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(Music, Eric & Adam singing, etcetera. Adam suddenly interrupts.)
: Ohh, ahh, hold on, hold on, hold on.
: Whoa, whoa, whoa, what was that?
: I'm sorry. Enough of this white boy rap crap for a second. (to the audience) If I can just pull on your coat about something for one minute...
We always play this song in every show, and people always ask us...
"What - what is 'the big payback'? What is that? What does it mean? You're preachin' about it, you're singin' about it, you're talkin' about it, it's gotta mean something."
I'll clear the air once and for all, just so we can get it out of the way so we never have to talk about it again, what exactly the big payback is.
Now, to do that, I'm gonna have to talk very openly and very personally about a lot of the, you know, very personal, sensitive subject matters of my life, which is not very easy for me, so if you would bear with me and follow along... I feel like we'd all be in a better place at the end of the song. Work with me.
Growing up, many of you know me, many of you don't, but growing up a young puerto rican boy in the streets of Spanish Harlem was not easy for me. I grew up impoverished, I grew up starving, I grew up in a horrible, crime-ridden community and the only joy that I found in my sad, poor little existence was the music of the streets, the music of the people, the music of anarchy, the music of freedom, the music of... Julio Iglesias.
Now... I was obsessed with it as a kid. Posters on my wall, heh, [indistinct] latin, all the time, I dressed like it, I formed this band, in an attempt to be like him, because he was the only person that I knew who was truly about art, truly about freedom, true to himself and to his fans...
And it always annoyed my mother, heh. It always just ate at her, got on her nerves. She hated it, and one day we got into a sweltering fight about it.
And she said: "Listen. No more Julio Iglesias, no more! And I'm gonna tell you why! 'Cause of two reasons. One, Julio Iglesias is NOT an artist, it's a lie, it's a--," I was as shocked as you are, "it's a lie, it's a fabrication, he's not even Mexican! It's all just a big fib, it's a cover-up, and there's no such thing as an artist! Artists are just sycophantic, disgusted, perverted human beings who use their art, their music, their writing, their acting, as a front, as a front to cover up their pathetic obsesses."
I thought this was the most disgusting thing I'd ever heard.
And she said: "It's true! I'll show it to you!"
She handed me this. Now, those of you in the front can see, those of you in the back will pass it around later on. It'll be by the mailing. This is Julio Eglesias' contract. This is what you must have to hire Julio Iglesias. And it says - if I can just recite this for a second - that he must have, backstage at every show, two pounds of Mexican-making make-up. What else -- Spanish lessons from a tutor named Mrs. Veterri - and, because he's Jewish, a full bowl of mozza ball soup and farfal.
Now, I thought this was crap, I thought this was the most disgusting thing I'd ever heard, I thought she made this up, she printed this up, she said: "No. this is all true." And the reason she knows it... is because Julio Iglesias... was my father. I am the illegitimate son of Julio Iglesias. Now, this, this was too much, this was too much, I couldn't believe it, she said: "You don't believe me? You don't believe there's no such thing as an artist, you don't believe that you're a Jew and not Mexican? Save this contract and bring it to your friends in the band, and see what they have to say."
So I did, I took this thing over to these guys, and I said: "ERIC! ERIC! My mother says that there's no such thing as an artist, and that I'm Jewish, I'm not really Mexican, and Julio Iglesias is my father!"
And he said: "Well, yeah."
Apparently he had been in on it.
And I looked around at these guys, and I realized - wait a second! There is no - wh -- well these guys aren't artists! We're not artists! (throaty laugh) I mean... look at these guys! Seriously! Take a good, hard look at them!
This guy - he thinks he's from Oklahoma? He thinks he's from the South, he sings in an accent, he's from Syosset, Long Island. I'm sorry to, uh, burst the bubble, people. This guy over here is a snakeskin, with his obsessive love of 70's gay pornography? He collects them all, and he alphabetizes them, but he doesn't alphabetize them by, you know, the movie, but by the porn star, which is, uh, really sick. Honestly, I really have to say something, no, I really have to say something, this guy -- this guy here is obsessed not with movies like any artist, but with movie theaters, he's obsessed with the theaters and the popcorn and the cranes and the arcade games, he hangs around inside pretending he works there, he asks people how the movies were but he never goes inside to see 'em.
So I ran, I flipped, I figured I'd have to take this contract and I had to go to the source. I had to go to my dad, Julio Iglesias. And I knew that he was playing at the Senganero festival on Mercer and Mobs street.
So I ran down there, I busted past the crowd, I busted past security, I went right up to his dressing room, I opened the door, and there he was, standing there, with the - like a vampire, with a big huge nose, with all this makeup around, being taught Spanish over a bowl of mozza ball soup and farfal.
And I said, "Daddy, Daddy Iglesias, tell me it's not true, tell me there's such a thing as an artist!"
And he said, "Son, this is the big payback. It's the same thing as Ozzy Osbourne and his bats, and Elvis and his fried tomato - well, banana and peanut butter sandwiches, and Woody Allen and Sun Yi, there's no such thing as an artist, and you, son, are not an artist."
And I thought back, and I thought for a second, and realized - he was right! I'm not an artist! I've never been an artist! I don't know what an artist looks like! I have the sick, obsessive need to stand in front of an audience and make up shit, lie about my past, lie about my future, lie about where I'm going, lie about the members of this band, and the only way I can do that is by pretending that I'm in a band!!
And THAT... is the big payback.
That there's no such thing as an artist.
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