Daniel's Bloco Vomit Brazilian Tour Diaries
Saturday 8th April
It's 3pm in Recife ! After nearly 24 hours of sitting on jet planes and going through customs, immigration and loads of stuff like that we finally arrived at BV chaos. Now at a practise studio somewhere in Recife and everyone is here. It's rained cats and dogs but Ian has got sunburn (not sure how he managed that), but I suppose that it might have been sunny in the morning.
Our taxi got lost but eventually found the studio and they have an hour or so before another band come to practise some more. Si Ze has also called so everything has happened and it's all OK.
What else, OK yes, an upgrade on a 13 hour transatlantic flight. That was good. Now hanging around while everyone practices. They are getting hyped up for tomorrow when everyone goes on stage and we also set up.
So what's Brazil like? Well for a start everyone speaks portugese which sounds like difficult spanish but the Brazilians say that it's easier, It'll come. The place reminds me of a mediterranian country. Everyone seems pretty laid back and good humoured.
Outside the water in the street has got pretty deep, so it's going to be interesting to find out how we get out of here with dry feet. Perhaps that just isn't on the cards, especially as it's started raining again.
Sunday 9th April
At Ze's house - just off the Jd Atlantico, Olinda, PE Brazil !!!
Last night we saw Ze's band in a massive concrete bunker with a tin roof that leaked. Music was very loud and the audience were all pretty young. Ze's house is a relaxing haven by contrast with a pool !!!
Monday 10th April
Last night BV played the festival. Big night, big sound and a great deal of press interest. Cameras, TV crews and journalists all came to the dressing for interviews after playing.
We're now staying at the 7 Hills (Siete Colinas) Hotel and it's pretty comfortable. Maybe a little sweaty as we've had massive tropical downpours again. Needless to say everyone got pretty partied up and there's a few hangovers.
Tuesday 11th April
Wow, well an interesting 24 hours. BV have got some reviews in the papers. Not quite the raves we expected but that's journalists for you.
For my part I've been on the sick so to speak. About lunchtime I tarted feeling a bit dodgy/feverish and the a few hours later was all chills & sweats & aches. So it was all getting a little bit scary. Malaria ? Dengue ? Who knows. Laura asked the hotel to call a doctor who duly arrived with an assistant, an ambulance and both in white coats. They inspected very thoroughly, temperature, blood pressure, stomach, neck, back, chest. Then a big injection that took a while to pump in. Finally after a thorough check the doctor said she thought it was a cold that was common in the Recife / Olinda area. Thank god for that. They prescribed a series of tablets and vitamin C, Caffeine ? Paracetamol I think and also that I drink loads of orange juice. So anyway after some rest and no booze recovery is happening. Bit dramatic at the time. Since Trauma are doing the CD's my new role is to catch all the diseases to ensure nobody else has them.
Other people's illnesses: Jasper - sun stroke ? Claire - swollen foot, Ian - swollen foot, Neil - swollen ankles, Esther & laura - mosquito bites, Ian - persistent blister, Mike - terminal boredom, Gary - healthy.
Wednesday 12th April
And so it goes on, still at the hotel and still raining from time to time. Esther, Steve, Mike Rob, Aileen and Neil are staying at Ze's house. Ze came round this morning and the word is they are all healthy. So it's just bugs at the hotel. Cold still bad, it's just amazing how much mucus you can produce. Jasper is also still not good. Oh dear, oh dear.
Laura & I went for a stroll round Olinda this afternoon, very old colonial style. It's pretty atmospheric and interesting to see where they all were for carnival, although I'm glad I wasn't there myself.
Thursday 13th April
Early start, up before 6 to get a taxi with Neill to the airport for flights to Sao Paulo, leaving Ian sleeping peacefully like a door mouse. Went out for nosh yesterday in this fish restaurant which had massive puppets dining at the table next to us. After eating he food I was knackered again, so was Laura. We went back to the hotel to crash and Jasper & Claire & Gary went on to look for a music bar mentioned in a guide. Anyway so now Neill has left on his VASP flight and we await boarding our VARIG flight. Touring Brazil while ill with BV seems like the ultimate endurance test.
