TEEN YOUR ENTHUSIASM (12)
May 5, 2023
One in a series of 25 enthusiastic posts, contributed by 25 HILOBROW friends and regulars, on the topic of heartthrobs from our adolescences). Series edited by Heather Quinlan.
I’ve never had big crushes on celebrities or well-known artists. (Some people would say I’m quite picky, also for imaginary love…) But there is one big exception that started in my teenage years — where really good heartthrobs always live and remain — Gustavo Cerati, the leader of one of the most important pop-rock Argentinean bands, Soda Stereo.
I must have been around 14 (circa 1986/7) when I started listening to their songs on the radio. By then, it was hard to know what were the upcoming bands unless you listened to certain shows on the radio, or had older siblings or cousins — which was not my case. I liked what I heard, and their music was increasingly starting to be played everywhere… so I went on listening. I think the first time I saw the band “in action” was in the all-day long Saturday TV show Badía y compañía, in late 1986. And there he was: thin, tall, with crazy and fashionable hair, with that voice and those eyes… and the attitude. Maybe a little full of himself, but completely seductive. (I still remember not being able to take my eyes off the TV when I saw him wearing one yellow glove with a lace on it, eye makeup, that hair… and looking down at the audience, of course.) But it was when I started going to their concerts that he absolutely got me. The spell was complete. From the early 1990s until 1997 (“The Last Concert Tour”) — in which he said the phrase that quickly became a classic in Argentina: “¡Gracias totales!” (“Total/Complete thanks”) — I never missed a concert in Buenos Aires. I went to theatres, to football stadiums, to every type of venue… He always looked so tall, so thin, so alluring…
But I guess all crushes crash eventually. In early 2001 (before the country went to the dogs in December that year), I was talking a walk with my boyfriend along a big avenue near our first apartment together. He calmly pointed to a 4×4 that was stopping at a corner to buy a magazine at a newsstand. He said: “Look, that’s Cerati.” Oh, my. He had such a big head for his body and was much shorter than he looked on stage… I hated my boyfriend in that moment, but I guess he may have had a plan: he’s been my husband for almost 20 years.
Bonus track 1: one of Soda Stereo’s most remembered videos, still called the “Dark carnavalito”, “Cuando pase el temblor” (“When the tremor is over”). It was shot in Tilcara, Jujuy, in the north of Argentina.
Bonus track 2: One of the best collaborations Cerati and his band had, with Andrea Echeverri, the singer from the Colombian band Aterciopelados, for one of their best songs: “En la ciudad de la furia” (“In the city of fury/rage”) at their Unplugged MTV concert.(1996). The original video of the song is also worth watching.
TEEN YOUR ENTHUSIASM: INTRODUCTION by Heather Quinlan | Adam McGovern on ANDY GIBB | Crockett Doob on DREW BARRYMORE | Kathy Biehl on THE MONKEES | Josh Glenn on SHAUN CASSIDY | Catherine Christman on ELI WALLACH | Carlo Rotella on VALERIE BERTINELLI | Miranda Mellis on EDDIE VAN HALEN | Paul Finnegan on KIM WILDE | Heather Quinlan on MIKE PATTON | Mariane Cara on NKOTB | Mimi Lipson on ARLO GUTHRIE | Gabriela Pedranti on GUSTAVO CERATI | Michele Carlo on MICHAEL JACKSON | Ingrid Schorr on PAUL McCARTNEY | Carolyn Campbell on ROBERT REDFORD | Erin M. Routson on JOHNNY KNOXVILLE | Amy Keyishian on JIM MORRISON | Fran Pado on TONY DEFRANCO | Krista Margies Kunkle on LUKE PERRY | Lucy Sante on FRANÇOISE HARDY | Lynn Peril on DANNY BONADUCE | Jack Silbert on CHERYL TIEGS | Kelly Jean Fitzsimmons on CHRISTIAN SLATER | Cynthia Scott on LEONARD WHITING | Elizabeth Foy Larsen on OLIVIA NEWTON-JOHN.
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