Its so hot, the Winds are blowing in from Africa and the southern part of Spain is stifled with a heatwave making everything such an effort. Even the couple of days at the Miramar sapped my energy to a point where even turning over on the sun lounger wasn’t an option. Thus with a sun burnt back I wait for Rocksey at the airport and hoping that Max and his crew of Zombies have left the finca and we can return home for some quality time together before the arrival of SP and Suki on Friday evening.
Rockseys flight has blown in on those very same African winds and his flight is on time. As he has only been away for a few days he careers through passport control with his cabin bag pulls me into a big Rocksey bear hug kissing the top of my head. Misse you babe he murmurs but come on things to do! And off we go squeezed into the Fiat 500 I hired up into the hills to see what fates await us.
Next doors dogs greet us with a rally of barks and I noticed that their dog which likes to spin round and round (hencely named ‘spinny dog’ ) spins dutifully round whilst barking excitedly as the unfamilar car passes their gates. There are no signs of zombies or Max and Lizbet when we pull up on the driveway. The deflated unicorn stares forlornly at us from the side of the pool – I still don’t know who this belongs to -I’m hoping that there are no other surprises left for us.
The house has been cleaned from top to toe, Marcella has done wonders, who would have known what trails of destruction she had to clear up. I can see her know, shaking her head and cursing everyone in Spanish under her breath. I think Rocksey is a little bit scared of her as she looks a bit like the old woman in that film ‘Dragged to Hell’ and I’m certain he thinks that one of these days………
In the kitchen stands a vase filled with flowers, lilies and roses in full bloom filling the kitchen with their sweet aroma. A note is pressed up against the vase.Welcome Home it says, sorry for the inconvenience of us stil being here when you arrived , hope these more than make up for it – if not there is something in the freezer which might, love M&L. PS thanks for the loan of the Unicorn, don’t know what we would have done without it! can’t have a video called Revenge of the Killer Unicorn without one !!
In the freezer is a box labelled Vegan Ice cream. I get it out and open it, creamy and delicious it tastes of both Mango and Coconut and I think I am in love. The icecream box and myself are barely separated through out the day. I sit by the pool idly watching Rocksey alternating between blowing up the Unicorn ( which sadly must be punctured somewhere as it does keep deflating) and strumming chords on his guitar immersed in a new song. Around about 7 he goes indoors brings out some Cervesas de Clara ( this is beer flavoured with lemon juice and delightful) and announces he is going to make dinner later with one of the recipes he has brought back from Rob. In the meantime here is Max and Lizbet vegan Mango &coconut icecream recipe to fall in love with…………………………the mystery of the arrival of the Unicorn can wait for another day.
Vegan Mango Coconut Ice Cream
1 can (14 ounces) unsweetened coconut milk (do not use light or cream of coconut)
1/2 cup organic evaporated cane sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (homemade or purchased)
1 1/2 cups chopped ripe mango
1 tablespoon orange liqueur such as Grand Mariner or Cointreau
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla
Combine coconut milk, sugar, almond milk and mango in blender container. Cover and blend until smooth. Add orange liqueur and vanilla; blend to combine. Cover and refrigerate coconut mixture at least 4 hours until well chilled. Freeze in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s directions. Makes about 1 quart (4 cups)
Tip: Homemade ice cream freezes very firm. Adding the orange liquor makes a slightly softer ice cream since alcohol does not freeze.
Well the first week of recordings went better Than could have been expected, with the sunshine, beer, beach close at hand. Rocksey had put the guide vocals down, and as per usual these had no resemblance to what the final takes would be. Rocksey as per normal put no effort or feelings into them and as per usual stated they wont be used and NO ONE will ever hear them. Penguino had spent the rest of the week putting down guitar and bass tracks and ignoring Marshs request to allow him to put one bass track down. Penguino being rather kind I thought told Marsh ” I would sooner let a squashed Baboon put a bass track than let you loose on one of the tracks” this just seemed to bounce off Marsh as he told Rocksey, Penguino was thinking about letting him loose.
Drums down, bass guitar down , lead and rhythm done just the solos to complete. And a Banjo track that Penguino wanted to put on 92 In The Shade. Marsh could be seen skuttling about a bit like a Orc in the darkened corners of the building, drinking from a bottle of red wine and carrying his tambourine (Rockseys tambourine really) waiting for his turn. Marshs first attemp ended in a utter disaster as he couldnt keep time even with the simplest beat. Penguino had stormed out after 3 hours of listening to Marshs attempts. Rocksey gave up a couple of hours later and left marsh trying to keep time with no one listening or recording just the one light left switched on in the mixing room keeping Marsh company.
