It was a special recital for both the members of Soda Stereo as for the fans. After almost 15 years of history, with successful albums, endless tours of Latin America, and the consecration, the trio faced the end. Consolidated as one of the most important groups nationally and internationally, Gustavo Cerati, Zeta Bosio and Charly alberti they said goodbye to a crowd.
On June 29, 1995, the band presented Dream Stereo, an album that had themes like “She used my head like a revolver ”(the video won the 1996 MTV People’s Award), “Zoom”, “Eternal Disco” and “Paseando por Roma”, among others. The following year, in September, saw the light Comfort and music to fly, with the presentation in the Unplugged of MTV.
At the beginning of 1997, rumors of the separation took hold. There was uncertainty in the band’s environment. Cerati traveled to London to produce the Chilean singer’s album Nicole, while his teammates kept a low profile. The news was confirmed the first of May through a statement that said: “Soda Stereo confirms their separation, resolved by mutual agreement. The date of the last show of the group’s career will soon be announced in a stadium in the city of Buenos Aires. Signed: Gustavo Cerati, Zeta Bosio and Charly Alberti ”.
The next day, Cerati published a letter in the Supplement Yes from Clarion. “Lately different personal and musical misunderstandings began to compromise that balance,” wrote the musician.
How Soda Stereo’s farewell tour came together
In June 1997 the dates of a small tour that passed through Mexico, Venezuela, Chile and the grand closure at the stadium River. “I had the idea to go on a tour. It seemed to me that we had to part on good terms and we had a duty to notify our families and fans. Gustavo was against it. I was the promoter. I convinced him and he liked doing it ”, Charly Alberti told La Viola a few years ago.
Within the group’s work dynamics, rehearsals occupied an important place. Every detail of the repertoire had to be prepared together with the invited musicians, leaving no technical details left to chance. “We get together in our room and we dedicate ourselves to preparing a great concert. We wanted people to take the I remember being in an unforgettable show and from the musical point of view the band was incredibly intact “, described Zeta Bosio in his book”I know that place “
In the middle of the preparations, the group entered the studio to record a version of a Queen song, “Some Day One Day / Someday ”, for a tribute album to the British band, which turned out to be the last song recorded by the trio in a studio. In those days they also had in mind to participate in a tribute to Kiss, but it was left in the inkwell. The chosen song had been “Beth“, A classic of the American group.
Soda’s room began to get smaller. Each of the musicians had a fairly large array of equipment. There were the keyboards of Tweety Gonzalez and the percussion set of Andrea Alvarez, plus the other invited artists for the farewell. “We lacked space and we moved the sessions to the disco Dr. Jeckyll (formerly Prix D`Ami.) which had a huge room where we finished the work prior to the tour. The final rehearsal was mobilizing and definitely emotional, we knew it was the last of the band after so many years ”.
“I was summoned like all of us who participated in the history of the band. It touched me “The dome”. What they planned was a pallet with wheels and it was positioned well ahead. In those big shows you lose contact with the people, you are half in and half out, ”Álvarez highlighted. “At that time she was doing nothing, she had been a mother and hadn’t played for a year. The song was totally different and I really liked it ”.
Soda kicked off the tour at the Mexico City (August 30 and 31, 1997) at the Palacio de los Deportes with Julieta Venegas and Azul Violeta as opening artists. On September 2 it was the turn of Monterrey. On the 6th they would go through Caracas, Venezuela, with Aterciopelados and Zapato 3 as support bands and 13 in Santiago de Chile, in the National Stadium, with Sien and Solar as guests.
On September 20 it was the turn of the last show, in Buenos Aires, in front of a full River stadium. Tombs, Before Press and Innocent saints were the bands that started the farewell of the famous trio. “When we went up, nothing was heard. Later it was heard better and we saw all those people. I felt the sensation of being in a giant living room. We were very involved with the idea of opening for Soda Stereo. It was becoming aware that a decade was ending ”, recalled Leo García, ex-guitarist and singer of Avant Press.
