TV recording. We will give everything!
Peter MacDonald from Isle of Skye
I have had several conversations with Peter MacDonald now. He is Drum Major at the Edinburgh Tattoo and lives on the Isle of Skye, which my girlfriend and I will visit in two weeks. I have already received tips from Peter for the stay there and we still had the idea that we organize a meeting with his pipe band and me, so that we can get into an exchange and build a bridge between Scottish pipes and drums and the TSDC style. I am very excited and look forward to more connections with the Scottish culture in the future.
Scenery at Edinburgh Castle before “SHOWTIME”
The weather now begins to become increasingly Scottish, namely wet and windy. After two weeks of permanent sunshine, it may now be as it should be. Yesterday it rained for the first time while we were drumming on the Esplanade. The scenery in Edinburgh Castle in the evening when it is dark fascinates me again and again. I enjoy these moments very much. When something catches my eye, I usually take a quick snapshot with my phone for the blog.
Enriching chats with Mark Reilly
Further this week we were also invited to Brigadier Sir Melville Jameson, former and long-time producer of the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo. Also thanks to him the TSDC survived, became a sensation and was invited to the REMT every three years. We were also accompanied that day by Mark Reilly, a brilliant drummer and former member of the Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps. I talked with him a lot that day and it was so enriching and motivating. We had already talked to each other at the Basel Fasnacht, we always meet on eye level and have a good exchange with each other concerning drumming or life in general. Whenever he introduces me to new people, he tells them about that video he filmed many years ago. I must admit, it is a phenomenal clip. We also took a photo together in the Cast Bar yesterday, fortunately!
It is also remarkable how much Mark knows about our Basel drum culture. Almost every composer I mentioned he already knew. We had the following topics that we discussed. I won’t go into them in detail but here are the following topics:
- A young superstar always has the old mentor to look up to
- The feeling of music in contrast to perfectly execution and that it gets very subjective at high quality of music
- Always knowing that the ultimate level isn’t accomplished, never be content
- Similarities between his and my story because we were both successful very young in drumming competitions
A wonderful guest
And the highlight of this week: The arrival of my girlfriend at the airport, actually she would have arrived at the train station. But since her passport expired and she hadn’t noticed, she arrived a day later. A little drama. But the nicer it was when we finally had each other. Now she is already gone again, in London. We had breakfast twice at the highly recommended Wee Cafe. It was so nice to have her with us and to experience a bit of the nightlife with her. We only went to the pub Dropkicks once, it was really fun and entertaining. We are both looking forward to continuing our trip together in Scotland after REMT. It’s going to be so great and I’m so excited.