Showing posts from July, 2017

How Can Stella Get Her Groove Back?

Saturday July 29, 2017

We were watching Crying Ladies, and I couldn't help but think of the times in my life when it seemed that everything was going wrong. With all the things I've been through, it is quite a subtle understatement.
Yet, I also feel grateful beyond words that those days are over, and that I have survived and even emerged as a better person.
I like the Stella, the lead character, primarily because I love Sharon Cuneta. She really is a good person who had just fallen on hard times.
But there is more to a person that his or her circumstances. She loves her son more than than anything else, and I've known few things more painful that having your child taken away.
Her greatest dream is to go to Japan as a singer, make enough money and get her son back from her ex-husband Guido (Ricky Davao).
The problem is that she kept getting passed over at auditions.
And so, she has to be creative to make ends meet.
She has a clever way to save money on transportation…

My Top 7 OPM Songs In English From The 80s

Wednesday Songs July 26, 2017

Of the many songs from my beloved Michael Jackson that I love, there is one that is really special to me...
"...We've been together for such a long time, the music, music and me..."
I love so many songs that I have to organize them in my mind in different ways. I can use, say, genre, so I have ballads ("Is It Okay If I Call You Mine" by Paul McCrane), jazz ("Sweet Baby" by Stanley Clark and George Duke), folk ("Scarborough Fair" by Simon and Garfunkel), rock ("Stairway To Heaven" by Led Zeppelin), country ("Summer Breeze" by Seals and Crofts) and a lot more in between and beyond.
I also have a group of pop with a fast beat, like the kind of music played in the smart but sadly gone 103.5 K-Lite: "Believe It Or Not" by Joey Scarbury, "Trapped In A Stairway" by Paul Jabarra, "Steal Away" by Bobby Dupree, "What You Won't Do For Love" by Go West, "…

Chicken Adobo For The Soul

Saturday Stories July 22. 2017

It is beautiful how some people stay in our lives even while we go our own individual journeys.
There will always be those who will leave, but as sure as God made apples, new people will come – and new chapters will begin.
I've been thinking these thoughts when,  by coincidence,  the same themes began to appear as we watched Laurice Guillen’s American Adobo,  a bittersweet story about Filipinos in the United States.
I like American Adobo as much as I love chicken and pork adobo, and that's saying a lot.
We watched it primarily because of Christopher De Leon, one of my favorite Philippine actors, right up there with Aga Muhlach, Eddie Garcia and Rogelio De La Rosa.
I happily saw that the film is more than I expected. It's not because of all-star cast – Christopher De Leon, Dina Bonnevie, Ricky Davao, Cherry Pie Picache, Sandy Andolong, Paolo Montalban and Gloria Romero, with American actors Randy Becker, Keesha Sharp and Wayne Maugans  – but …

The Magic of Jose Mari Chan

Wednesday Songs July 19, 2017

I honestly don't know where to begin a story about Jose Mari Chan. My all-time favorite OPM song of all time is "Constant Change." My favorite Christmas song of all time is "A Perfect Christmas." My favorite remake of all time is his "Perhaps Love"
I will never forget the time I was singing "Thank You, Love" to someone whom I had once loved more than life itself. I chose Christmas In Our Hearts when somebody once asked me to name an album I'd want to have if I'm stranded on an island. The other item on my list: the Avengers' Quinjet so I can go back home.
My personal soundtrack has featured "Tell Me Your Name" and "Can We Just Stop and Talk Awhile" at different times in my life.  Even my LSS (last song syndrome) right now is from Jose Mari Chan – "The Sound Of Life"
"Can you hear the laughter, can you hear the music, sing with your heart, it's the song of life!

Once Upon A Time In Manila

Saturday Stories July 15, 2017

"She came to me. She said, 'Anna,' just like that. I said 'Why?' 'How are you?' I said, 'Fine.' But what I was thinking, what I really wanted to say was, 'Mother, your breasts are sagging now. Your face is already wrinkled. I bet your lover is not fucking you anymore.' She tried to give me money. I refused. I showed her my bag. 'Look,' I told her,' I have a lot.' Then I tried to give her some, but she also refused. 'We both have a lot of money,' she said. Then she cried. Me, I never did. I don't want to cry. I don't want her to see me cry."
I couldn't pinpoint any predominant emotion among the mix in me when I watched Mel Chionglo's Lagarista again recently. Lagarista is about a young man named Gregory (Piolo Pascual) who lives in the same house where I used to, a mansion built during the Spanish era in the 18th century in Quiapo at the heart of Manila. Gregory'…

The Best of Asin

Wednesday Songs July 12, 2017

Himig Ng Pag-Ibig

Masdan Mo Ang Kapaligiran

Ang Bayan Kong Sinilangan




Itanong Mo Sa Mga Bata 

Gising Na, Kaibigan


Anak Ng Sultan 



At Tayo'y Dahon

Mga Limot na Bayani

Ang Tanong


Para Kay Agnes


Sa Malayong Silangan  

Bato Bato Sa Langit

Lakbay Diwa

Damdaming Nakabitin

Orasyon (Mano Po)

Ili-Ili Tulog Anay 


Ikaw, Kayo, Tayo


Ang Mahalaga

Aves De RapiƱa


Kahapon At Pag-Ibig 

ASIN Greatest Hits Collection

The Healing

Saturday Stories July 8, 2017

It was a miracle. They were all healed even after the doctors had given up. They had asked their friend Seth (Vilma Santos) to take them to the faith healer Elsa (Daria Ramirez) and now they have their lives back.
Alma (Pokwang) had gangrene, Chona (Ces Quesada) had goiter, Greta (Ynez Veneracion) had a lump on her breast, Ding (Chris Villanueva) had a rare skin disease - and they have all completely disappeared.
Cita (Janice De Belen) had taken her daughter Cacai (Abby Bautista) who was blind. One morning, as she came home, she saw Cacai reading aloud her father's letters, and as she realized that her beloved daughter can finally see, and she just broke down and cried.
Seth's son Jed (Martin Del Rosario) begged her to take his half-sister Cookie (Kim Chiu) who was dying of a rare kidney disease. Val (Mark Gil), Cookie's father and Seth's ex -husband, was furious when he found out. He threatened Seth should anything happen to his daught…

The Best of Joey Ayala

Wednesday Songs July 5, 2017


Walang Hanggang Paalam 

Wala Nang Tao Sa Sta. Filomena

Karaniwang Tao

Bathala with Bayang Barrios



Manong Pawikan

Buwan, Buwan




Saan Ka Patungo Panganay Ko 

Awit Ng Mandaragat

Photo courtesy of

The Beautiful Mind of Malang Santos

Saturday Stories  July 1, 2017

I first knew about the great artist Mauro "Malang" Santos from the Bear Brand print commercials. The more I learned about Malang, the more I admire him.

Malang's art is distinctive for that spirit of optimism, that indestructible sense of hope, even in everyday scenes like street vendors and humble houses.

A newspaper poll in 2000 ranked him in the top three of the most popular contemporary Filipino painters of all time along with Fernando Amorsolo and Vicente Manansala.

His began to study art when he was only ten years old. As a young man, he sent himself through school by working for the Chronicle as an illustrator, cartoonist and lay-out designer. Malang is the first Filipino cartoonist in English and the first to have his comic strips published in American magazines, like his "Kosme the Cop" and "Chain Gang Charlie."

He also created magazine covers and advertising designs before he devoted his full time to painting…