Well 5 days had passed since Marshs last attempt and he was under strict orders “NO DRINKING” nothing alcoholic from dawn until he was finished in the studio. Penguino told Rocksey you have no chance he’ll be drunk before 10AM and he don’t get up till 9AM. One last chance that’s it “I told him he could appear on the album” – (Marsh has been in many bands but never had a real release) “Your wasting valuable time Penguino shouted “I could bring my pet lizard and we would get things done quicker” “one last chance Rocksey shouted back”
Rocksey sent out the word Marsh was required, the time now was 11AM Marsh hadn’t been seen all morning, then just like the shop keeper in Mr Ben, He appeared ! ! ! ! !
BEER IN HAND and a idiots grin spread across his sunburnt face. “What did I tell you No BEER”, I’m ok Marsh replied his words sliding out of the corner of his mouth dribbling down his chin and bouncing off the empty wine bottles in his pockets. “Get out ” Rocksey shouted if Penguino see you you’ll be out of the house and sent back to the UK. Marsh disappeared post haste the sound of bottles and cans echoing as he sped down the hall. Rocksey thought it sounded like santas sleigh and had a wry smile. Picking up the tambourine Rocksey said to the engineer “lets get through the first 4 tracks and NOT a word to Penguino ”
Rocksey had the tracks done in 2 hours and went hunting the elusive (orc) Marsh ! ! ! !
Marsh where are you, marsh had taken refuge in his favourite wardrobe surrounded by his favourite wines and was chatting away to them like they were all listening “there hunting us my precious, I won’t let them take you” the sound of Rockseys calls soon faded and Marsh curled up with his new friends and drifted off dreaming of a land where rivers were wine, seas were beer and all food tasted of burgers…. TO BE CONTINUED
Marsh bounded into the kitchen, where Rocksey and Penguino were eating, “Ive worked it out – it all makes sense now” Marsh blurted, whilst leaving a trail of beer cans, champagne bottle, and red wine bottle behind him. “Worked what out” both friends asked, both looking stunned at the trail of destruction that Marsh was leaving in his wake. The language its easy, sorted, I’m going shopping by myself to prove it as well, “what do we need ?, Rocksey and penguino gave Marsh a list “I wont be needing that just tell me” was his reply. What about the mess you’ve made “I’ll clear it in the morning” (That was Marshs answer for everything)
Marsh sprinted to the door shouting “HASTA LA MEGRA ! ! !” Rocksey looked at Penguino and shrugged, What does that mean penguino asked Rocksey “I have no idea” Rocksey replied. (Rocksey is fluent in Spanish). What do you think he will bring back ? At least the water as we really need that ! ! ! ! .
Somehow Marsh arrived at the supermarket (2 hours after setting off) and its only a 2 mile drive.Bounced across the car park yelping and squealing as he’d forgotten his shoes and the tarmac was almost the temperature of the sun. Marsh always saw himself as a bit of a lewis Hamilton when behind a shopping trolley, so after demolishing the display of tined beans and narrowly avoiding the cooked meats counter, he decided to walk and not run barefooted on a marble floor still not a good idea. Marsh resembled Bambi on ice as he made his way towards the water section, UNFORTUNATLY he had to pass the BEER to get there ! ! ! ! ! . With a trolley now groaning under the weight of the beer cans Marsh(Bambi) opened a can sipped the cool contents and tried to remember what it was he was supposed to get. In a flash he thought he had remembered and staring pushed the over laden trolley towards the salad and vegtables.
This was it Marsh V The Spanish language (HAsta la Megra/poor fav four/buenos nochees/chocolate) he was fluent according to himself. The stunned shop assistant looked at Marsh like he was an alien as Marsh reeled off his entire Spanish vocabulary, nothing making any sense to anyone who may have heard. Marsh decided the assistant must be a bit deaf so reeled off his Spanish again and this time with gestures and three times the volume and spilling beer on a now glass like floor which had Marshs legs going 10 to the dozen just to stand still. Marsh looked like a demented chicken speaking alien and drinking his still unpaid for beer (The shop are YouTubeing the cctv later today) shouting in a strange Spanish accent and doing charade actions for “I want turkey” (you imagine the scene) ……..
