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Robin Bibi Visits ARN 2011

August....

Another hot and humid musical visit to the house of LUCY PILLER(www.allrightnow.com) in Roswell, N.Atlanta Ga, USA..Looking forward to sweet Georgia sunshine and sweet Georgia music...!! on arrival on the Monday we are taken straight out on our first night to the 
 TAVERN AT BELLS FERRY  
 for a jam session hosted by the lovely Heidi Paquet....met some fine musicians...notably the Ebullient JIM NICOLETTA who lent me his semi acoustic Epiphone and then his USA Stratocaster for the entire length of my stay....

On the Tuesday we attended another top quality jam session in Marietta at MONTANAS .....where we were lucky enought to reaqaint ourselves with one of Atlantas finest guitar players BARRY RICHMAN...www.barryrichman.com
 
Wednesday night went to Gibsons to see another of N.Atlantas top young Guitarists MARTY MANOUS.. .www.martymanousband.com



On Thursday I reunited with the Voice of Atlanta, my good friend  ANDREW BLACK for a well recieved acoustic duo gig at the aforementioned MONTANAS....Andrew has a voice you will never tire of...

on Friday i was lucky enough to become part of the ANDREW BLACK BAND for a gig at HENRYS LOUISIANA GRILL...A Rockin night with an excellent band with LEX LUTHER on Bass and ELIZABETH TULL on drums played to a packed house who were ready to partaaaay...!!

On Saturday I was taken to see another outstanding young local blues guitarist TRUETT LOLLIS....a real blues master at a very young age complete with his excellent "lockedtite" rhythm section JONATHAN NORWOOD  on Bass and THERON PETERSON on drums..i was invited up to perform and we had a fun guitar duel which enraptured the audience who would not let me sit down again...!!

On Sunday i was part of the House band jamming at Players...featuring ANDREW BLACK, with DOUG SAKO on drums and KEMPER WATSON.on bass...some excellent players came including Truett Lollis again and also the unique HARPER HARRIS...who invited us for a free tour of the Civil War/ Railway museum in Kennesaw where we got to see the the awesome locomotive "The General"!!

On Monday we guested at  BARRY RICHMANS jam at the Dixie Tavern with an all star line up including HOLDCELL www.holdcell.net, GRAHAMS NUMBER www.grahamsnumbermusic.com and the hugely talented and very original BRIAN CAMERON www.myspace.com/reluctantsaints and not forgetting another unforgettable duet with ANDREW BLACK....

And last but not least on the Wednesday one of the best jams of all with drummer JOHN MCNIGHT and bassist LEX LUTHER at NIKS BAR..Also featuring ex Earth Wind and Fire Guitarist RICHARD SMITH...phew....!!! some really wicked music including sets from TRUETT LOLLIS and BRIAN CAMERON...



Once more a BIG THANK YOU to the lovely LUCY PILLER for all her help and hospitality...And thanks to Robert Piller for the use of his Guitar and I.T. support and getting me anew No1 Stretch Strap..!! Another unforgettably good time and thanks to every one who once more gave us huge doses of that Sunny Georgia warmth and hospitality...!!

Next year we will back for real to do our first proper tour as the Robin Bibi Band...we are working on it so watch this space and watch out North Atlanta we WILL ROCK YOU....!!
 

WELCOME TO THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF LUCY!!

Written by Jenni Williams

 

DAY 1

Arrived at Atlanta into a swampy heat which was oh so welcome after the miserable summer we’ve had in the UK.  Took the train to the Car Rental Centre, I’ve never seen so many cars in one place, organised our chariot for the next 10 days together with the oh so necessary Sat Nav (note to self: in the US it’s called GPS – so many things to remember, especially that we don’t always speak the same language).

After a rather slow journey through Atlanta’s rush hour (now I know what real traffic congestion looks like) we arrived at Roswell at about 5pm to a rousing welcome from the menagerie: Max the dashing dachshund & Eli & Yahoo the very regal cats - Lucy & Robert had to wait to greet us until they had finished!!

First things first, before even unpacking Lucy shows us our itinerary – a large flipchart with am & pm shown for each day of our visit.  It’s already practically full, often with a choice of places to go – wow Lucy has been busy.

Before jet lag can claim us we’re fed, watered & sent to get changed for the first evenings entertainment – we’re off to Darwins in Marietta, it’s Thursday so it’s Blues Jam night.  It’s little more than a shack but the atmosphere is electric - the house band were already on stage blowing up a storm with 2 harps adding to the guitar, bass & drums – a fabulous sound!  Jamie suddenly disappeared, Lucy & I thought he’d gone to the bar but, when a little while later he’s invited on stage to sing a couple of numbers we realise that he’d gone off to sign up!!  He introduced the band to a few blues standards popular on the UK blues scene “Baby, what you want me to do”; “Statesboro Blues” & “Walking the dog” & had great fun, the crowd were noisy & appreciative and the musos were a friendly bunch.  Blues certainly is an international language!  Finally it’s time for bed, Day 1 complete & we’ve had a blast – Lucy assures us that we’ve seen nothing yet!

