Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Minusa Bar, Barcelona

In Barcelona I played a cocktail bar. A fancy place with black and white bartenders, velvet curtains, backlit bottles, red lighting, the works. No kitchen so the owner took me out for dinner to his favourite local restaurant. It's nice to be wined and dined before a show. We ate a sort or paella and talked about Spanish politics. He did most of the talking. My knowledge of Spanish politics would consist of whatever he cared to tell me.

I played around midnight but it was a pretty joyless experience. A gabble of cocktail drinkers had little interest in my biting insights and whimsical asides. Like a paid performer I made all the noises and went through the moves but there was no light in the eyes tonight. I don't think they can tell. If I'd had more energy I would have tried some tricks. Singalongs, whoops, sssshs, covers, rolling around, fast one, slow ones.... As it was they just got the usual. As I lay back thought about what I'd do in Barcelona the next day.
Playing Liar. A very good poker game using dice instead of cards.

I stayed in my friend Aleix's apartment. He's a young choir conductor who I met via Enrique (Pleasure Man) Corton in Amsterdam. Aleix gave me his apartment and slept in his mother's apartment downstairs. It turns out the apartment building has been in the family for generations. With three apartments on each floor and 5 floors, it's quite a complex, and it has gradually been filled by Aleix's friends, mostly classical and jazz musicians so the place is really humming, music drifting in from every window. There are even practice rooms in the basement.
His girlfriend Monica has her own apartment upstairs and is six months pregnant, my to Aleix's horror. The guy was really on the ropes about it. He seems more resigned to it now, but is determined that it won't change his life in any way. While Monica is really looking forward to it. She gets a year's leave on full-pay and is relaxed about it all. So it's like a small Spanish soap opera in the house or the next Woody Allen film.
Aleix gave me a tour of his hometown of Barcelona, ending at the blustery beach.

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