David Guetta, Nothing but the Beat

House music was never my favorite style of music, but I’ve been enjoying it more and more. Besides that, I always found very interesting to learn more about the ones in the world that in some way are best at what they do.

I’ll just ad the link for you to see David Guetta’s Movie on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6gxDcUh6m8g

In the end of the day is always the same: passion + hard work = success

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With the growth of online poker lots of tools have been developed. The one I think is most important and therefore the one I use most is Holdem Manager. It was given to me some years ago by my closest friends as a gift =)
I started to use it right away and tried to learn as many things I could about it! As a cash game player, one of the things I found more complex but at the same time more useful was the HUD (Heads Up Display). I’ve found my HUD in a portuguese online poker school, EducaPoker (they no longer exist so, I think I’m not doing publicity for them…).

It looks like this:

It has 57 stats in the front and a lot more in some pop ups.

I’m doing this because I saw some other players HUDs and I think they are very poor and basic, not alowing the player to take full advantage of the stats. So if anyone wants this HUD just contact me and I can send it at the time.

In the next lines I will try to explain how it is organized and why I think the stats were well picked: (In a later post I will dig a bit more in this subject and I’ll try to explain more about each stat)

  • 1st line: Name of the player; Win Rate (bb/100) (I want to know if I’m dealing with a winning player); Number of BB (Just helps me to check if they guy is playing deep/shallow/short); VPIP (Pre-flop tendencies); PFR (More pre-flop tendencies);
  • 2nd line: Number of Hands (Just to know if I have a sizable sample where I can base my decisions about a specific player); Overall 3-Bet; Fold to 3-Bet IP (Some players tend to fold more/less when playing in position and I want to know who they are); Fold to 3-Bet OOP (Some players tend to fold more/less when playing out of position and I want to know who they are); WWSF (Won When Saw Flop gives me an idea if the palyer will playback at me); W$SD (Won Money at ShowDown tells me what kind of holdings this player will showdown); WTSD (Went to ShowDown shows me how often the player will go to showdown);
  • 3rd line: Cold Call BTN (Some players love to play the BTN and will call with every hand just because they have position, I want to know who they are); BTN 3-Bet (There are players that defend their BTN by 3-Beting); BTN 3-Bet vs CO (CO if a tuff position to play because some players on the BTN will put a lot of pressure by 3-Beting, lets find out who they are!); SQZ; Fold to SQZ as a Caller (Some players, especially bad ones, will not fold if they already called someone, if you want to SQZ them you can use this stat to know what to expect);4-Bet; BTN 4-Bet range (It helps you to figure out if your opponents are changing their 4-Bet during the battle of the blinds); Fold to 4-Bet (Some players 3-Bet a lot, but also fold a lot to 4-Bet, use this to your advantage!); Cold 4-Bet (It will help you to figure out the players that understand the dinamics of the table. Some players only cold 4-Bet with KK and AA and maybe QQ, but if you pay attention is profitable to cold 4-Bet bluff in some spots. Some players will do it, others won’t, find out who they are!);
  • 4th line (Battle of the blinds): SB fold to Steal; SB Re-Steal; BB Fold to CO Steal; BB Re-Steal vs Co; BB Fold to BTN Steal; BB Re-Steal vs BTN; BB fold vs SB Steal; BB Re-Steal vs SB; (Some players take difrent approaches in the way they play the blinds, this line will help you with that);
  • 5th line: Fold to CBet IP (Some players will fold more/less to your CBet depending if they have or not position on you); Fold to CBet OOP (Some players will fold more/less to your CBet depending if they have or not position on you); Raise CBet (Some guys will only raise nuts, other will raise every draw, others simply won’t raise your CBet, you have to know who they are and adapt); Bet vs Missed CBet IP  (Good stat to find some check-raise spots!); Overall CBet; Fold CBet vs Raise (Some player CBet almost 100% but then fold a lot if you raise their CBet! Raise them!); Check-Fold (For you to figure out if some player “check” means if we is giving you the pot);
  • 6th line: Bet vs Missed CBet OOP (When you bet turn OOP if the guy checked behind the flop); Fold to Turn CBet; Raise Turn CBet (Some players wait for the turn to make their plays, spot them); Bet vs Missed Turn CBet IP; Turn CBet; Turn CBet Fold vs Raise; River Bet; River Fold;
  • 7th line: OR UTG; OR MP; OR CO; OR BTN; OR SB; Donk Bet; Fold to Donk Bet; Limp Call (Good to spot those fishes that don’t fold once they put 1BB in the pot);
  • 8th line: UTG Fold to 3-Bet; MP Fold to 3-Bet; CO Fold to 3-Bet; BTN Fold to 3-Bet; SB Fold to 3-Bet;

