goodbye to you

6 11 2010

my co-host Myrene(Sandwich/Imago) at the old NU107 station for Groove Nation Sessions 94-96

I can’t say i’ve been an NU107 listener for years as i don’t really tune in to local radio, except for maybe once in a while when i monitor if a Terno band’s song is being played or on rotation. However, i did have a show on NU107 when i got back from the States called Groove Nation Sessions around 94. It didn’t last long, maybe a year or two as i was just a block timer on the station. My co-host then was  resident NU107 jock Myrene Academia of Not Radio.  It was my first foray into radio and it was fun while it lasted!

I’d like to think that i was able to play stuff you won’t normally hear on radio and not on NU107’s playlist and i thank the station for being open and allowing me to share the music i pushed.

A decade after, NU107 again opened its arms for me to share what Terno has to offer, most notably, Up Dharma Down whom i initially asked Zach and then after, Trish, to guest on their respective shows to be followed by tracks played on Francis’ In The Raw and eventually, the first single “maybe” on the station’s regular playlist. If i haven’t thanked them enough then here’s a big THANK YOU to you as individual jocks on the station.

Overall, i may not have that connection to NU107 as a listener but I’m very appreciative of having being given the nod for the awards given the past years and glad to have worked with the only decent “rock” station there ever was and the people behind it. To all the other jocks and Myrene, Emy, Celes, Glenn, Belle, Gelo…… Atom, Quark and Cris…THANK YOU.





my favorite year

31 12 2008

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2008, the year that was. My favorite, not quite. In fact, not at all. It was a year that  started off really well but went kinda downhill in terms of projects, financials etc. but there were some bright moments of course. I’m not going to do a recap or name what they were but you can guess on your own. If you follow the artists on Terno Recordings and the recently revived goings-on with Groove Nation you’ll come up with your own answers.

All i know is that the last Terno Inferno gig  at Saguijo for the year, ended with a BANG and as for DJing and the continuous push of quality House and Techno it also ended with a good  DEEP FRIED gig at Route 196 which  turned out to be  really promising.

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Cyril and i also did a gig for new promoters in town called Frequency a few days ago and it turned out ok. I’d like to think we did our job in getting the dancefloor packed without having to compromise our sound(i forgot ,we never compromise) and yes , originally, it was to be “minimal” re: the theme and sound but c’mon i don’t think the kiddies would understand and appreciate Minimal house/techno the whole night which the promoters realized after a meeting or two and an open House and Techno music policy was agreed upon. I did stumble upon a blog that said that the night was good, though not the usual “hard”(most likely prog and trance that most local kiddie “clubbers” are weaned on)  dance music they’re used to. Imagine how it would’ve been if we really went “minimal” in the strictest sense!

Thanks to Cyril who did a great job prepping and setting me up for my set which was more up than usual.  I mean, i normally like starting a set no matter what part of the night rather low and moody but this time it was extra strength tech-house 125BPM  right off the bat with the emphasis on funk as the main direction. Bulk of the set was that but i obviously got bored with it and went more house-y at the end.

the Frequency main guys followed us at 245am much to the delight of the remaining  young uns’ who wanted the  “hard” stuff. I wonder how they’ll react if we actually threw them bangin techno material from 6-8 yrs ago from  the likes of Ben Sims, Jeff Mills, Adam Beyer, Marco Carola,  etc. Would those be hard enough for them?

Just as well, it worked out well though i’m not quite sure it made sense as far as the techno awareness they originally wanted being that they played more “proggy” but good mixing on the 2 X 4 and like i said, the kids lapped it up. Congratulations to Frequency boys and thanks for having us.

Still on electronic dance music, a good friend of mine from Chicago, Robert M. arrived for the holidays with around 60 or so records, old and new, a healthy mix of techno/tech-house and deep and dubby house releases and wanted me to record a mix, which i did, squeezing in an hour or so in between Xmas last minute shopping and family obligations. The flow of the mix is not exactly that great but what can you expect with random picks and first time previews.

So goodbye 2008, and hello to 2009 which i hope will be way better despite  the projected  and predicted ugly economic aftershocks.

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I leave you with the 320 bitrate post X’Mas Mix that pretty much covers the diversity in Robert’s stash. Starts of deep and moody, even a dash of glitchy-ness and a somewhat uplifting ending ,all in its glorious outcome, mistakes and all. thanks Robert.

DOWNLOAD the 1 hour plus MIX right HERE.





boing boom tschak

8 12 2008

KRAFTWERK Hong Kong 12/05/08

After  30+ long years, finally i’ve seen the masters live and even without the original Karl Bartos, (co-founder) Florian Schneider and Wolfgang Flur, last Friday’s Kraftwerk gig in HK was truly an experience. The present line up of Henning Schmitz, Fritz Hilpert, Stefan Pfaffe and original member, co-founder  and vocalist Ralf Hutter performed extremely well, as expected. It’s amazing too how they showed so much charisma without uttering a single spiel in between songs.  Now, i can’t really say i’m their number one fan but i am definitely a huge fan of Kraftwerk and electronic music in general and i’m glad i can finally tick off “watch Kraftwerk” on my wishlist.

