Saturday, October 11, 2008


Out of all the photographs I had taken of the Manila Yacht Club, this has got to be my favorite. It was once selected as Photo of the Week by the editors of Manila Bulletin's Picture Perfect section.

I have never in my life gone inside the
Manila Yacht Club, but there's one striking memory I treasure from when I was a kid in which it played a prominent role. This happened one Saturday, the 3rd of July, 1966, when the Beatles arrived in Manila.

Their handlers' plan was to fly them by helicopter from Manila International Airport to a waiting yacht owned by Manolo Elizalde docked at Manila Bay. However, should the crowd of fans were to be less-frenzied and manageable, as compared to those in other cities which the Beatles had visited, a likely option called for a typical motorcade, as afforded to visiting heads of state. This way, many local folks would get a glimpse of the Fab Four as they headed from the airport to their awaiting yacht. I intensely prayed for the latter.

Besides the anticipated presence of riotous and hysterical fans that usually crowded the Beatles' live performances, the cost of buying tickets for the entire family to see their concert at Rizal Stadium proved prohibitive for my father. Neither did he have the heart to merely pick and choose
only a couple to see the concert, for everyone was stricken with Beatlemania, including the household help. So the decision was for everyone to stay home. And that was that.

After many years of growing up in a household with a soundtrack from other family members' record collections -- a repertoire that consisted of a steady stream from my father's favored jazz artists and big bands to my older siblings' mushy and rocking hits of the '50s -- the Beatles' music
I claimed as truly my very own. Darn, even my vocal range, pitch and enunciation matched perfectly that of Lennon's and McCartney's. Spurred by childhood dreams of grandeur, I was truly under the impression that I could be a potential fifth Beatle. Hence, under such compelling illusion, no one could possibly thwart my determination to see the Beatles in person, in one way or another.

Prior to their weekend arrival, a Manila Times article highlighted the upcoming visit replete with a map of their motorcade route from the airport to the Manila Yacht Club. Needless to say, that article inspired me to hatch a plan unbeknownst to all, except for my sister Inday and four more childhood friends who range in age from 11 to 15 (I was to celebrate my fourteenth birthday the following week).

On that momentous Saturday, the 3rd of July, 1966, all dressed up as if headed to a children's party, we got on a cab on Avenida Rizal that took us to Dewey Boulevard and Quirino Avenue. According to the motorcade route as illustrated by the Manila Times article, this was where the cars heading north from the airport would have to make a u-turn if they wanted to go to the yacht club. Hunch told me
the motorcade had to slow down to a crawl in order to accomplish such maneuver; thus, this would be the ideal ground for us to claim.

There was a lot of traffic on that Saturday afternoon and when we finally reached our destination -- at the service road that paralleled the boulevard near corner Quirino --
the motorcade with the white Cadillac limousine (obviously with the Beatles in it) were fast approaching; only a hundred or so meters from the u-turn. After silently offering a prayer of appreciation -- that the Beatles weren't flown by a helicopter instead -- we all jumped out of that taxi like a bunch of thoroughbreds bolting out of the starting gate; racing over to the boulevard as if our lives depended on it. Years of playing 'tag' and tumbang preso certainly gave our legs the much needed sprinting power.

And as it in lockstep, as we neared that particular u-turn junction, the white Cadillac also began to decelerate. For a few precious seconds,
Ringo, John, Paul and George were all within our arms' reach. As evidenced by the wide smiles on theirs faces, they were all apparently enthralled by the sight of our group of nicely-dressed kids running alongside their limousine while screaming out their names.

John Lennon removed the shades that covered his eyes, and his seemingly heartfelt smile and enthusiastic waving hand made my knees and legs suddenly felt rubbery. As the white limousine completed it's u-turn on its way to the yacht club, we headed for the grassy ground along the boulevard where I fell, tripping everyone else behind me in the process. We remained laying on the grass for a few minutes before we slowly got up to brush ourselves off and get back to the taxi waiting for us. The cab driver patted our backs; very much delighted that we all had seen the Beatles in person and up close.

We had the cab driver drop us off at the same spot where he had picked us up -- on Avenida Rizal, a safe and far enough distance from our house. I paid him with the money that I've managed to save the past few months. We then headed to Manong's sari-sari store where I treated everyone to a bottle of Cosmos sarsaparilla and hopiang hapon. Afterwards, Mang Fermin came by and we all enjoyed a cone of dirty ice cream as well. Everyone was rather giddy while discussing in hushed tones what we had experienced earlier that afternoon. Everyone promised to keep it as our very own secret.