Hope you can learn something from this, or at least take some ideas 😉

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Fuel Fandango

Fuel Fandango is a band I meet for the firs time in some friend Facebook… I saw some music videoclip and just fell in love.

I’ve searched a bit information about them and found their site: http://www.fuelfandango.com, from where I took this text:

“FUEL FANDANGO is a duo formed by the singer Nita and the producer Ale Acosta.

After more than 70 concerts and 15.000 downloads of their first EP, the time has come for their first album: 13 songs where we can find funk, rock, electronic music and touches of a very personal flamenco. The album was mastered in London by Simon Daveys (Depeche Mode, Bjork, Chemical Brothers).


Fuel Fandango is the new project of Ale Acosta, producer and DJ that already surprised the audience with his former band, Mojo Project, considered a cult band with three albums in the market. Other highlights in his career are the productions, mixes and re-mixes done for important Spanish artists such as Enrique Morente, Buika, Chambao, Muchachito, El Bicho or The PinkerTones among others. Ale Acosta received two nominations in “Los Premios de la Música España 08” and one nomination for “Producer of the year” in the Latin Grammy Awards 2008.

The other half of Fuel Fandango is Nita, a young but experienced singer from Córdoba. She started her career as a girl singing coplas and flamenco. Later projects in soul, funk and electronic music have made of her a passionate performer. She is pure energy on stage.

The album was recorded between Madrid and Córdoba during the Summer of 2010. In the process, there was only one rule: to complete the recording in no more than15 days in order to maintain the freshness and personality of every song. The result is a fresh, and at the same time, vintage sound. They smoothly combine funk, rock, pop, and electronic music with synthesizers, guitars (Spanish and electric), drums and Nita´s and Ale´s voices.
They say:

“We make organic dance songs”.

This perfectly describes Fuel Fandango´s music.

Nita goes from English to Spanish without blushing, the same way she shifts from a “Black-Soul” sound to flamenco, because as they say, “flamenco does not know about languages”. Their lyrics are carefully written and well wrapped up by an elaborated production with no prejudices when it comes to mix electronic elements from dance music with rock guitars, pop melodies and touches of flamenco.

To round it up, the album has been mastered by Simon Daveys (Depeche Mode, Chemical Brothers, Bjork) at The Exchange Studios in London.

Fuel Fandango pays special attention to staging. In their performance they play freely with flamenco elements leaving stereotypes behind.

Without a doubt, Fuel Fandango´s main strength can be seen, and enjoyed, on stage where Nita and Ale count with Carlos Sosa collaboration on the drums. Together they form an unbeatable trio and gift their audience with the most danceable versions of their music.

With their first EP they traveled to more than 70 cities (a successful visit to London included) and sold out all tickets in many of them.

Now, we just have to enjoy…”
I could have not said it better! =) Now I just need to find some live concert to see them!

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Moving Up

This weekend I meet with some friend who is still struggling to move up from micro stakes. He is still starting to play more seriously now, and so, he comes to me sometimes to get some advice. I happily start to talk about what I’ve learn during my short experience in Poker. So this post will be about the biggest diferences between stakes I’ve found in my way up from shorthanded NL2 to NL100.