8 hours later that day there was a knock at the door and the supermarket delivery van was outside. “Mr Rocksey” the driver asked “yes” this is yours we believe. The driver opened the back doors of the van and poured Marsh into the hall, Also he bought these, the driver handed Rocksey a box of now completely melted cornettos and defrosted broad beans! ! “The bill is €275 “the driver said. “WHAT” was Rockseys reply “€275 for cornettos and broad beans and we don’t have the contents of the cornettos just a soggy box ? ?. “No thats for the damage he caused and the BEER he drank” Rocksey paid the driver and turned to look at Marsh. he wasn’t there. Marsh had disappeared and neither Rocksey or Penguino could find him.
Penguino said to Rocksey “he’s gotta go he’s gotta go you cant keep letting him off”. “I know “.
Rocksey and Penguino climbed into the car list in hand, “its always easier to do it ourselves” quicker cheaper cleaner and we get what we wanted. As the pair drove off the upstairs curtains twitched as Marsh peeped out Champagne in one hand wine in the other, creeping off to hide in the wardrobe Marsh could be heard congratulating himself on his mastery of the Spanish language,navigation skills,shopping trolley driving and his all round super human ability and not mention his belief that he could drink Oliver Reed under the table. ( marsh couldn’t drink a five year old under the table let alon Oliver Reed)
Rocksey and Penguino returned from a night out in Malaga. Penguino knawing on what Rocksey said was half of a sheep leg Rocksey chewing on a celery stick, ( as this was what penguino had said was all he could eat from the kebab shop they had visited(now Rocksey was trying out a vegan lifestyle) before returning to the studio/house.
On entering the building both stopped dead and listened, in the distance there was a faint swish swish spray yelp sound and various high pitched screams and curses. Both Rocksey and Penguino looked at each other shrugged and headed to the kitchen, threw open the American fridge doors and retrieved a bottle of JD (Rocksey could still drink this) and a bucket of ice. Both friends settled down on the terrace and chatted about the album.
Penguino again said”What is that noise” Rocksey shrugged. Both friends clinked glasses and carried on where they had left off. Penguino retrieved his guitar and began to make it sing, the sound was more akin to a songbird than a guitar again Rocksey shook his head in disbelief and just watched.
Abruptly Penguino stopped “I’ve got to find out what that noise is”. Penguino and Rocksey set off to track the swish swish yelp scream spray spray sound down. “What do you think it is” Rocksey enquired ?” Penguino replied “as long as its not Marsh with one of my guitars i’m not to concerned”
The noise was getting louder and louder now, Penguino stopped dead “it is him it is him he’s dead if its one of my guitars” Rocksey pointed out when they last saw Marsh, Penguino had launched him out of the studio, and left him in a drunken heap then he double locked the door so he couldn’t get in, anywhere near to his guitars.
Opon opening the door to Marshe’s room the two friends stopped dead. There in his white Y fronts was Marsh fly swotter in one hand spray in his other. It looked like he was sword fencing multiple invisible opponents and engaging in chemical warfare at the same time, and the opponents were winning. Swish Swish spray spray scream yelp swish, Marsh was now polka dot from head to tow, red blotches on his lilly white milk coloured skin, where it was now apparent he had become dinner for countless mosquitoes and still was main course judging by his frantic fencing actions. Rocksey and Penguino looked at each other “shall we help him” Rocksey asked Penguino replied “why” “with you being vegan now you cant kill a living thing so it would be wrong for you, and I cant bebothered”
Both friends closed the door and returned to the terrace, Penguino asked Rocksey “can you die from loss of blood due to mosquito bites ?” We will find out soon enough we will find out soon enough. Another clink of glasses and more sweet guitar tunes cane from the terrace, in the distance the same swish swish scream yelp sounds echoed into the distance. Penguino muttered ” do you think the mosquitoes are going to kill him tonight” as his solo bounced off the the ceiling and resounded around the terrace, “No, oh well at least its not us” Rocksey replied. Both laughed and dropped more ice into their now empty glasses filled them and carried on chatting……. swish swish spray yelp scream yelp swish echoed into the distance Marsh was losing the battle. At least he wont look like Mr Milk bottle tomorrow Rocksey announced Penguino added if there is a tomorrow for him .
Well day 1 had been and gone Rocksey was finding the 99% of the things he liked to eat were now off bounds even LAGER ! !
Penguino returned from the beach and shouted to Rocksey he’d help him come up with a diet plan but not to include him in any shape or form on this new FAD, as Penguino saw it. Rocksey was by the pool with Ipad in hand as Penguino approached, as he got nearer Rocksey could see he was chomping on a triple decked burger all cooked raw, in fact Rocksey was almost sure they hadn’t been cooked. “Thats not helping much is it” he sneered towards Penguino as the last traces of burger disappeared never to be seen again.