When we all went home, my sister Inday and I found our father alone in the downstairs living room reading the newspaper. After pressing his hand on our foreheads, my sister raced upstairs while I sat next to my father. He asked how the birthday party was. I told him the truth: I said it was my upcoming birthday that we celebrated. And that we took a cab to Dewey Boulevard to see the Beatles' motorcade. I was prepared to accept whatever punishment he thought appropriate for such roguish act. Instead he just calmly told me not to mention what we had done to anyone else, especially to my mother. Unlike my sister who had immediately gone upstairs when we got home, I chose to remain sitting on the sofa next to my father, lost in thought. For some strange reason, I was feeling that my childhood, my age of wonder, was finally coming to an end.

I was aroused from my pensive mood only when my brother Pepsi came down and turned on the radio. The top ten program he tuned into was playing the Beatles' Paperback Writer.
After the song was finished, I went upstairs to change my clothes.

The Beatles' concert performances in Manila during that weekend set a record-breaking phenomenon in terms of attendance. Some estimates placed the figure as high as 50,000 for each performance. Regrettably, what could have been a historic musical event soon got marred by 'political' controversy.

Supposedly, a miscommunication between their local promoters and manager, Brian Epstein, resulted to Imelda and her friends getting insulted by the Beatles' nonappearance at a Palace reception. Consequently, incited by the Marcos' media machine, Beatlemania turned into Beatlephobia. Hence, the Beatles, including their entire entourage, were roughed up at the airport as they were leaving Manila. U
ndoubtedly, it was a concert tour that proved less than fabulous for the famed Fab Four.

Nevertheless, what I deemed more unfortunate for the Beatles was the missed opportunity to enjoy a glorious Manila Bay sunset. At that time, since they may have already been experimenting with mind-altering substances such as LSD, God only knows what words and music might have come from Lennon and McCartney after enjoying a spectacular Manila Bay sunset. A more psychedelic tune than Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds, I bet.

* * *

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posted by Señor Enrique at 9:31 AM


Blogger EM said...

Lucky you for you saw the beatles in person. Their songs are ageless. Even my son who is only 14 is head over heels on Beatles. He is learning to play "Hey Jude" and "Let It Be" in piano right now. It only shows that even the new generations are enthralled to the beatles songs.

I will also be not surprised if he sneak out one day just to have a glimpse of the popular band. My only hope is that he takes me with him...hehe. I wanna see too!

October 11, 2008 11:10 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not so much of a Beatle fan, but I have several favorites among their songs: "Golden Slumbers/Carry that Weight", "Let it Be" and of course, "Across the Universe".

"Let it Be", I lately realized, has some kind of religious tone in it - although it is hard to say if that was indeed the message which McCartney wanted to convey... because as you said during that time, they were actively experimenting with mind altering substances, so Mother Mary, for all we know might pertain to Mary Jane or Marijuana. Oh well, not really abreast with Beatle info, I'm just guessing. :)

News that circulated during their visit in Manila was that Paul McCartney (or was it John Lennon), supposedly wiped his forehead with a handkie, and handed it to the Palace emissary and said: "Here, give this to the First Lady."

When "Let it Be" the movie was shown, my siblings were all very excited, they even recommended it to our parents. So my mom and dad went to see the film. When they got home from the movie, inis na inis ang nanay ko... "Ano ba naman yung pelikulang yun? Wala naman palang kuwento! Wala akong nakita sa screen kundi puro balbas at bigote!" hahaha.

October 11, 2008 11:38 AM  

Blogger ka tony said...

Hi Eric,

I'm proud to say that I'm one of the thousand lucky audience who saw the Beatles at Rizal Memorial Football Stadium. The sound system was so bad, plus the screaming of the fans...wala ka nang marinig!!! The sound of screaming fans was like a ten 747 jet planes landing at the same time! But watching them performed live, was nothing better! Our local band the "Downbeats" opened for them. I'm so glad sa ginawa nilang "no show" sila sa Malacanang.

Might be your intention Eric to write a blog about The Fab Four 'cuz yesterday, October 9 was John Lennon's birthday. He could have been 68 years old, probably still writing beautiful poetry, music, art show & protesting against the war in Iraq.