First of all I really think that if you want to succeed in cash games you should play every level and move up slowly making sure you’re a wining player bofore you move up to the level above.

Starting from NL2 – NL6, this is the base of all cash game poker, and although it’s a bit boring play such small stakes I think playing this levels is very good to get some discipline and to start to control yourself tilt related! =) Belive me, some crazy shit will happen when you play NL2!
I think that some very basic strategy is enough to play this first stakes:

  • Play tight and avoid bluffing: Play good cards, raise big (6/7 BB sometimes gets two callers!!) with big pairs and big suited connectors and most of the time you’ll be dominating your opponents. CBet most of the boards, but unless you hit the board with a solid hand or a very good draw don’t waist your money barreling turn and river because no one will fold a pair;
  • Fast play your monsters and NEVER SLOWPLAY: Top pair and Overpair hands can be fast played in this levels, also sets are a good way to get lots of money in the pot (just be carefull and play small pots pre flop with small and medium pairs). Don’t be afraid to “Pot-pot-All in” your opponents, if they fold in early round is just because they were really weak.
  • Don’t overthink: Sometimes I was thinking too much about my opponets hands and what I was representing with my bets and so on… Micro stakes just don’t have metagame involved. Play your cards, thing about you opponents cards (or range of hands) play accordingly and it’s enough!
  • Avoid playing OOP (out of position): there are some crazy guys in this levels and because you’re not very experienced (otherwise you’ll be playing higher stakes) it will be very dificult for you to decide in some OOP spots. Only open raise top range UTG and UGT+1 and defend your blinds with a tight range too. Don’t worry about being tight because you will capitalize a lot on the others mistakes!
  • Steal the blinds when folded to you on CO or BTN: Most of the time you’ll get called by one of the blinds (3bet is less common in this levels, because every one wants to see a flop), but they are playing “fit or fold” (if they hit they continue, if they miss they just fold most of the time), and that means your Cbet will have a big % of success;
  • Don’t tilt: is not worth it, the money is no that much and they are simply worst players than you! Keep it cool 😉

Going on to NL10 to NL30, the games change a bit. There are less multiway pots and less limping, ther is a lot more of blind stealing and 3beting but the players are still fairly weak and easy to beat. This is the time to start using Holdem Manager (HM), to refine your basic strategy and start to adapt more to your opponents. To beat this levels you’ll need to work a bit hard, but is still fairly easy to get some money:

  • Keep a good bankroll managment: as you move up in stakes the variance gets bigger, so you need to be carefull about your money or you’ll have no way to work;
  • Refine your HUD and study HM tools so you can take fully advantage of the software:this is one of the best ways to get better at adapting to your new opponents and to know their game. Review hands and you’ll get aware of your strengths and weaknesses and your opponents’s too;
  • Keep some notes about the regulars and mark all the fishes you can!
  • Start to range merge: this is the only way you’ll be able to have a good read on your opponents and to beat them constantly (when you know “what they have” you can decide better!);
  • A litle bit of metagame is not bad idea: if you can always thing one level further than your opponents you’ll be always ahead. Most of the times players in this stakes think about their hands (0 level) and in some way they think about your possible holdings (1st level), so, if you can think about their hand range and also about what they think about your hand (2nd level) you can act better!

Besides all of this, in every level is important to always try to improve. Trough books, articles, videos, coaching, whatever…, but just don’t stop working!
I’m nowadays playing NL50 and Nl100 (mostly this one), but I still need to improve my game a bit to move up to NL200. Maybe when I get there I’ll be confident enough to write some tips about how to beat NL50 and NL100! 😉

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Spy Game

Just saw this movie. Good storie, good action….very well spent 2h 😉

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Poker Complexities

Some days ago I was surfing around on the net and I found this picture… As a recent professional Poker player I’m always trying to improve my game and I thought that meant read as much books and articles as I can. I also belive that but I guess there is much more I can do to improve me, my game and the aproach I take to this profession.