Penguino leaned back in his chair and produced a scrap of paper, Rocksey’s attention peaked as this normally meant a new melody. (Penguino had to write things down now as his memory or lack of it weren’t up to much nowadays) unfolding the paper Penguino announced “THINGS YOU CANNOT EAT OR DRINK” Number 1 Lager was announced and penguino knew Rocksey loved a cold Lager on a hot day or when performing, Rocksey visibly slumped, Number 2. Anything that you used to eat and enjoy. Rocksey slumped even further down. Penguino was now revealing in this fact finding exercise, now he was so excited at his last announcement that he was physically jumping up and down so much he slipped lurched sideways did a double somersault and disappeared beneath the pool surface. Spluttering and still gasping for air as he broke through the surface of the pool he announced “VEGETABLES VEGTABLES” THATS IT. Now Penguino disappeared under the pool surface for the third time Rocksey had now slumped so far in the chair he was almost horizontal. Penguino broke the surface for the 4th time like Jason from Friday 13th part 1, spluttering coughing and still shouting VEGETABLES……
Rocksey now stormed off shouting your about as much help as Marsh is at singing. (Marsh was still in his darkened room recovering whilst this was occuring )
Back in the house Rocksey emailed Rob with his dilemma. Almost immediately a reply hit the in box. Rocksey immediately printed it off and stormed back to confront Penguino. Turning the corner and shouting “oi listen to this” Rocksey found Penguino on an inflatable chair bobbing up and down in the centre of the pool fully clothed guitar in hand singing his new MEAT eating song drinking cans of Rocksey favourite lager still dripping after his olympic diving exploits.
Listen for just 1 second Rocksey shouted, this statement skipped across the surface of the pool completely missing Penguino who I think was totally unaware Rocksey was even there, as his hit his soprano bit of his song. (Penguino + genius guitar / Tone deaf -singer) Rocksey gave up with Penguino and turned shoulders slumped and headed back towards the house. As he rounded the corner to leave the pool area Penguino shouted “JD IS VEGAN PARTY TIME” As he slipped beneath the pool surface again. Rocksey was sure as he walked away he could hear Penguino under water burbling VEGETABLES VEGETABLES.
Well the night after the Debarcle of Marsh in the studio. Rocksey came bounding into the lounge at 7AM where Penguino was busy strumming out a new tune .This stopped Rocksey in his tracks as this guitar had only 4 strings yet Penguino was making it sing like a song bird. “We’ve no time for that now” Rocksey shouted. I’ve just got off the phone to Rob Zombie and he wants us to play at Sheri Moons Birthday party! ! ! ! ! . Rocksey had been on the same bill as Zombie at Download festival this year performing as Pablo Mercedes. Zombie headlined and Pablo was well down the bill. But Rocksey and Zombie hit it off big style and Zombie had convinced Rocksey to give the vegan lifestyle a go while Rocksey was in Spain for six weeks.. Rocksey announced to Penguino that the whole band was going vegan for the six weeks ! Penguino uttered a mouthful of expletives in the direction of Rocksey finishing off with you’ve got no chance.
Rocksey did think that Penguino would react like that. So it was Rocksey alone, which he thought wouldn’t be to hard as he was pescartarian. “Well i’m giving it a go for 6 weeks Rocksey batted back at Penguino.
Rocksey and Penguino decided to go and sit by the pool before going down to the beach. A few beers later and a lot of self congratulating on there recordings last night.Penguino asked “have you seen Mr no rhythm ” “who Marsh ” Rocksey replied. Yes the one and the same “NO” not a sight or sound. Penguino and Rocksey clinked glasses and carried on where they had left off.
Right its 10AM lets go said Penguino, “don’t you think we should look for him” Rocksey replied. You know when we spilt that milk and didn’t clear it up for a week we couldn’t get rid of the smell and if he’s dead the stink will be ten times worse. “YOUR RIGHT” Penguino reluctantly acknowledged and they both set about looking for Marsh. After searching the bedrooms, Kitchen, Study and every place they knew Marsh liked to sneak off to when the drinking was getting to much and hide ! ! ! . All turned up nothing, “Where did you last see him” Penguino asked “The studio” was the reply. Now penguino was worried he had left his guitars in there and Marsh was forbidden to go within 10 meters of any of them.
