Tag Archives: Highlights

LAST CHAPTER OF 2013: MY HIGHLIGHTS.

This is the last post related to 2013 I’m gonna write. It’s been another rough year (the second in a row), with many ups and downs, and some disappointments, but fortunately not everything was dark, and thanks to some people, music and some personal achievements I survived it, and pounding both good and bad things, I prefer using the adjective rough instead of shitty.

I reckon writing down a list of highlights is a positive way to close a year in the best way possible, so with no particular order I’m starting to remember my personal best of.

JORDI AND RICHARD

It’s still shocking that after living so many years in Barcelona I still don’t know, or haven’t been introduced to certain people I’ve seen thousands of times at bars and shows. At the end of the day, the rock scene in the city is quite reduced, so it’s easy to know who is who. It’s also funny the fact that it was Andrea who properly introduced us, considering she lives in our hometown, and not in Barcelona.

toi jordi and richard

And it’s wonderful to feel a crush at first sight on these two guys with whom I share so many things in common, especially the passion for music and this will to enjoy and have fun. And I love their strong friendship, and the way they connect and complement each other.

I reckon 2013 is the starting point of a long relation with them, and feel very happy and proud of feeling so welcome by them.

ALVARO LLORAR

carmen

I think it was a great idea to start a dark year getting tattooed by one of the artists I admire most: Alvaro Llorar. The result was Carmen, a gorgeous woman with a flame coming out of one of her eyes. The design, the palette of colors used, and the composition are amazing, and I’m very pleased and proud of my girl.

KRISTONFEST

This festival will last in my memory for several reasons. First, the lineup, Orange Goblin and Clutch; Second, I could spend some time with my British pals; Third, I met adorable people I already knew virtually but nor physically (Iñigo, Ostaika, Alberto…); Fourth, it was my first assignment for Rockzone Magazine.

ROCKZONE MAGAZINE AND MY FIRST INTERVIEWS

I started writing for Rockzone in June, and since then I’ve been doing some homework reviewing albums and shows until I was assigned my first interview to Dave Wyndorf, of Monster Magnet, and I’ve been doing few more in the last 3 months.

I love music and writing, so you can imagine the possibility of combining these two passions is a blast. Again I have to thank Jordi and Richard for the support and trust.

JAUME AND TANI

I’ve always expressed how lucky I am for having the friends I have, and the meaning of this highlight is not making any favoritism, but I feel like celebrating my friendship with these two people, who are so important and dear to me.

On one hand I’m supper happy of Tani coming back to my life in a solid way. I’m positive there won’t be more distance between us, and it’s great to have the funniest chick in the world (apart from me, heh) by my side. Every minute we’ve spent together has been top quality and I know there are many more to come.

tani and toi

As for Jaume, my first internet friend, my best supporter and my best confidant, his life’s changed quite much this year, and I only hope I have supported him enough. Truth is that such change has also strengthened our friendship one step beyond. Cubism, gossip, movies at The Hellhouse and many nights of fun. For many years!

DJ’N SESSIONS

It’s been a very busy year with sessions almost every month at different venues: Psycho Club, Hey Ho! Bar, Es Xibiu tapas bar, La Caja Tonta and La Ley Seca in Zaragoza, and the most remarkable event, with Veronica, as guest djs at Siberia Festival in Vitoria.

djn

Playlists I post here are becoming  popular and the crew seem to be pleased, and as for myself, I’m getting more comfortable and confident with the sessions. Very proud, to be honest.

#DADDYCOOL

I’m especially pleased with the current relationship with my father. We can have different points of view, argue, and get pissed off with each other, but I reckon we’ve never been so well as nowadays. Perhaps certain circumstances have encouraged the closeness of it, and I regard it as something very positive.

We still got some Japanese beers pending at the basement. I remember, Randy.

NEIL YOUNG IN NIMES

I feel lucky for being able to attend another show of the old man, with Crazy Horse. You never know when it’ll be the last chance, so whenever it’s possible I’ll move wherever to see him. The show was neat and beautiful, the place, wonderful, and the experience unforgettable.

HUEY MORGAN

As weird as it might sound, Fun Lovin’ Criminals’ singer, Huey, has managed to cheer me up every day thanks to his philosophy quotes, his jams of the day, his replies on Twitter, and his show on BBC6 Music. I’m positive I’ll meet him in person in the future, and I hope that future comes soon. #jeah!

