Alja

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  1. I am sorry for your friend and hope she is/will be able to get out of this. I would pick up the feeling of being "damaged goods". It may come from bad treating/experience (as you said - abuse or trauma and this stuff). Other interesting thing to consider is being the misfit which may even come first or have strong influence (I`ll repeat myself, that if you are different, you know it since ever. The thing is how lucky you are about people you meet and how you learn to cope with your different approach, because even they tell you to be "normal", you cannot, like they cannot be weirdos of your caliber). Talking about two young people I met (Call them BabyAxl and Unicorn Lady), they were both from well-of families, good in school, both incredibly smart and sensitive. Both dealing with being misfits, then drugs, BabyAxl after chain of suicidal efforts, Unicorn Lady cutting herself so she looked like she recently ran naked through rosehip bush. Although having long "late night talks" with them, I`d rather try to build some self-respect in them people than ask them to confess nasty details of their past life. If they speak, I listen, but not ask. I just then heard shreds of stories that Unicorn Lady lost her virginity as a minor to a guy who left her soon afterwards and then the spiral of already existing inability to find people to fit in (that girl was seen brilliant by leaders, but was too different from others in her age and was not much into their stuff), lower and lower self-respect, drugs, I-don`t-ask-what but with her experience with sex I wouldn`t be surprised if she did these things for some advantage afterwards. Other thing is that with so low self-respect she attracted abusive people and other junkies and existences on downward spiral. She spoke about cutting, that she always did it in some kind of lunacy to comfort herself (heard this also from other people cutting themselves). Basically it has something with two things: if you are truly low, you often don`t just don`t feel anything, they say that`s like being dead, vacuum, maybe rational buzzing and overthinking all over that vacuum in feelings. If you hurt yourself, you feel pain. It`s at least something. Pain makes you perceive your body (like sushi-roll blanket comforting technique, just much more brutal, because the pathway for touch and pain is the same, just differs in intensity), additionally you get endorphines (opiates) that brain produces to cope with pain and injury. Here you are, drugged by your own body. (Or you can undergo pain to express your feeling. Pain is enigmatic beast). BabyAxl was young, ginger-blond copy of Axl, incredibly androgynous with that special charm of androgynous guys (mastering this thing without knowing it or being pansy, which makes men confused when they both feel attracted and disgusted by that they feel attracted to someone who is actually a man (and they can "solve" this by becoming violent like Lafayette policemen)). Also a misfit, too smart, too sensitive for hillbillies he came from, and never found people to fit in when growing up. He said that when he got drunk and drugged, the abyss somehow disappeared, with junkies becoming his only friends (but in one sentence admitting that the drug friend are not actual friends). Doing drugs to numb pain sometimes so intense he wanted to rip his guts away. Feeling like a sh*t for being junkie. He was also confused with feeling strongly feminine, "reject", "damaged goods" anyway, feeling so unworthy that in one moment he wanted to pass to make a place for others (and cut himself in attempt to kill himself). Maybe if you can`t find near ones who accept you as you are and unconditionally take care and protect you when you grow up, you somehow lost your hope in ability to make unconditioned relationships. For weirdos is additionally crucial to find someone else "from their planet" to relate to. When you meet these people, they are usually gave to their fate and somehow expect that they will be treated like a sh*t anyway - and accept this position. (It`s for me sad to say, but in the system I work, if you are suicidal or junkie or stuff like this without having established psychiatric diagnosis, you will be treated like an unworthy sh*t by way too many staff) One of the nicest, heart-warming moments is when you start to treat them like human beings, because one of the most difficult things for them to accept is that they are human beings worthy some unconditioned attention and love and when they get this, they respond kindlier and more appreciative than common people - and are surprisingly gentle and polite. Basically that`s all I can do for them, to help them find some self-respect to build solid ground in their rock bottom to rebound, because no one else can heal your soul.
