Passeata Nocturna

Hours. I never looked at the clock, but I know I listened to it for hours. I remained static in that park, me, my daily life and my commitments, captive to an unusual, ambivalent sound, which at the same time stopped me and made me travel. There I stayed, listening to him sitting on the grass, guitar in my lap and soul in the wind. The sound was dominant, addictive, intrinsic. It emanated a vibration that made my atoms dance. And the feeling of this ballet was so pleasant, that I felt like I could stay there forever.

The drumming on the wood of the guitar, the caress of the chords, the dance of the hands on the strings. Hours. I had no idea who it was. Much less that he had been playing since he was a child, having been instructed in one of the most renowned musical academies in the world. Which used more than 20 guitar tunings. That the technique that had mesmerised me had a name, namely “modern percussive guitar”I was far from imagining that he had already traveled the world playing. Who had already poured his jazz in New York pubs or in the mythical The Cavern, a bar in Liverpool on whose stage the Beatles played for the first time. Far, far from imagining that he had already played with Jethro Tull, Maria João, Gary Burton. That he had a quartet, an octet, an album.

I only freed myself from that delightful sonic prison at dusk, when he got up and put the guitar in the bag. During all that time, he seemed so immersed in his own music, in his own world, that I didn’t have the courage to approach him. I just watched him walk away, with a heavy black overcoat hugging his silhouette and all the mystery of that vast moment. Dark as the sky, which enlightened me from the hours I had been there. And only then did I continue on my way, in disbelief at the ability of sound to detune the hourglass of time, tormented by the uncertainty of ever being able to hear that enigmatic musician again. I never knew his name was Sandro Norton

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