Italy’s Westmoor were our Band of the Day about three weeks ago, just as they began their first UK tour. Well, they were kind enough to draft a diary of their experiences on the road and handed the documents over to us as they headed home. Ever wanted to know what it’s like to tour at the coal face? The real touring, not the “4 people in a double decker tour bus with hot and cold running Jack Daniel’s” type? Here we go…
And so we made it. We survived our first ever UK tour. It’s been hard since we’ve been back, as if we were hit by a sort of “post tour” depression. However, we are still so hyped about the whole touring thing that we have decided to share our experience with you… so bear with us, this is how it went.
Go big or go home… or go with a big moving home. So we decided to embrace our first tour fully and drive all the way to the UK with a motorhome, in which we lived for 12 days.
It took us about 19 hours to arrive at the tall, light-coloured cliffs of Dover; England was welcoming us with its own beauty. Driving on the left side of the road was an experience, but wasn’t too bad at all! We didn’t leave any casualties behind us and managed to get used to it pretty quickly.
Busking a full Sunday in Oxford was our first goal, before heading to London for our first gig on the Tuesday.
The tour: between busking and gigging
We had never busked before, so we had no idea what to expect. 11 AM… and the centre of Oxford is literally a huge stream of walking people, of all sorts. We start playing our acoustic show, once, twice, then we change spot, then again and again. We found such a warm and active atmosphere, we made loads of new friends and managed to create a nice constant crowd around us for most of the day. We simply loved it.
Still hyped from the previous day, we decided to spend the Monday playing in the streets of Cambridge. Oxford was surely beginners’ luck… but Cambridge proved us wrong. It was just as good as Oxford!
Honestly, our tour wouldn’t have been the same without busking: visibility, new fans, good vibes, money.
First gig, London. You know, just to start nice and easy. Probably the most crowded gig we played in the whole tour. Eighty entries and the Hope and Anchor was honestly packed! Happy to see so many people turning up, we felt very connected to the crowd and played a satisfying show (at least from our point of view). The nicest thing about that night? Without a doubt meeting those two girls, who came all the way from Cambridge because they saw us busking the previous day. Priceless.
Our bass player lived in York for five years of his young life, so playing a gig there was a pretty special one for him. Before heading to the Fulford Arms for the gig, we decided to go to our bassist’s house in West Moor Lane. As you can imagine from the name, that place is pretty close to our band, since it’s where we decided to start a band named Westmoor. And yeah… we did take a posing picture with the street sign!
York was a bigger venue than the one in London, but turned out to be a pretty crowded night too, with about sixty entries! Great place, fun gig.
Maybe a bit overexcited, we decide to busk the following morning in York for a few hours before heading to Darwen. Despite the fact that we had no idea where Darwen was, we found a very nice local venue (Sunbirds) with great staff and a very decent turnout for a Thursday night of about thirty people.
After this gig, the touring experience started to take its toll on us. Our singers started to feel the fatigue and lack of sleep… but this obviously didn’t stop us. From a performance point of view, The Frog and Fiddle in Cheltenham was probably the best show of the whole tour. A nice sound system and a warm crowd of about forty headbanging complete strangers definitely helped. We made friends with one of them at the end of the show, and she gave us the wonderful suggestion to busk the next day in Stratford upon Avon. Greedy and happy to meet more people in the streets regardless of our bassist’s terrible headache, we decided to go. Stratford was so worth it… even if it drizzled for most of our set!
And so came the time for our last show in Nuneaton. Once again, Brits simply don’t disappoint when it comes to live music. Prepared staff, nice people, pretty full venue. Tired and a bit sad to have played our last show, we left Nuneaton… but decided not to go towards the ferry yet. We went to Brighton instead (three hours drive from Nuneaton), so that we could busk for one last day on the Sunday before going back towards Milan.
Back to the UK soon!
What’s left to say? It was by miles the best experience we did as a band and as individuals. We plan to be back in the UK as soon as possible, so keep an eye on our social media for upcoming announcements. We hope that this is just the beginning, guys: what we did, felt like nothing else we had done in the past together!