Where? When? What?
1966 in Luanda, Angola. Africa: the colors, the heart, the drums, and where it all began. (see the wonderful photo galery of Fernando Chavez)My father Jose and my mother Micaela formed the most lovable and complex of all possible environments. I inhabitated this world with my brother Jorge, the coolest man alive, who is now married to Paula with a beautiful son Tomas and a beautiful baby daughter Margarida. This universe entailed a lot of traveling around the world, and the appreciation of differences between people as a source of richness and love. I miss Africa where I lived until May, 25, 1975.
We moved to Lisbon, Portugal in 1975, a hectic year, revolutions, a not so warm reception... not that pleasant... Anyway, we adapt and I do have fond memories of my teen years: being a young punk rocker, Sex Pistols, The Jam, The Clash, The Police, my first rock concert (The Tubes). New Wave, Ian Dury, Joe Jackson, Lene Lovich, New Romantics, ABC, Duran Duran, The Cold War, Nelson Mandela, Amnesty International, oh well, the 80's were pretty cool. Spending my time reading science fiction, Philip K. Dick, William Gibson, Robert Heinelein, and all sorts of things about Classic Rome and Egypt... Travelling around Europe using those InterRail passes and a back pack: Amsterdam, London, Paris.... I finished my high school education in 1984 with a major in Chemistry.
The College Years
For the most part, these were the nerd years! I enrolled on the 5-year Mechanical Engineering program at the Instituto Superior Tecnico. I majored in Systems Engineering, though with a strong emphasis on Manufacturing Technology. In fact, my last year in this program was mostly spent in Stafford, England where I attended classes from the Masters program in Industrial Engineering of the Staffordshire University, but you can check that stuff on my formal CV. The music of the mid-80's got pretty boring, so I discovered Jazz and Brazilian music. I remember seeing Miles Davis in Lisbon twice. Genius. So were Charlie Parker, Cole Porter, and Tom Jobim. I kept listening to all sorts of music and finding great pleasure in such movies as Terry Gilliam's Brazil and Riddley Scott's Blade Runner. Then, BLAM! Acid House/New Beat hit the scene. I remember thinking that Front 242 and S-Express were doing something so new and brilliant that made me feel great to be living it. 89-90 got me all excited in moderm music again (which I still am). Finally, my generation had left the trauma of not living up to Rock and Roll behind. My stay in England has the Happy Mondays, Jesus Jones, and the Stone Roses for a soundtrack. ABC and the Pet Shop Boys kept on doing some of the most exciting pop music around too.