Hi everybody! Rachel here. First of all, I’d like to say I miss you Motherf*ckers. For years, I saw your faces every week — or every month — or whenever we saw each other — and all of a sudden, nothing.
Many of you have asked me about the Anti. Specifically, its status. Where’s it going? Or is not not going anywhere? Has this last show at Sidecar on January 22nd been the last?
I didn’t respond because I had no answers. And I needed a break. I presented — and prepared — the Anti-Karaoke every week since December of 2005. That’s a long time. I felt burnt out. It wasn’t the Anti’s fault, and of course I never got tired of seeing you — on the contrary! Seeing you, and the people who worked in the club, made my week. The show made me happy. How in the world could I get tired of so much great energy and such wonderful people?
But I got tired of the routine. And I got tired of myself. I got sick of the frustration of not being able to achieve better conditions for a show as awesome, popular, prestigious, and beloved as the A.K. Shit, everyone knows what Anti-Karaoke is. (Once, I went on a first visit to a psychiatrist and never went back… because the whole visit, she was trying not to laugh! When the visit ended, she confessed that she’d been twice to the Anti at the Apolo Club.) So if people don’t come to the Anti, it’s not because they don’t know about it; it’s because they can’t come. And often, the reason they couldn’t come was because they had to get up early. Of course: the next day was Friday. People had to work. And I got plenty sick of lifting up weak nights for the club when every time we had an Anti-Karaoke on a weekend, or the night before a major holiday, we had a packed club and a fantastic atmosphere.
So after ten years, I shut it down. I know a lot of people were disappointed, but I had to stop it because I had to stop. There were other projects I wanted to focus on. One was “Coñólogos” at BARTS club with Naria Caamaño (and thanks so much for all of you who came out to see it; I’ll always be grateful for your support for my non-Anti-related projects). I began to do a radio program in English. And there are other projects that I’ve been silently working on for the last year, but I haven’t mentioned them because they’re still in development, and I don’t like to talk about things until I’m sure they’re going to happen.
All these projects were based in the Antikaraokean philosophy: self-expresión, transparency, cameraderie, risk-taking, and joy. But to be able to throw myself into these projects, I had to free my mind of the millions of details of the A.K..
So that’s the personal side of my decision. Now to your questions: is there a place to go? The honest answer: no. But not for lack of offers. Of course some clubs have contacted me, interested in hosting the A.K.. But I passed on them because they couldn’t offer adequate conditions. This isn’t a criticism of these clubs; I’m sure they’re good. But for the Anti to continue in a new phase, the conditions would have to be better than they were at the last place, not the same or worse. And at Sidecar Club, the Anti did pretty well. Not as well as it should have, but it did well. Sidecar is a good club and with the best location imaginable in Barcelona. And, apart from its intransigence regarding the date, it treated the show well. But the Anti deserved more than that club could — or would — offer.
So yeah: I’m looking for a new place, but calmly. No rush, no desperation. Maybe a great place will turn up; maybe not. I can’t promise anything.
Meanwhile, life goes on. I’m living my life and you’re living yours. We grow in new directions, day by day. At least, that’s what I’m hoping for all of you.
Another thing I’m hoping regarding the A.K. is that it’s given you, besides lovely memories and hilariously fun and crazy nights, tools that are useful to you in your personal and professional lives: self confidence, stage presence, connections, friendships, (love, even?) and other positive things.
I hope I’ve answered your questions. If you have more, or want to leave a comment, please don’t hesitate to leave them here, and I’ll try to answer them. We’ll be in touch.
I send you all a big, sweaty, smelly hug, coated with confetti and smashed ganchito pulp, Barna-Madrith-Valencia-guiri-and-wherever-else-you’re-from-f*ckers!