Farewell

Ray+Manzarek+19692020Henry20Diltz205820Pier

It’s been two days already since Ray Manzarek passed away on the 20th of May, and to be honest, nothing has changed for me.

Yes, I feel sorry for his family and friends, and yes, once again I curse this goddamn illness called cancer. I’m sorry he had to leave that early (he wasn’t that old and, as far as I know, he was pretty active, musically speaking), and I wish he could have spent many more years distilling awesomeness from his keyboard.

Despite all this, I can’t say that I’m shocked or sad in any way. It’s simply that The Doors will be always alive, ’cause they became immortal many years ago, and their legacy is immense and everywhere!

I was lucky enough having the chance to see The Doors of the 21st Century year ago in my hometown, and it was really special. After all, The Doors are my favourite band of all times!

Despite the absence (only physically speaking) of Jim Morrison, the whole feeling was there, plus I can’t think in a better alternative singer for this band than Ian Astbury. Altogether, they f*cking rocked the bullring (yeah, in Spain we used to do concerts in bullrings) and the 7000 people in the audience.

I remember that it was December and the weather was pretty cold and wet. Ray and Roby were wearing thick wool jackets and scarfs, while Ian was there with a shirt and his leather trousers. I’m pretty sure that my mind has somehow distorted my memories of that night, but I swear I remember them playing Riders on the Storm and then… bang! Rain started to pour and lightning illuminated the dark skies… Man, it still gives me goosebumps.

No one can deny that Ray’s keyboards were the real  spine in the songs of The Doors, the same way that John was the heartbeat, Robby was the soul and Jim… well, Jim probably was the cock.

I can’t say that Ray Manzarek and The Doors has much to do (at least directly) with the music I make nowadays, but they absolutely formed and shaped the way I listen, feel and understand music. No matter how loud and heavy I’m now, I’ve been before or I will be in the future.

My guts are cast in blues.

The_doors

Is sad music actually sad?

Despite it is a bit hard to follow (the guy speaks so fecking fast!), it’s quite interesting, yet I’m not completely convinced about the whole idea.

I mean: if you take a newborn baby, isolate him/her and condition him over the years by playing Albinoni’s Adagio in G minor every time something awesome happens, and feed him/her with Sponge Bob’s main theme whenever he/she sees something sad… will he/she cry when somebody sings the Happy Birthday song?

It makes sense, but I just can’t see it happening :/

What do you think?

My Tornado

Yes, the European Storm Forecast Experiment (sounds like an evil project from a James Bond movie) has raised a level 1 warning for tornadoes in Ireland.

What does it mean? Well… for what I’ve seen so far, we have the same bloody winds and shitty weather than the last months (or years, not sure), but know it is in the news.

“A LEVEL ONE tornado warning has been issued for Ireland by a European storm forecaster – and our own Met Éireann is warning of winds gusting up to 100km per hour.

According to Met Éireann, we can expect strong to gale force south to southwest winds of 50 to 60 km/h, with occasional gusts of 90 to 110 km/hr. Winds will be strongest in western coastal areas, said the forecaster.

It has placed a weather warning of ‘status yellow’ on the country for today. Status yellow means there is a ‘weather alert’ and people should ‘be aware’.

Tornado warning

A level one warning is the lowest warning out of three, and warns of a five per cent probability of a tornado hitting Ireland.

It says that the “strong vertical wind shear and very low lifting condensation level is reason to believe that one or multiple tornadoes may occur” in Ireland.

The Irish Weather Network said that for the rest of today, showers will move in off the Atlantic during the morning affecting the western half of the island. They will become more widespread through the afternoon with one or two on the heavy with a risk of thunder.

It also predicts gusts of 80 to 100kmh, strongest in western areas, and says tonight will be cloudy with showery outbreaks of rain across the island as winds moderate.

Temperatures will remain mild, with lows of 6 or 7C

The weather for the week ahead will remain unsettled mild and windy at times.”

TheJournal.ie

So, yea. Here we are.

 Anyways! As almost everything, all this matter has a bright side, and in this case is that it all has reminded me of a great song from one of the coolest bands on earth. Enjoy!

Evil Dead – The infamous remake

I don’t know about you, but I believe that people shouldn’t mess with some things.

You know… sacred things. Things that we all would be better off if we leave alone. Just like the Necronomicon ex mortis, or the feckin’ original 1981 Evil Dead movie!!!!

Damn you, modern film industry. I curse your houses.

Yuk

Yuk

Start the reactor. Free Mars…

Thatcher is dead and I couldn’t care less

Why? Because I hate politics.

Plus I didn’t know much about this woman, just the basics to know that she was loathed by many, respected by some, and feared by everybody.

The thing is that she’s not here anymore, for bad or for good.

Now, changing to a far more interesting topic: I need a new guitar amp!

Yes. Right during the soundcheck before last Saturdays gig, my poor ol’ 1992 Fender Rocpro 1000 started crackling like a sonovabich, so I had to leave it aside L

Dammit! After bringing it from Spain, fixing it with my bare hands (well… and with the help of a few screwdrivers and a solder iron), and testing it successfully through a whole 4+ hours rehearsal, he failed one the battlefield!