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Initially, as much as i already knew they would blow me away, i prepared myself to be a little jaded being that i pretty much know how their concert set up was from acquiring their most recent live DVD a couple of years ago, the larger than life visuals, the ultra clean sound(much like listening through an audiophile’s tube gear), the stage gear etc.  I was wrong and despite what i knew, it’s definitely different seeing and hearing Kraftwerk LIVE. My only complaint was that it wasn’t loud as i expected it to be. Kinda expected the bass to rattle people’s rib cages. It would’ve been good as the venue was packed to the gills( the size of two halls of our local World Trade combined) with young Hong Kong hipsters and music geeks, foreigners from everywhere and Germany of course plus us, the few “delegates” from the Philippines.

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I went with Mario S. and Dino A. to be joined at the gig itself  by Ean of Up dharma Down, his brother in law Chi and our very own original visual graphics guy and good friend Koro Fujiwara. Some of our other friends/djs within the Groove Nation circle couldnt make it due to schedule conflicts but i really was expecting “electronic” musicians and ahem, DJs from Manila to be there being that this is one of those once in a lifetime deals from an act that’s highly influential and deemed as one of the main progenitors of electronic music and a direct influence, especially to techno, electro and even hip hop. Before you can say,we were able to go because we had the funds to throw away, i’m sorry but that’s not the case, no, not at all. It’s something we had to work for and worked around on just to make it last weekend. It’s just simply too important to pass up. It really validates my observation that majority of the local electronic producers and superstar djs are merely in it more on the surface and have no foundation nor sense of history.

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It’s Kraftwerk for crying out loud, the very group who influenced the likes of Derrick May, Juan Atkins, Kevin Saunderson, Carl Craig , Richie Hawtin etc.!

Oh yeah, i forgot, in this country majority equate electronic music to Tiesto and Armin Van Buren. Talkin’bout “provincial disco”.

Totally related story HERE.





open up your mind and let me in

15 10 2008

While the majority of the youth and Filipinos in general are continuously getting derailed in terms of electronic dance music, there is still hope for some of the young uns who refuse to conform, who think and decide for themselves and are open to new sounds, new ideas, new experiences.

I post here a blog entry i stumbled upon from a young, bright lass named Jaja who went to the first DEEP FRIED night last Sept.6. and while she mistook everything played the whole night as all techno ,(actually, it was a combo of deep and tech house and techno), she’s excused. Not bad for a newbie and better than mistaking it for Trance! Kidding…

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First Techno, First Balut    Sep 7, ’08 6:18 AM

I went to Saguijo for the first time last night and was introduced to TECHNO (although it became more house-y towards the latter part of the night, er, dawn) at Deep Fried by Groove Nation with Mr. Toti Dalmacion on the decks. It’s definitely not your like your garden-grade exclusive though. That’s for sure.

the place
reminded me of a much cleaner version of xaymaca. hehehe.
lots of posters and murals. baul saguijo -where i bought silver and gold wire bangles (a steal!) was upstairs. small but efficient and well-stocked bar. wood floors. definitely homey. only one bathroom but very clean. and they never ran out of toilet paper! the flush was working. no liquid soap but the water pressure was strong. the walls were a different much more pleasant version of your public washroom vandal. my personal favorite scribble was “god is coming. look busy.” 🙂

the outfits
I haven’t been out to a party party in the longest time and i’ve never been to saguijo, so i wasn’t sure about what i was supposed to wear. i shouldn’t have worried – at all. i could’ve been wearing a baby blue shirt, tiny tiny green pekpek shorts, fuschia tights and sneakers and nobody would’ve even noticed or cared. and yes, someone was actually wearing that – complete with a tiny white shoulder-purse and hair ponytailed  in a matching pink scrunchie. there were people wearing flipflops, stilettos, ruffles, tank tops, leather belts, good ol’ t-shirts, blouses, onepiece safari-type  shorts ensemble, skin-tight jeans, square-legged bottoms, jerseys, dresses, skirts, jackets, scarves, boleros, sweaters, chucks, boots – all heights, too.

I loved it.

the people
all ages and sizes were there. mixed breeds too. drinking water, redhorse, pale pilsen, smlight, cocktails. i was personally enjoying my favorite malibu rhum and coke.

the dancing
i’ve never seen anything like it. people weren’t dancing with each other at all. everyone was facing the dj, doing their own moves. and by own moves, i mean their Own Moves. rocking side to side. rocking front to back, back to front. stomping. clapping. hopping (for lack of a better verb). crazy footwork. swaying. jumping. hands up in the air. hands down by their sides. hands everywhere. no gyrating bodies humping each other like agogo dancers. there was no one common dance step that the entire room would do at a particular part of a song.