 

DAY 2 Did I mention the weather? It’s glorious high 80s, not a cloud in the sky.  We get up late as befits the rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle.  Lucy has a healthy breakfast prepared as we really don’t want to go home having put on tons of weight as is usual after a visit to the US!

We work on the itinerary

a little – having so much fun in such a short period of time takes very careful planning!

Lucy takes us for a drive around the Roswell area for us to familiarise ourselves with the area.  First stop Roswell Village centre – it’s so pretty & clean: full of antique & craft shops; restaurants & bars & wherever we look there seems to be music advertised.  For a complete contrast we then head into the woods, it’s all dappled shade with amazing cottages (often more like mini mansions) hidden amongst the trees & secluded lakes at every turn.  The roads are little more than single lane tracks, if you meet a car coming from the opposite direction someone has to give way.  I had no idea Georgia was so gorgeous.

Next we have a look at some of the newer sub divisions (that’s estates to us in the UK) dotted around the Roswell area: we see huge mansions, back to back, each house a show house; a monument to the American dream, it’s all pretty amazing, but perhaps to our UK eyes a touch pretentious.  En route to one of the best views of Atlanta Lucy spots a house for sale with the realtor standing outside – we stop & ask for a tour.  The house is utterly amazing, it’s a bank foreclosure so will go cheaply – the previous occupants have stripped it of most of the fittings & it’s in need of some work, most of it superficial but it has the most stunning decks on 2 levels with views over 2 or 3 states.  It’s a tardis – we counted 16 rooms (only 5 bedrooms though!) all of them enormous to our UK eyes with many featuring 2 storey 

ceilings.  The realtor reckons that it will go for between $350-380k (that’s £230-250k)– are they kidding!  In the UK it would go for more than £1 million!

Next stop, lunch, it has to be American as it’s out first full day – Lucy takes us to Wild Wings & we eat, what else but WINGS – yummy!!  It’s then time for home & a quick dip in the communal pool – wonderfully refreshing & Jamie suddenly announces he’s got an idea for a song & he rushes off to write it down.

There’s no rest for the wicked, so they say, so after a quick wash & change if’s off to Woodstock, they’re having a festival & there’s lots of music on.  Woodstock is a relatively new town that is growing fast & everyone is trying to create a community feel to it.  There is outdoor music at every shop & restaurant, the range is positively huge, delta blues outside one shop, singer/songwriter at the next; a rock band belting out sounds from an upstairs venue; there are films being shown & food, food everywhere. 

We’re in for a treat tonight as Lucy is taking us to see the Barry Richman Band at Niks in Marietta.  Niks is famous for its wraps & their very special dressing & they don’t disappoint (belt now having to be loosened by a notch!).  We were utterly blown away by Barry’s guitar – I’ve seen some great players in my time, but Barry tops them all, he has such an elegant style, real feel & great taste & he doesn’t overplay!  To top it all he’s also a lovely guy and his band are pretty impressive too - we have to take home a CD to remind us of a great night.  Barry has inspired Jamie & he has another idea for a song “Mr Dynamite”.

 

DAY 3

Jamie & I decide to give Lucy & Robert a break while we explore Roswell – just too pretty & quaint for words!  We stop off at Mitties for a bite to eat, surrounded by southern belles in hats lunching!  Then it’s off to the Diesel Bar for a leisurely drink before getting ready for our trip to Athens to see ‘Holdcell’, one of the bands that Lucy is promoting & we’re really excited to be finally seeing them.  Lucy gave us a sampler CD when we met in the UK but this will be out first experience of seeing them live.  Athens is a couple of hours away & it’s Labor weekend with a home college football game so we have no idea what to expect – luckily the traffic is reasonable light going our way, most people seem to be leaving.  First we visit Melting Point: it’s a bar/restaurant where Holdcell are due to play later this month & Lucy wants to check it out.  It has a nice stage & a smaller outdoor stage for acoustic acts it looks like a really good venue.  Lucy’s friend Daniel has come along & over the best burgers we’ve ever eaten the discussion becomes far ranging everything from symbolism in the architecture of Washington DC; free masonry; the Knights Templar through to Steve Earle, Warren Zevon & Mary Gauthier (all singer/songwriters that we like).

We’re still early for the gig, so find a bar & the conversation continues to flow.

Time for the gig & we’ve already missed the first band & Dan suggests that giving the 2nd band might be a good idea too – he’s had them on his radio show & wasn’t impressed.  Neither was I, but that’s another story…  Now for the main event - Holdcell.  We’d already met Richard, their manager & his partner Angelica – what a lovely couple & the guys in the band are all delightful too.  I knew they’d be good but I was still completely awestruck, they were utterly amazing, so much energy & excitement – they really do deserve a break as they are truly world-class.  Jamie is already wearing a band t-shirt & I’m dancing like a loon…. We finally crawl into bed at 4am, but we’re too wired to sleep!

