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Saturday, August 4, 2007

On Bayang Barrios, F. Sionil Jose, and being a fan

I realize have several books by Francisco Sionil José more popularly known as F. Sionil José. I also realize I still have to buy more, which means I have to save a bit from my allowance so that I could buy all if not most of the rest of the titles that I do not have. This also reminds me that I planned to go to Solidaridad Bookshop in Padre Faura to have them signed by the old man, and perhaps, have the chance to talk to him, have a photo-op with him. That should be inputted in my celfone as a reminder, lest I want to forget again.

Having an autograph is something new to me or does not catch my fancy. Not ever in my entire life until the year 2003.

I have worked for two Presidents and rubbed elbows with one of them. I had the chance to work for Canadian and US Ambassadors, had the chance to mingle with the who’s-who in politics and government. Believe it or not, while others run berserk just to have a photo-op with them, I just stay in one corner or even offer to take their photographs. You may think how snob and smug I am. Well, maybe. But I am just too shy, that is why. Plus, I always have this eeky feeling during photo-ops. It is just too jologs. Kahit na sinong Poncio Pilato pa sya. (I hope you get what I mean).

Call me smug! But hey, not anymore! I said earlier in my promo blog about Bayang Barrios, I finally succumbed to somewhat borderline fanaticism. It was one afternoon sometime in 2003 when I left the office early to meet my wife at the mall. It was also the time when GMA 7 was also promoting its MetroPop album. It started with me buying their CD. The saleslady informed me that perhaps I would like to have the CD cover signed by one of the artists who would be performing. I asked who that artist was. She told me it was Bayang Barrios and kept on talking just to entice me because the seats were still empty and there seems to be no one interested in the promo show. But her words became muffled like murmurs in my ears already growing deaf upon hearing the name Bayang Barrios. Perhaps, I would not overrate her when I say that, for me, her name is synonymous to something that is ethereal. I love Bayang Barrios—that is why!

Now I admit that I am jologs. But I would like to clarify that my state of being jologs is not the jologs-to-the-max thing. My taste has a wide spectrum. Call it tasteful jologism (So is this another jologs morphology to justify one's self being a jologs?). After all, I adore no less than F. Sionil Jose and the popular alternative music artist of our time. And I should not forget to include Lea Salonga in my list (No. Not Regine. She is my wife’s favorite.).

So I sat there alone while waiting for my wife to come, who eventually arrived in the middle of the show. We enjoyed watching Bayang sing her winning piece Malayo Man, Malapit Din, which she wrote and composed. Then the time comes—autograph signing. I was glued to my seat. My right brain says it is time for me to go out of the enclosed area. But my left brain says I have to let go and take this one-of-a-lifetime opportunity (because it may never happen again). My wife even told me to go and line up. After all, it was Bayang Barrios and not just any teeny-bopper idol. Still, I thought that lining up in a long queue for an autograph was simply dyahe. Someone I know might see me and would endlessly tease me about it. But deep inside, I have to have it signed and not just waste the opportunity. So, the logical part of me finally cooperated and says I have to have some strategy. I have to make it quick and with a style. So I waited until there were only ten persons left. While waiting for my turn, I prepared some words to tell Bayang, then it was time for me to have the CD cover signed.

I told her, “Alam mo, noong Bagong Lumad ka pa lang with Joey Ayala, fan mo na ako.”

She smiled and said, “Talaga? Salamat!”

Photo of Bayang's Signature on the CD case of Metropop Song Festival CD.

I wanted to talk to her more, but those hawi-boys were just so annoying because they shoved us to move on. After that, I played the song over and over again, watched any documentary or feature, and browsed some articles about her.

Nevertheless, that made my day, and I look forward to see her up-close and personal in one of her gigs at the Conspiracy Bar.


15 people have commented. Leave your comments too!:

I stopped being a Lea S. fan when I saw her in person.

Don't worry, I share the same sentiments with you.. I love them too! weee :) hehe

@cez...hmmmm...why naman? hehe.

@brian, great! I am not alone after all!. I know many love them like I do!

There are only few of them that I have the stomach to rub my elbows with, one of them Bayang. When she performed at Matina Town Square's Taboan (actually a play), I arranged for an inteview with her and those snap shots followed.

thanks for dropping by, bananas!

You remind me of MTS! I love it there especially at Blu Gre! I wish I could go back to Davao soon...

pwede pa ba ako makisali sa fan club ni BAYANG BARRIOS?

the last time I meet her with Joey A was in UP Diliman concert of the bagong lumad... matagal na yun after EDSA ONE (1987) pa


Natawa naman ako sa comment mo Hector. Hindi naman ako nagtatayo ng fans Club ni bayang. (Just kidding!)

isn't she really good?

she must be really good, or else, she's not worth your time.

sa france, di gaano sikat mga sikat (daw) sa mga tao dito.
Like roger moore in one of the veg and fruit market here, no pansin ng mga tao, he is just a common sight ????!!!

mama mia. Sa Pinas niya, tad tad palibot na siya ng hawi boys, lol

Nice to hear from you again, Francesca!

Indeed, Bayang is one of the local artists who are into alternative music who has made it to the mainstream music entertainment. Maybe because she has the x-factor and the talent. Pinay na pinay ang ganda nya (which I love her for).

Even here in Manila, you seldon see people signing up for autograph of movie actors and actresses specially when you see them at the mall, airport. Yung mga hibang na lang talaga ang tumitili at humahabol sa mga artista. More or less, mas tamed na ang mga tao, especially the A-B crowd, na katabi na nagkakape sa coffee shop, walang pakialaman.

Ako naman, first time ko talaga, and I would not miss that oportunity either. Lolz!

but after my experience with Bayang, I kind of having second thoughts...ching!

Hey there. From one fan to another. She is something else; no one else like her. No other voice like hers and she has not changed over the years. Her voice and personality belongs up there, at the top of any ranking.

I was trawling the web looking for stuff for an article I'm trying to put together and came across your post on Bayang. Her birthday's June 12 you know, hence her name. Cheers.

Hey redster! Thanks for dropping by. I guess you have described her talent succinctly.


Pahabol to Red: It is an honor to be visited by you.

And by the looks of it, you got your father's flair for writing sensible materials.


Not familiar with Bayang, but will now check out her music after having read you entry.

Although I worked in the music industry for many years, I am one of those who would never ask any celebrity for an autograph or have my picture taken next to them -- including Sting when ushered into my office by an entourage of IRS Record promotion people when on his first U.S. tour with The Police.

I would, however, ask to shake their hands, especially artists whose music I love. In so doing, almost always, they'd end up spending a few minutes chatting with me.

It was because not asking for an autograph meant I wanted no piece of them.

I learned that after reading about Bill Russell's life, an NBA player with the Boston Celtics who had been embittered by racial discrimination he was subjected to despite his stature as an NBA star.

He became to despise anyone who asked for his autographed, but would quickly warm up to those who merely wanted to shake his hand and "connect as human beings."

So in all those years living in Manhattan, I had shaken many hands of incredibly famous people, including James Brown, the godfather of soul, just shortly before he got thrown in jail ... hehehe!

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