  2. I`m against tattoos on myself and I don`t have any (I would rather have my songbook signed). You know, I see people naked with even their really private tattoos, and no, I don`t want anyone to read me this way. It`s nice to have a picture, if not, it`s about caring a sparkle, a feeling of that particular person and meeting and how did the other make you feel. Touch can make connection remarkable in way it really goes straight to the core. Still it`s not optional, with charismatic people it happens more often (as it`s said, some people touch you easily). And of course in case of artist-fan it will be mostly one-sided. I have this sparkles of meetings which touched me in my memory and sometimes I go back to them when I feel down. It`s a warm safe place there. (that`s what I meant)
  3. One thing is skin per se as a bunch of cells and stuff and the other is skin as sense - a something which provides you both connection with outside world and a barrier which defines you from the outside world. No matter if it`s flaccid or wounded or how it looks, skin contact is the strongest and most difficult to analyze kind of contact. (I could personally write more if you trusted me, but nothing for public forum)
  4. Maybe just... I asked one musician to sign my songbook after the concert. I think he supposed some stuff I bought before concert or so. But it was my handwritten, illustrated songbook with chords - so it`s pretty much one of the most personal things I have. Even I was surprised how enthusiastic he turned by that thing. Skin is even more personal thing than songbook or any stuff. That`s all.
  5. I don`t know what happened that this forum was inaccessible right after the show, so I would like to add my two cents now. Report from the left side of heaven Although no posters and other ads, there was a lot of people in GNR shirts the center and fans at all. They didn`t outnumber Japanese tourist anyway, but still lots of people. You walk by and mingle and get into the concert mood together. I love this time when the mood ascends and then when it goes down but you still carry a sparkle after the concert. I decided to go around noon. At the final station I was the only one person in whole metro, the hall was empty, only resonating with the melody of Estranged soundcheck. Up there was just a couple of people by the fence, so we had fun, talked, danced, sang a capella... (silly, but ours). Then the crowd went tighter, I ended up under the armpit of some huge guy repeating myself: "I do it for GNR..." and when the gate opened, I ran like a hell to the security (surprisingly, I think I could pass a truck if I wanted to; I left empty water bottle there... just because there are no allowed water bottles? During the concert security guys passed some of theirs to the crowd anyway, so... whatever. No one got hurt). Then second running until I landed on the rail on Duff`s side. Okay, let`s breath in all the thrill, no heart attack, I will see something. Rail is a warm safe place for petite fans. Prague was generous to Gunners. There was light rain in the morning, but in the afternoon the predicted one did not came, it was just cloudy to not to get baked in the open space, but warm enough to be in comfort. I talked to the rescue guy and he agreed that it`s much better than during AC/DC. They also brought water in plastic cups during the show, and we passed it on to back. First supporting act was something more for intimate night club or bar and basically put me asleep, second was punk-ish, energic. And then... They said you are not prepared what you will see. True story. They were so near I could put my glasses off and enjoy them little blurry (less wrinkles and so). Melissa in the beginning of Better was...wow. I could not see her much, so I can`t say more. Also about other ones by stable instruments. Yes, they sounded really good but with all the stimuli from leading figures... One thing I did not expect was how I fell to that guy Richard Fortus. He was often really near by me, with his keen, Pete Townshend-ish windmill, whole body accented guitar move, completely enjoying the music. He is a guy on his spot, rhythm guitar, mostly holding back. He was also that shy and surprised kind of happy when we cheered him, having fun with us when all others left to Slash`s side or catwalk (yes, Slash`s side got much more attention than ours, but does not matter, we got some true gems). That man is delicate in compare to others but it does not make him less responsive. I also enjoyed musical energy between Slash and Richard, they seem to have much respect towards each other. Keith Richards would call it ancient art of weaving. Other thing which you get on the left side is Duff, the calm Peaceful Warrior. He was incredible, tall, standing firmly on his long legs, in stable base groove from shoulders down and simultaneously interacting