There was a lot going on in Buenos Aries. Before I even left Curitiba, I had been working with the local promoters in Argentina on details regarding an interview at the hotel Bruce was to do with one of Argentina's top Djs Mario Pagoloni and trying to make sure everything went without a hitch. We also had William from EMI (see Singapore-Bali diaries) who is a good friend of the band and management coming in with Alex Milas from Metal Hammer. Rod was also rejoining us in Buenos Aries as was his partner Andy Taylor, his wife Liz, Nicko's son Justin and his wife Rebecca. Everyone was coming in for the filming of the live DVD in both Argentina and Chile so you can imagine how busy things were all around.
We threw the fans off by showing up a day early so we could prepare for the filming, but as soon as one saw us pull up at the hotel, he was immediately on the cell phone and within just minutes one fan turned into a bunch of screaming, chanting IMFC members. And they were outside, through rain and shine, for the full three days we were there!
Due to set up, our interviews started a little late but Rod was kind enough to give them a quick interview while we waited for set up to finish. The interview went great and it turns out that Mario is also a pilot so he and Bruce immediately bonded.
After the interview, I went to my room to get freshened up because we had a big dinner with the entire Banger Films crew who all flew to film the show. This included Dave Pattenden who used to actually work for Maiden and was once my contact so it was like a big family reunion. Our huge group also included Janick, Kevin, Andy Taylor, Gaddsy, Ian, Rod, John Mc, William, Alex and myself.
We ended up at another one of those killer Brazilian style BBQ places where they slice off different meats for you
The dinner broke up around 10ish and we all piled into the waiting vans and went back to the hotel stuffed and bloated. Some of us then decided to go to a pub with Janick and Kevin but the place was a little quiet so William, Alex and I took a cab to another place the crew was at (Janick and Kevin decided to stay and have a quiet drink). We walked up and found Justin, Spider, John and Nick hanging outside talking. The place was much more lively and had rows of picnic style tables out front, packed with people. We sat and had a few while we hung out in front for a couple hours before heading back to the hotel to get a bit a rest.
The next night William, Alex and I met with one of William's friends Lisa (MTV) who took us out to dinner. We went to, what else, a steak house. Just what my body needed. After, we ended up at some swanky bar but decided to ditch that place and go to a house party that Lisa knew about. Basically it is a house owned by a popular Argentinian chef who throws these very exclusive house parties with food he cooks himself, DJ's spinning and drinks. You actually have to know someone to get in and we knew Lisa! It was a really great vibe and the music was really good. The place was packed with people hanging out and dancing until 7am! Word got out we were with the Maiden Krew and it turns out a lot of the people there were actually going to the show including the owner! At around 3am Alex and I decided to get a cab back to the hotel leaving John and William who decided to stay and hang out for a while.
The next day was show day and I TRIED leaving the hotel a little early since we had a lot going on. Not only did we have EMI Brazil presenting the band with a gold record for "The Final Frontier", we also had the Vice Minister of Social Development of Buenos Aries presenting the band with the Honorary Visitors of BSAS Diploma (the key to the city). Trying was not good enough as traffic was at a complete standstill. I ended up finally getting there with barely enough time to get both the EMI and Social Development groups in place for the presentations. This was the first time I got to see the packed stadium and I just stood there just staring out into a sea of people. There were about 40,000 fans packed onto the floor and in the stands. It's an amazing sight when you're smack in the middle of the floor and take a 360 degree look around. And, like Mexico City, Sao Paolo and Santiago, this is the third time in just four years Maiden have been here for a massive show on Ed Force One, and the fans still can't get enough of the band!
Because of filming, inside the barricade, the middle aisle and the front of house were very busy work areas so trying to get the camera crew and photographers out of the pit while staying out of the cameras eye was like trying to get to the other side of a freeway (motorway) during rush hour out of the sight of CCTV. There were cameras everywhere. Banger even had one camera gliding across a wire way at the top of the stadium so all of you can look for yourselves when the DVD is released later this year!
The band were playing in top form and the fans were treated to the return of "big" Eddie, who made appearances in Sao Paulo and Rio and now for his cameo in the live DVD! The entire crowd went crazy when he mischievously peaked over Nicko's kit while tapping his fingers on the amps. All in all the Argentinian crowd brought their "A' game on, flares waving (yes, actual flares!) and will be a very tough act to follow.