367/377: Monastir


Towards Monte Zara

Three bikers from MTB Monastir meet me along the road that connects San Sperate to Monastir to escort me to the entrance to their village. I am only 20 kilometers from the finish line, the energy of the city is starting to make itself heard but I am out of energy.

Luckily today I’m at the home of friends, Riccardo, Gabriella and their daughter Zoe, who understand my situation well and leave me alone to spend the day at my own pace. But I still want to visit the territories and enjoy the last days of the trip.

View of Monastir from Monte Zara

I head alone towards the volcanic hill that dominates the village, cut by the state road 131, Monte Zara. I tackle it from behind by bicycle, slowly climbing a road that becomes more and more bumpy, until I am forced to leave the bike and continue on foot.

I pass an archaeological area, right nearby there is a series of important domus de janas, but I have seen too many of them and I continue to the top… I want to see my finish line, enjoy the last days of the journey. And once I got to the top, whipped by a very strong wind, I dominate Monastir and all of Campidano. The view goes as far as Monte Santa Vittoria of Esterzili. I climb the highest stone there is, the cars rush by on the 131 and I enjoy the silence shaken by the wind.

Due to fatigue, I stopped blogging and composing for a while. In recent weeks my head has been empty, music has now been reduced to the daily performance of 4’33” by John Cage, a silence where the only sound is that of the bicycle chain, tired from over 4000 kilometers travelled.

Live sound fragments at Santa Lucia church

But in the afternoon, at the little church of Santa Lucia, immersed in a park, I find some inspiration to improvise a sound fragment which, like the wind this morning at Monte Zara, breaks the silence, while little Mattia, Riccardo’s nephew, who listens to me curious.

San Sebastiano church

At dusk, the view from the belvedere of the village is enough visiting for me, just one last visit to the festively lit church of San Sebastiano, to end the day and calmly in a homely atmosphere, with Riccardo, Gabriella and Zoe.







With Riccardo Melis

I was saying that the energy of the city is starting to be felt. Like the pulsation of rock, that of the eighties and nineties with which I grew up in Cagliari, an island within an island, a harbour town where the air was different from other areas of Sardinia. It resembled 1950s Liverpool, the place where American rock’n’roll records arrived that would influence and then radically change English music.

For its part, the latter also changed my musical horizon forever. And also that of my friend Riccardo Melis, born in 1964, with more than almost forty years of experience on stage, piazzas, clubs and resorts. In all these years he has created several important projects, some lost over the years, others still in vogue.

While we dust off old songs with a guitar and a ukulele, Riccardo lists many of his groups, Welfare State (1985), Willy & la non solo Blues Band (1993), and then Marvin in Detroit (2004) in which I also played. We start playing our favourite song, What’s going on by Marvin Gaye, who is the immense artist who gave his name to that band of ours, and then our version of Angeli di Strada by the Cagliari singer-songwriter Alberto Sanna.

But Riccardo has had and still has many groups: Cani Facili (tribute to Mannarino); Essence Capossela (songs by Vinicio); Singin’n’Swingin’ with an unmistakable name, a dive from Sinatra to Ray Gelato and Bubblè. And again, The King of Soul, Dogs on Wheels, a biker rock band, Easy Dogs, a rock, pop and Italian style trio, The Black Soul Men… stunning.