 

DAY 4

 

After the late night it’s a leisurely morning spend chatting & a quick trip to the supermarket to get some much needed supplies – it’s a wondrous experience for me: aisles full of goodies unheard of in the UK; Havarti with dill; Rosemary smoked ham; my eyes are out on stalks – piles of tropical fruits & ½ an aisle devoted to salad dressings alone – the Americans really do know how to live!

At 2pm we head off to Allatoona Lake – Andrew Black is playing an acoustic gig at Props & Hops.  We first met Lucy at an Andrew gig at our favourite haunt in the UK, St Anne’s Castle, when she was his tour manager.  The restaurant is up on stilts overlooking the lake & Andrew is set up outside – what a glorious setting; the sun is shining; there are boats on the lake & everyone is really chilled.  Amazingly Andrew remembers us & makes us feel really welcome.  He plays a wide ranging set everything from Robert Cray; Johnnie Cash to Jack Johnson, all very laid back & chilled as befits a sunny afternoon.  I ate shrimp & Lucy introduced us to Key Lime Pie … yum, what a perfect lazy afternoon.

Back to Lucy’s for a well-earned rest – all this fun is exhausting!

Next up it’s to Players in Marietta, Andrew is hosting a jam session.  It’s a biker’s bar, but really friendly.  We eat fries served in really cute napkin cones & listen to Andrew & the house band play Hendrix, Elvis & some great blues before slowing it down with a stunning rendition of Clapton’s ‘Change the World’.  Andrew got Jamie up on stage & they did a couple of blues standards before Jamie borrowed Andrew’s acoustic guitar & he led the band in a couple of his own compositions ‘Come Home’ & ‘Blues Man’ – the audience were appreciative, dancing & clapping along.  Another great day – what on earth can tomorrow hold for us?

 

DAY 5 (LABOR DAY)

A late chilled start to the day after yesterday’s exertions… Jamie borrows’ Lucy’s very precious guitar signed by both Paul Rogers & Simon Kirk to work on the 3 songs he’s already written since we arrived – the creative juices are really flowing.

Our next port of call is a visit to the WRFG Labor Day Blues BBQ at the Park Tavern in Piedmont Park in midtown Atlanta, the sun was shinning, not a cloud in the sky & all was well in our little world.  There was nowhere to park, but Robert being the perfect gentleman dropped us outside while he went to find a spot.  The stage was set up in an enormous marquee & was already filled to capacity, the smell of the BBQ was delicious & the beer was flowing freely & everyone was having a ball.  We’d already missed the first few bands but we did get to see the Liz Melendes Bands last 15 minutes full of real up tempo rockin’ blues.  The Breeze Kings were next up starting with a duo format with some great delta-esque blues, but once they were joined by the rest of the band the tempo rose sharply & they played some great Chicago blues.  Lucy as usual knew everyone & introduced us to her friends including Radio Jock UK Bob; Motor City Josh & Jeff Robinson of the Blues Cats amongst others.  We sampled the ribs & shredded pork from the BBQ which was utterly delicious & Jamie managed to round it all off with a hot dog!  Back to the music & Roy Lee Johnson led the Breeze Kings in some of his best-known songs including Mr Moonlight, which was covered by the Beatles in 2 of their albums.  Born in 1931 he has amazing energy & stage presence for a 79 year old!

Lastly my personal favourites of the day, Motor City Josh & the Big 3 – they played a stunning set of funky blues which had everyone dancing – a brilliant end to a brilliant day.  With exhaustion creeping up on us we took a slow amble through Piedmont Park & admired the city skyline at dusk – what a sight, then it was home for a well earned rest in preparation for another busy day.

 

 

DAY 6

Shopping day – all those of a nervous disposition look away now……………  First stop & Lucy thought Jamie might find some great gigging gear at Kohl’s – she wasn’t wrong, her first pick a black embossed/embroidered shirt, a princely $8.40, & she just kept on pulling out bargains from the multitude of racks… 30 minutes later Jamie has 6 shirts at a total cost of $63, a huge $144 of savings off list price!

Next stop Michael’s Arts & Crafts – we went for adhesive magnetic sheets so I can make some fridge magnets (I’ve never seen it in the UK) unfortunately we had to pass the jewellery making section.  An hour later & poor Jamie is wilting & positively fed up with our indecision, we finally forget all the beads we’ve collected & end up with the pendants we started with!

Lunch was a fabulous steak at Charlies & I simply had to sample a Grapefruit/Orange Marguerita – delicious. It’s a tough life………..

Suitably fortified it’s off to Horsetown, a western superstore, as I want to replace my old cowboy boots.  They advertise that they have 30,000 pairs & the dizzying range on display looks like it, but as usual Lucy comes to the rescue, she looked me up & down, smiled & said “I’ll be right back” & low & behold in less than a minute there she was clutching a pair of boots & said “These are the ones!”  I fell in love with them instantly & once we’d found the right size they fitted like carpet slippers.  I put all the others back!  I shan’t say how much they cost but I haven’t stopped grinning since I got them.

