Evan Dando in Brazil – A Balada do Louco
While we, as a nation, gave away our worst, that is, a fascist ex-president, to the United States, almost simultaneously the United States lent us, for an indefinite period, one of the most complete and unique artists in pop culture. Yes, in this “transaction”, as incredible as it may seem, Brazil took advantage of getting rid of Bolsonaro and bringing here none other than Evan Dando. And what’s even more incredible, a select few dozen unsuspecting indie rock fans had the honor, last Friday, of witnessing what would be the Lemonheads’ front man’s first public appearance on a stage not only in Brazil, but in the year 2023.
Come here and I’ll tell you more about this chapter of our saga “Evan Dando in Brazil”.
27-01-23 – Not just a Twinpines concert
“It was very good! I didn’t even know it was going to happen, so it was a shock.” Pedro Paiva was at the small, but honest FFFront house, in Vila Madalena, to enjoy a good rock concert once again, when he came across a guy with a backpack and a white dress, a skateboard in his hands, making his way to the front of the house to the stage, guided by the ubiquitous Lirinha, while the headliner, Twinpines, watched the unlikely scene after delivering an authorial set with at least 8 tracks amalgamated in 20 years of contribution to the underground. Despite the reduced space, the house takes special care with the equipment and acoustics, which makes it a meeting point for lovers of different sounds.
While the band kept the suspense going – yes, they had already rehearsed with that mysterious person in a session or two, however they couldn’t reveal the feat. due to contractual issues that subject the artist to a fine – it didn’t take long for the public to denounce, amid tones of emotion and hustle, the true identity of the person arriving: “It’s Evan Dando from the Lemonheads!”, screamed one of them. Positioning his skateboard in front of him, on the stage, Evan, alongside the proud members of Twinpines, started what would be, perhaps, the feat. longest of their career, treating unsuspecting audiences to around 15 songs from the Lemonheads’ usual set list, plus covers improvised on the spur of the moment.
Editor and skate fanatic Marcelo Viegas, who had already had the pleasure of attending a solo show by Evan in Paris, described the emotion of the unexpected encore. “It was exciting and surreal. You can say that it will enter the mythology of São Paulo nightlife. You know those stories that are counted and increased over time? I have a feeling that will be the case. Evan’s voice is perhaps not as sweet as it used to be, but it has a beauty in the roughness it has acquired. There’s history there,” he says.
The first unofficial appearance of Evan Dando’s Brazilian era
While trying to remember each of the songs that Evan Dando would play that night, which extrapolated, and a lot, what was combined and rehearsed between him and his band, the illustrator and drummer of Twinpines – one of the main responsible for the feat. of our dreams – Magoo Felix finds it difficult to describe last Friday’s experience. “I’m anesthetized”, says he, who mastered the kitchen very well in classics like “Into Your Arms” and “Rudderless” – that track from “It’s a shame about Ray” that brings a line created by exemplary mother Susan Dando.
My great passion is this alternative journey, and twenty years ago, my band and I rehearsed Lemonheads in the back room of the singer’s house and we never imagined at first that the band would last twenty years and that one day it would be on stage playing Lemonheads with Lemonheads himself.
Magoo – Twinpines drummer
Magoo and his Twinpines certainly would not have imagined that they would be part of the first unofficial show of the Brazilian era by Evan Dando, witnessing a moment of complete happiness for the artist, a kind of genuine and jovial happiness, commonly interpreted as madness or “under the influence”, as his girlfriend Antonia Teixeira explains: “I still get upset because a lot of people think he was high and he wasn’t, it’s just the way he was, he was normal and super happy”, she says. According to her, one of the reasons for happiness would be a new toy he bought here: “he bought an unbranded guitar that he is loving. The guy who sold it, a good luthier from São Paulo, thinks it’s a Giannini, but there’s no brand, it’s Brazilian”.
It is worth remembering that, since arriving on Brazilian soil, Evan has transformed the Teixeira home into a kind of recording studio while developing sounds that will most likely appear on the next Lemonheads album or even on a supposed project involving cassette tapes.
Returning to the show, Evan demonstrated that he is a walking jukebox of Lemonheads songs, blasting through a set list that encompassed hits from all of their most famous 90s albums, including Taang-era gems! and, of course, lots of covers that always make the show unique. ““Green Eyes”, by Hüsker Dü, was a beautiful moment to see and hear”, highlights the, above all, Lemonheads fan Viegas. And best of all, the night’s performance was packed with tricks and treats, like during “The Outdoor Type,” where Evan goes into the crowd turning his sweet, austere voice into a growl for seconds. Not to mention the “outfit” chosen for the symbolic night: white dress, shorts and all-star long-top sneakers. Styyyyyle!
When the set for the night was closed, anyone who thinks that Evan ran to his dressing room to receive celebrities and distinguished people with sips of champagne and loads of drugs is wrong. He took his skateboard and headed towards Sucupira Street until he reached the parking lot. This after having done some maneuvers in front of the nightclub. It’s not that Evan is exactly seen as high, Antonia, but two more doses of lucidity compared to those who only expected to consume one of so many rock concerts and a few long necks before going home after a full day of work. Like Arnaldo Baptista (of the Mutantisss, as Evan pronounces it) has said:
Dizem que sou louco por pensar assim
Se eu sou muito louco por eu ser feliz
Mas louco é quem me diz
E não é feliz, não é feliz
Balada do Louco – Os Mutantes
You better calm down, Evan solo is coming
Although the disappointment of many who only noticed Evan’s surprise appearance after the consummate show is mixed with the ecstasy of being in the right place at the right time; we already know that a tour is being negotiated for the beginning of March in some of the main Brazilian capitals, with the debut show in a SESC-SP unit (to be defined) triggered as the great comeback of the grunge rocker to the country since 2004. And what awaits us? A cover of “Romaria” written by your father-in-law? A sea bass caught especially by him in Ubatuba on the cover charge?
The stakes for Evan in a dress to greet us at the door with his skateboard are high: as long as he’s having fun, louco é quem diz e não é feliz.
To be continued ……