It was new. I Liked it.

the music
came from a turntable, a mac book and other contraptions i’m not familiar with. i’m not sure if toti uses discs but i did see vinyl being pulled out and placed back in their case on almost regular intervals. very little lyrics. mostly beats and other stuff i can’t really explain.
let me just say that now, i truly understand the power of a dj – how s/he can make an entire room move. He alone controlled the pace and brought us to different levels -up and manic, steadily rising, steadily falling, slowing, calm, then rise again.
astig.
the music was something that would move your feet and pulse through your groin even if you’re sitting at one corner of the room people-watching.
astig talaga.

it was very much different from the dance music i was used to. i still think nothing beats dancing with someone else – may it be one person or two or ten, and singing along to a song you just love. but last night’s environment was a new and refreshing and welcome change.

would i go back? oh yeah. and maybe bring some girlfriends along so i have pretty lady friends to dance and share the experience with.

are you game? 🙂

—-
p.s.  i ate balut for the first time last night too.
i think the yuckiness hype it’s been given is overrated. it’s not that bad at all.
and hella Delish!

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Now this is the kind of attitude we’re looking for. Bravo and kudos to you Jaja. May there be more of you to balance the future of this country!





drowning in my nostalgia

20 09 2008

Continuation and Part II of Past Foward entry. Starting off with some Consortium pics taken by the great Eddie Boy Escudero…

Consortium residents Cocoy P and myself. Photo by Eddie Boy Escudero.

Consortium residents Cocoy P and myself. Photo by Eddie Boy Escudero.

Jamie Bissmire of Space DJz. All around great guy and techno dj. Rode with me on my Vespa after the gig and shouting "we are the mods","we are the mods" along roxas blvd. in reference of course to Quadrophenia.

Jamie Bissmire of Space DJz. All around great guy. Rode with me on my Vespa after the gig on the way to after gig breakfast shouting "We are the mods,we are the mods" in reference to Quadrophenia of course. A mod/b-boy/ techno dj. Photo by Eddie Boy Escudero.

I have no idea who he is but he looks fierce and has a nice, rare Consortium shirt on. I don't even have mine anymore.

I have no idea who he is but he looks fierce and has a nice Consortium shirt on. There were probably a hundred or so of this printed for a crowd of 3,000 so it's a rare item and anyone who still have theirs in good condition might want to get in touch with me. Photo by Eddie Boy Escudero.

Cecile Z. A regular at the Consortium parties. Grocery,her store then would sell clothes for the 90's local rave generation.

Cecile Z. A regular at the Consortium parties. Grocery, her store then, was part of Consortium,selling clothes for the 90's local rave generation. Photo by Eddie Boy Escudero.

The Detroit innovator Derrick May gracing the decks at Consortium. Check out the Adidas banner. Yup, my favorite brand supporting COnsortium back then.Photo by Eddie Boy Escudero.

Detroit techno innovator Derrick May gracing the decks at Consortium. Check out the Adidas banner. Yup, my favorite brand supported COnsortium .Photo by Eddie Boy Escudero.

the fashionable set were definitely also represented then at Consortium.

the fashionable set were definitely also represented at Consortium. Photo By Eddie Boy Escudero.

as well as the rockers( Krishna M and Nathan-then with Rivermaya) which shows some were actually open to it then and maybe inspire others for Deep Fried?

...as well as the rockers( Krishna M and Nathan-then with Rivermaya) which shows some were actually open to it then and maybe inspire others for Deep Fried? Photo by Eddie Boy Escudero

Karl Roy resting for a bit

Karl Roy resting for a bit. Photo by Eddie Boy Escudero.

the one and only and John Glenn of Blue Cafe was a regular fixture at Consortium and i've played  at some of  the  most memorable gigs at his establishment. In fact ,the very, very first experiment that is the roving club/rave Consortium was held at Blue Cafe when Malate was in full bloom.

The one and only John Glenn of Blue Cafe and friends were regulars at Consortium. In fact the experiment, that is Consortium was first held at Blue Cafe when Malate was about to get really hot. Photo by Eddie Boy Escudero.

rod t.another Groove Nation dj

rod t.another Groove Nation dj. photo by Eddie Boy Escudero.

at Consortium...no comment

at Consortium...no comment. photo by eddie boy escudero

Noel dB and Rod T

Noel dB and Rod T. photo by Eddie Boy Escudero

one of my idols and an amazing dj with great taste in music. Really good guy and somewhat my mentor when i was trying to get in the L.A. underground  scene.

Doc Martin-one of my idols and an amazing dj with great taste in music. Really good guy and somewhat my mentor when i was trying to get in the L.A. underground scene.

this was the smaller Groove Nation in betweener to Consortium named after The Jam's rousing tune.

