the new adventures of old mateo.
13 years ago, around this time, I was embarking in the greatest adventure of my life. (so far)
I left my family, my friends, my loved ones, in exchange of the distant promise of a career in the music industry.
for years I struggled. I waited tables, I sold cellular phones, I even worked as a landscaper with a bunch of adorable mexicans who always complemented me on my “ballet” style of sweeping fallen leaf branches.
Then I created a band, A band which I fronted. I rounded up a group of individuals who shared my passion for the art of RAWK and we headed to new jersey, and then eventually to the windy city of Chicago.
we all found our ways. Some found great jobs, I found a loving wife and we built a fan base. we had kids who sang every song at the famed Metro auditorium in Chicago. We even got as far as doing around 26 showcases for major labels. It all ended when a very important asshole at a very important label declared “that singer will go nowhere”.
After that, there were no microphones for me, I switched to the guitar, (a much better fit for me) and with a bunch of like minded souls, created the Juggernaut Madina Lake would eventually become.
With that project it was always smooth sailing, success came quickly, but so did inner band tensions and the inevitable decay of our own personal relationships.
I saw my five year marriage burn to the ground, I found myself clinging to the bottle a little too hard, and realized that after all the traveling, I was a full blown nomad, homeless and pretty much dead inside.
After much deliberation I decided to abandon ship and try life on my own. No managers, no agents, no accountants.
The next year and a half of my life was a grueling process of self discovery. What to do with my life? After a lot of soul searching I realized that my only source of real happiness and well being was writing music. That was it.
The glitz and glamour were passé, the magazine covers had become irrelevant and all there was left was the realization that I was a studio rat. My skills were writing and producing, not performing.
I re discovered my loved ones while spending time in my home country. I made more friends than I originally had, and even met a couple of blood sucking leeches that dried me up for a while.
And once again, like life has done for me time and time again, everything came together and everything seems to be pointing me in the right direction, with the right people.
this time it is less scarier than when I was a young lad, but its still intimidating. It is very difficult to change the warm embrace of your family for the cold distance of strangers, especially in a working environment.
But it feels good, It feels like the right thing to do, it wasn’t forced, it came natural, and that is how Ive found the little success Ive had in my life.
so if you’re holding some kind of booze in your hand, hopefully a vodka tonic, make a toast to me, and the new adventures of old mateo.