RAFAEL AMADOR, ‘PATA NEGRA’. SALA HEINEKEN MADRID
Venomous flamenco returns
S.C. Madrid, November 18th, 2006
‘Pata palo’, ‘Los managers’,
‘Los delincuentes’, ‘Ay, José’...
There wasn’t a single song which the enthused audience
didn’t sing in chorus at the top of their lungs. With
the Sala Heineken Madrid jam-packed with fans, musical descendants,
some neophyte or another and aromatic smoke, Rafael Amador
and his own pulled out all the stops to bring back to life
not just Pata
Negra, but also that venomous, streetwise spirit which
shook the very foundation of flamenco back in the eighties.
Rafael Amador, in concert
(Photo: Daniel Muñoz)
The concert revolved around the figure of Rafael Amador,
who showed that despite life’s harsh blows still dragging
on, he’s enough to uphold the repertoire of the revived
band. And moreover, to put new songs into circulation such
as ‘El pollo robao’, a denunciation of the past
persecution against the gypsies. Still surprising is the way
of synthesizing the people’s wisdom in mundane lyrics,
with their sourness, their sarcasm and their rhythm. Rock
singer-songwriter. Jondo bluesman. A great guitarist. And
a monster on stage.
Rafael grows from song to song, urged on by olés,
whistles and cheering of “torero, torero!”. He
rips his voice to make the cantes burst with expressiveness.
And he goes from one guitar to the other, from flamenco to
electric, from the solid one to the empty box... which, for
the first time, discovers the sensation of being strummed.
The band plays with a rock attitude, though three flamenco
guitars come together; those of Caracafé, El Pájaro
and Rafael himself. Adrenaline in measured-out doses, from
AC/DC to Camarón. Drums and congas at high r.p.m.’s.
Too bad about the finish. Instead of the expected grand finale,
Rafael made an exit and left the group to finish things off
with a version of Jimi Hendrix’s ‘Purple Haze’.
And the end. For a few minutes, hundreds of people resisted
leaving the venue. But two convincing arguments drew the crowd
to the exit: no, nobody came out on stage... and no, drinks
were no longer being served at the bars (Not even the beer
sponsoring the venue? Not even).
Rafael Amador, 'Pata Negra' (Photo: