Hello. My name is Isaac, 35 years old from Vancouver, Canada. I have set this blog up to document my journey following Mark Knopfler’s 2013 “Privateering” tour, from April 25 (Bucharest, Romania) to July 31 (Calella de Palafrugell, Spain).

Due to Despite the tour’s obnoxious schedule (thanks, Mark), I cannot be entirely sure that I will attend all concerts. That being said, I will try. You are more than welcome to sit back, relax, read, and comment. You can also subscribe to the blog’s RSS feed (see the “Subscribe for Updates” box at the right hand side of the page. For standard RSS readers, select the “Atom” option).

Have fun,

Note: The contents of this blog are also available in hardcover and paperback formats. For more information, click here:

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

What, Again?

(If you are to read any post in this blog, then this should be the one, as it contains a very important disclaimer.)

So here we go again.

Three years after the epic Get Lucky tour, which I followed in its entirety, here I am about to do exactly the same thing for Mark Knopfler’s Privateering tour.

I had many doubts before deciding to follow the Privateering tour in its entirety. Life circumstances being one thing; the other being my recollection of how difficult such an endeavour really is. I know, I know: once such an epic journey concludes, the sweet memories (France, Italy) usually dominate the bitter ones (Poland, Spain). Yet, I am a pragmatic realist and therefore cannot lie down in a bed of roses for long without feeling the thorns. When all is said and done, following the entire Get Lucky tour was hard; I would not recommend such a journey to most people I know.

Yet, as time progressed, it became increasingly apparent to me that, for me, following a Knopfler solo tour is a feat that appeals more than other circumstantial factors. It is simply an experience that I like going through, period. Whenever I tried to rationalize it by challenging it with plain down‐to‐earth pragmatic factors, I some got stuck with a “but still…” of some sort. It is that gut feeling that defeated all other factors before the Get Lucky tour, and it did it again now; who am I to argue, then?

Another thing that made this tour easier to digest was the fact that I am not going to follow it by myself. My dear friend Jeroen Gerrits has decided to suspend his wakeupslices of bread with some spreadworksome more bread with spreadshomeyet more bread with spreadssleep cycle, pack a bag and haul himself throughout Europe via any method of transportation known to man except for space shuttles and catapults. That made planning easier (although still very hard) and is certainly going to render the journey more enjoyable and manageable.

(No, he is not writing a blog.)

How Can You Help?

You didn’t see that one coming, did you.

Well, constructive comments can definitely help. While you are free to comment in any which way you want, please try to keep it constructive and—to the extent possible—positive. Leave the negativity to me.

If you happen to own a residence that can host two strangers in a city along the way, and willing to offer some space for one night—that would definitely help.

You can also buy me some coffee. Had it been possible, I’d set up a PayPal‐like “coffee fund” (hey, did I just come up with an idea for a start up?); that is impossible though, so find your own way.


There are going to be some changes here, comparing to the last tour.

First and foremost, I am going to write less about the actual performances. Writing about a performance is very easy when you attend one performance, or three. When it’s about 70 performances you attend, differentiating between them becomes very hard. Also, the performances themselves become a secondary factor in the overall experience: the actual travel captures top spot instead. I am going to write more about thoughts, experiences (though less about the actual food I eat. That’s what Instagram is for), joys and grievances.

Second, about pictures. Expect (much) less performance‐time pictures: I am hardly going to take any. Having attended so many performances already, I can conclude that the less cameras see the “light of day” (so to speak) during a performance—the better, not just for the viewer but more so for the band. Having said that, if you had taken pictures during concerts and would like them posted (and credited), feel free to share them with me (using Google Drive or Dropbox is preferred over email). Just please, avoid close‐ups and attempt to capture situations rather than people; atmosphere rather than skin.

Third, please understand that occasional grumpiness is inevitable. I might, at times, become negative—especially around days when travel is very hard, and this tour definitely doesn’t suffer from shortage in difficult transit. Grumpiness is a part of me, and so is this blog—and therefore you, the reader, are responsible to implement your own filters to what I write.

That’s about it for now. Flying to Bucharest tomorrow (Wednesday), while the tour kicks off the next day.




  1. Safe travels, Isaac and Jeroen - I look forward to reading all about it.

  2. You are yet on the dictionary. "to do a Shabtay" has his own definition. Good Luck you and Jeroen.

  3. Ingrid, NetherlandsApril 24, 2013 at 2:35 AM

    Have a lot of fun, good luck, enjoy it all and I'll see you for the first time in Berlin. As said earlier keep in touch for transportation and hotel "Ingrid" if needed. I do 17 of them as you know.

    At Alberto: it's not listed as "to do a Shabtay" but at it's known as "to do an Isaac" ;-)

  4. linda from salt lake cityApril 24, 2013 at 4:12 AM

    Hey, you two - have safe and enjoyable travel experiences, and I can't wait to read about them again.

  5. Issac - I followed your incredible journey on the GL tour and am excited about this one too. Those who know Mark's music can fully understand how much something like this can mean.

    Btw, I am flying from Charlotte, North Carolina to Italy in July for 3 shows...Padova, Roma, and Napoli. Hopfully I will get to see you and shake your hand.

    Good luck and god speed!

  6. Hey Isaac, good luck in your endeavours and hopefully see you at Bournemouth, Brighton and the RAH!! Incidentally as a fellow MK strat owner (ok I now have 3!!) but for interest what is the serial number of yours?? See you soon Steve Anstey

  7. Hey Isaac,

    So glad that you and Jeroen are doing it again. I truly admire both you and Jereon's tenacity in your last GL world adventure, and to share with us your experience. I'm sure this one will be just as fun to follow. Too bad I won't see you this time like the last time. Lots and lots of good lucks and fun !!!!!

  8. Hi,
    I'm looking forward to reading about your new adventures around Europe :-)
    We may cross paths in Paris, Rennes or Nîmes.
    Have fun!

  9. Wolfgang /Northern GermanyApril 26, 2013 at 1:30 PM

    Now it feels complete. MK touring, set list discussions, GF tour diary... and here it is, Isaac's blog.. great, now all is in place perfectly well! Thanks a lot for giving us insight into this big adventure, greetings to Jeroen and looking forward meeting you within the next few weeks (again)! W.

  10. Thank you so much for posting this. It's like being there. I would love to read the Get Lucky Blog.

  11. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    1. That was spam. Don't know how they get to do this, with the word verification thing I had turned on...