 

We get back & it’s time to head off to meet Daniel in Roswell, we’re going to see their old friend, singer/songwriter Doug Easterly who’s playing at the Street Kitchen.  He’s set up on the porch & is already playing as we arrive – he has a wonderfully smooth voice & when we finally persuade him to sing some of his originals we find out just what a great writer he is too.

Doug joins us during his break & soon discovers that Jamie is a singer/songwriter too & immediately offers Jamie his guitar & sends him up to sing a few numbers.

Thanks to Lucy we have met some truly wonderful people & this really is turning into the trip of a lifetime.

 

 

DAY 7

Sightseeing – we’ve promised ourselves a trip Down Town to catch the sights & today’s the day.  As usual the sun is shinning & it’s a beautiful day.

First stop the Georgia Aquarium – it’s the biggest in the world & absolutely amazing.  Its spread over 5 distinct areas but you can end up with a crick in your neck from constantly looking at all the fish, rays, sharks & whales swimming over your head!  The beluga whales were my particular favourites they seemed such gentle giants as they glided through the water & of course the otters were as cute as cute can be!

Next stop the World of Coca Cola – not being a huge consumer I wasn’t sure what to expect but it was an amazing experience as we were shown the entire history of the company.  There were historical artefacts; cartoon characters; rooms full of advertising across the ages & from around the world; a breathtaking 4D film show; an art gallery & finally a tasting session where you could try all 162 flavours currently available across the world – needless

to say we didn’t quite manage to sample all of them!  It was however a really worthwhile visit, one I would highly recommend to any visitor to Atlanta.

We strolled through Centennial Olympic Park just as the choreographed water fountain show was due to start – it was beautiful with the jets rising high into the sky to tunes from Sinatra etc. 

Robert had told us that the best view of Atlanta was from the top of the Westin Hotel, so that was out next port of call.  The Sun Dial Restaurant & Bar is on the 73rd Floor, so we duly present ourselves at the reception desk & were escorted to the lift.  Oh horrors! It was glass & climbed the outside of the building.  Luckily we were the only occupants as terrified I cowered & cringed, clinging onto the railing as if my life depended on it as we shot into the sky.  Luckily once on the 73rd floor it wasn’t so bad as I didn’t need to go anywhere near the windows to see the most staggering view.  I composed myself & then happily sampled a Georgia Peach cocktail whilst quite literally watching the world go round.  The prices were of course pretty steep, so we made do with one drink & came down to earth (via the internal lift I hasten to add) & popped into the Hard Rock Café for a few drinks & a well-earned rest.

We made it to Niks in Marietta thanks to the GPS to find Daniel already there, but we just managed to beat Lucy!  We were introduced to Atlanta’s other finest guitarist, Mike Martin & as advertised he was just as wonderful as Barry Richman but with a totally different style.  Mike’s playing was truly breathtaking, more rock fusion & played at a furious pace – it was exhausting just watching & as usual he was utterly charming when Lucy introduced us.

So ended another fun filled day in Atlanta & we were now completely shattered – Lucy suggested a lie in followed by a lazy day to recharge our batteries – it seemed like a marvellous idea.

 

DAY 8

Time for the full American breakfast – well you have to have at least one – it’s the law!  We took Lucy’s advice & went to IHOP & had the full works, served with the obligatory pancakes, Jamie’s with strawberries & cream & mine with apple, cinnamon & cream & delicious they were too, I just needed a forklift truck to get me out of there!

We then bought a few souvenirs to take home to the band & retired exhausted to the Diesel Bar had a couple of drinks sitting in the sunshine & put the world to rights.

The evening was going to be busy, Lucy had lots planned.  We began at  ……………….? A Mexican restaurant in ……………..?, sitting at a long table on the deck overlooking fields of horses, with a game of football going on in the background.  I had a marguerite to start; in fact it was so good I had to have second!  We all ate fajitas, which were utterly delicious, & we ended up taking more home in our doggy bags than we’d managed to eat.  The entertainment was provided by Ian Schumacher who played a stunning set of originals & covers with guitar, drum machine & a loop pedal, he really was superb.  He joined us during his break & on learning that Jamie was a fellow singer/songwriter he immediately dragged him onstage to sing one of his songs.  Unfortunately we couldn’t stay for long as we had places to go….

Next stop, and en route to our final destination, we popped into Montana’s in Alpharetta to catch a little of Andrew Black’s set.  This time he was playing a completely different set, closer to his touring set & fantastic as ever.  He has such a great voice & the emotion he puts into his delivery is awe-inspiring.  Lucy introduces us to Andrew’s lovely wife Julia, but we can’t stay we still have places to go!  Then it’s off to Darwins for the Blues Jam.  Jeff Robinson is there, what a lovely, warm, funny man, we were all so busy talking no one joined

the jam!  A little while later Barry Richman popped by to say ‘Hi’.  One piece of news is circulating, the owner has sold Darwins, & the jam will be moving to Sidelines in October, I wonder how that will work as Darwins has such a unique atmosphere it might prove difficult to move elsewhere.

