Camel Hero ~ Laurie Small
|Laurie Small ~ Camel Reflections|
Greetings to Camel fans from Bielefeld in Germany where I am currently on tour with Riverdance the Irish dance show were I am Company Manager.
It could have been 1974 or 1975 and I was working for Virgin records who had a company called Virgin Concerts. We had already promoted a concert with Camel at the Roundhouse with the Snow Goose and were approached by Decca to do a full UK tour. I do remember that we were paid a promoters fee of £50.00 per show.
As I was on the road anyway as the promoter I offered to the then manager Geoff Jukes to drive the band around with me. The start of a career as a Tour Manager.
After a UK tour it was off to Europe on a show case tour of the Snow Goose, we were treated very well by the Scandinavian promoters - I remember in Oslo a huge stretch Limo collected us from the airport, a great sea food restaurant in Gothenburg where you sat round a tank of water with radio controlled boats in front of you to move the food around and especially the promoters tour manager Bo Norling, sadly now gone to the great gig in the sky but if anyone were to ask me who would have been my mentor it would have been him.
In the early days it was a case of getting them from A to B and then making sure the towels and the beers were ready at the end of the show. As time went on the job developed into something much bigger and it is thanks to Camel that I got the start.
I have had the privilege to work with many greats either as Tour Manager or Production Manager - King Crimson, Toto, Lou Reed, Pretenders and many more . So thanks to the Andy, Pete, Doug, Richard, Colin - the mainstays and what a pleasure it was working with later members.
I have also happy memories of many of the crew Martyn Prior and Alec Nisic, my good friends, Chris Lyndop who owns Garwood a company that makes radio in ear monitoring systems, Ange Jones, sound man for Paul Weller, Skin, Davey Bryson, Dave Peacock, the first loyal Camel crew. Also it should be noted that over the years I have come across many Lighting Engineers who where influenced by seeing a Camel show.
I am sure I have many Camel Tales but it needs a spark to remember them.
Good luck to all the readers and compilers of this great site and to the creators of Camel, can it really be some 30 years ago!
Laurie Small is now the Company Manager of Riverdance... www.riverdance.com
Here are a of couple fun pictures sent in by Laurie