Focus On Filipino Music

Focus On Filipino Music

Pinoy Rock icon Pepe Smith, hospitalized

The pioneering Philippine Rock artist Joey “Pepe” Smith was hospitalized at Metro Antipolo Hospital and Medical Center Emergency Room on November 14, after suffering another stroke. Good thing was, it was not as bad as the last one he had. Many regard Smith as a Filipino music icon. He was one of the members of the legendary Philippine group Juan dela Cruz Band, which during its golden heyday in the 1970s included Mike Hanopol (bass/vocals), Wally Gonzales (guitar), Edmund Fortuno (drums), and Nides Aranzamendez (drums). The seminal band was famous for songs like “Himig Natin,” “Beep, Beep,” “Balong Malalim,” and “Titser’s Enemy no. 1.” Despite his age, currently 69, Smith has remained active in the music scene by performing live at various Rock concerts and lending voice and hands to many younger artists since the resurgence of Filipino Rock music in the 1990s. Fans of Smith are now praying and wishing for his recovery. Smith is actually slated to perform on November 18 at Amoranto Sports Complex in Quezon City for the Pepe Smith Rockfest. Obviously, his awaited performance will be cancelled. After all, the priority right now is for Smith to regain his health condition. [photograbbed/credit to Luis Liwanag/Rappler]

The Dawn releases new single

The prime Philippine band The Dawn has just released its new single, “MerryGoRound,” a quite heavy and punchy affair, which sees the current members—Jett Pangan (vocals), Francis Reyes (guitar), JB Leonor (drums), Rommel Sanchez (guitar), and Mon Legaspi (bass)—flexing some sonic muscles and having serious fun.

The single is available for download on Apple Music, Google Play, and Amazon Music. Formed in 1985, The Dawn was one of the bands that led the Philippine Rock music scene in the 1980s, releasing a slew of now classic singles that include “Enveloped Ideas,” “Love Will Set Us Free,” “I Stand with You,” Iisang Bangka,” and “Salamat.”

Winnipeg’s The 12/21 performs at Toronto’s IndieWeek fest

Winnipeg’s band of brothers—Roman, Rico, and Roque Muñoz Maceda, collectively known as The 12/21—graced Indie Week night at The Cavern Bar in Toronto, Ontario, giving the hardworking trio the chance to dish out their original music to a wider, whole new audience. Here’s to the success of a pride of Winnipeg’s Filipino-Canadian music community.