We have to go home, we’re all shattered, we’ve crammed so much into such a short period of time & tomorrow’s our road trip to the north of Georgia.

 

 

DAY 9

Up early & a quick breakfast & it’s into the car heading up I75 to the Blue Ridge Mountains.  It only takes a couple of hours & the scenery has totally changed, we’re in the mountains & every which way you look its forest, I’ve never seen so many trees.  Lucy takes us first to Blue Ridge, a small tourist town & stop on the scenic railway that crosses the mountains.  We come across one of the strangest mixes of shops ever – my favourites …………………. The record shop, it’s a real little treasure with prints, throws & incense as well as an eclectic range of CDs.  The owners remember Lucy & we’re soon having an in depth conversation about music – what else?  They recommend Cyndi Lauper’s latest CD – it’s blues, & good blues at that – are they sure?  They play us a bit, of course they’re right – strangely she’s made a really good blues record.  Jamie buys a CD, me, a throw, but there’s no time to waste & we’re off to our next stop The Chocolate Express – if you’re a chocoholic as we are then this place is a must – trays upon trays of home made chocolates, the biggest problem being what to choose!  Its elevenses & lunch won’t be for a while so we all have just one.  It’s then down to the serious business of deciding which fudge to buy – after a tasting session we settle on Chocolate/walnut & Butter pecan.

Something catches Lucy’s eye & we’re off – The Bear Shop – I can’t believe my eyes, it’s a whole shop selling everything to do with bears: ornaments; toys; clothing including a range of very tasteful pants; even CDs of bear songs – it did put a smile on my face.

On our way out of town we find the Welcome Centre & stock up on maps & info.

We’re now in lake country & everywhere you look between the mountains are beautiful shimmering lakes with stunning houses scattered between the trees.  After an hour we arrive at Hiawassee & the Smoke Rings BBQ.  Lucy found this restaurant on the web & wanted to check it out.  What a fabulous setting, it sits slightly back from & above the main street & has a large balcony overlooking Lake Chatuge with the mountains & forest all around – it’s stunning.  We have a lazy BBQ lunch & chill out just enjoying the peace & quiet & the view.  All too soon it’s time for home & en route we drive through Helen, a German themed village – it’s cute but a bit of a shock to find a chocolate box image of Germany in the middle of the Blue Ridge Mountains, but hey this is the US of A & anything’s possible here!

We see a small road side stall & decide to get some peaches – the place is amazing, it has a whole room devoted to jams, another to sauces, racks upon racks of different types of home made bread & just about everything you could possibly need from umbrellas & garden ornaments to fridge magnets & piles of the biggest peaches you have ever seen – a real Aladdin’s Cave & right in the middle of nowhere.

Back in the car we see bumper-to-bumper traffic heading to the mountains for the weekend; luckily we’re heading in the opposite direction.

We get home later than planned & so decide to miss the first gig Lucy had planned, just time for a quick shower & we’re off to Sidelines Sports Bar to see the Marty Manous Band.  Wow – there’s a truck parked inside the venue acting as the backdrop for the bar, how cool is that?  We try to work out how the hell they got it into the bar; it must have been put in before the

walls!  The headline act tonight is a Red Hot Chilli Peppers tribute band but we’re only here to see Marty, so we have a bite to eat before heading over to the venue.  Luckily Robert manages to get a quick look at the support band before we pay our $10 entrance - it’s not Marty.  Close shave there!  It appears that there’s been a mix up & the band isn’t playing after all.

So Plan B, we head over to Matilda’s in Marietta, Lucy has heard it’s an interesting occasional outdoors venue behind some craft shops – she wasn’t misinformed, it’s actually held on an patch of ground behind a group of arty shops, between the trees with an improvised stage, no bar or seating, everyone brings their own drinks, picnics & seats.  It’s really casual & the music had a really laid back, funky feel.  We couldn’t see the band as there were so many people dancing but there was a great atmosphere – definitely not to be missed, but we were all tired & decided to make an early(ier) night of it.

 

 

DAY 10

So it’s our last full day, where has the time gone, I can’t believe we’re leaving tomorrow, how sad.  I spend the morning packing.  Lucy & Robert are taking us to Stone Mountain, there’s an arts & crafts show on with some music too & apparently it’s a beautiful part of the country.

The drive takes just over an hour & then I see why it’s called Stone Mountain, it is in fact a huge stone mountain, there’s no other description, rising from the woodland beneath & surrounded by lakes.  There is an enormous carving of the 3 Confederate generals on one side of the mountain & this is the site of the laser light show which will take place later, however it’s sold out so we’ll have to come back another time.   It’s very hot & humid as we arrive & it’s getting greyer by the minute.  We just make the visitors centre as the skies open & it pours with rain.  It didn’t last very long but it’s the heaviest rain I’ve ever seen, an absolute torrent.  At this point we decide to give the craft show a miss as they will probably close early due to all the rain, we head off to find a bite to eat & Jamie & I both try the southern fried chicken, well we had to at some stage & it is our last day!!  The chicken was delicious although I was a touch concerned when our waitress started throwing ‘biscuits’ at us.  Apparently that’s what they do there, & for those of you who don’t know, ‘biscuits’ in the states are not ‘biscuits’, they are more like scones.  We are then served with a napkin full of battered deep fried bits & upon inspection it’s a mixture of pieces of onion, sweet potato & strangest of all gherkin.  Now I have eaten some strange things in my time but deep fried, battered gherkin is not, & remains not one of them – even I draw the line somewhere!