Gustavo Cerati: “In Buenos Aires I say goodbye to Soda just once”
The assembly in River was on a large scale: 200 thousand watts of sound, 350 lighting fixturesn, a huge video and projection screen. “Gustavo decided to do only one River, out there you could do more shows. He said ‘I say goodbye to Buenos Aires just once’. For that reason, the stage was moved 15 meters back, the stage is always placed over the arch, and they did not let me put some equipment. It was the show that sold the most tickets in River for a single function, “Adrián Taverna, in charge of the sound of Soda Stereo, told La Viola.
“It was very mobilizing. It was a similar time, in each place it was different, the consoles, the sound systems, the measures of the stadiums. For that show I had a team from Brazil brought in, “he added.
At 22.35, Gustavo, Zeta and Charly stood before the crowd. Tweety González, Alejandro Terán and Axel Krygier were the guests for each of the recitals. But, the emotional finale was attended by Richard Coleman (almost a fourth Soda), Andrea Álvarez and Daniel Sais.
“The hour, the minute, the second, the instant has arrived. I guess they’re thirsty Soda Stereo, Buenos Aires, Argentina! ”. With these words Gustavo Cerati began the last show. The first chords of “The city of fury”Before the delirium of 70 thousand people. “Are you ready for a long night?” Asked the singer. And the truth is that it was.
A day before the show in River, Cerati told the Yes Supplement of Clarion that the group had felt on the tour: “The idea behind this show it was to scatter the past a little and not looking for a chronological situation, not immersing the show too much in nostalgia, if it sank a bit in potholes, remove it immediately, because all this makes sense for the future ”.
Charly Alberti, with the National Team shirt
“September 20 was a strange day. I started the show very sad thinking that every song that I was ending I was not going to touch it anymores. I did not know there would be a 2007 (The tour will see me return). In a moment I was able to change the energy and enjoy the show. In the last recital I put on the shirt of the Argentina team, for all that this band meant that changed history. He is from Argentina and he needed to do it ”, recalled Charly Alberti.
Total thanks, a trademark of Argentine rock
“The phrase is magic. They are those things that happen without anyone being able to guess the scope and how far something said that is not 100% improvised is going to go because surely Gustavo rehearsed it in the living room or at home or in his head. It was stuck to the broadcast cut and the video clip of “Of Light Music“So it was repeated over and over again on the radios and channels with the video and it was not only in the memory of those of us who were in River”, he defined Marcelo Fernandez Bitar, biographer of Soda a La Viola.
Years go by and the phrase “Total thanks” took on more force. There are many who are grateful in this way in everyday life. The journalist and writer said that he spoke several times with Cerati about the repercussion of the famous expression: “Gustavo did not imagine the scope he could haver. They had no dimension of what could happen with the recording of the recital, with the phrases said between theme and theme, and with the farewell. ‘Total thanks’ remained as a registered trademark, as an immortal phrase of Argentine rock and one of those things that happens in the concert and that people in an inexplicable way embrace it, repeat it and take it as their own ”.
“The Last Concert”, a historic internet broadcast
“Those who cannot go to River on Saturday to see the farewell recital will be able to follow it from their home through the computer,” described a statement. It was the first time in Latin America that a recital was broadcast over the internet through the Soda website.
The note highlighted that “with a 28.8 Kbps modem, the world could follow every detail of the recital ”. But due to the high demand, the transmission had problems: a space had been reserved for 15 thousand navigators and many were left with the desire. They had to follow him on the radio. Charly Alberti was the mentor and producer of the webcast, on a Microsoft NetShow platform, a product that had been launched on the US market two months before the recital.
Soda Stereo published online the historic “Last concert”, with a documentary and extra material
In April of this year, the band announced the release of the historic DVD called “The last concert”On the trio’s official YouTube channel, with the videos of the songs and extras with interviews and a documentary of the historic tour. In addition, you can see an interview with director Alfredo Lois that was not uploaded and extras such as a documentary filmed in Mexico, Venezuela, Chile and Argentina.
“In the city of fury”, “Game of seduction”, “American blinds”, “When the shaking stops” and “TV overdose”Are some of the songs that can be enjoyed, plus the famous version of the song“ De music light ”. “We would have been nothing without you and all the people who were with us from the beginning, thanks total“, Those last words of Gustavo Cerati” sound in the distance. “