Huey Morgan

THE SOCIAL NETWORKS

Again, they must be included as a highlight. The ARF forum, Facebook, Twitter and this blog, have allowed me to get to know very interesting people, get closer to artists I admire and be in touch with people living far away. How can anyone hate internet?

***

I only hope 2014 is a bit more positive, or at least steadier, that these last ones, with no extreme ups n’ downs. There are cool events ahead which make me feel optimistic at this moment but you can never trust Fate whims, right? Let’s see what happens… I got my fingers crossed.

WE’VE SURVIVED THE LONGEST MONTH

Oh, dears! The toughest month in the year has finally come to an end. Is it only me or January is always slow and super loooong?

Truth is that many things have been done in the past month, and rhythm has been intense but the feeling I ended up having, was of tiredness. Can’t complain of many activities and changes occurring in the past 31 days.

Here there’s a summary of my highlights, not that you care much, but feel like writing them down here:

Dj’d at Psycho and Rocksound bars. Seems like the machine is slowly starting again, and I’ll be able to do some some nights on my own and with friends.

Went to the movies to discover Jane Eyre was pure poetry reflected in a film, and reconfirm both actors, Fassbender and Wasikowska, deserve complete respect. I cried nonstop, no matter I don’t dig love stories that much. But Brontë’s sisters and the way they depict tortuous affairs, it’s something I can’t resist. I sould go to the cinema more often, I’ve discovered I actually love being there, watching movies on my own.

Started Yoga  sessions. I was writing Yoda…hahahah, not yet, not yet! But most def I’ll go for some Jedi learning. It’s good because such exercise requires of all my confirmation and it’s demanding an effort and certain discipline.

Cut smoking down to zero, struggling temptation and enduring the company of my smoker friends. It’s been two weeks already. What can I say? I’m proud of myself at the moment and want to go on, pass through all the stages required as not to feel like having a fag at all.

I attended Danny & The Champions of the Word show, actually my first gig in 2012, and it ended up being a wonderful night. The show was a blast and the band sounded amazingly solid, focusing on their last work, Hearts  & Arrows. The after show resulted one of the funniest, with everybody dancing and drinking crazy. Our performance was such, the band joined us in the party, and I had the opportunity to have a long chat with Danny Wilson, the lead singer, a very nice guy, actually. Tattoos, living and playing in London, bands and experiences…it was a great time.

Poker Nights @ my Hellhouse are becoming a regular event, and I love it. The Mexican Night was a super blast. I’m proud of being able to gather different kind of friends at the Hellhouse and everybody enjoying, getting on well and playing cards, as if we all knew each other for ages. Real fun!

Recovered some of the most shocking and interesting films of the past decade, and enjoyed them even better. Finally updated Popcorn & Movies with a review on Requiem for a Dream.

I cooked my first veggie stewed lentils with cabbage and mushrooms and such meal was absolute WIN. Ok, there was no chorizo nor morcilla, but I was lucky to combine certain ingredients and spices as to turn it absolutely delicious.

January is a weird month, long, cold and usually you broke after Xmas. Right towards the end of this month the Blue Monday occurs. Not sure whether you’ve heard of it, but according to statistics and research on the subject (of course!), around the 3rd Monday of the year, is considered to be the most depressing day in the year, to everyone, for all these facts I was just naming. I reckon something like that happened to me, thus when I was reminded of the date, everything started to make complete sense.

I’d love to know about your achievements, or just the pleasant experiences you’ve enjoyed, to overcome this season of emotional hangover, and also to wish you the February month. Glad to admit my agenda is getting quickly busy, thus I will try my best at entertaining you from here. Take care y’all!

2011 HIGHLIGHTS

There are still a couple of things I should post, related to the past year 2011.

This could be named the year Toi was reborn, from the ashes to the top (well, not so much). Many events of different kind have succeeded, making of this, one of the most intense years in my life. I’m going to review the most remarkable moments, with your permission.

