Kyle Settles In, The Ship Heads South and World Exclusive Interview With Quartermaster David.
As the Beer and Flies vessel travelled slowly through the night the small lights of explosions could just be seen over the horizon, bursting up from the tiny island of New Caledonia.
‘Quite a show they’re putting on!’ I said, turning to Nicole and David, who were leaning on the railings beside me.
‘Absolutely,’ said David, squinting in the darkness.
‘I hope they’re okay out there,’ said Nicole vaguely.
‘Oh, they’ll be grand!’ said David, ‘I just hope they’re taking prisoners!’
We all laughed, ‘You’re right,’ agreed Nicole, ‘they can more than handle themselves.’
The Captain, the Doctor, and the new arrival, Kyle, were up on the bridge; charting a course due South.
Kyle was explaining the situation on the island.
‘It had been brewing for months, Captain, a corrupt leadership, stealing the people’s food, hampering their trade… it was bound to happen one day, it just needed someone to light the fuse.’
‘Let me guess,’ said the Doctor, mock shrewdly, ‘that’s where you came in?’
‘Well, in a way,’ said Kyle, chuckling to himself.
‘But what’s in it for Brandon and Ziv?’ asked the Captain.
‘Haven’t you ever wanted your own island kingdom, Captain? Way out in the ocean, too far away to be bothered by the authorities? A genuine pirate utopia?’
‘I prefer the open water,’ said the Captain, ‘but still, I can see the attraction,’ he went on, winking to the Doctor.
‘Utopia,’ said the Doctor, ‘now that’s a fickle plan, but as Carlo Petrini once said, “he who sows utopia will reap reality”…’
‘Exactly Doctor!’ said Kyle, ‘they’re creating a new reality! Do they have radio contact with the ship Captain?’
‘Yes, they’ve got a satellite phone, so we’ll keep the line open,’ said the Captain, frowning at the sonar radar on the control panels.
‘Well, we may have to drop by for a visit to their new reality at some point.’
‘Where are we headed then?’ asked Kyle.
‘South East,’ said the Captain, ‘the Doctor has something he wants us to see, by the way, are you still singing, playing the drums?’
‘Yes, Sir, of course!’ said Kyle.
‘Excellent,’ said the Captain, ‘welcome aboard the Beer and Flies!’
The Beer and Flies had decided to head South East, out into the open waters to avoid any unwanted attention that may arise from the recent events on the island of New Caledonia where a revolution may or may not by now have taken place.
The crew were in the bar, recounting tales of the World Tour so far as well as mad happenings from the past. I decided to seize the moment and conduct an interview with David, the ship’s Quartermaster.
His talents for keeping the crew fueled and living in luxury, despite the perilous mission, was astounding to say the least. Never yet had I seen the bar less than fully stocked, yet alone depleted. And of course, it goes without saying the ship’s larders and store rooms were overflowing with enough storable food to survive years at sea, not even taking account of the crew’s deep water fishing skills.
Exclusive Interview with David, Quartermaster of Beer and Flies.
Rik: What motivated you to join the Beer and Flies crew?
David: The promise of gold, rum and fair maidens. Our fair captain is yet to deliver on any of these.
Rik: Can you describe your creative musical process?
David: Mostly my ideas arrive during a restless sleep. Some would argue this is a result of too much rum. I stumble from my bunk and write them down straight away. I then hire a ghostwriter I know from the Island of Elba who turns them into commercially-viable sea shanties.
Rik: If you could collaborate with any musician (other than the Beers and Flies crew), past or present, who would they be and why?
David: I strongly believe that Beethoven would benefit from collaborating with me. I know for a fact that his arrangement of Ode to Joy is about a man who craves the open sea and the plundering of smaller, less powerful sea vessels.
Rik: What musicians inspired you in your early days?
David: Maxwell is responsible for introducing me to the pirate sea shanty business. He knew all the movers and shakers. My early works were not well received by the critics, so I sent Brandon to finish them off with a hand cannon. Who’s rated 7/10 now then?
Rik: What’s your favourite venue for performing?
David: On deck! Obviously. With my cannon-mounted keyboards. I can simultaneously play power chords whilst destroying small distant villages.
Rik: What are the unusual, or unexpected skills that you need to have to be a world class musician?
David: Everyone knows that the most important skill is to be as loud as possible. What they DON’T know is that you also need eardrums like granite in order to avoid complete and utter deafness. See Beethoven again. Too much Beer and Flies for him.
Rik: Do you have any pre-gig rituals?
David: Oh, I have many. Most often I do the usual things. Arm wrestling, rum drinking and vocal warmups. Again, Maxwell taught me about all these things, apart from the vocal warmups.
Rik: What’s the best thing about living on a pirate ship?
David: I get to share a cabin with Pirate Brad. He’s a trigger-happy maniac with a short fuse and an insane tolerance for alcohol, but we get on well and so far he’s only removed two of my fingers for cheating at poker.
Rik: How has living on the Seven Seas changed your outlook on life, the universe and everything?
David: I live in the 19th Century. What is this ‘Universe’ you speak of? In terms of my life outlook – I like to believe my next album will drop big time, but it’s more likely I’ll end up having A Long Drink in the great bar under the sea before the year is out.
Rik: Do you think you’ll ever return to dry land on a full time basis?
David: The main problem with land is the prefix ‘dry’. I’ve been banned from every pirate bar in the Caribbean, largely because of my drunken streaking habit. It apparently frightens all the other pirates, bunch of sissies.
Rik: If you had the chance, would you take a one way trip to Mars to become the first interplanetary band in human history?
David: You’re starting to irritate me with all these questions. You see this cutlass? I’ve killed men for less. Now get out of here before I carve you a new eye socket you half-baked, muzzle-eared sea earwig.