and having fun with people right under the stage, contented and genuine with his smile. I don`t think they ever filmed this for screens, far back it wouldn`t make sense anyway. I was so near that I was not paying attention to screens anyway, neither I saw fireworks and some effects. Anyway, why, if I had them, living beings, so near) Slash is... At the latest in the moment when his fingers immerse in between frets, he skyrockets somewhere else, where is just pure music and where he can`t be reached by anything other (or anyone). He perceives world through music and as music. I loved the moment when he was soloing and all others stopped playing and were just looking at him and Axl was like: "Look at this guy, look at him!" (Slash obviously somewhere far, far away, pure music of the moment passing through his body to the guitar so we all can hear it). From all the things in this world I love the most... I call it listening to melodies of people. Everyone has one`s own melody (okay, Slash when playing basically does not have it because he is melody then). Not a thing easy to explain but... Getting Axl as a whole person so near, I got a melody of a man all exposed, with incredibly thin, sensitive skin. I met never grown up to full adult in his`s best: sensitive, perceptive, curious, enjoying, enthusiastic. He is the man who most of his life performs in front of huge audience, yet you still see that humble glimpse when he looks to the crowd if they liked it. Even when something came off so well it even surprised himself, he was like You got it? This is good, isn`t it? For me he feels like a huge chunk of human warmth and light with shine white, genuine, shy and humble smile. The song which moved me the most was "This I love". I like the song anyway, for me it`s Axl`s most mature song. He came to our part of the stage during the song with shattered heart plucked off this chest. Then came solo and immediately he was smiling, goofy and vividly communicating with people in the front, imitating them, cheering them up and having fun. And then cut, in a millisecond, singing again there was that piteous, abandoned, heartbroken man. He did this repeatedly during the show and various songs. It was my first time, so I cannot compare it with anything previous, anything who they were in the past. I swear I perceived no ego, no anger, no unhealthy tension, just incredibly gifted musicians enjoying themselves and each other, each and every exactly on their spot to bring the sound full and great. They talk to each other through music and it works. ________________________________________________________ *I was surprised how perfectly was the show managed, so everyone could make it over 3 hours with no major problems or signs of exhaustion. During Paradise City was Axl still running like a ferret in a hat vivaciously cheering everyone up on both sides of the stage. And sounded great. I was a bit blasted by bass in where I was, but the sound was great (I did not get so strong heights there, I also regularly use ear protection for concerts which partially cuts heights, I got 3 days of strong tinitus after AC/DC, never more). Axl was not voice-saving in a way it would disturb me. *When he flips few octaves from high to low pitched voice - whoa! *It seemed like encore would never end... *I have no idea how can I ruin my vocal chords on 2-3 GNR songs in original tuning (include plain screaming, of course) and now - nothing. Some concert magic. Music heals. *Crowd gone bananas during songs like Jungle, Rocket Queen and, top, Nightrain. Whole Lotta Rosie also was not bad either. I had great people all around, no moron standing like frozen. *Anyway, it`s difficult to take photos of them, particularly Axl is teaser, either lithe and running and dancing (difficult to focus, he also seems to know where the light really works against camera), and especially because in the moment you could possibly get best photos, he makes you to want to interact, not to gaze onto some little display. Yes, huge fight between photographer-me and concert-enjoying-me. *The blur: For me the live show is 110% about feelings, not analyzing; at the end of the day, they made me feel great. I like my blur. Makes me perceive better. _________________________________________________________ Day 5 I Still can get hyped every time I remember the concert.
  6. Right in front of me, baby. And not once.
  7. Thank you! It`s cold and rainy here today, nothing to do. I would sell my soul for Early entry to Vienna if I was not a ginger, because I`m sure I`d catch it there - after what I got in Prague. I got it as a no way hypocrisy, in the whole context and the way that Axl was saying it - he was pointing on himself as being at least a big part of what happened. Slash was in his music mode anyway, and I guess he maybe caught last few words, if anything, so he was huh.