On the way home we encounter one of the scariest thunderstorms I’ve seen & Lucy wonders whether the Blue Grass gig we’re going to tonight will be cancelled as it’s outside.  She calls Richard & Angelica to check - they’re not sure but they say ‘come on over anyway’, so we do.  The house belongs to Richard’s parents & there is a welcoming committee of grand & great grandchildren, to whom we soon add the gentlemen, returned from their trip to the liquor store, there are about 14 of us in all & the noise level is fairly high.  The adults soon descend to the ‘games’ room; a pool table takes pride of place & Richard’s collection of vintage guitars & amps take up one wall.  Lucy, Richard & Angelica take themselves off to the jigsaw they’ve been working at for the last few weeks (it’s mainly black & very hard going) & Janice challenges me to a game of pinball on her vintage Elvis table.  I’ve never played before & have enormous fun, how on earth did I miss pinball when growing up?  Richard makes me a wonderful Marguerita to his own special recipe, which is just to die for.  It’s now too late to go to the gig, even if it’s still on so we decide to head into Marietta to the Irish bar, a particular favourite of Richard & Angelica’s.  The joint is absolutely heaving & we have to push our way

through lots of small rooms, all decked out with comfy sofas & chairs & out into the garden which is also pretty full but we manage to find a table.  The drinks are flowing, as is the conversation but all too soon we have to go home, but hey it has been the most amazing holiday ever, we have had a ball!

 

DAY 11

Home today - what a dreadful thought.

We finish off our final bits of packing & take our farewell of the Max (the dashing dachs) & Eli & Yahoo.  Lucy & Robert take us to the Flying Biscuit for our final breakfast (well brunch as it’s gone 11.00am); Jamie has steak & eggs & I opt for the full American, pancakes included – scrummy!

 

We finally take our leave of Lucy & Robert.  I really hate goodbyes & am really bad at them & we’ve had such a brilliant time here, it’s really hard to leave.  Lucy has worked so hard in making sure that every detail of our stay has been perfect and there is just no way in which to thank her.  She has shared her home, her family, her pets, her friends & her music with us, but most importantly she has become a great friend, someone who will always be in our hearts.

 

Written by Jenni Williams UK

 

Still charishing your / Paul's picture,,,got a lot of envious People & Friends,,Thanks again Honey,,,always love you for that.
one of the nicest / Coolest things anyone has done for me.


I was gonna post this,thought,,,naw,

,I'll send to Lucy to post,,,no need to mention me.
Peace & Bless Lucy,,,Peace & Bless You

Thanks Lucy for always doing such an excellent job of keeping us informed....
 
YOU ROCK GIRL!!!
 
Steve & Wendy Fenner
Alpharetta, GA

Robin Bibi Visits ARN

BB'S RETURN TO ATLANTA

Mid August in Atlanta Georgia...hot, humid and nothin to do but hang and Jam...(And a little bit of shopping...!!!)
Six years on from my first....My second visit to the Lovely Lucy Piller's house in Roswell just North of Atlanta...I was figuring on havin a veeery chilled 8 days ...but little did I know there was a hectic schedule planned for me...!!.... I arrived on monday night tired but happy and Lucy took me straight down to O'Malleys Irish Bar to sit in with my dear friend the wonderful Andrew Black (
www.andrewblackmusic.com ...) I've decided one of my missions is to spread the word in the UK re Andrew...his voice can turn anyones knees to jelly ...the man has soooo much soul.... I was lucky enough to do 4 more gigs with Andrew...

Tuesday night another duo gig at Paddy's......and on the Weds we went to Niks bar to attend the Mike Martin band's jam featuring the amazing voice of drummer John Mcknight and Mike Martin himself ..an awe inspiring fusion master guitar player who has now been picked up by Steve Vai..!!..... (www.mikemartinmusic.com). Thursday turned out to be the most hectic day of all.....In the afternoon Andrew and myself popped into a local studio (at one hours notice!!) to record our version of the Robert Johnson classic "If I Had Possession over Judgement Day" with yours truly on vocals and echoey guitar... And later in the afternoon on the same day another great connection was made with English Bassist Dave Hewitt (Ex Humble Pie and now back in the Reunited UK 70s Rock Band "Babe Ruth")...we went to visit him doing a gig in a rather upmarket restaurant and his Guitar Player had not turned up due to car problems....Dave asked me if i was carrying a guitar and I ended up doing an impromptue gig with his band...anything to help out a fellow muso!!! then it was straight onto a gig with Andrew on the Roof of a really Funky Mexican bar, Cino's rooftop bar in Alpharetta .....Phew!!!!