Unlocking the Door to the studio and swinging it open Marsh fell through. He resembled on of the characters from Day Of The Living Dead “I don’t feel to good” he whispered clutching his head. Penguino being the ever compassionate person his is plugged his guitar in turned everything up to full and hit his favourite power chord. This drained the remaining colour from Marsh not that there was much to drain. Were off to the beach will we see you there Penguino asked. “Yes Yes just go” Pleaded Marsh. Rocksey laughing and slamming doors left for the beach. Only after Penguino had double locked the studio door.
“Are you really going to try being Vegan” penguino asked “yep” rocksey replied. 2 hours later Marsh appeared around the corner still whiter than a bottle of milk and looking worse than a 8 day old cadaver. Marsh joined Penguino and Rocksey on the beach, now Rocksey and Penguino were sat in the shade as the uv level was 10 Marsh on the other hand set up in the full sun (mad dogs and English men) Are you sure Rocksey enquired “yep I know what I’m doing” Marsh replied. Now Marsh was asleep wishing 2 minutes, Rocksey and Penguino thought about moving the umbrella to shade Marsh but decided instead to go and have a beer at the bar where they could slowly watch Marsh change from White to a lovely Crimson colour.
2 hours later they returned to find Marsh now in the fetal position. Marsh suddenly from nowhere sprung into life and asked about dinner. Ok we’ll go now. Penguino expected Marshes skin to split at any moment as he was now radiating more heat that a fusion reactor. Dinner didn’t go to well for Marsh as he managed to eat about a third of the food in front of him .
The Trio returned to there slot on the Beach Marsh again passed out Rocksey and penguino were now checking what Rocksey could eat and drink to go with his new life choice.Penguion announced “YOUR SAFE WITH WATER AND THATS IT” laughing and sprinting across the sand as to stand for more than 2 seconds would remove the skin from your feet. Marsh now felling even worse had found a shady spot to wish for a swift death. Rocksey and Penguino again took up camp in the bar and settled in for the afternoon.
“Will he never learn” Penguino threw the comment at Rocksey “NEVER NEVER NEVER” not as long as the sun keeps rising and he’s allowed into a bar. Again the to friends clink glasses and toast “This ones for Marsh the living breathing zombie”.
Tomorrow Rocksey was off to his Spanish retreat for 6 weeks, Claiming after the last festival performances he needed time to reflect. Since sharing the stage with the likes of Rob Zombie, Rocksey had now allowed me to try a Vegan lifestyle on him, I had been living a pescaterian life for some years now, but trying to get Rocksey to give up meat had always been a resounding No from him
Now Rocksey was going out with Marsh and Penguino was joining a few days later. This was supposedly to sort the track listing for the next album and to write the last 3 songs. Now Marsh is your typical English (GIRAS) tourist, he wants the same food, Beer and even takes his own. Breakfast cereals and tea bags away with him. How he was going to manage this I had no idea as Rocksey had stated Hand luggage only. Marsh also thought it was going to be a lads booze holiday, Rocksey was set for a working holiday and recording the new tracks .
Penguino and Rocksey set about the new songs with a vengeance while Marsh relaxed by the bar.Rocksey and Penguino worked through the night and in the early hours the shout of Yes that’s it we’ve captured the sound and the atmosphere we needed. Penguino and Rocksey retired to the bar where they found Marsh slumped over a chair. Rocksey immediately shouted at Marsh “Get your act together your in the studios next”.. To which Marsh responded in a burbled voice I’ll have a Beer. “You’ll have nothing ” rocksey responded your in the studio now.
Rocksey marched off to the studio with Marsh in tow. Senor Penguino reclined in the chair behind Rocksey and whispered ” I told you it was a bad idea to include Marsh”. Rocksey responded lets give tonight a go, But if tonight doesn’t work we’ll discuss it more.
All Marsh had to do was put a percussion track down on three tracks but long into the night and after many takes on the first track Marsh still couldnt keep rhythem or time Penguino had stormed out shouting “Call me when he’s gone I told you it was a Bad idea” Rocksey kept on trying to preserver with Marsh but it was getting harder and harder to tolerate his bad timing and poor rhythem and NO Musical talent at all. Eventually Rocksey switched the desk and the lights off turned his back on the studio and decided to join Penguino at the local bar and leave Marsh stood in the studio with his tambourine and no rhythem or talent in the studio.
When Rocksey arrived at the bar Penguino said “well what have you done” the reply was swift and curt “he’s got no talent no timing and he cant drink he’s out” Penguino and Rocksey clinked glasses and toasted the new tracks without percussion . We’ll put the percussion on tomorrow when Marsh is out of the way. At least it will be in time Penguino said.