(On Supporting Touring Philippine Artists and Performers)
Since the 1990s, the Philippine Alternative Rock music scene has been very diverse, prolific, and vibrant. It has produced so many interesting bands whose music encompasses genres from Punk Rock, New Wave, Metal, to Pop, Novelty, Jazz-influenced, and Folk-inspired. In the area of Alternative Novelty—subgenre of Alternative Rock whose music may be described as playful and infectious and whose lyrics are often comedic, satirical, and poking fun on social, political, and other issues—perhaps no other Philippine band has gained high-profile popularity, prolificacy, and longevity other than Parokya ni Edgar.
Formed in 1993, in Metro Manila, Philippines, Parokya ni Edgar is currently comprised by Alfonso “Chito” Miranda (vocals), Vincent “Vinci” Montaner (vocals), Buhawi “Buwi” Meneses (bass), Darius Semaña (guitars), Gabrielle “Gab” Chee Kee (guitars), and Ferdinand “Dindin” Moreno (drums). The band began performing at clubs that included the legendary Club Dredd and Mayric’s Bar. Although some of their most popular songs are parodies (“Trip,” of Radiohead’s “Creep”; “Alimango,” of Pearl Jam’s “Animal”; “Nakaw ang Wallet Ko,” of Guns n’ Roses’ version of the Bob Dylan original “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door”; and “Picha Pie,” of Cake’s version of the Gloria Gaynor original “I Will Survive”), many hits are also either serious ballads or comedic songs originally written by the band.
The overall music of Parokya ni Edgar is distinct with the combination of the deadpan vocal style of Miranda and the rap infusions of Montaner set on a grungy style of the rhythm section—obviously an influence of Grunge bands popular in the 1990s when they were formed, such as Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Stone Temple Pilots, and Soundgarden—or, in some other songs, inspired by the folksy and somber sensibilities of Filipino kundiman music. Obviously experimental and diverse, Parokya ni Edgar continues to broaden its style by adopting elements from a variety of genres, parodying songs by The Clash (Punk Rock), Pixies (Alternative Rock), and System of a Down (Nu Metal).
To date, Parokya ni Edgar has released nine full-length studio albums most of which are platinum-record holders as well as had gained for the band various awards. In the parentheses are my favorite songs from the albums: Khangkhungkherrnitz (1996, “Buloy”); Buruguduystunstugudunstuy (1998, “Please, Don’t Touch My Birdie”); Jingle Balls, Silent Night, Holy Cow (1998, “Olops”); Gulong, Itlog, Gulong (1999, “Halaga”); Edgar, Edgar Musikahan (2002, “Sige Na Naman”); Bigotilyo (2003, “Mr. Suave”); Halina sa Parokya (2005, “Gitara”), Solid (2007, “Akala”), and Middle-Aged Juvenile Novelty Pop Rockers (2010, “Pakiusap Lang [Lasingin N’yo Ako]”).
Parokya Is Coming to Town
On November 16, Parokya ni Edgar will be performing at Republic Nightclub (291 Bannatyne), with the also-touring Filipino Hip-hop artist Gloc-9 and the Winnipeg-based bands haLf man haLf eLf (Classical New Wave), FourSight (Alternative Rock), and Casting the Circle (Progressive Rock). Ticket is $50. For inquiries, you may contact (204) 783-5687 or (204) 227-9225. Produced by Shadow Inc. and coordinated by producers Vancouver-based Bojie Yangco and Winnipeg-based Marby John Aguilar, this concert is part of Parokya ni Edgar’s North American Tour 2011. This will be the band’s second time to play Winnipeg, where they first performed on July 26, 2008, at Garrick Centre. The event is supported also by Melanie and Gary Tapia of Century 21 and Richmond Barroso.
Some have said that the 50-dollar ticket is expensive. Comments like this obviously come from people who are shortsighted and shallow-minded, who fail to realize that the production cost of such events demands a big capital from the respective producers: talent fee and airfare of the performing artists, accommodation (food and lodging), rental fee for the concert’s venue, rental for the lights and sound equipment, printing of posters and tickets, and the time and effort in coordinating and producing the show—from the moment the touring artists arrive then leading to the concert night itself and onto their departure. Add to that the time and money the band spends on practicing, making songs, and promoting their music. Yes, all these for only $50! Now, don’t you think that’s fair enough?