Priceless Surprises: Mastercard & Kaiser Chiefs

It’s been a strange few weeks for running into famous people.

First, I got my Access All Areas tour pass for Foo Fighters’ European dates. Had the time of my life at the Manchester gig, stood on the side of the stage a few yards from Taylor, watching the 60,000 people on the ground having as great a time as I was. However, I couldn’t go to see them in Wembley or Edinburgh, because I’d already booked to see The Killers in Atlantic City the same weekend. Then, conveniently, Dave broke his leg – and the injoke became that I set up his fall so I wouldn’t miss any gigs…


I arrived in Atlantic City three days before The Killers gig, and – shockingly – so did Brandon.  I ran into him four days in a row: which was nice, because I got to give him his birthday present in person, but not so nice, because I always get really nervous around Brandon, and – after accidentally bumping into him three times in 24 hours – I spent most of my vacation hiding behind slot machines, trying my hardest not to bump into him again.

Then there was my X-Factor audition which involved Olly Murs, Simon Cowell, Cheryl Cole, Rita Ora, Nick Grimshaw, Rochelle Humes and Melvin Odoom.  None of whom I’m even slightly interested in or care about. However, it also involved Caroline Flack, who I’d filmed with before, and who I adored, so that made the whole experience great. Simon Cowell’s mother died on the weekend before filming, meaning my audition got postponed by 24 hours.  The injoke became – not only did I break Dave Grohl’s leg, I also killed Simon Cowell’s mother to give myself more time to rehearse. Pretty sick, but I have to admit, I got a chuckle out of it.


I figured my brushes with the ABC-listers of the world were over. Then Mastercard contacted me to let me know I’d won a meet and greet with Kaiser Chiefs as part of their Priceless Surprises campaign.  I’d loved these guys around the time of their first album, I played it constantly and went to see them a number of times, but I’d lost track of what they were up to… in fact, I didn’t even know that Ricky was a judge on The Voice until I was frantically searching to make sure I was up to speed prior to our meeting.  My online pal Sondre being a judge on The Voice in Norway, my X-Factor experience under my belt, and my recent encounters with their old buddy Brandon: I had plenty to talk about.  Turned out it was a photo opp, and not really a meet & greet, so there wasn’t much time for idle chatter, but it was still great to say hello to the guys. Unfortunately, the pic came out really, really badly because I was mid-“saying-hello-to-the-guys”…


The gig was awesome: Mastercard laid on food and drink & made it an event to remember.  I was an idiot for not listening to the new Kaiser Chiefs’ stuff sooner: it has the early 2000s synth vibe I love. The highlight had to be when, from out of nowhere, they suddenly bust out Pinball Wizard . Ricky’s even more agile than the last time I saw them, which was probably 7 years ago. Peanut still likes to clap. I still like to clap. It was all good.

Thinking about it: I probably should have gone for The Voice instead of X-Factor. I could have bribed one of the judges beforehand, and maybe I’d have stood a chance!