The gig went well and all events flowed smoothly. Not as pompous as the previous Suman Festivals (this year the festival for the suman was officially dead). With a relatively modest budget of 1 million pesos (according to the Philippine Star report posted below) this one looks like all those bucks went where they really should belong. Kudos to the Governor and her officials as well as Mr. Christopher Gonzales, the new Tourism Officer and the Chairman of this year’s celebration.
Here are some pictures from the week-long celebration:
The opening of the 9th Aurora Surfing Cup at the Labasin Beach on February 15. The new watchtower was also inaugurated.
Also on February 15, the Agro Industrial Trade Fair was opened at the Capitol Grounds. A Beach Bazaar was also opened at Labasin.
The Batangbaler booth at the Beach Bazaar – sun, sea, and shopping. Most of the booths were food shops and there were three tattoo shops but the top grossing store was the unofficial Ka Siming’s sari-sari and turo-turo.
Aurora Pop Superstar. The best singers and dancers competed during the Tuklas Talino contest at the Capitol on the night of the 15th. With the program title I first thought it was a quiz bee.
Most Aurorans know DoÃ±a Aurora Quezon only from her statue at the Capitol. Here’s her real picture side by side with the sculpture. Can you see the striking resemblance?
On February 19, 2005 Aurora will celebrate it’s 26th Foundation Anniversary and the 117th birthday of our lola, DoÃ±a Aurora Aragon-Quezon. The event has always been billed as a double celebration. But do you know that Aurora, the province, was not really founded on February 19 and on that date this year, Aurora will be 5 months and 24 days short of it’s real 26th anniversary. Batas Pambansa Blg. 7, the law that created Aurora Province was actually signed by President Ferdinand Marcos on August 13, 1979. Maybe there’s a resolution somewhere in the vaults of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan moving the date of Aurora’s Foundation anniversary celebration from August 15 to February 19. I’m only in my historian mode and that ends my lecture.
ORGASM ADDICTS – One of the homebands of the Manila-based music collective called In Diss Corner. Regularly plays in different rock digs in and out of Manila, Mayrics, Freedom Bar etc. They have an EP and currently working on their first album. NU107 plays their originals. AKAW connection: Raygan or Kangker or Conquer, a pure Balerian from the Palispis clan formed the band with his friends after his Baler-inspired and Music Museum-regular band Bhonog Fever dissolved.
PENTAVIA – Pentavia formerly known as soultribe was formed on the eve of the millennium. It is composed of Chico Gonzales on Drums, Andrei Agulto on Bass, Jesse and Joks Reyes on guitars while Vlad Pullarca does the vocals. Pentavia was coined as the groups name because of their vision of flight, they were five hungry souls yearning to fly combined with shrieking guitar riffs and pounding drum beats which filled their moods, Pentavia was born. Pentavia means five in flight or five wings symbolizing manâ€™s limitless boundaries. Akaw connection: Rambo or Boyet de Guzman usually sits-in as the drummer.
GINGER – Ginger is the new incarnation of Baler’s “most popular” band Badfish. Plays reggae and ska covers and originals in groove with their guitarist’s surfing inclination. Akaw connection: 100% pure Akaw, Alvin Morada on vocals, surfing champ Okoy Rojo on lead guitar, skate boi Toytoy PorqueriÃ±o on rhythm, G.A. Francia on bass and Robert Flores on Drums.
ENSLAVE – the band formerly known as 13th Underground, formerly known as Underground Chicken Sound. The winner of the My Generation 3 song competition. These kids, some of them are still technically young enough to legally drink beer, are infected with hardcore music. They have been playing since first year high school and are now using their college spare time honing their musical skills. Akaw connection: Most or all members are from Baler.
BHONOG FEVER – 90’s almost famous band composed of three Balerians and one San Luis dude, they made a career out of Eric Friginal’s old compositions. Used to play at Freedom Bar and Music Museum. Original songs used Baler stories and words and usually referenced Baler legends like Tata Penong, Tantul and Pitimini. They disbanded before CD-burner became popular relagating their originals to molding cassette tapes and into oblivion. This gig will be their comeback act.
KWAK-KWAK – Chosen because of longevity and their persistence not to change probably one of the baddest band names in the history of music. Composed of college students from ASCOT and MCC. The band is into hardcore music. Fronted by Ino Guerrero.
This gig is a tribute to all Baler bands and musicians who almost made it especially to Pinoytubo, who managed to release an album during the rock explosion of the 90’s. Unfortunately their music was too far ahead of their times (insert sarcastic giggle here), and to Boyboy Ferreras, still the best guitarist in Aurora, who had his fifteen minutes of fame when he became the guitarist of April Boys Bingo and Jimmy.
The 4th Bays Inn Surfing Challenge October 29 – 31
Bays Inn Resort and Restaurant
Sabang Beach, Baler, Aurora
(this is an unpaid advertisement)
AKAWSTIK JAM a fundraising gig for the AKAW INVASION show
October 30, 2004
Tita Guding’s Restaurant
Sabang Beach, Baler, Aurora
featuring acoustic sets by: Ginger (former Badfish), KwakKwak, Bhonog Fever and other bands
presented by: batangbaler
BATANGBALER EYEBALL 2
October 30, 2004
Tita Gudings (sabay ng AKAWSTIK JAM)
Mayric’s Music Bar, EspaÃ±a Road (in front of UST), Manila
featuring Baler bands: Orgasm Addicts, Bhonog Fever, Enslave, Ginger & Kwak Kwak. + guest band.
November 19, 2004
8:00 PM Entrance: 50 bucks
A Fine Arts graduate of the University of the Philippines in 1982, who also attended painting lessons at the Art League of New York in 1997. He is a multi-awarded artist in the Philippines and a Freeman Foundation Asian Artist’s Fellowship Awardee of Vermont Studio Center, Vermont, U.S.A. and a silver medalist in the Second Biennial World Children’s Exhibition in 1983 in Kanagawa, Japan.Bitancor has had group shows in the GSIS Art Museum and the National Art Museum of Malaysia and Singapore and many solo shows in the Philippines. He is the founder and current president of Baler Art Group which conducts free art workshop for children in the province of Aurora, Quezon. He represented the Philippines to different art forum in Singapore; Brisbane, Australia; and New Delhi, India. Presently, he is the Art Director and Graphic Designer of Caritas Manila.
His works are on exhibit from 04 to 15 October 2004 at the Philippine Center on 556 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday to Friday.