Sample flyer to the smaller Groove Nation in betweener to Consortium named after The Jam's rousing tune!

a break from Consortium with samples of Los Angeles rave flyers during those halcyon days. Standard clubbing in clubs can be claimed by NY,SF and Chicago but really from recollection, the “raves” really flourished first in L.A as far as the US is concerned. Introduced mostly by British expats who infiltrated the club scene in L.A. playing mostly house and techno music from Chicago and Detroit! Go figure. Ping Pong in full effect. I must have gone to hundreds from 89 to 93. From dark, abandoned warehouses to normal establishments during the day, rave location by night as well as glamorous old buildings like the Park Plaza to the Union Station and amusement parks.

I think this is one of the reasons why people really dance abroad and not just stand around or make chit chat. This was the average price to most raves back then with some going as much as $40. It's definitely a factor as to why people here take things for granted. It's because it's usually "face value", guestlist or a measly entrance fee.

I think this is one of the reasons why people really dance abroad and not just stand around or make chit chat. This was the low average price to most raves back in the day with some going as much as $40. Then again, majority of the "party people " here in Manila do pay that and more nowadays and still just stand around and chit chat like they're at a dinner party. So maybe not many here are value for money conscious? That or Manila really is the Hamptons and people are moneyed ?

afternoon ravin' at Venice Beach. Ahh the love for beats.

afternoon ravin' @ Venice Beach. Ahh,the love for beats.

Lava Lounge menu by Agu P. .Dig that dilis!

Lava Lounge drink list by Agu P...Dig that dilis! oops, my mistake that's on the menu which i have yet to find.

Lizza N and Koro during the Lotus Eaters/Rivermaya recordings that didn't see the light of day.

Lizza N and Koro during the Lotus Eaters/Rivermaya recordings that didn't see the light of day.

Juan Nunez of Wax Records L.A.. Sadly, majority of the record stores in L.A. have now gone belly up and are just existing online.

Juan Nunez of Wax Records L.A.. Sadly, majority of the record stores in L.A. have now gone belly up and are just existing online.

 Cyril Y.,Simone of DSound and Pepi D.

Cyril Y.,Simone of DSound and Pepi D.

Lourd, Peter Coyle(The Lotus Eaters)Jay I., Joonee G. and Jem Kelly(The Lotus Eaters)

Lourd, Peter Coyle(The Lotus Eaters)Jay I., Joonee G. and Jem Kelly(The Lotus Eaters)

J-Jay(Moulton Studios SF/naked), Rica,Pepi and Latrice Barnett

In a LOMO moment gone wrong -Jay J (Moulton Studios SF/naked), Rica,Pepi and vocalist Latrice Barnett.





past forward

17 09 2008

Yesterday, i stumbled upon a bag full of old pictures,papers,fliers from back in the day. It’s amazing how time flies and how we’ve changed, improved or failed throughout the years. There were lots of good times and equally bad experiences but all in all, essential in what we may be doing today. It’s good to look back every now and then,in order to move to the future.

One day you’re selling records then you’re on radio, the next time you part own a bar and when you wake up you’re married with kids, managing bands and running a small label. Along the way you meet different people, some of which are still around and some are gone, much like places and things. Here’s a few examples of miscellaneous goings-on that had something to do with my yesterday, in correlation to today and possibly,even tomorrow.

flier for the opening of the “way ahead of its time” bar for the local lounge lizards circa 1998
the original Groove Nation partners. Arnel F.,Alde A. and myself.

the original Groove Nation partners. Arnel F.,Alde A. and myself.

The Verve Room where Mario was the resident dj and yours truly guested every now and then.

The Verve Room where Mario was the resident dj and yours truly guested every now and then.

my co-host Myrene(Sandwich/Imago) at the old NU107 station for Groove Nation Sessions 94-96

my co-host Myrene(Sandwich/Imago) at the old NU107 station for Groove Nation Sessions 94-96

with Boo Kyler during the RT years for Groove Nation's After Hours

with Boo Kyler during the RT years for Groove Nation's After Hours

my Vespa taken by Neil Oshima

my Vespa taken by Neil Oshima

the actual mag ad featuring the Vespa

the actual mag ad featuring the Vespa

with Jason Bentley of Metropolis on KCRW/Quango Records and then girlfriend Veronica.

with Jason Bentley of Metropolis on KCRW/Quango Records and then girlfriend Veronica.

Some of the coolest Jap friends of mine and the GN crew. Shigeru and Koro. Not in picture is Hiro. Our excellent visual graphic jocks and former partners in Lava Lounge.

Some of the coolest Jap friends of mine and the GN crew. Shigeru and Koro. Not in picture is Hiro. Our excellent visual graphic jocks and former partners in Lava Lounge.