I read your past blog about Lennon "THE NIGHT THE MUSIC DIED" I did a painting of him which was part of my one man show here in San Francisco. Titled my Lennon painting "THE DAY THE MUSIC DIED" here's the page...

You also mentioned that you are saving the Playboy copy where they interviewed Lennon few hours before he was shot, I have that as well. But you can download the very last interview of John Lennon few hours before he was murdered in AUDIO! on my website...

Enjoy Eric,
ka tony

October 11, 2008 1:41 PM  

Blogger Unknown said...

this is a sweet memory, Eric! seeing The Beatles a few meters away--wow! I could have fainted.:D what an unforgettable birthday treat.

October 11, 2008 1:48 PM  

Blogger ka tony said...

Pahabol Eric,

Ang ganda naman ng kuha mong litrato!!! Congrats na select na Photo of the Week by the editors of Manila Bulletin's Picture Perfect section. Bagay na bagay na visual sa kanta, written, composed, performed - the 1st, 2nd & 3rd voice in a capella... "BECAUSE" by John Lennon.

The story goes that Lennon was reading newspaper, while Yoko was playing piano of Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata." Lennon stopped reading, took a tape recorder & recorded "Moonlight Sonata" After recording the music, Lennon played the tape in reversed, wrote a great poetry with it & the song "BECAUSE" was born!

You can hear the solo "Pure Lennon" a capella of "Because" on my website...

enjoy again Eric,
ka tony

October 11, 2008 2:01 PM  

Blogger Unknown said...

oh, it was Lennon's birtday the other day---October 9th. i "discovered" The Beatles when i was around 9 or 10 years old. my uncles are beatles fan...they entertained me with beatles songs when i stayed with my grandparents for the weekend. i even saw one of my uncles cry when lennon died.

my friends and i played the guitar in high school singing "strawberry fields","imagine", "the long and winding road" and "yesterday". and i have a friend who cries when she hears "here, there and everywhere".

October 11, 2008 2:03 PM  

Blogger JayAshKal said...

Truly one of the classic bands of all time. Unfortunately, like the ABBA they have not had any reunin tours or gig like other bands.

Nice story. My brush with fame is shaking hands as a boy with Ferdinand Marcos, in the mid-60's. I think it was his second term. I remember the numerous band aids on his hand... I surmise a lot of people pinched his hand.

October 11, 2008 2:47 PM  

Blogger nutart said...

ethereal photo, Eric! As well as an engaging short story! Wow, quite a brief but soul-connection you had there with John Lennon!

In the highschool where I taught, we would have our nights all filled up with activities and one such was Beatle's night---as I recall it must have been regularly on a Wednesday. We would light candles, watch the valley down below and eat pica-pica. The rest of the week were dedicated to Yoyoy Villame, Joey Ayala, Madonna, ABBA...and Bob Marley :-). We would randomly choose the other singers but these mentioned were our mainstays.

October 11, 2008 7:13 PM  

Blogger Dennis Villegas said...

I can relate with this story since my uncle was a press photographer who covered the Beatles's stay in Manila in 1966. The concert was supposed to be held in Araneta Coliseum but was transferred to the Rizal Stadium. It was said that the Fab Four even received some beatings from Imelda's cohorts while rushing to get to the plane.

October 11, 2008 7:40 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was too young to see the Beatles when they arrived in Manila. But then in 1972, I was all 4 of them plus Yoko Ono at Kennedy International when they arrived from London.
I never saw them again up to this time.

October 11, 2008 7:52 PM  

Blogger BCS said...

How WONDEFUL it must feel for you to reminisce on this, Señor Enrique. I've had a few of these experiences though none nearly as fabulous as yours. :)

October 11, 2008 8:59 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow eric, that's an amazing experience! ;-) what an adventurous childhood you had!

October 11, 2008 9:50 PM  

Blogger NOYPETES said...

