Music starts healing
(Sorry for my bad english)
The sessions with Jon in the living room with my acoustic guitar amplifying songs became daily, as it is since then, even if it is for a short time; a song at least, almost every night. The battle against the advance of the disease was very hard those months and It was a task for many hours each day of Mentxu exclusively, because I had to be part time at work. I hooked up at noon and in the afternoons to a train in which I actually also lived those hours at work at 15 kms from home. Yes, it was a complicated battle that did not end with the arrival of the night, because we spent many of them awake due to the disorders that Jon had suffered in his sleep patterns with the disease, the dosage of the drugs at dawn … They were days of continuous attention, fight, frustration over the progress of the disease despite the efforts we were doing, remembering the past, feeling a deep damage seeing how Jon was losing so many things … So many extreme feelings !! On the other hand, also enormous happiness pure and deep and of an intensity like never before, when there was an oasis; a smile; a moment of peace. It is so hard and undesirable … but pain has made us learn so many things.
In that context I received the call of a good friend: Miguel. Life had distanced us in recent years, but, as it would happen throughout those months, the whole process was a wonderful reunion with old and new friends. Miguel and me were joined by a friendship with deep roots; the kind of friendship that is well established even if our paths had been different in the years before. «Mikel, do you know who comes to play in Bilbao?» «No, no idea, you know I’m disconnected from everything, Miguel.» Miguel played with me drums in that group we had in our university days and we shared almost mimetic musical tastes. «Steve Wynn, Mikel!» It was one of our main musical references. He had started his solo career a few years ago after the Dream Syndicate was dissolved, a group that influenced us fundamentally as they did the Velvet, Lou Reed, the Stones, Hendrix, Clapton, Neil Young, the Smithereens, the Creedence, Springsteen , Elliot Murphy, Cougar … «And it comes with Linda Pitmon on drums and Chris Cacavas on keyboards and guitar!» Miguel’s enthusiasm contrasted with my slight reaction. For us it was amazing, but I did not have neither the “body” nor the “soul” for anything and I just wanted to stay at home with Mentxu and our children. But Miguel had the determination: «Mikel, come on, man, come on, it’s going to be just a couple of hours, we will not stay longer after the gig and we will go back directly home.»
It was a cold night in February the 6th of 2009. We approached the dark and certainly sinister industrial estate on the outskirts of Bilbao, where it was the small room where the concert would be held. We were about 200 people. On stage, the enormous talent of Steve and the whole band that accompanied him. And the greatness of a giant person who, at the same time, exuded a wise humility and normality. I would never have imagined at that time how life would join us with Steve and Linda in the future.
That concert was a whirlwind of feelings for me. Moreover, living with Miguel, after so much time… And with Mentxu, Jon, Andoni and María even though they were not physically there. With the backpack of feelings so loaded … that day the tears fell free and hidden thanks to the darkness of the room. Yes, music was healing me a little.
The concert ended and Miguel raised it: «We should stay one day to play again, Mikel»
© Mikel Renteria. Year 2019