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Rumer's Tour Diary, Part 1: California Dreamin'

rumer5.jpgRumer, a British-by-way-of-Pakistan artist, sings dusky ballads reminiscent of 70s chanteuses like Carol King and Karen Carpenter; her talent has even caught the eye of Burt Bacharach, who invited the artist to perform at his home.  With the U.S. release last month of her debut album, Seasons of My Soul (which was already a hit in the UK when it came out in 2010), and a North American tour to coincide, we've asked Rumer to record her thoughts and impressions for PAPERMAG while she's on the road.  

As we hit the tarmac at LAX, I spared a thought for the chaos I had left behind: I just moved apartments and books and papers and cups of coffee were everywhere... I just finished my new record and the mixes were still up on the desk next to studio notes strewn around... Seasons of My Soul was being released in the US and I was here to promote it.

My mind was like a toy shop. The day after we flew in, we all met for breakfast at the 101 Diner, and Roger Klein went to put some tunes on the jukebox when he noticed my CD in there next to Sly and the Family Stone. That was so cool.

In San Francisco we played Bimbo's 365 Club, which is an amazing venue. It is like a museum.  It has to be seen to be believed.  Frank Sinatra played there as did Count Basie and Smokey Robinson. It harkens back to a golden era.  I was glancing up at my name on the bill when a cute delivery boy wandered past with a large bunch of flowers and a box. Inside the box was the whole series of "Tales of the City". The gifts were from Bill, a local, wonderful man who has supported me and my music for years, back when I was a hustling young singer trying to promote myself on MySpace and working at the Apple Store. It was so kind of him to send me a gift!  Here is a pic of the cute delivery boy and the package when it arrived...

Later, it was time to sound check at Bimbo's:

rumer3.jpgThe best thing about my job is meeting people after the show.  I love to connect with people I haven't met before. They are always warm and friendly. It takes me back to years of working behind the counter, whether it was a retail store or a coffee shop. I stand behind the counter like I am greeting the next customer. I like to sign things for people, talk about music, take pictures. We all love music. It's great to connect. This lady, Dolores Sampson, is 85 years old.

Another highlight of this leg was taking a boat trip:


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