Six degrees of separation. Today: Elvis and Toi.

Kind of frustrated because I didn’t post anything related to Elvis’ birthday on Thursday. I still paid my tribute watching the great documentary Elvis: That’s the way it is, which I strongly recommend you, including lots of footage of the rehearsals previous to Vegas residency in 1970, and the actual shows, which were awesome.

I know it’s a bit late but I want to talk to you about Elvis, Toi and the Six degrees of separation theory anyway, and that’s what I’m gonna do right now.

Back in 1929 there was this Hungarian writer, Frigyes Karinthy who wrote a book of short stories titled ‘Everything is Different’. In one of these, he was telling about how the world was shrinking so to speak, as the human being was moving, emigrating, and establishing more connections and ties to other people than we used to do in the past. Somehow he was anticipating something which is completely fashionable nowadays, which are the social networks. But it wouldn’t be until 1967, when the researcher Stanley Milgram published the compilation of experiments related to the extension of social networks under a theory named “The Small World problem” through The Psychology Today, when it was demonstrated that the world was becoming increasingly connected. At some point in the 2000s, the concept of “Six Degrees of Separation” was born, to explain you’d be related to anyone in no more than six connections.

Well, this is a vague summary of what the unproven theory is about, but I guess you already knew about it.

I’m not sure if it would apply to deceased people, but in this case I like to think is valid too, especially considering Elvis and me coexisted on earth for less than 11 months.

So here is the thing.

Elvis, the king of rock n’ roll, who only left the States for the military service in Germany and few shows in Canada, and Toi, an average(a bit freak too) girl from Zaragoza, Spain, have only two degrees of separation.

How can it be possible?

Ha! A couple of years ago I discovered this picture by chance: Elvis and Torrebruno.

torrebruno and elvis

Many of you are wondering now how the fuck was Torrebruno. Rocco Walter Torrebruno was a little Italian showman, who settled in Spain, doing comedy, singing, working as hosts in many TV programs, and during a long period of time, he used to work for a circus and oriented his career as a child’s entertainer.

Apparently the picture was taken in Paris in 1959, at the Moulin Rouge, when Elvis went to salute the singer Nina Holloway, to her dressing-room, after a show, and Torrebruno happened to be there with his guitar.

I met Torrebruno in 1981 when he took me to stage to sing his hit “Rocky Carambola”, who was actually a chimpanzee. Si I sang with him and this little man gave me the single as a present.

toi carambola

Thus, I met Torrebruno, who had met the King 22 years earlier. Only 2 degrees, friends. So now I’ve just proved myself that the world is ridiculously small. How cool is that?

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