vendredi 20 juin 2008

Concerts in China

26 May 2008

The arrival in Beijing is disappointing, the sun can hardly go through the continuous pollution. Where are the bikes, the narrow streets, the atmospheres of the wonderful book by Lao She ("Four Generations Under One Roof")? Quite luckily, my hotel room is a wonder, I take a shower, I listen to Björk's latest album at full volume and dance.

27 May 2008

Xia Jia is an amazing pianist, a very good composer. I rehearse with his band, I then discover a few streets which have not been laminated by progress, but where are the chinese people? And how clean are the streets, what a conception of urban design: I feel like I am in Austria.

28 May 2008

We play in one of the rooms of the Forbidden City, the venue is located in an huge park, some trees are several hundred years' old, the atmosphere is unbelievable, I feel like arriving in China, finally in a place that has not been struck down by the destructive roadroller of progress... I first play with Xia Jia a very acoustic and free music, I'm happy, the Quartet plays right after. The audience of about 1,000 people is slightly diffident at the beginning of the concert, but, as the machine warms up, I feel the reactions grow and we end up with a standing ovation and an abundant encore... We end up that night by testing delicious meals...

May 29th - Shangai

We dine before the concert with the boss of the club, some people of the French Consulate and a rather peculiar sculptor-engraver : after some polite exchanges, the guy starts conversation on a very dynamic way. I ask him if he works at the Consulate, he asks me who I am and very rapidely pronounces the following memorable sentence : YOUNG MAN, YOUR FLEXIBILITY EQUALS YOUR INTELLECTUAL SUFFICIENCY, This rather cuts my breathe and I prefer not to continue the dialogue in this way, on one hand because I did not take the same medecine and otherwise because I prefer to devote my energy to other things ...

22h The public waits in front of the club, Salvatore tries to resolve thousands of problems that characterize the soundsystem of the club (it will often by that case).At last we play, we are like mirrors and receive really well the electric energy of 400 people cramped together in this rather small place, 2h30 of punk jazz, happiness ....

May 31st - Canton

Concert in the campus of the university in the hall of the conservatorium, thousands of sounds, I regret that I can not record ...The concerts in the universities are always source of happiness what is confirmed very quickly. June 1stI observe from the 16th floor of my hotel the 25 m2 of slums resisting to the attack of the bulldozer of the so-called progress. I love Canton, it's wet here, I feel the jungle, the clamminess of the writings of Kessel, the vegetation overflows and attacks the façades, the vendors of drugs stroll around in the streets with an air of unhealthy complicity. China is definitely there, it is swarming, the population is very cosmopolitan, it makes me think of New York. I think about Hong Kong only a couple of hours by train away. I think about the grandeur of this insusceptible world, the richness of the present moment. It's time to go out ...

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