Sunday in El Paniajo
We thought we’d get out and about this weekend, and a took a trip over the Sierra de los Filabres mountains and down into the valley of a little village called El Marchal, enticed by the promise of Blues, and Chicken Satay! “El Paniajo” is a lovely little bar by the riverbed in El Marchal, run by Jess and Anne-Marie, and a venue I played solo some years back. I’d visited again recently when showing my Dad around the area, and asked Jess to put me on her mailing list, thus discovering Sunday afternoon’s music and food combo.
It’s a lovely drive over the mountain, past the village of Bedar, the roadster loving the serpentine road that negotiates both the Southern and northern slopes, dropping down into the village on the other side. It was a sunny afternoon, and the band ( Colores Libres) set up on the huge patio in front of the bar, proceeding to play a number of blues and 60’s classics to a creditable standard. The female vocalist had a voice almost reminiscent of Cleo Lane, quite a low register for a girl. To be honest, if you have a competent band playing, sunshine, a few drinks and a nice meal, is there really any better way to spend an afternoon?
These kind of gigs locally always bring out great characters, it’s one thing I love about the area!
As a musician, its always interesting to note the moments when a band moves from autopilot to flashes of inspiration. The unlikely addition of a passing friend guesting on blues harp for a couple of numbers pushed the guitarist into a series of back and forth exchanges that lifted the band, fleetingly, to another level. Great to see.
The food, was gorgeous! Chicken in a satay sauce served with wild rice, spinach and beautifully roasted red peppers, ensured we’ll be back again soon. If you’re down this way, check out El Paniajo, it’s worth the trip.