Alde and Arvin.A couple of my really really good friends. Here in fookin Manchester vibe circa 1990

Alde and Arvin.A couple of my really really good friends. Here in fookin' Manchester vibe circa 1990

Regulars at the store then. Bob Y,Felisa and my cousin AJ G.

old friends from highschool/mobile days in the 80's. Maly and Boom of Violent Playground and one time ex singer of VP, news anchor, actor Manoy

old friends from highschool/mobile days in the 80s. Maly and Boom of Violent Playground and also at one point,singer of VP,actor and news anchor Manoy

Jonny, Pepi at 1 1/2, myself and Kim of DSOUND

Jonny, Pepi at 1 1/2, myself and Kim of DSOUND

our beloved top dogs Margot and Georgie who just recently passed away after 14 years of making us happy.

our beloved top dogs Margot and Georgie who just recently passed away after 14 years of making us happy.

those of you who went to Groove Nation should know Carlo O. and Joel G.(my best friend) who were behind the counter pre-dating High Fidelity shenanigans. Right here in their glorious 80s new wave pose. Carlo is currently with Ben Sherman/Paul Smith and Joel resides in the US.

those of you who went to Groove Nation should know Carlo O. and Joel G.(my best friend) who were behind the counter pre-dating High Fidelity shenanigans. Right here in their glorious 80s new wave pose. Carlo is currently with Ben Sherman/Paul Smith and Joel resides in the US.

Noel de Brackinghe, now of Sweetspot and engineer for Up Dharma Down's recordings with Doy Santos and Cocoy Puyat inside 99.5RT for SNL.

Noel dB, now of Sweetspot and engineer for Up Dharma Down with the other GN guys Doy and Cocoy at the old 99.5RT studio for SNL with Boo Kyler

Gienel! Koro and Hiro- the best visual graphics guys and way before the term video jock came about. Great friends as well. Also in the picture is Paolo , another good friend and supporter

Gienel! Koro and Hiro- the best visual graphics guys and way before the term video jock came about. Great friends as well. Also in the picture is Paolo , another good friend and supporter

Benedictine Abbey School school mates, the Jocson brothers in the US. Young, Pinoy and in the snow

Benedictine Abbey School school mates of mine, Jocson brothers and Joel in the US. Young, Pinoy and in the snow. New Wave chong!

Peter Coyle of The Lotus Eaters with good friend Karlo Samson at the dinner hosted by my cousin Cherish Garcia.

Peter Coyle of The Lotus Eaters with good friend and Groove Nationale Karlo at the dinner hosted by my cousin Cherish.

Cocoy, Myself, Jon Hardy,Chez Damier(standing), Derrick Carter and Paolo t. in 98

Cocoy, Myself, Jon Hardy,Chez Damier(standing), Derrick Carter and Paolo t. in 98

take your pick...The Fat Boys? Ant & Dec? I have no idea how they were able to convince us to pose like this in Boracay but here it is. You may stop laughing now.

take your pick...The Fat Boys? Ant & Dec? I have no idea how they were able to convince us to pose like this in Boracay but here it is. You may stop laughing now.

Laurent Garnier and i at the best Consortium ever in 97'

Laurent Garnier and i at the best Consortium ever in 97

After store hours we'd usually hangout a bit. Felisa, Patrick,myself,my cousin Louie and John "B-Boy" Deakins.

After store hours we usually hangout a bit. Felisa,Patrick,myself,my cousin Louie and John "B-Boy" Deakins

no, it ain't Bagets nor The Gwapings, It's Positive Noise L.A. chapter. Edwin & Robert Maclife,Dwight A., Dan S. Lots of good times with these bunch!

no, it ain't Bagets nor The Gwapings, It's Positive Noise L.A. chapter. Edwin & Robert Maclife,Dwight A., Dan S. Lots of good times with these bunch and yes ,we were hamming it up for the cam!

For the Halloween party around 97 at Ramon Magsaysay Center in Malate, Mario S dressed as uhm, of course, Mario of Mario Brothers and Ces G. as some housefwife in curlers.

For the Halloween party around 97 at Ramon Magsaysay Center in Malate, Mario S dressed as uhm, of course, Mario of Mario Brothers and Ces G. as some housefwife in curlers.

A Youth and a couple of Muhlachs

A Youth and a couple of Muhlachs

more Muhlachs

more Muhlachs

One of my early bookings and small billing alongside L.A.underground staples of the day and the great Doc Martin himself. check out the Toti D. spelling. I suppose you can guess why. If not, say my name with an American twang.

One of my early bookings and with an itsy bitsy billing alongside L.A.underground staples of the day and the great Doc Martin himself. check out the Toti D. spelling. I suppose you can guess why. If not, say my name with an American twang.

Aphrodite, Christian Smith and Misstress Barbara and the press at Lava Lounge

Aphrodite, Christian Smith and Misstress Barbara and the press at Lava Lounge

9 Fanzine

9 Fanzine

Mutual Admiration Society

Mutual Admiration Society

Tracey Thorn and fanboy with the "pinch me i must be dreaming"look.

Tracey Thorn and fanboy with the"pinch me i must be dreaming "look.