  8. Report from the left side of heaven As I said, Prague is somehow filled pure magic and inspiration, Prague moves you, unavoidably. Maybe that`s why Prague always gets some extras. Although no posters and other ads, there was a lot of people in GNR shirts the center and fans at all. They didn`t outnumber Japanese tourist anyway, but still lots of people. You walk by and mingle and get into the concert mood together. I love this time when the mood ascends and then when it goes down but you still carry a sparkle after the concert. I decided to go around noon. The thing was that at the final station I was the only one person in whole metro, the hall was empty, only resonating with the melody of Estranged soundcheck. This is Paradise City, I`m home. Up there was just a couple of people by the fence, so we had fun, talked, danced, sang a capella... (silly, but ours). Then the crowd went tighter, I ended up under the armpit of some huge sweaty guy repeating myself: "I do it for GNR..." and when the gate opened, I ran like a hell to the security not to be knocked down with someone bigger (surprisingly, I think I could pass a truck if I wanted to; I left empty water bottle there... just because there are no allowed water bottles? During the concert security guys passed some of theirs to the crowd anyway, so... whatever. No one got hurt). Then second running until I landed on the rail on Duff`s side. Okay, let`s breath in all the thrill, no heart attack, I will see something. Rail is a warm safe place for petite fans. And Prague was generous to Gunners. There was light rain in the morning, but in the afternoon the predicted one did not came, it was just cloudy to not to get baked in the open space, but warm enough to be in comfort. I talked to the rescue guy and he agreed that it`s much better than during AC/DC. They also brought water in plastic cups during the show, and we passed it on to back. First supporting act was something more for intimate night club or bar and basically put me asleep, second was punk-ish, energic. And then... They said you are not prepared what you will see. True story. They were so near I could put my glasses down and enjoy them little blurry (Less wrinkles and so. People tend to be more beautiful when I put my glasses off). Melissa in the beginning of Better was...wow. I could not see her much, so I can`t say more. Also about other ones by stable instruments. Yes, they sounded really good but with all the stimuli from leading figures... One thing I did not expect was how I fell to that chronically underrated guy Richard Fortus. He was often really near by me, with his keen, Pete Townshend-ish windmill, whole body accented guitar move, completely enjoying the music. He is a guy on his spot, rhythm guitar, mostly holding back. He was also that shy and surprised kind of happy when we cheered him, having fun with us when all others left to Slash`s side or catwalk (yes, Slash`s side got much more attention than ours, but does not matter, we got some true gems). That man is delicate to catch in compare to others but it does not make him less responsive. I also enjoyed musical energy between Slash and Richard. There`s one way you can show someone you appreciate him musically - and it`s going from solo position to background one - and Slash did rhythm guitar for Richard with pleasure (dynamics between like Slash and Angus Young is on videos somehow different and less warm). Keith would call it ancient art of weaving. Other thing which you get on the left side is Duff, the calm Peaceful Warrior. He was incredible, tall, standing firmly on his long legs, in stable base groove from shoulders down and simultaneously interacting and having fun with people right under the stage. (I don`t think they filmed this for screens, I was so near that I was not paying attention to it anyway, neither I saw fireworks and some effects. Anyway, why, if I had them, living beings, so near) Okay, there was like 50 000 people around me and behind my back, but I got one little glimpse, surprised reciprocal smile from Duff. Slash is... At the latest in the moment when his fingers immerse in between frets, he skyrockets somewhere else, where is just pure music and where he can`t be reached by anything other (or anyone). He perceives world through music and as music. I loved the moment when he was soloing and all others stopped playing and were just looking at him and Axl was like: "Look at this guy, look at him!" (Slash obviously somewhere far, far away, pure music of the moment passing through his body to the guitar so we all can hear it). From all the things in this world I love the most... I call it listening to melodies of people. Everyone has one`s own melody (okay, Slash when playing basically does not have it because he is melody then...). I don`t know you if I was not near enough to you to hear your melody. Not a thing easy to explain but... I got Axl. I got a melody of a man all exposed, with incredibly thin, sensitive skin, translucent to his inner light. I met never grown up to full adult in his best: sensitive, perceptive, curious, enjoying, enthusiastic. He is the man who most of his life performs in front of huge audience, yet you still see that humble glimpse when he looks to the crowd if they liked it. Even when something came off so well it even surprised himself, he was like You got it? This is good, isn`t it? He feels like a huge chunk of human warmth with shine white, genuine, shy and humble smile. I think the man makes much more sense to me now. The song which moved me the most was "This I love". I like the song anyway, for me it`s Axl`s most mature song. He came to our part of the stage