Around the middle of this year my passion for gig going went from what always felt like an eternal roaring flame to a dwindling spark that was close to being extinguished.
I just wasn't feeling it anymore.
The rise of excitement pre gig had vanished, the losing myself in the moment of a good show had went awol, and post gig I wasn't feeling much of anything at all.
Maybe I was getting old, a bit jaded, and possibly over exposure had ushered in too much familiarity leading to some feelings of contempt.
I couldn't really put my finger on what was wrong, and that's frustrating.
In some ways it felt like I had lost an old familiar friend.
Live music had always been there for me, and then it wasn't. It had become distant, and wasn't talking to me anymore.
And then November came into my life.
Oh glorious November.
All the feelings of despondent apathy I was carrying around were lifted clean off my shoulders by Ryan Hamilton and the Harlequin Ghosts as they stormed the Voodoo Rooms in Edinburgh.
And then they were kicked further down the road by MC50 and Michael Monroe as they took the roof of the Academy in Glasgow before the legendary Supersuckers reminded me of the redemptive powers of good ol' rock and fuckin' roll as they shook the foundations of Bannermans in Edinburgh.
Was this all I needed? A run of excellent shows?
It didn't even finish there.
After Supersuckers I'd barely caught a breath before diving headlong into back to back gigs with Duncan Read and the Big Heads, Reaction, and PowderKeg, and with those shows the flame roared fully back to life ready to scorch anything that dared to stand in its path. My old friend was back and whispering to me to sing like no one was listening and dance like no one was watching.
The love affair with the excitement of seeing live music was back on.
Thank you Jebus.
So as the fire was burning bright again the opportunity to then go and see Tony Wright in the Hug and Pint in Glasgow was a no brainer because, well because I bloody love Tony.
It's platonic. One sided too.
I don't want anyone getting the wrong impression. I love him because he's such a talented guy and always entertaining.
He ticks all the boxes I want ticked when considering if I want to go to a gig.
Terrorvision? Bring it on. Solo? I'll have some of that. With the aforementioned Ryan Hamilton? I don't mind if I do.
In hindsight I would have regretted missing him as I'm sure friends who had attended would have taken great pleasure in telling me how enjoyable it was.
And not just because they are dicks, but because it would have been true.
There's something a bit different about a Tony Wright acoustic gig. It couldn't be described as taking itself too seriously for a start.
The songs, whether they are Terrorvision compositions, or his own solo material, are just part of the show. A big part of course, but what pulls it all together is the comedy elements as he holds court sharing hilarious anecdotes and sparring verbally with his long suffering musical partner Milton.
If he ever gets around to putting pen to paper to write a memoir it may just be the funniest ever written.
Seeing Tony actually reminds me of a cabaret bill. Some song, some laughs, a bit of the old soft shoe shuffle, but all rolled into one, and he's absolutely brilliant at it, but the most important aspect is the connections he makes with his audience.
That's what can't be understated.
The artist/fan barrier simply doesn't exist. His infectious warmth makes every intimate gig feel like a gathering of mates.
Going to a Tony Wright gig is akin to hanging out in your local pub with friends. It's comfortable, you can laugh easy, and there's a communal warmth to it.
Bottle that and the world would be yours for the taking.
I recently read that doctors may soon be prescribing social events to patients as a strand of treatment, and Tony and Milton could be the poster boys for that idea. A tonic for the troops. Regardless of what ails you they will lift you spirits and send you home feeling better than you did.
And I can't think of anything better than that to be honest. He's the sunshine on a rainy day.
I'm so glad I dragged my tired old arse to the gig. November isn't over yet and it has smashed every month of 2018. It's as if November has laughingly screamed that there's a party over here fuck you over there to every other month of the year.
Just what I needed.