Monday, January 21, 2008

A Reunion Of Old-School Punks at Weslu's Tribute Gig

Time and again I would aver that, even though I enjoy listening to ska and watching ska gigs, I am not by all means a rudie. For most of my formative years as far as music appreciation is concerned were spent listening to punk songs and attaching a fork or a stiff alambre to the radio antenna just to get a decent reception of "Capital Radio" off XB 102. (Then again, that does not make me a punk, either.) I could not get myself to see the lovely concerts over at places like Rock-ola and Katrina's (I had only seen a handful then) for I used to live really far and my mother was extremely strict. So I sought consolation by playing music really loud in the house till my mom actually learned to appreciate the noise that her deprived young child was drawn to. See, (bless her soul) she was a very cool woman after all.

Anyway, the line-up of the bands that played in Weslu's Tribute Gig at the Purple Haze Bar last January 18, 2008 is an aggregate of the old and the new school, of punks and rudies and the younger set, of punk and ska music. It is a great combination. The late Luis Guiang, after all, has left an indelible imprint in both the punk and ska scene. This time, however, I lost some sense of objectivity and suddenly hungered for the old hats. In fact, it seemed that a lot of people missed the so-called old guys.

I saw how the crowd started slamming during G.I. and the Idiots' performance, and how a mad flurry of slamming bodies formed at an alarming rate during Music Front's set. When it was Al Dimalanta and Throw's turn on stage, people were simply slamming silly, especially during the part when Al was singing his anthemic songs "New Life" (a punk song that figured prominently in my young life) and "Don't Drop Your Guns/Noise Barrage."

One of the night's highlights was the appearance of Mr. Tommy Tanchangco, guitarist for Chaos and more popularly known as the man behind the Twisted Red Cross label. He seemed just as amazed at how people have continued to live the punk lifestyle after all these years.

That night saw a impromptu gathering of most of the members of the Class of '84. It was a joyous sight.

I hope my friends in the ska scene will forgive me for gushing no end, but I got to say this. At some point in one's life one has to go back to where he started. Such is the circle of life. For many, it was a night of various homecomings, with the biggest homecoming alumnus being Luis Guiang. And the night, no doubt, belongs to the old-timers.

Captured by Canon: The Mandalondon Crew; Hilboy Raymundo of Bisikleta Productions; Erwin Romulo; Mae Ilagan of Shuffle Union shaking her booty; the audience; Tommy Tanchangco with Arnold Morales, later with some alumni of the Class of '84.

G.I. and the Idiots

Music Front


A sort of homecoming: Japo, Arnold, Al, Rogel, Je, Aji, Bobby, Russell, Homer, Rodil, Albert

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