Vividly remember this tour and dancing to Greame Park at the Mayan dropping really low BPM tracks like Inner City's "Watcha Gonna Do with My Lovin" and Saint Etienne's version of "Only Love Can Break Your Heart"

Vividly remember this tour and dancing to Greame Park at the Mayan dropping really low BPM tracks like Inner City's "Watcha Gonna Do with My Lovin" and Saint Etienne's version of "Only Love Can Break Your Heart"

one of Seal's best known songs "killer" is originally an Adamski 12"single featuring a then unknown Seal.

one of Seal's best known songs "killer" is originally an Adamski 12"single featuring a then unknown Seal .Here, he gamely holds a placard promoting Positive Noise. No Groove Nation, Terno Recordings yet in the offing.

3 of the still,very active and loyal Groove Nation people around. Mario and Gina S., Cyril Y.

3 of the still,very active and loyal Groove Nation people around. Mario and Gina S., Cyril Y.

3 of the cast of Melrose Place Bgy Groove Nation. Felisa,Benjie L.and Belle currently with NU107

3 of the cast of Melrose Place Bgy Groove Nation. Felisa,Benjie L.and Belle currently with NU107

my former partners in Quiapo vintage watch expeditions Agu P(now editor of Men's health and also the guy responsible for the Groove Nation logo) and Karlo S.( husband and writer at large)

my former partners in Quiapo vintage watch expeditions Agu P(now editor of Men's Health mag and the guy responsible for the striking Groove Nation logo) and Karlo, full time husband and writer at large.

This a shocker i know but this was Oakenfold pre-prog and trance crap-ola, when he was still putting out good stuff like Movement 98 and produced the Happy Mondays' Pills,Thrills & Bellyache. What i find more shocking is my Tom Hingley inspired bowl cut. It made me look more like Efren Reyes Jr.!

This a shocker i know but this was Oakenfold pre-prog and trance crap-ola, when he was still putting out good stuff like Movement 98 and produced the Happy Mondays' Pills,Thrills & Bellyache. What i find more shocking is my Tom Hingley inspired bowl cut. It made me look more like Efren Reyes Jr.!

a little recent but connected. Pepi was just 3yrs.old here,with friend Noelle

a little recent but connected. Pepi was just 3yrs.old here,with friend Noelle

my bosses

my bosses

pepi at Terno Au Go Go with Carlos. Heavy Duty...Rock & Roll.

pepi age 3 then at Terno Au Go Go with Carlos. Heavy Duty...Rock & Roll.

rajo,yes the designer at Consortium.

rajo,yes the designer at Consortium.

Cecile Zamora's Grocery at Consortium

Cecile Zamora's Grocery at Consortium

The actual test print of the Groove Nation(store)logo done by an Angeleno.

The actual test print of the Groove Nation(store)logo done by an Angeleno.

the Groove Nation paper cd bag

the Groove Nation paper cd bag

sample fan mail of Groove Nation Sessions

sample fan mail of Groove Nation Sessions

first episode of Groove Nation Sessions

first episode of Groove Nation Sessions

is this old skool or what?

is this old skool or what?

again with the name (towdi dee)

again with the name (towdi dee)





shoe fetish?

11 09 2008

As far as I can remember, I’ve always been fascinated with footwear- loafers, brogues, suede desert boots, bowling shoes, Wallabies you name it, as long as the design’s sharp and has character but not over the top, I’d probably like it. I’m not much into designer shoes. At most, probably Paul Smith, Patrick Cox or Yohji Yamamoto but not really the Bally, Prada, Fendi kind. At times, there are some that attract me like the Gucci colored loafers that came out in the mid 90’s but even then i never felt the urge to buy something that expensive. For me it could be from Payless but if you know how to carry it with the right ensemble, then it can work for you.

Of all the types of shoes there are though, it’s athletic shoes that I’m most enamored with. Branded yes, trainers, sneakers or as it is referred to here in our country, “rubber” shoes. I’ve worn many brands since grade school. Some of which are now classics and/or rare but may have been reissued like Puma(Wimbledon,Clyde,States,Roma), Wilson(Bata), Pro-Keds, Pony(Top Star), Diadora(Borg Elite), Nike(Road Runner,Waffle,Internationalist).

For all that, the brand that really had an impact on me was Adidas. Top Ten, Rebound, Jabbar, Americana, Pro-Model I’ve worn throughout my basketball days in the Midgets Division till i moved up to the Aspirants Division. For casual wear, i vividly recall having the SL-80, Country, Rom, Samba, Jeans, the ubiquitous Superstar and the locally produced Match and Hurricane. Back then, i wasn’t conscious of the collecting aspect and never thought that something then might be of value some day, so they’re all history now.

My love for Adidas never waned though and i got back into it again in the late 80’s early 90’s and even traded some records to get cash for overstock Campus’ from the 70’s at X-Large, the Beastie Boys clothing store on Vermont in L.A. and got pairs in maroon,blue,burgundy,gray and my favorite at that time, black with silver stripes. Apart from that, i also scored some rare green and red Stan Smiths and pretty much all the colors the Gazelle came out in around the early 90s. Some of you who i know or met during the Groove Nation store days probably remember some of the kicks i wore then.