Starting with “Focus“, I guess surfing on the web while playing is one of the common mistakes of a young player (mine too -.- ), “Come on!!! If I can play 12 tables at the same time I can play 9 and surf on the web at the same time”… Yes, maybe you can but you’ll miss some very profitable spots that you can only identify if you are really paying attention to the flow of the game, and besides that, when your’re surfing on the web, without even notice your game will become more and more robotic and more and more predictable, so PAY ATENTION TO THE F#$%&ING GAME!!!! or just don’t start to play at all…
Listening to music is also a common practice among players, I do it too. In my opinion this is a subject that depends from person to person… In my case it helps me to feel more confortable during my long online sessions; suckouts hurt less and I feel less lonely in my room, so I think it’s a good thing for me!

Moving on to “Self Control“, start a session drunk is just ridiculous for me because I think normal people don’t go to work drunk, so… And for me poker is a real job so I will never start a session drunk. Tiredness is another thing… I’m always starting sessions tired and I really think it’s one of my bigest leaks… When you’re tired you lack of focus, patience, logical thinking and some more important characteristics to play your A-Game, so just don’t play tired, rest a bit more, use your time to review a session, to read your poker book, to see a tv cash game, whatever, but don’t go to the tables give your money away. It’s true, you’ll rake less, you lose the opportunity to clean some wale’s money but at the same time you’ll prevent yourself to just become a easy target to the other good regulars. So, if your are no drunk, hangover, of tired there is no motive not to be at your top level, your A Game, and you can just play and play… lol… I wish it was that easy 😉 After 3 or 4 suckouts it starts to bother you, maybe you tilt a bit, maybe you loose your focus and your confidence so your really should stop a bit, put it all together and maybe start again. It’s a thin line the one that puts your A and B Games apart, so be aware of how you feel during your sessions!

Moving on to “Fitness“: good sleep, regular exercise, and healthy eating should be rule not only for poker, but also for life. But if you have a demanding activitie it becomes even more important. Your good sleeping patterns, your balanced meals and the 1h run you do every day will massively help you to stay focus and fit during your sessions! So don’t be a sick degenerate…at least not always 😉

Poker is a people’s game played with cards and because every player thinks at least a little bit diferent from the one next to him the game is always evolving and new ways of thinking/playing are always showing up. It’s hard to keep up, to follow the new trends and to be on the top of the wave so, you need to work. Review your sessions, read books, skype with your friends to discuss some hands, think about the game, get a coach, use the forums, etc., but always try to improve and to fix your leaks, that way you’ll be able to fight back when dificult times arrive and the variance eats up your bankroll. Variance is for me one of the most dificult things to deal with in Poker, it’s just mentaly tuff to take the right decision and loose a hand, but I think that if the EV line is moving in the right direction you have nothing to worrie about! Just put enough volume of hands and you’ll be able to surpass every downswing.

So, just to finish this analysis: Poker is a demanding game, and achieving your A Game it’s not easy, but with some work in diferent areas you’ll be able to put yourself in a very good spot to succeed. Don’t expect success will show up overnight but keep yoursel sharp and good things will start to happen!

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Having a blog

I guess I’m not writing to anyone in particular…maybe yes…maybe I’m just writing to myself, to clear my head, but anyway I’ll not start every post with “Hey guys….”.

I though about having a blog for a while… Don’t know why I could never manage to do that… maybe I’m too lazy, maybe I’m to ashamed to do this… but I hope this time it will be different.

I’ll write mostly in english, maybe with some portuguese comments in the midle, because besides helping me to keep my english sharp I find easy to express myself in english. Please feel free to correct my writing/grammar mistakes!

I guess my main subjects will be poker and music, but I hope to write about more stuff as time goes by!
So… hope you enjoy it!

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