16 12 2008

Hats off to the ultimate record collector. If i had $3 Million i’d buy his collection in a heartbeat.

The records in that warehouse are worth more than what he’s asking for. They’re priceless. I can’t even imagine how he must feel having to let go of all those vinyl.

Those out there who want to throw out their old records gathering dust, i’d be more than happy to be your garbage can.

punks vs.chongs

1 10 2008

I'm still looking for old pictures from that time when it wasn't odd to see some people in trench coats or leather jackets in the middle of the day(even summertime) but temporarily this will do,for now. A bit more general, with the preppy, pastel color galore 80's Menudo kind of look than the dour European New Wave visual. It does remind me of current trendy bands though, both local and international. mismatched Chucks, skinny jeans. Ahh, the cycle in music and fashion. What goes around comes around. Scary.

both noun and adjective
An 80’s term of endearment by local punks for new wavers.

Punk1-Huh?Pupunta kang party sa Corinthians? Puro Chongs doon no!

Punk2-di bale Positive Noise yung mobile, nagpapatugtog yon ng “Damaged Goods” at “Wild in The Streets”, pwede na rin!

If Britain had Mods versus Rockers, well then, here in the fabulous 80s there was the amusing Punks versus Chongs division. It wasn’t as bad as one would imagine though and wasn’t even close to the stupidity behind the Rock versus Hip Hop call for arms in the 90s. It was just a loving, slight derogatory term placed upon people who were into New Wave by the local Johnny Rottens and the Sid Vicious’ of the day like they were better because they listened to something harder,noisier, chaotic and rebellious.

I was actually both, a hybrid. I enjoyed Circle Jerks as much as i enjoyed The Lotus Eaters but being that i’m from a different background and didn’t sport a mohawk nor wore a dog collar with rusty nails protruding, i was definitely referred to as a “chong”.

It wasn’t something bad to me nor did i take offense to it. I’m not going to deny i was more into the cool demeanor of a Tim Butler(bass player and brother of Richard-Psychedelic Furs), Martin Fry of ABC, the quirky Mark Hollis of Talk Talk and moreover, the unabashed, fey swagger of David Sylvian (Japan). Heck, at one point i even sported Phil Oakey‘s(Human League) lopsided hairdo. This sense of style appealed more to me than having to put egg yolk on my hair to make it stay up and spikey though from time to time i would be caught wearing PVC trousers,(or something close to it), something narrow and plaid or something with loads of buckles and zippers tucked in a pair of U2 or The Alarm looking boots. Not just for the weekend mind you, but more for school, partnered with the school polo uniform, shirtjack style.

However, seeing Paul Weller in a white trenchcoat, Fred Perry sport shirt with drainpipe trousers and loafers seemed to connect with me more and that’s where the “mod” posturing came about. But to most i was a “chong”.

Still, the group of mobile friends i was with then and i were probably the only ones who could get away playing Hardcore/Ska and Punk/New Wave/Post-Punk altogether. Ex. D.O.A, The English Beat ,The Fall, Dead Kennedys, Seona Dancing (Ricky Gervais) and The Fire Engines etc., side by side for a Punks not Dead party or a trench coat wearing (96 degrees in the shade), allblack,eyelinerheavy,The Cure lookalike soiree. I’ve certainly had my fair share of beer bottles whizzing by, being spat at and given the finger by groups of Punks, and all this, while playing their favorite Minor Threat song or the never fail “Sex and Violence” by The Exploited.

But yeah, still in the configuration i was a considered a “chong” and i was, for the most part. But, was i really one in the Industry “State of The Nation” sense? Check for yourselves and decide whether i was a permanent fixture at the Corinthian club house or whether i have New Wave pedigree and an indie cred… from a sample of records in my arsenal. Click HERE

While the subject’s on New Wave here’s one of the best bands from the 80s in my book. Critically acclaimed yet criminally misunderstood by most.

Yes, you heard correctly. Mark Hollis was singing live over the minus one for this simple video directed by then wonder boy Tim Pope. There is another version of this video btw. The other two, Paul Webb and Lee Harris went on to form O’rang and if i’m not mistaken Paul Webb collaborated with Beth Gibbons under Rustin Man. Sadly, Mark Hollis, after putting out a wrist slasher of a solo effort in the same vein as the last two Talk Talk albums has retired completely from the music business. He should make a comeback. Their last two albums Spirit of Eden and Laughing Stock are considered by many music fans and critics alike as the progenitor of “Post Rock”.

For another excellent Talk Talk video click HERE.

One man’s trash,another man’s treasure. a re-post.

25 09 2008

Years ago i contributed articles to Elan, the Philippine Daily Inquirer special supplement and one of the better features i’ve managed to put out is this little piece on collecting. I’m thinking it’s just the right time for a re-post after all, it is the simple yet complex world of The Collector. Just click and zoom in.

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.


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


Cut La Roc

Fantastic Plastic Machine

and then some…

China Crisis


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

will post more finds unearthed.


3 09 2008

Whenever i see fans of Radioactive Sago Project, Up Dharma Down or Paramita etcetera, it’s somewhat amusing to see how they’re either all giddy or shy to approach the bands, ask for autographs and have their pictures taken with their favorite front person or member.

But when they get to it, it’s probably one of those special moments wherein you’ll see how genuine the admiration and respect they have for their heroes and idols. All smiles, sweaty palms, hearts palpitating and sometimes speechless. Some, even in tears. They’re lucky though, as locally, it’s easy to approach the bands in the many gigs all over the city, sans security and bouncers.

There’s also the exceptionally hardcore fans, those who follow their fave  band anywhere and everywhere and know their band inside out. They have everything that their favorite band has released, both official and bootlegs, press clippings, merchandise, at times even their phone numbers and home addresses. You name it, they have it and probably know more about the band than the band know themselves.

I see myself more with the latter, although i draw the line at stalking and knowing what brand of underwear they use individually. So, how much of a fanatic am i? Well, i wouldn’t necessarily have to see every gig and be completist about it, as in (have every release, every format, every bootleg they have out in the market) but I’d like to get a hold of what i can get, for as long as i like it. Some of my favorite bands, i have every release, some i don’t. I don’t know why, that’s just the way it is. Either i outgrew the band or something turned me off about them or just simply didn’t feel the need to get a particular album which made me not complete their total output. Strangely, there’s bands that I’m not a big fan of but i have just about everything they’ve put out!

If there’s one thing that indicates how much of a fanatic i am though, it’s my patience to wait outside after the gig and rumble with the other fans and autograph hunters when i used to live abroad. This could be anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours depending on how considerate the band members are, the gig itself, security, the venue and location of the backstage door or artist entrance/exit. It’s the thrill of the chase i suppose and when you finally get that coveted autograph, it’s all worth it and you go home tired but happy.

Here’s some examples of my hard work with fandom…

Will post some more next time.