What else. Oh yes, went for a stroll around old Olinda yesterday. That was very interesting, all very colonial. We ended up at this cafe which did really good fruit juices. They were almost like milk shakes in their thickness.
Later on... Finished the doctor's prescribed course on Exedrin and back to feverville. Bang ! Which is a big shame as Sao Paulo looks like a really fun city. Like a big spanish city only with 20 million inhabitants.
We were met off the plane by Jamie (Kid's brother) and taken to our accommodation.
Friday 14th April
Hello Sao Paulo! This is better. Morning stroll, lunch, afternoon photo session. And Ian reminds me to let everyone know he got trench foot in Olinda. On the whole, fuck Olinda, SP is much better. A real city.
What else, well apparently Otto is coming round tonight so there'll be a party at 141 (55) and time to have some fun.
More sickness, during the photo shoot Steve did his back in while throwing Neil into the pool.
Oh classic, Jasper had a wobbly this evening. He wanted to get money from the safe but it has a time lock on it. Jasper shouted a few rude words and went red. We all went out for a drink anyway.
Saturday 15th April
Time to find a barber, have a bit of a mosey around and enjoy a weekend in Sao Paulo. Laura has a need for musical instruments. Meanwhile BV are starting to become organised. I say this because we managed, in the space of less than five minutes, to get breakfast, lunch and supper orders sorted for the hotel's caterers. Very unusual in BV terms.
So today we wandered downtown and looked in instrument shops at drums and shakers and stuff. We had to rest a while and ended up havin sushi and beers beside a flea market, as recommended by Otto. Oh and on the way down there we stopped for Guiness (Ian & Claire needed iron). I had a haircut over the road and got ripped off because I wasn't together enough to check the price beforehand or argue the price afterwards. Oh well, live and learn.
Sunday 16th April
Palm Sunday. Loads of people wandering about with palms. Got trashed yesterday and today went walkabout round the Botanic Gardens -very peaceful. Spied a cockroach trying to enter the fridge, not telling the Voms yet as they will all want one. Laura is succumbing to the cold and has gone to bed with ibruprophen and a runny nose. It doesn't look to severe at the moment. Finished reading Iain Rankin's Lost Souls which is a good read but not great literature. Now starting Look Homeward Angel which is great literature and a more difficult read.
Scenes from last night. Claire playing her pandeiro on the street corner while we stood around chatting and (unintentionally) interrupted any chance of a customer for a couple of local hookers.
Otto (the night before) explaining how he met Dr Dave a few years ago a Olinda Carnival, Otto was playing the pandeiro, tripping, with Dr Dave on Bagpipes.
Ian - I think he's lost his pandeiro. Tomorrow the band start work with gigs and TV interviews and loads of stuff like that.
Monday 17th April - still in Sao Paulo
A gig tonight. Drums secured from some drum factory. Good sleep. Laura bought loads of CDs and we're ready to go.
Laura still has her cold and it looks like Neill might be getting it. Everyone else seems OK. It has gone windy here. We may miss dinner and have to survive on beer and snacks. Hungry. Oh and the gig is at Woodstock. We also found a post office and sent cards. Drums borrowed from Contemparanea's factory.
Tuesday 18th April - still in SP
Gig done yesterday at Woodstock. It went OK except there weren't many people and Mike's surdu fell apart halfway through the set.
Afterwards some people went on to the Irish Bar so there's headaches this morning. Apparently everyone was making scenes at Woodstock over the drinks bill. Sounds like it ended up as bad behavior all round. Anyway so this morning it's all a bit subdued. It's getting near time to go to Rio.
Wow, well BV have just done a live TV show, a kind of Brazilian TFI Friday. There was about 6 hours of waiting around in order to play 3 songs. All a bit mad but mostly very boring. We were all bored and I think everyone decided the price of fame looked like being set too high.
