July 13th, 2015

Monaco Journal July 12: Palace Gig, Robbie Williams and Hangin' with the Royals

Well, friends, I am in Monaco until the middle of August. I’m back for a 2nd year, performing in the house band of the Monte-Carlo Summer Sporting Festival. We’ll be opening for an unbelievable slew of artists like: Santana, Sting, George Benson, George Ezra, Anastacia, Enrique Iglesias and more! I’ll be chronicling the adventures here when I can! The band is: me (guitar), Justin Caldwell (lead vocals, guitar, percussion), Courtney Jaye (lead vocals, guitar, percussion), Ian Miller (keyboards), Taylor Jones (bass) and Ross McReynolds (drums, percussion). Follow me on Instagram or Twitter for more timely posts.

July 12: Palace Gig, Robbie Williams and Hangin' with the Royals


Yesterday was an interesting day.

We went up to Monaco-Ville and the Prince’s Palace to soundcheck in the afternoon… like ya do.

After a blazingly hot and lengthy but otherwise good soundcheck, we hung out in the palace garage which had been converted into production offices, dressing rooms and a green room. We filled the time by chatting with some of the production crew and eating dinner before our set.

A couple of hours later we went onstage and played a pretty blistering set (if I do say so) and ended with 3 songs backing up Angie, the local pop singer. The audience was great and it was one of those nice reminders that we are pretty good when people can hear us! Supposedly, we’ll be able to get some video of the performance eventually, so I’ll share some of it if that actually comes to pass!

After us, UK artist Lemar came out and rocked the house. He has a really tight band and we were enjoying the set, but we had to round everybody up and head backstage. Because… well… the Prince and Princess of Monaco wanted to meet us.

OK, well… they wanted to meet Robbie Williams and we were also performing, so by proxy we got to take pictures with them and chat for a second. It was really cool. With the help of some good-humored production people, we almost had Courtney convinced that she had to do a full bow and kiss the Prince’s ring. But she caught on. The Prince and Princess were incredibly nice and normal-seeming. It helped that they both speak English fluently, so there wasn’t the presence of that herky-jerky conversation that comes with our lack of French comprehension.

Robbie Williams' show was incredible. Badass band. Amazing singer/dancers. And Robbie was really funny. He spent a good portion of the set mugging for cameras and making jokes about the people in the balconies of their apartments overlooking the proceedings. I also discovered my new favorite Robbie Williams song. Plus Robbie had a special message of encouragement for me.

I’ll try, Robbie!

After the concert we got little wristbands that allowed us into a afterparty in the Palace Garden where we pretended like we belonged amongst the high-rollers and literal royalty around the serene pool and lush gardens. Everyone was actually quite nice. There were tasty drinks served to us by friendly staff and some bitchin' finger foods that I stuffed into my face at an alarming rate. No one seemed to mind.

I didn’t snap any good pictures, but Courtney got a great one.

princess GRACE KELLY’S pool. this day was b a n a n a s & i’ll never forget it.

A photo posted by Courtney Jaye (@tropicalijaye) on

The party wound down after about an hour and we headed home, wondering what the hell just happened.

This week is the Blues Brothers tribute show. Apparently Steve Cropper is actually going to be around, so I may be freaking out for a while.