How A Hotel Chef Saved Tenille Townes’ UK Tour: ‘There Are Really Good People In This World’

Rising country star Tenille Townes recently took to social media to reveal the story of how she almost didn’t make…


Madeleine O’Connell

| Posted on

October 31, 2022


12:08 pm

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Photo Courtesy Tenille Townes

Rising country star Tenille Townes recently took to social media to reveal the story of how she almost didn’t make it to several of her sold-out shows. 

Townes wrapped up her month-long, twelve-show world tour on Tuesday (Oct. 25) at the Häkken in Hamburg, Germany. The critically acclaimed international tour saw Townes playing in Australia at CMC Rocks, Ireland, the U.K., Netherlands and Germany. 

While she was in the UK, her tour manager, who also serves as her van driver, got sick with the stomach flu. This meant that Townes and her band had no way of getting to the remainder of her sold-out dates in Glasgow, Bristol, London and Manchester.

As she explained in the video, her bandmates made the effort to drive the bus, but since they needed to drive on the other side of the road and the van was a stick shift, things were looking pretty hopeless for the five-hour trip they had ahead of them. 

Just as they were starting to think their luck had run out and they wouldn’t make it to their upcoming shows, they were introduced to their “night and shining armor” while staying at the Premier Inn in Penrith. 

“We jokingly asked the nicest guy named Grinch who sat us for breakfast at the hotel if he knew anyone who might want to drive us to our show,” Townes explained. “He came back to our table telling us he found our night and shining armor, Cat.”

Catalin Toma, a Romanian hotel chef who was cooking their breakfast dropped everything he was doing and offered to drive Townes, her crew and band to the shows in Bristol and London.

Photo Courtesy Tenille Townes
Photo Courtesy Tenille Townes

“Moral of the story is that there are really good people in this world and people who are willing to be a friend and lend a helping hand,” Townes said at the end of the video. 

“I’m so in awe of the incredible audiences I got to hang out with around this beautiful world… music truly is a universal language and it moved me to tears multiple times on this tour hearing people singing along to these songs in so many different places,” she later shared. 

While documenting the event, Townes made sure to share photos of the hotel staff who lent a helping hand and also got to enjoy the show as thanks for getting them to their destination in time. 

“It felt like we’re all neighbors. I love our community of music lovers and I can’t wait to keep travelling around this world and witnessing the way these songs keep bringing us together. I had the best time and it’s truly been a run of some of my favourite shows I’ve ever played.”

Fans quickly took to the comments to share their gratitude towards Toma for stepping in to help out a group of strangers at the last minute. 

“Loved hearing you telling this story at the Manchester show! Awesome story and memory,” one user wrote while another said, “This is the best thing I’ve heard in weeks!”

The European leg of the tour began at the Workman’s Club in Dublin, where Townes played an intimate acoustic set. She will continue on her SAME ROAD HOME TOUR in the U.S. and Canada before embarking on the SIDE A + B TOUR in January.

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Madeleine O’Connell graduated from North Central College with a bachelors degree in Journalism and Broadcast Communications before deciding to pursue her studies further at DePaul University. There, she earned her masters degree in Digital Communication & Media Arts. O’Connell served as a freelance writer for over two years while also interning with the Academy of Country Music, SiriusXM and Circle Media and assisting with Amazon Music’s Country Heat Weekly podcast. In addition to Country Now, she has been published in American Songwriter, Music Mayhem, and Holler.Country. Madeleine O’Connell is a member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.