On the Friday night we retuned to Niks bar and sat in with the amazin Barry Richman band and there is some fab footage of this on youtube...Barry Richman is one of the most highly rated guitarists in the Atlanta area who is a Master of Blues, Fusion ,Rock, jazz and country and has great taste and feel in all of these styles......

On Saturday Andrew and I played a house party at Lucy's for invited guests..and there is more footage of this on my facebook page and Youtube....the first gig for me playing my lovely new Martin acousic guitar...!!!!!! Sunday another gig with Andrew in the afternoon...hot and sultry (but very cool..!!!!) and actually a rest in the evening..!!! Then on Monday 2 jam sessions...firstly at Bella's with John Mcknight and the remarkable Lefty Williams...and second at Lola's Jam at the Northside Tavern...all human life (and the lead guitarist from the Temptations) was at this one... .

What a week!! I wont forget this in a hurry and Huge Thanks to Lucy Piller for giving up her time working on www.allrightnow.com and making all this happen....and looking after me and hey...those ice creams dipped in chocolate...mmmmm!!! Also huge Thanks to Andrew Black for his help and inspiration... and all the other musicians and folk I met who made me feel so welcome ....it wont be too long before I'm back and spreading the word of the Robin Bibi Band music into Atlanta for real.....

Hi Lucy, I just wanted to thank you for all the info you've been sending out,almost on a daily basis, about the appearances of Paul Rodgers and Bad Co. You have been fantastic !  I have managed to tape 3 interviews and  2 concerts  and there is still an appearance on Jools Holland on 13/4 to look forward to.
       I also went to our huge arena in Manchester last Friday   to watch Bad Co. and they were just sooooo good ! I never thought I'd get to see them in concert and we were quite near the front.    That again was with your help when you alerted us to the early sales of tickets.  I have ordered one of the 'live' CDs  so I'm looking forward to hearing that soon.too.
       If you get chance to pass a message onto  them please say a big Thank You  from all the fans in Manchester, and please come  round again !!  The Hard Rock Live DVD/CD is also fantastic and shows their expertise on stage,even after these years.


      Thank you again, Lucy, for all your help,
         Best wishes, Jean

 
 

Category: Music
"AND SO IT IS WRITTEN". 
 
A famous piece of literature taking from a famous piece of history.

Today i will like to introduce, not only a good friend of mine, but an amazing woman, who, not only takes a fantastic photo, but embraces the music collective and all those concerned to a humble and energetic vibe, that only she creates.

Her name is, LUCY PILLER.
All those who have the pleasure of meeting her are the most enlightened people, who are enthrilled with her generosity and her willingness to succeed. Not only to herself, but to others to.
She will strive to get the best out of you. And will stop at nothing to see for herself the best results that you can muster.

Make no mistakes, this woman is a legend in her own right. And her past is living proof. And her future is our pleaure im sure.

From the decade of true music, came an intriguing young woman, and with her camara and cheeky enthusiasm, got some of the greatest stage photo's the world has seen, of the great band, FREE.
Getting to know the band on a personal level after seeing for themselves the top quality of Lucy's photographs, they (FREE), where pleased to see Lucy at any of thier gigs and warming to her nature as a top photographer.

This promted Lucy into the music scene from a different angle.
Not only did she fulfill her conquest as a continuing photographer, but she now had a buzz from the enjoyment her pictures gave the public, and her friends and family.
But no, Lucy did not stop at her photographs.  She wanted the music life.  And from behind the scenes, she entrusted some of the great names in this wonderful business and to bring us all up to date, and with the help of the World Wide Web, she has created websites and Myspaces that has been so successful, even the most none pc minded person can access her information to keep them up to date with the artist(s) that Lucy protrays in her time.

With the help and understanding of her family, Lucy is with out doubt, a UNSUNG HERO, and she will be remembered highly with, not only myself, but the likes of PAUL RODGERS, MIKE RALPHS, SIMON KIRKE, and the late but great BOZ BURREL.  Then thier are the new bread like KURTIS DENGLER and ANDREW BLACK, and more, who with the help of Lucy and dear friends will only emulate the success of the above.

Lucy will give her all in your pleasure.  I am lucky to have graced her presence. And i will return her values ten fold.
This im sure is the same for many people.

So, May i introduce the most hard working woman, behind many famous names in the music industry, and some not as famous.  And if Lucy has anything to do with it, they will not stay not so famous for long.

And if you Lucy, should read this blog, then may you continue doing what you do, that keeps us all informed of the artists you enthrill us with, week in, week out.

And to all the artists that appreciate her work on your behalf, please stand up and applaud her, for she is worth it, and then some.

LUCY PILLER,  a wife, a mother and a friend to all.

May there be a walk of fame in Atlanta, and your name should be right in the heart of the city. 

From us all,

Thank you.
 
"AND SO IT WILL BE DONE"   !
 