To be honest, it could have been much worse (like if, for example, it had chosen to do its shenanigans in the middle of the show), and fortunately one of the other bands could provide a backup amp within minutes (thanks Zelen!), but it still hurts like a mother.

God knows I will have it fixed again, as I’m sure that the problem is not that bad, but this time I might bring it to an specialist. Not a guitar shop or anything (specially after my experience at Crowley’s). I will search for a trustworthy guy who really takes care of musical instruments, and who knows what he’s doing. Otherwise, I’d tackle the problem myself once again, hopefully with better and more durable results.

But a want to look at the bright side of life, and despite this incident has been a complete and absolute disgrace, it made me finally accept a fact that I’ve been avoiding and ignoring for long, long time: I need a new amp.

Oh yes, I will take it as a sign from above. I have to say that my sweet wife (which, as you might already know, happens to be also the bass player in Johnny Horne) have been advising me to get another amp for months, but because I’m a cheap bastard, I’ve been subtly moving away from this idea every time the topic comes up on the conversation.

It’s going to be a good opportunity for an upgrade too, and get one of those motherfudging tube amps. Now the problem is to choose one! So I forecast long days of browsing, comparing, testing (when possible), then browsing again… until I find the perfect one without spending a whole lot of cash.

Of course, if anybody reading this has a suggestion, I’ll be more than happy to hear it. I’m desperate, goddammit!

At the momento, the eye of Sauron is set on this bad boy:

Laney IRT60-212 Ironheart

60w full tube combo amp, with all the features I want, and 2×12” HH custom designed speakers. Looks good, but I heard that it might get a bit heavy, both soundwise and weightwise (36kg!), and yeah… I usually play pretty loud music, but I want something versatile too, with great warm tube tone and a good spring or tube based reverb.

I’ll keep checking, and only time will show me the answer.

Until next time, take care.

A brand new world is coming alive!

Well, hello!
 
G. Garcia here, writing from my own hell.
 
This is the first blog I have since LiveJournal was the coolest thing in the world (sharing its popularity with the IRC).
 
If you know what “IRC” is, you probably are as old as me, and you get an picture of how long it has been.
 
If you have no idea of what the hell I’m talking about, let’s just say that it’s been a shitload of time since I’ve written anything on the web besides updating my Facebook status, twitting one or two things, and publishing Johnny Horne’s announcements on ReverbNation.
 
No pressure, though. I do not aim to be featured in any most-influential-blogs-ever list, and being quite honest, I’d be surprised if I make it out there. Too many blogs already, y’know.
 
In fact, this is something I’ve been thinking lately: there is too many of everything nowadays: too many rock bands, too many pop singers, too many photographers, too many writers, to many restroom models… Mondo amateur.
 
With the new technologies and these really accessible prices for “looks-like-professional” equipment, in the last years the amount of amateur artists have grown more recklessly than the guy from Akira towards the end of the movie.
 
But don’t get me wrong. I think that’s great! in a way…
 
I mean, it is really awesome that anybody with a computer, a smartphone and/or a microphone can become a writer, journalist, photographer, singer, broadcaster, porn actor/actress (?). Internet helped in great measure with the democratization of this kind of activities, and opened the doors of our own bedroom to the rest of the world: I brand new world became alive.
 
The downside is that anybody, and now I mean ANYBODY, with a computer, a smartphone and/or a microphone can become a writer, journalist, photographer, singer, etc. Instagram and autotuner, what a pile of shit (I’ll come back to this in  future posts). Nothing feels organic because nothing requires a minimum amount of craftsmanship to make.
 
 
Plus, right now it feels that there is more offer than demand. There are many more bands out there than people willing to listen to anything different than what they see on TV. Many more photographers than people who really enjoy pictures (other than pictures of food, duckfaces and clouds). Many more people writing stuff than people willing to read.
 
Then you realise: the rules have change but only for “business needs”.
 
While years ago, only a few could produce songs, paintings, pictures, books, etc…, and the rest paid for watching, reading, listening them; now people (at least people how’s not that dumb to pay 20+ euros for a CD) does not consume art the same way than before, and pay just a little price (if any) to download songs and movies from the web.
 
Now the business seems to be more in the artist and less in the audience.
 
Think about it: how many people had a SLR camera 10 years ago? That’s right. Now Canon and the other big brands have convinced us that we can become good photographers if we buy an EOS and make crooked pictures of anything (and then add a ton of filters).
 
The same way, bands and musicians now have to pay to play almost anywhere, or accept other poor conditions, as venues doesn’t consider enough with whatever number of tickets and whatever number of pints they sell the night of the gig. They want us to pay too.
 
This, of course, doesn’t apply to bands and musicians who directly make the shitty music that the industry can sell to the brainless masses (yea, you know what bands/artists I mean).
 
To all of them, here’s something they can have from me:
 
There you go! Enjoy.
 
And I think I will stop now, ‘cause I could keep on writing on this subject for ages. Plus I’m sure you will have better things to do (too).
 
However, if this is not your case, feel free to comment and share your opinion and ideas. Or just say ‘hello’ for f*ck sake! The world has lost his manners.
 
See you next time. Be good.
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