The NetherlandsI live in a big city: Manchester. I love Manchester because its grey is the blank canvas for self-expression, its wetness is the fertiliser of creativity. But I had forgotten the quality of warmth and hospitality one can only find in smaller towns, unspoilt by the races and speeds of their bigger sisters. That is what Steendam, Amen and a few other of the Netherlands’ northern finest would teach me over again for a week long.

I promise you, this was not just about performing my music, eating great food and travelling, three of my greatest passions. Granted, Leni’s cooking, the couple’s hospitality and the venue’s atmosphere at Cafe Peter en Leni keep customers and musicians coming back for more. Cafe Amer de Amen’s haven and its own Piet offer their guest artists a musical atmosphere that helps them unleash the best of themselves, after which, tasting the country’s delicacies feels like a well-earned cherry on top to savour. The air itself was freshening, the company many a blessing, and everything in my body was simply grateful for this journey.

This lasting feeling would never have been possible without Eiman, Michael, Richard, Peter, Leni, Tom, Piet, Willem, Okko and Judith, Isabella and her family, Els and her family (including little Samuel), Jan, Roefl and many many more people who have made our stay there a formidable time. So, to you all, I say Many Many Thanks once again. Looking forward to coming back!