Wednesday 19th April
Still in Sao Paulo. Major phaf again. Going to MTV to do an interview. Everyone messing around and getting fed up with hanging around. As Esther says `the point is the performance'. Everyone fed up with the media circus and no longer interested.
Phaf in at the deep end. I think the truth is we're getting bored of being glamorous and wish to get back to our respective allotments. Went to MTV in the afternoon and got mobbed by teenage girls. Seriously.
Thursday 20th April
Still in Sao Paulo - just. At the airport waiting to fly to Rio de Janiero. Got up seriously early (well before 6) and ended up at the airport with so much time to spare. Last night we went out for a meal, and what a meal it was. There was a salad buffet and then the waiters came round with all these different cuts of meat, cows sheep, chicken hearts, all sorts. We all dreamt of farmyards after that. One of the group from Trauma gave us a bottle of his father in law's home made cachaca which we now have to sample.
Oh yes an illness is upon us. Rob isn't well and Aileen spent yesterday in bed with the sickness and disease.
Finally it must not be forgotten that yesterday was Ian's birthday, bringing him up to 43.
Later- in the hotel in Rio, staying with Steve, Esther, Aileen & Rob. This is the so-called civilised room except more pandeiros have been discovered, arggghhhh.
Apparently we have more illness, in the form of Mike ad Ian, we are wondering whether calling a doctor will cure them.
And finally I need to tell you about the bad boys room. Jasper's taken the double bed. Claire has the mattresses, meanwhile Mike and Ian are without somewhere to sleep. Neil and Gary got the two single beds.
Friday 21st April
Well Rob is ill again and seems to have the shits. Meanwhile the rest of us are putting on weight.
Lunchtime - more beer and more meat, but the veggies are happy as there's also a great salad bar. We've met Pedro and have just had lunch in the ballroom - a restaurant by day and a bar by night. There are also smiles all round as one of the Rio newspapers has given a great review of Bloco Vomit at Abril Pro Rock. So anyway we are playing at the Ballroom tonight (at some amazingly late hour) being supported by Vulgue Tostoi and Sheik Tosado. Saturday night there's another gig, again at an amazingly late hour and then we have a week (or so) off to explore Rio and the surrounding countryside before heading back to UK.
Saturday 22nd April - Rio - in a minibus
It's the morning after, we are all in a minibus with all our luggage and it's raining. Feeling very evocative of an english summer resort. Good gig last night. Sold 5 CDs and got a hangover. The Voms went down well at the Ballroom. We decided that Gary should go out for a fag and that would hurry Pedro along. It worked, he turned up immediately. Now it's off to find our apartment.
The apartment's quite comfortable, but I think we may just have entered communal living hell. We all have to agree and organise ourselves. Is this going to be possible ? Will this be the end of Bloco Vomit as we know it. Watch this space.
Sunday 23rd April, Cococabana 905
The tour has ended so we went with Pedro to the football. Vasco vs Flamengo. Vasco won 5-1, with one brilliant goal and a couple of penalties and loads of players sent off from each side.
Then some Samba bar, then food (goat - good). Then wander around the market on Cococabana. Then home. Living with the Voms is a serious passion killer so it's just as well it finishes soon.
Mike flies home tomorrow morning. Neil's gone already. Big argument yesterday in a restaurant but everyone is happier now. We're sleeping with Esther who is an OK roommate and doesn't snore too much.
Monday 24th April
We've paid the rent for a week and now are off to the beach for some well earned sun and sea, before coming back in time for the plumber to sort out the hot water system. Sounds like many people are going off for a few days. Don't know what we will do yet. Play it by ear I suppose.
Later went to watch sunset with Pedro and Smokey Siovia, then back to Pedro's to listen to music. Then some food in a sandwich bar and then beers. Good day all round. Came back, Jasper up reading, everyone else asleep...........