Tuesday, 26 January 2016

El Gremlino

12 noon, 24/01/16
The first 3 shows under the belt.
Great opening for the tour in Terrassa, nice to see a few people actually have flown in for the show.
A good review for the show too, tho’ it called me the ‘always horny Billy’.
Must be a mistranslation of ‘I am happy to be here’ to ’I’m horny to be here’

I do speak a fair bit of Spanish, enough to introduce the songs and the band.
But sometimes I think the Scouse accent is a bit weird sounding for the locals.

My French is half decent too.
Not as bad as El Gremlino, or Mark the driver, who, last show we did in France proclaimed that the French do not have a word for ‘goodnight’ but instead say ‘Good Yes’ and that is what they use for goodnight.
A strange man our driver, maybe too much staring at white lines.
I explained the French say Bon Nuit, to which mark replied ‘Exactly. They say Bon Oui, which translates to ‘good yes’. No Mark that’s ‘bon nuit’, not ‘bon oui’.

Next he will be saying that Vitamin C in Spanish is Vitamin Yes!

                                             Now you see now what I have to put up with?

The second show in a new territory for us, Vilafranca.  A really good crowd and an excellent turn out for our first trip here.
Being  a late show, 12.30am onstage, it was always gonna be late to bed.
But the crowd were in no rush to go home, and 3 encores later they were still shouting for more. We will definitely return again.

Being British we have to talk about the weather, which has been unseasonably mild, today tho’, thick fog, as we drive to Zaragoza.
More later, and until then ‘good yes’ to you all.

Just arrived at Hotel Sauce in Zaragosa, last night was Lograno, centre of the Rioja area, so needless to say we had some great wines, and some really good tapas.

I like the Spanish way of life, good food, good wine, a bit of a kip in the afternoon then out in the evening for  good beer.

Anyway it was a cool gig, sold out, the dressing room was a bit like Grand Central Station, where it seemed anyone could just pop in to ask what time we were onstage?
We were glad of an early show time, 9.30pm,, as we could get a much needed early night, but still managed somehow to conspire to not get to bed ‘til 4am.

Zaragoza, lovely place, fantastic cathedral and the 5th largest city in Spain.
And todays ‘Billys’ Fact of the Day’ is - Its name comes from the ancient Roman place name, Caesaraugusta , in honour of Emperor Augustus Caesar in 14a.d.
Zaragoza= Caesar Augustus.

The city holds the titles of Very Noble, Very Loyal, Very Heroic, Very Beneficial, granted after the Napoleonic army resistance.

                                         This is the view from the front on tonights' venue.

En route to Lleida we pulled into a ghost town, Belchite.
It experienced heavy fighting during the Spanish Civil War and then abandoned.

On August 24, 1937 the Republican army launched an offensive in order to take Zaragoza, an operation that did not have the expected results.

After heavy fighting the siege was completed, leaving small pockets of resistance.
Once it reached the town, house to house fighting developed, maintaining a core last resistance around the town hall and adjacent homes, and the tower of the church of San Martin.
These last strongholds fell on Sept 6.

The Battle of Belchite had a second episode in 1938, although the town had neither strategic or military importance.

Now, slowly collapsing on itself, it has a very eerie feel to it, more so due the fog that had descended during the night.
We often see photos and news reel of the devastation left after war, but this as it was, is frozen in time.
The overall atmosphere is one of deliberate neglect. Even the soil is red, as if stained.

As we walked around we could hear the sound of falling masonry as time takes it’s toll.
It stands as a grim reminder of the many who lost their lives, and the futility of war.

It has been used as film set, parts of Pans Labyrinth was filmed here.

Day off tomorrow.


  1. according to George Bush jnr....the french don't have a word for "entrepreneur" either!!...good to hear all's going well...luv to all...ps was fascinated to hear about Belshite...must have been surreal to walk around it! xxx

  2. pps i didn't mean to miss spell the town's name!!