during the song with shattered heart plucked off this chest. Then came solo and immediately he was smiling, goofy and vividly communicating with people in the front, imitating them, cheering them up (this surely makes him great with kids and animals). And then cut, in a millisecond, singing again there was that piteous, abandoned, heartbroken man. He did this repeatedly during the show and various songs. Maybe he also can hear those melodies of people and enjoy them (and make them into music). It was my first time, so I cannot compare it with anything previous, anything who they were in the past. I swear I perceived no ego, no anger, no unhealthy tension, just incredibly gifted musicians enjoying themselves and each other, each and every exactly on their spot to bring the sound full and great. They talk to each other through music and it works. ________________________________________________________ *I was surprised how perfectly was the show managed, so everyone could make it over 3 hours with no major problems or signs of exhaustion. During Paradise City was Axl (without shirt ) still running like a ferret vivaciously cheering everyone up on both sides of the stage. And sounded great. I was a bit blasted by bass in where I was, but the sound was really great. When he flips from high to low pitched voice - whoa! *It seemed like encore would never end... *I have no idea how I can ruin my vocal chords on 2-3 GNR songs in original tuning and now - nothing; include plain screaming, of course. Some concert magic. Music heals. *Crowd gone bananas during songs like Jungle, Rocket Queen and, top, Nightrain. Whole Lotta Rosie was not bad either. I had great people all around, no moron standing like frozen. *I didn`t like bandana-baseball cap headwear, with that particular glasses he wore it in some unlucky way which deformed his otherwise beautifully sculpted head. Made few photos, nothing to publish. *Anyway, it`s difficult to take photos of them, particularly Axl is teaser, either lithe and running and dancing, and, especially, in the moment you could possibly get best photos, he makes you want to interact, not to gaze onto some little display.
  9. My little sister was there: There was a drunk guy doing mess and those local security guys in orange vests did nothing about it. Then came Gio, ("the guy I would not want to mess up with" as said my sister), grabbed him by the neck and pulled from the crowd, people helped him to pass legs; then cheered him very much. He was walking around with big protecting one earphones like panther all the time.
  10. I`ve been to many cities across the world (from Buenos Aires to Lima, LA, Frisco, Vegas, Seattle to Tokyo, Kyoto, even Auckland, and, of course, many European cities). My tip (apart from) Prague is Krakow, in its own way more intimate than Prague. Paris is nice, but Prague is love. I was there for a week straight few years ago and I all I did was drifting around. Even these days around concert I let myself got sucked by its meandering streets - the history goes around and every time I find something new and unexpected.
  11. Prague is special piece of the world, inspiring with its vivid, magical athmosphere. And in the day of the concert Prague was incredibly generous to all of us in the unprotected field. If I had insane amount of money I would choose Four seasons to stay just because you cannot get room with better view on Charles Bridge, Malá Strana and Castle (Kafka`s Prague). I shot this in the morning after the concert from the riverside by the hotel (public accessible).
  12. Hello ladies One glorious ass spotted from rail, Prague, Letňany. Right after Paradise City began, shirt went off and...
  13. If you`ll listen carefully to the letter, you`ll maybe hear the one child shouting that the emperor is naked, whatever grownups say. It`s 1992, he is that school drop out with sheer power of rock`n`roll backing him, nothing more, nothing less. Looking for maybe single pair of ears to listen, reevaluate and change things. With his specific expression, that guy is brilliant and more intelligent than most people you`ll ever meet. To not to get used to and be numbed by how the world goes, you must maintain being childish. Some basics of western logic and science work might had help him to tidy up his mind, but Academy is not the best place for this kind of people. Sounds more noble than it actually is. Brilliant minds don`t need academic degrees. and stay away from microwaves
  14. They did it onstage even when they hated each other`s guts, or Steven Tyler says so in his biography. He also says that when they are onstage, he and Perry are one two-headed monster, no matter what happened offstage. (a wild and strong monster it is, saw it live, was impressed. They have at least great respect for each other anyway, it was appreciable through all the show). Some sketch? Inspired by some interview where Axl said something like he likes to lean his back to the speaker when Slash plays to feel his music. (No reference, pencil & long boring day at work)
  15. It`s normal, it`s a drug (addictive AF and quiet expensive, too), you get high, you get low afterwards... After some time, it will settle down and you will have better and more positive insight. If you did the best you could in that moment (forget your current commenting self, it was not there at given moment, it`s mere overanalyzing asshole), you got it, you enjoyed it the best way you were able to do. Don`t compare it with anybody`s description. No regrets. Even if you plan best scenario, there may be million things going on in each and every show you`ll ever go and with which you won`t be able to do anything with.