It was so warm today that the man with the belly was out, luckily his belly wasn’t but he has taken his place on the Marquês square bench facing the sun. At the pool, Tania at reception told me it was 22/72 degrees. I walked to the pool in T-shirt and shorts and thought that for me Portugal is the perfect compromise between Scandinavia (too cold), Australia (too hot) and Northern Europe (too rainy). You can see why people retire to southern Europe and if you imagine a heater in your room and you can sit close or far away from it or find the perfect place, that’s how you can decide where to live in Portugal, as you go further south it gets warmer, it’s like the volume on your guitar.
Two hours in the gym today fighting Portuguese cakes. Next will be leg raises and sit-ups, planks and push-ups, anything to get ready for going on tour with Anekdoten. One reason is that I’ll be playing a Les Paul on that tour and you need to be fit to carry that weight around the stage for an hour and a half. I overdid it today but maybe you have to. I think just keeping up the regular exercise is the way forward, see where I am by the first gig in Sweden on April 30th. Having been thin all my life, this is weird, but then again not wearing glasses till I was 45 was also weird, the hair will be next. How sad that you can’t use all that knowledge and experience in the body of a 22-year-old, that’s sci-fi but then again when they find that ageing gene, you might be faced with overpopulation’s biggest threat, immortality.
Mojo magazine arrived in the post today along with a publishing statement that said money due, zero. Haha, I love it. Meanwhile, the streaming sites lead us into the future. I’m not sure why Metallica fought Napster and not Spotify. I suppose they were getting nothing whereas next to nothing is ok. The whole structure of royalty payments has changed but how did it happen? I imagine that record labels must have had ownership of major artists from the past that they let the streamers have the rights that benefitted them over the artists. Metallica probably actually do make substantial money from Spotify as they have so many streams and any major artist that owns their own material does too. But the minnows don’t and the artists that are owned by labels don’t. So because we sell fewer records we get paid less for physical sales and streaming doesn’t pay you what you used to earn in publishing royalties. That’s why I’m in eleven bands.
Seshes with Kadeem in Stratford (London) and Jeff in Ohio, Olivia was out and I was watching Chelsea vs Lille in between the seshes. I had to, the gym had wiped me out and I was napping during the game. At one point before the game, I felt dodgy but it soon passed with a cup of Tension Tamer and a ginger tablet, with some rest from workouts and the computer screen and I was soon ok again. I’ve been asked not to put the football scores up because reading the blog often occurs before a fan of a team has had a chance to watch the game, fair enough, I hate spoilers.
Sad to hear that Mark Lanegan has died at the age of 57, tragic, what a shock. I saw him play with Queens of the Stone Age in New York once. RIP. As Mojo arrived today there’s a section called Real Gone and there every month I see the deaths that aren’t publicised anywhere else such as R. Dean Taylor, There’s A Ghost in My House (1967), Gotta See Jane (1968) and Indiana Wants Me (1970) were his best-known songs. Indiana Wants Me reached No. 2 in the UK and Canada where he was from. The Fall covered There’s A Ghost In My House on The Frenz Experiment (1988). Don Wilson, The Ventures’ guitarist, also left us, Walk, Don’t Run (1960) was a classic guitar instrumental. Guitarist Bruce Anderson from visionary art-rockers MX-80 Sound also left. Then there’s Robin Sarstedt, aka Clive and brother of Peter and Richard aka Eden Kane who is the eldest brother and survives his siblings at the age of 81. Robin had a hit with the 1951 Hoagy Carmichael song My Resistance Is Low in 1976, reaching No. 3 in the UK Chart. RIP.