STEVIE - UK

OH Atlanta by Debbie and Denise of Denver

Oh Atlanta

 
Music brings people together. Debbie and I share the same passion as does Lucy of loving the voice of Paul Rodgers. That is what brought us down to Atlanta to spend a few days with Lucy & Rob Piller......
 
As our Plane touched down in Atlanta Debbie & I were so excited to finally get together with Lucy, As we have all talked for a few years about our love of music together. Lucy loves to entertain fans from all over the world.  And we were ready for a treat...
 
We arrived at Lucy's home had a quick bite to eat . Took a tour of Lucy's office, it was apparent her life dedication to the music of Free, Bad Company and Paul Solo. Memorabilia was all around us on the walls. Signed photos and personal messages from various band members that have spanned  many many years... Lucy drove us to the village of Roswell where we looked around the stores. (lower your volume if you press Roswell)
 
Wednesday evening:
Our first night we all went to a delicious barbecue  joint Fat Matts to hear the young artist 16 year old Jordan Gonzalez  and his band it was excellent to say the least....
Our next stop was to hear Andrew Black perform  . He was amazing and the highlight of our musical trip.Such power and grace to his soothing soulful voice. Andrew took us away and captured us both with his beautiful voice.
 
Our third and final stop of the evening was to hear Mike Martin play and his band. Mike is a awesome guitarist his talent blew us both away....
 
Thursday:
Woke up early. Looked at properties in the Atlanta area. Beautiful homes !!  as we are looking to purchase a vacation home together. In the evening we went to Darwins to hear Aaron Simpson play. He was wonderful to say the least. Was a delight to meet his parents also.

 Friday:
Lucy took us both on a scenic drive up thru the beautiful Georgia Mountains. We did a little shopping. Lucy got quite a workout driving the sharp curves (LOL). It was lunch time so we decided to stop  at a rustic restaurant . There was a chill in the air... We all agreed to order the "Brunswick Stew" to warm us up. Well it was a unforgettable taste will never forget or order again lol......
 We listened to Paul all the way up and down the mountains, had great conversation too...Returned home... Lucy treated us to a "Proper Cup Of English Tea" It was superb....very relaxing also.
 
Friday evening:
Lucy and Rob took to the Northside Tavern  to hear  Zydefunk.  It was a wonderful mix of Eclectic people. All ages enjoying the "Cajun Southern Sound".  The energy of the music took us both by surprise ... It was wonderful to dance too....
It was such a pleasure to finally meet "G" from Dirty South T.V.  After spending countless evenings being entertained by Atlanta's best musicians.... He is a such a fantastic guy.....Hope to see you again soon "G".
 
 Saturday  morning:
 We both slept in... Reflected on the wonderful trip down to Atlanta... It was very frantic and peaceful to get away....
 Thank You Lucy & Rob for having us down.
 
"Oh Atlanta" As Bad Company sings... We will be back one fine day!!!
See you all soon.
 
Love Denise & Debbie
 
Message from Lucy - Girl's don't forget the KFC :-) (press KFC)
 
 

 

DVD Winner

The Glasgow DVD came to my house last week and it is fantastic. 
 Thank you so much for doing what you do on you website. 
 You're great!!!  It's so neat to have a place to go to find a variety of information about
not only Paul Rodgers but many other entertainers. 
 (The link to the Keith Urban video was good!)  Thanks again!
 
Sarah Anderson
_____________________________

Desolation Angels Tribute Band

Our little donation is just to say 'thank you so much' for all your encouragement and support.

 It's been such a pleasure knowing you and being part of the ARN family.

 Keep up the fine work.

With best regards,
Fred Sampson
and all the guys in www.desolationangels.us
 
 
 
________________________________

 
Lucy Piller
Lucy Piller is an amazing woman. It seems like she's dedicated her life to helping musicians, not only in Atlanta but all over the world. She started out as a fan of the band Free over in England, taking tons and tons of photos of the band, and now has a fan site, http://www.allrightnow.com - but the beauty is that she dedicates part of her site to promoting Atlanta artists as well.


 

On top of that, she also comes out to shows, promotes shows, gives you pointers on how to do better in this crazy industry - honestly - she's like the local music den mother or something.
__________________________________

From David Brown

The number one thing I can say about Lucy is that she is one of the few people in the music/entertainment business that I would trust with my reputation and future100%. Her professionalism is unsurpassed, and she is a joy to work with, as well. Also, she has the knowledge and expertise one can only gain from "being there". Lucy certainly is a true pro, and my band and I plan on using her services again in the future. In short, Lucy ROCKS!"
Your website is great and extremely well researched and presented; I really enjoyed checking it out.
You must be a journalist, author, photographer or the like to have consolidated all that information together in such an efficient way.
Tim Lynk    http://www.myspace.com/thetimlynkproject  

Interviews with Lucy Piller

Bond with Band stretches 35 Years

©2004 The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.  Reprinted with permission from the
Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Further reproduction, retransmission or distribution
of these materials without prior consent of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and
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