Now that’s nothing compared to the truly hardcore sneaker freaks who basically have every Adidas that ever came out or the really classic ones but recently, being an endorser for Adidas, i am lucky to be given a number of current models and reissues plus some that were given by relatives and friends as gifts. None are exactly rare or sought after yet for obvious reasons but maybe a couple or two will be, one day. Oh and i go for more of the Heritage line/Originals with the Trefoil logo and not the sports Equipment  line.

Check,check,check these out.

So

The last pair. The Campus with velcro straps is my most used pair and what i have on most of the time. I love it. Love em all. I can only go to Ebay and drool at those that I’m really after but for now anyone who wants to donate a size 12(US) pair that were given to them by mistake is most welcome.

Imeldific? Nah, it’s not even close to 100 pairs although i am actually a distant relative.

So tell me, do i have a shoe fetish or am i merely being a huge fan of an exemplary brand institution?





spring cleaning in september

9 09 2008

Yesterday i got a text from an old customer of mine at the record store back in the 90’s. Yes, Groove Nation originally was a record store up the penthouse of Vernida1 bldg. Anyway,his text was to ask if I’m selling my framed autographed records and he’d pay good money for them. This made me think, being how bad it is these days, i sure could use some money what with some new releases coming up on Terno. I have to admit i was tempted but then again i felt it would spiritually and emotionally strip me of something that i truly cherish, definitely irreplaceable and something that i worked hard for and was a big part of my youth and still is, part of my whole existence. I would probably regret it for the rest of my life. I politely declined. I don’t think I’d ever part with them or my record collection. I don’t care if mp3s are taking over on how we listen to music. It’s good to know i still have the actual records and cds that i will pass on to my kids which they will pass on to their kids. They should be worth a hefty sum someday but will it be ever sold? Nah. Maybe to a museum or something. Yeah, that could be the closest to it being sold.

As consolation to you my old customer, here i share some of them…

Adorable signed by lead vox Piotr

Japan- Assemblage signed by David Sylvian

Inspiral Carpets signed by the whole band

Bristol. England's The Blue Aeroplanes 12" signed by the whole band

Trash Can Sinatras 12" signed by the whole band

The Blue Nile's A Walk Across The Rooftops signed by Paul,Robert and PJ.

The Lotus Eaters-No Sense Of Sin picture disc signed by Jem Kelly

and while doing some cleaning, i discovered in an old record case some stuff from some of my DJ heroes…

Doc Martin

Laurent Garnier

Evil Eddie Richards

Silicone Soul

Swayzak

Cut La Roc

Fantastic Plastic Machine

and then some…

China Crisis

Stereolab

Steve White(The Style Council/Paul Weller's drummer)

will post more finds unearthed.





and the results of the experiment…

8 09 2008

Ok. As for last Saturday… it was both good and bad.

Good because it was actually a fun night and i had a great time spinning. The vibe was good from the people who went and from friends who gave their support. It didn’t have the numbers but sometimes it does not have to be packed to the gills for it to have a great vibe.

Bad because it clearly shows how narrow or close minded most “rock” people are about dancing and for the most part listening to electronic dance music.  Just as expected, the local rock majority still has problems with it. How did i come up with this conclusion? Simple. The venue is a known place for bands and the radio plugs, even though bombarded by NU107 just reached local rock’s ears and despite Deep Fried the radio show airing every Wednesday, it really just started so still, the general rock audience definitely stayed clear last Saturday. Maybe it’s too simplistic an analysis but i think it’s accurate. Now, we’re not forcing it down your throats, it’s just an observation that’s quite an eye-opener, at least for me. It’s the opposite of what i experienced abroad where people from all sorts of background and music tastes actually do get down together in underground clubs and raves. Here, there’s obviously a division. The rock people go to rock events and gigs, the hip hop people go to hip hop parties and the “Tugs” go to the commercial clubs, raves and to gigs like Deep Fried last Saturday.  Yes, i know there are tribes but they do crossover abroad. Not here for the most part.  A bit sad but well, with the radio show, some will probably warm up to it and appreciate something new to their ears and eventually go to the next one. I’m counting on the rock community to be the ones to embrace it and make a real underground scene different from the average “party person” or the “Tugs” as they call them. Yeah, I’m still optimistic.

But No, we’re not going to change the venue as that’s precisely the point why Angelo (Saguijo) and us (Groove Nation) chose to do this. To get people who don’t normally go to clubs in the metro to enjoy electronic dance music and dance in a non official club environment wherein you don’t have to be dressed to the nines or rub elbows with social climbers. It’s purely for the music, the vibe and dancing in an intimate, small setting.