  • Hellhouse Sweet Hellhouse – I started the year and a new life at once, by moving to my current Hellhouse. I named it after Guns n’ Roses first rehearsal basement in Hollywood, where they used to live, play and bring chicks for having fun. Anyway, little by little, my cave has been becoming my home, with my personal touch in every corner, and living by myself in my own shelter, has resulted one of the best decisions I’ve ever taken.
  • My Iphone – yes, it might sound super snob but it’s my favorite toy nowadays, especially for taking those instant captures of my life I love so much. It came to my life in February and is awesome for all related to pix. Everything is subject to remain forever.
  • Lion tattooed – when I came back from Japan, almost two years ago now, the impact on me had been such, I wanted to reflect it in my own flesh, for good. At the end of 2010 I got my darumas inked, as a reminder of the way life goes, with its good and bad things all the same. But I wanted a lion protector, as I saw it at the entrance of a temple in Kyoto. The evil and mean must be far away, and the lion will be responsible for keeping them away. Two painful yet pleasant long sessions took place at Namakubi Tattoo, and Daan Verbruggen did an amazing piece I’ll never be thankful enough.
  • Eric – The New Hope. My brother’s son came to life in April, and it was a bless. It’s amazing the large amount of happiness and illusion a little creature can provide.  Everything related to this baby is exciting, and the way he’s turning into a little person is unbelievable. And the fact that my small family is one new member extended, makes all the meetings and events much more attractive.
  • Michael Monroe tour – Michael Monroe stopped by in Barcelona and Madrid to offer their amazing show, with his super band, with Ginger, Steve Conte and Sammi  Yaffa. We could talk to all of them, take pix, and Jaume and I managed to talk to the leader of our beloved Wildhearts for a while. The Finnish super blonde never fails, and confirming he’s one of the the best frontmen in hardrock and punkrock scene, left us babbling and seeking for more. I attended the two shows, that weekend becoming one of the craziest of the year.
  • Ryan Adams in O Porto – What can I say? Summer season started with my first flashtrip since my widow status, with my friend Veronica, just to see our beloved messy hair boy in O Porto at a theater, supported by Jesse Malin. That was one of the finest evenings in the year, and Veronica was a hell of a great trip partner. The city was ok, but I came back a bit disappointed. Perhaps I expected something more impressive. https://sincemybabyleftme.wordpress.com/2011/06/19/the-ryan-adams-experience/
  • Azkena Rock Festival – Where to start? I already said everything. Surrounded by my best friends, getting acquainted with new fantastic people such as Chema and the Locomia crew from Ibiza, and enjoying memorable shows such as QOTSA, The Avett Brothers, Kyuss Lives… The best ARF in my life. https://sincemybabyleftme.wordpress.com/2011/06/30/arf-2011-chronicles-my-lifetime-festival/
  • Turborock – Friday evening in Benidorm was just Epic. Witnessing D-Generation reunion was one of these dreams come true. we all got crazy. And let’s don’t forget Urge Overkill and all the crew drinking and taking pictures with Nash Kato. Awesome!                                             https://sincemybabyleftme.wordpress.com/2011/09/05/the-night-jesse-malin-was-the-king-and-i-had-a-beer-with-nash-kato/
  • My 35 birthday – hadn’t enjoyed such a great birthday in years, with great part of my best friends gathered at my parents’ enjoying a gin-tonic’d barbecue. Big time!
  • Madrid – my second destination. The reason? The Cake couple, Agnès and Kiko, plus one of my personal down to Earth heroes, Artie. Madrid is the real vice city, and I love getting wasted in Malasaña. This city really rocks.
  • New friends – I cannot name them all, but they should know who they are. Chema, Enric, Ricard, Sergio, Xavi’s… I love you all.
  • My best friends – I’m lucky to have such good friends, who’ve welcome me, and have shared so many great moments. The actual engine and fuel in my life.
  • Psycho Bar – Charly Raw, Ricard Ritxmond, and Gonzalo opened my current favorite spot in Barcelona in July. Such great nights I’ve enjoyed there, and many others yet to come.
  • Stockholm – another flash trip, with the purpose of attending a show of My Morning Jacket, with the added value of an acoustic set by Justin Townes Earle in November. It was a great weekend, and Stockholm was a delightful surprise highly recommendable.
  • Popu reviews published – some of you who usually read this Spanish magazine, noticed a couple of reviews from the Stockholm shows written by me, were publish in Popular 1 Rock. What can I say? I’ve been reading issues since I was 16, thus being published was an honor. 
  • Album of the YearThrough a Crooked Sun, by Rich Robinson  https://sincemybabyleftme.wordpress.com/2011/09/05/the-night-jesse-malin-was-the-king-and-i-had-a-beer-with-nash-kato/
  • Song of the YearLost and Found, by Rich Robinson
  • Gig of the YearThe Avett Brothers @ ARF; Ryan Adams @ O Porto
  • Movie of the YearDrive, by Nicolas Winding Refn, with Ryan Gosling http://toirock.wordpress.com/2011/11/08/sitges-film-festival-2011-pt-i/
  • Series of the YearBoardwalk Empire, by Terence Winter
  • Hottest Man on EarthRyan Gosling; Michael Fassbender.