Thursday, 3 November 2016

Live music in La Línea, October 2016

I spent September and October teaching English in La Línea de la Concepción. I was told that the town is famous for its flamenco singers. Why, Camarón de la Isla himself lived there for many years. Shame I did not hear or see any flamenco in La Línea, except an impromptu performance from one of our students one Friday afternoon. Apparently, there was a flamenco concert in Eden, a bar on Plaza Cruz Herrera which I visited couple of times because there were free dance lessons (salsa, kizomba etc.) on Fridays. Somehow I missed that show. Luckily, I discovered a great place for live music: Molly Bloom’s, an Irish pub at the very same plaza as Eden. Molly has great atmosphere but drinks are pricey, as one would expect.

  • 7 October: Malaka Youth @ Molly Bloom’s, Plaza Cruz Herrera, La Línea
      An energetic reggae band from Málaga, featuring Nacho Meliveo (vocal), Edu Fernández (drums), Carlos Fernández (keyboards), Camilo Lagreca (guitar) and Antonio Rueda (bass). Sure enough they covered a couple of Bob Marley songs but mostly performed their own material. To my surprise, many punters knew the lyrics.
  • 8 October: Jam Session @ Cortijo El Cartero, El Palmar beach, Vejer de la Frontera
      I did a bit of couchsurfing during these two months and, thanks to my wonderful CS hosts, was able to visit some amazing places not readily accessible by public transport. That Saturday, on El Palmar beach, I went for a sunset swim and then sat down at El Cartero to enjoy a drink and a jam session!
  • 9 October: Edna Brezinska @ Iguana Bar & Restaurant, Vejer de la Frontera
      Edna, a singer-songwriter with fantastic voice and crazy hairdo, was accompanied by Fran Mangas and Jon Ayuga. Jazz, soul, blues, funk... even a song by Nina Hagen! Also, the food at Iguana was delicious (even though slow to arrive).
  • 15 October: Winter Blues Fest @ Cortijo El Cartero
      Exactly one week later, I found myself in the same place at the 4th edition of Winter Blues Fest. Here’s the programme:
      • 15:00, Smoking Alligators (Cádiz)
      • 18:00, Los Hermanos Roncha (Sevilla)
      • 21:00, Los Deltonos (Cantabria)
      I stayed there almost till the end, using the break for a swim (but of course). IMHO, the first act was the best.
  • 16 October: La Reina: tribute to Queen @ Molly Bloom’s
      Strange but true: I’ve never been to any tribute band concerts. Until now, that is. In spite of the show being very late on Sunday night, the pub was packed. La Reina started with Tie Your Mother Down and stayed on the heavier, less obvious side of Queen for the most of the first half. And closer to the end, just for the hell of it, they played Highway Star. I can’t say the singer was quite up to the task but the rest of the band cooked it perfectly. (I think every decent tribute band, irrespectively of who they are tribute to, must know how to play Highway Star. It’s a benchmark.) For the encore, of course, they did Bohemian Rhapsody, which was fine. It would have been cooler though if they had opted for something else. By the way, I never learned where La Reina are from but I found them very andalú.
  • 23 October: The Jungle @ Molly Bloom’s
      Another band from Málaga, playing a healthy mix of R&B, soul and hip-hop covers. With Julia Martín (vocals), Alejandro Berenguer (keys), Eric Pozzo (bass and vocals), Raúl Ranea (guitar) and Daniel Guzmán (drums). Uplifting!

Hasta pronto, Andalucía.

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