What makes it underground? Well, first and foremost, the music. It’s what sets it apart from the clubs who claim they play underground dance music. I don’t think i have to justify that. Those who go to Consortium or any of the parties before or just last Saturday can attest to it. No anthems, no trance, no proghouse, no cutesy stuff (Sorry but we’re purists). Just quality underground house and techno,the way we dish it out. Secondly, the atmosphere and feel of the place. Lastly,the type of people who did check it out last Saturday.

If there’s another thing good about this Deep Fried experiment is that last Saturday, we more or less got a sample of people who are really into it and they will be essential in influencing their friends that for November, the number doubles and so forth and so on. Congratulations and hats off to these people who can say they were there from the  very start.  Much appreciation also given to those who normally don’t dance but let their hair down last Saturday and participated in this electronic revolution. Same goes to the loyal GN followers, friends and some Terno bands like Up Dharma Down, Swissy, who gave support and participated in  the experiment.

We’re already bringing it to you people. Giving you an option from what’s the usual in this city. It’s up to you now to open your minds,ears and embrace it.

Next one’s November 29. You have more than a month to overcome your inhibitions and really, just have FUN and DANCE but with really GOOD dance music.

SPECIAL THANKS to Mario Benipayo of Forerunner Technologies for the RCF ART-325A and the new Cerwin Vega CVA-21 subs last Saturday. Thanks also to Audio Technica for our amazing ATH-M50 headphones.

Pics courtesy of Chico Limjap.





jack of all trades and master of none.

30 08 2008

Yes, i wear many hats. I might be selling myself short though with the post title but it sounds good so it stays.

Recently, i revived my DJing career and the Groove Nation entity though it doesn’t mean i DJ every weekend. It’s whenever i feel like it. I’ve slowly learned to enjoy it again and play the other kinds of music I’ve championed from the start. There was a time when i couldn’t listen to HOUSE music be it Chicago, deep, tech, micro and TECHNO, from minimal, Detroit, dub and hardcore to electro, the way i would listen to it everyday before, not because i grew tired of it but more because of just about everyone here in Manila were DJs and each one tooting their own horns with proclamations of being “The No.1 DJ in the country”,”The Best Local DJ”, “The Most Exciting DJ”…something i’d give to anyone IF they backed it up with TALENT,SKILL and TASTE.

As it is though, most lack history and foundation in music or to be specific with Soul, Funk and Disco onto the “House” music that they play and it shows. Being a DJ doesn’t mean just because you learned to BPM mix from one record,cd,mp3 to another,then you’re already a DJ. Worst of all, if you just throw “anthems” one after another. The argument I’ve heard is that the DJ is an entertainer and should please his/her audience and i agree to some extent, especially if you’re a DJ in a bar or a club wherein you’re expected to play the hits or you have to have a more populist mindset but if you’re propping yourself up as THE DJ much like how the famous international ones are then you’re expected to guide and influence your audience to new ideas and sounds and not just give them what they have in their Ipods which they know inside out. If you’re going to promise me that cliche, “I’ll take you on a journey of valleys and peaks” then by all means i for one, expect you to push the envelope and not play what the 100 other DJs play day in day out in bars and pseudo-clubs around the metro. Back it up so to speak.

Now that’s not to say I’m the best in the land but one thing i can say is that i push the envelope and provide an option and to a point, educate that “Everafter” is not really a good representation of what House music really is or that this new rave/fidget scene is not the modern electronic dance music I’m referring to…to a local audience who mostly are uninformed and ill-informed or just plain apathetic. Sadly, in this country it’s more about schmoozing,partying,to see and be seen and the music is more background than anything so it doesn’t matter if they’re dancing or partying to crap dance music or something that’s played from TV variety shows to Alibangbang Beer Garden to Decades or Embassy.  Despite of that short rant, i have cooled down ,the bad taste has left my mouth and while the country is still overflowing with superstar and fake DJs who continue to disappoint and simply, just don’t get it, I’m feeling good about playing every now and then.

Groove Nation also has a new show on NU107 every Wednesday night 11-12midnight  called DEEP FRIED with an accompanying DEEP FRIED bi-monthly dance night at Sagujio. The first of which is to be held this Saturday the 6th of September. It’s obviously experimental being that Saguijo is really more of a rock venue and i really don’t know what to expect for Saturday but Angelo of Saguijo’s open with it so we’ll see how long we need to build this. It is perfect for its small size and somehow i know there are people out there who are really looking for a place where they can dance and have fun but cannot really see themselves going to the commercial chi-chi clubs.

It’s also about time to get rid of the “I only listen to rock music therefore i can’t dance and won’t listen to anything else” mentality. It is 2008 after all and if you’re a true music fan you would’ve heard of the late 80’s Summer Of Love, Manchester or how your favorite foreign bands have embraced the rave/electronic dance music culture. I’ve seen for myself how for example, Bobbie Gillespie and the rest of Primal Scream dance and party at various underground raves in the late 80s,early 90’s why can’t you?