The most talked about C64 event on the planet and Lee's gonna go? After finally being pushed to go by my fellow workmate, Karl ("I have great faith in the event"), I finally emailed Chris Abbott and asked for some tickets which he quickly sorted out. I knew Chris's work but never ordered the Backintime CD's (Yes, Im the one), funny as I loved the remixes I was hearing on Remix.kwed.org and always wanted to hear some more...much more.
I told my girlfiend, Debbie about the event, Thinking she wouldnt want to go "To some StarTrek thingy" but she wanted to, which in retrospec was wierd. Maybe she thought Id be poked by some guy with a copy of Daley Thompson's Decathlon or maybe she wanted a free night out
The hotel was booked and the train was too. I emailed Chris about more info on the event on the guestlist grew even adding Robb Hubbard, Galway and
a personal fav, Gary Liddon from ZZAP!64
We got into Birmingham early, as with all thing connectted with "going out", we were gonna be pissed, big time. The hotel was called by our driver "used to be a brothel" which Im sure he was making up, but I hope he was as I asked the nice lads from Def guide to ZZAP! to use this "Brothel" Hotel. Lucky for us (And me) the hotel was lovely and nice and no ladies of the night in sight
So, we booked in, got ready for the booze and ventured out ALL DAY. And it was fun, in a drinky, drunk sorta way. The lads from the ZZAP! webpage were lost, constant ringing of mobiles was needed but they finally got to the hotel at which this point we ventured back, to get ready for tonights big event
We got a taxi to the club and told my mates to go and get more drunk as Myself and Debbie went into Club DNA and was met at the door by Chris A. Chris was obviously in high sprit but a bit worried about the night, Who wouldnt be? We got our VIP tickets and went upstairs, opening the door to the room.
All we got in our faces were loads of people, lots of bulbs flashing and me, well...not noticing no-one, until Lando of C16/+4 CLASSICS noticed me and said hello along with Navvie and Cmj of KEEP IT RETRO. We chatted, we drank alot and then I noticed David Whittaker at the bar, The man who made that game I played all one summer, LAZY JONES! We chatted, he got me a beer, told me about Zombie Nation (Didnt he tell everyone?:) and he was cool and drunk too.
We drank some more
Jeff Minter passed me, Jeff minter! the guy who made that game about cutting grass, the guy who made Tempest 2000 (Not really retro yet but whos counting?). We chatted and he signed my ATTACK OF THE MUTANT CAMELS game after a chat about how he
stolen the idea from the Atari2600 game, EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, but all is forgiven. He's a legend and he made me laugh:)
As I was again chatting to Dave W in came Gary Liddon, The guy who wrote for ZZAP!, you know "Sticking his fingers down his mouth to be sick for a bad game" reviewer in good old ZZAP!64. I managed to grab a smart photo of Gary doing it, he he
Met the music programmer of Amiga game, OUT TO LUNCH, Mark Knight ("I cannot
believe you remember it") and he introduced me to Richard Joseph who I commented on him making the best soundfx in a game...
Lee-"you know, Cauldron II where the witch cackles, superb sounds man,"
Richard-"he he he ha ha ha...You're very kind"
My mates left the club "No birds" they said, and suddenly the DJ said he was having a Air-guitar comp to win a signed C64. Lee, being the ultimate "F*** it, im drunk" kinda guy got up there, did some sort of wobbly leg dance to the C64 licks and errrm..won it!
How? couldnt tell you! Needless to say Ben Dalgish didnt look to happy as he was next to go on (why didnt he?) and to quote him ""these f**king kids
have NO IDEA!!"...hmmmm I upset a c64 legend..nevermind:)
Debbie was getting a bit drunk too, so I grabbed her camera and ventured up into the
VIP bar again, stopped to ask these two guys where my hero of the c64, Martin Galway was?
The guy I asked was talking to him!
Anyway :) he seemed nice and answered all my questions that for some odd reason I dont know what I said to him, I told him RAMBO was cool and the way he put Jerry goldsmith music into his own work was good, which he liked and thanked me for. Got my games signed too!
Time was getting on and I had not met Hubbard yet so I asked the now drunk Mark Knight where he was. "I will introduce you to him" he said, and he did
Now, Im not one for weird moments but this was one. Mark led me downstairs to the lower bar, and walked up to this well-dressed guy, bent down and chatted very low to this man. Now, I swear on the Commodore's life, that all I could hear was nothing! not a pop! The music was not there and the chatting silenced. The whole room was dead in noise. Mark said "This is Robb, Robb this is Lee" and I met Robb Hubbard. He was a great guy and part of our chat went like this....
Lee-"Robb (Shook hands), Im Lee from PeeknPoke website, Ive been a long fan of your music, when I was a kid and now"
Lee-"Do you miss those old days?"
Robb-"I think we all do"
Lee-"What do you think of the remixes of those game music?"
Robb-"To be honest, Lee Ive not heard a great deal of them but from what Ive heard tonight, its great"
I then from my sweaty hands gave him a copy of Commando to sign which he did, we shook hands again and I left. I met the guy who made me get into games big time...And I didnt take a picture!!! Doh!
Back upstairs, I could hear again and caught Lando on his hands and knees begging for Minter's coat (Which he got) Jeff invited us up to the DJ booth to watch him do the light-show and that was great until a DNA guy threw us out..he he:)
By this time I was drunk, I returned to Debs a happy guy as more C64 sounds flew around us.
We went up to the celeb bar again only to be great to four guys helping Dave W out (Or is that thrown out as the DNA guy looked deeply upset, shouting the odds and Chris Abbott looked so worried but maybe it was me being too drunk.....)
Up in the bar, I met up with my new mates, Mort, Iain, Sundance, Lando, Navvie, and Cmj chatting for a while. Jeff joined us and I managed a chat with him about Flossie (His sheep), Eugene Jarvis (Defender) and his StarWars Arcade machine ("its gone")
We all staggered outside, got a taxi with my ZZAP! pals and went to the hotel and slept like a king with my C64 signed next to me
In all, A fantastic retro night. Fun for all and the celebs and VIP's were great.
Im still buzzing after it all and so I should, Ive been part of a legendary night