September 27, 2020

The thousand and one lives of Joaquín Sabina

Joaquín Sabina has poor steel health. He repeats it himself and his relatives, collaborators and friends comment on it. From 2001 to 2020, almost twenty years, the medical part of the singer-songwriter abounds in setbacks, scares, aphonia, falls. The last one was on Wednesday night, when, blinded by the spotlights during his last concert in Madrid of the present joint tour with Serrat, the fourth night, Sabina fell into a vacuum from a height of two meters. He was evacuated on a stretcher and returned to dispel fears. He had a strong blow that prevented him from continuing, but he was fine. His Catalan friend helped him with the wheelchair and Sabina spent the night at home. However, according to the singer’s medical history, with a stroke included, the next day he advised tests to rule out major illnesses. So it was. Sabina entered the international Ruber in the morning to extract an intracranial hematoma. In the afternoon, he was stable and recovering. The first 48 hours will be crucial.

A long history

And it is that the health history, like the history of everything else is long in the case of Sabina. Although no one imagined the man surfing behind death in a hospital pilgrimage. But the night claims his pound of blood. The human pitanza in pain and glory. Those health caps distributed in analytics, denials, cancellations and operating rooms. The list is long, and it hurts. The most important scare took place in 2001, when a cerebral aneurysm struck outburst. Then it was a mild ischemic stroke. Sabina, who suffered a problem of blood supply to the brain, evolves favorably and will be discharged in the next few days.

Pancho Varona, legendary guitarist and composer of Sabina, told in the book «Sabina. Sun and shadow »(Efe Eme, 2017), that that morning« the phone rang and it was Lena, Joaquín’s secretary: “Panchito, don’t panic but Joaquin has had a major accident, it seems that cardiovascular’ ’”. I went to the Ruber clinic. Joaquin realized the seriousness of his condition when he saw my face. I should have put on a cushion face …! They had cut his hair to zero to put the wires and make an electroencephalogram. He was quite emaciated, shaved, and we all got scared. In the first 24 and 48 hours you never know what will happen, and in that wait we were waiting. He had paralyzed one side, which was recovering little by little, but come on, the right side was paralyzed and could have stayed that way. Joaquin is lucky because all these things happen to him, fortunately, to a minimum: diverticulitis, stroke … He recovered very well. He had a very small sequel in his hand, which sometimes he remembers, but nothing, nonsense ».

He had to say goodbye to the intelligent, nocturnal, somewhat wild and quite enlightened bohemian dance of 30 years. The failed attempt to quit tobacco and the change of life followed. Then the depression. The black cloud In «Sun and shadow» the poet Luis García Montero, a close friend, recalled that «Joaquin had a hard time. By his way of being he did not want to talk about psychologists, or help of any kind, to overcome the monkeys, and faced the change of life caused by the ‘‘ marichalazo ’’ lung. He spent a very depressed time, thinking that he would not write again. And he was afraid to get in front of people.

Another good friend, the poet and novelist Felipe Benítez Reyes, explains that «Joaquín found the escape route to a situation that had very branched complications. Among them, a crisis of creativity. He was still very witty and affectionate. The procession was inside”.

Years later, ten years ago, he canceled in Barcelona because of a bad fall. In 2011, diverticulitis led him to the operating table. The dizziness, caused by heat, of 2014, is the tremendous blow of Madrid, when the legendary Pastora Soler suffers. A scenic panic attack with all the lyrics. Or a fear of what they will say. To go blank. To palmar the lyrics, the songs, the rhythms. That burned his brain for a few seconds, shorted like Curro Romero’s in front of a stony Miura. Although the media, inevitable vultures, we exaggerate: it happened in the bises, after a great concert. And there is the suspension for tendinitis, the fall in Mexico, thrombophlebitis, aphonia and … so, blow by blow, between shocks and resurrections, advances the very lively legend of a genius accustomed to laughing at the usual medical team and their parts of war He will return, very soon, to deny everything.


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