Maraming nalugi na barbero sa Pilipinas nuong sumikat ang Beatles.
Kumita rin ng husto ang pamilya Santos na may-ari ng Glenmore shoes sa kalye Azcarraga dahil duon ka lang nuon makaka-pag-pagawa ng Beatles Boots na may elastic o garter sa gilid ng boots. At sa kumpitensiya ng pamilya Santos ay nagtayo rin ng isa pang pagawaan ng sapatos ang kapatid ng matandang Santos sa Azcarraga rin na ang tawag naman ay Glendale Shoes. Meron din combo ang anak ng may-ari ng Glenmore Shoes nuon na ang tawag ay "Boy Santos and D' Glenmores". Dito unang lumitaw sa tugtugan si Mike Hanopol a.k.a "Palakol" dahi; sa laki ng mga ngipin niya nuon. Meron din half Beatles boots na di kasin taas ng Beatles Boots kung medyo limitado ang pera mo pang-sapatos. Matindi ang epekto ng Beatlemania sa Pilipinas nuon na halos lahat yata ng kabataan ay gusto maging kamukha ng mga Beatles at dahil di kahirapan ang mga melody ng tugtugin nila at makabuluhan ang mg lyrics sa marami, tanging ito ang maririnig mo sa radyo, tambayan at lalo na kapag nag labasan na ang mga Lumanog gitara na yaring Pinoy at mabibili mo ng mura nuon sa Raon, ayos na ang magdamag! Pati ang mga Harana ay na-uwi na sa Beatles songs, tulad ng "Yesterday, Girl at Michelle" at pag sapit naman ng hating-gabi at maliwanag ang buwan tuwing Sabado, may sisigaw ng, "Mr. Moonlight" kasunod na riyan ang mga pag-sigaw din ng mga kalapit bahay na tulog na pero nagulantang sa ingay ng mga istambay. Takbuhan na! dala at sukbit ang mga gitara, tsinelas, supot ng pan-de sal, lipat naman sa ibang lugar at patuloy pa rin ang mga awitan ng Beatles songs hanggang ma-paos dulot ng hamog at lamig ng kina-umagahan. Bumili po kayo ng DVD ng "Tribute to George" na dulot sa ala-ala ni George Harrison na siya namang ginawang mangyari ng kaibigan niyang si Eric Clapton at kasama ang marami sa mga nakasama ni George Harrison sa buhay at mundo ng musika niya.
Naruon din po ang anak niyang si Dani na parang kambal niya ang hitsura. Matutuwa po kayo at may kaunting luha po para duon sa mga masugid na taga-hanga gn Beatles at lao na po kay George Harrison at ang mga sinulat niyang awitin.

October 12, 2008 12:40 AM  

Blogger Amadeo said...

A nice human interest story, Eric. Though I was not too fond with the Beatles. The King was and is my choice.

A little trivia, from the grapevine. The King too was invited to perform there, in the newly-done Araneta Coliseum. But the King never performed outside the US, except Canada (Hawaii is still US). But he did not want to be rude and to sound arrogant, so his people instead as rumors go asked for an astronomically high fee to it could be refused by the Aranetas.

And that's how it went.

Re the Beatles, we of course know that at the end the entire tour soured and the incident became a black mark for us even to this day.

October 12, 2008 1:15 AM  

Blogger just me said...

Great Shot! How I wish Im in Manila now.

October 12, 2008 4:10 AM  

Blogger Watergirl said...

Perfect timing of a Beatle related post given John Lennon's birthday a few days ago! What a lovely close encounter memory, I'm glad your dad didn't get angry and let you enjoy your moment.

Speaking of the Manila Yacht Club, I have been inside the place a few times, you can take sailing lessons there. Unfortunately, I can't say I have great memories, since falling off your boat in Manila Bay is not something I would wish on most people. It's a great location, but peehew! Olfactorily (spelling?) offensive.

October 12, 2008 7:37 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Hi EM,

After so many years of going to the movies with just my father or my Tia Inez (at Cine Noli ... hehehe), my mother and I went to see a movie, just the two of us for the first and only time. That was when I had just started high school. The movie was "The Sound of Music."

Your son is doing now what I could only dream of when I was his age -- to play the piano. "Hey Jude" is one awesome piece of words and music. By the way, he ought to get into Elton John's music as well, if only to study the guy's piano-playing technique -- one of the best in modern music.

October 12, 2008 8:18 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

"Across the Universe," Rhoda, means so much and evoke fond and poignant memories.

I'd like to think that "Let It Be" might have been entirely McCartney's creation. Being more of a superb melody maker than wordsmith, his lyrics tend to lean towards redundancy as evidenced by the phrase "let it be" being repeated ad infinitum. And I don't think it has nothing to do with religion, either. He probably just used Mother Mary since he couldn't come up with anything else to fit a rhyme. Yoko once poked insult to McCartney during some awards ceremony (for which she later apologized). She alluded to McCartney's fondness for "June with spoon"-type of crappy lyric writing ... hehehe.

But in fairness, I should point out that Lennon sucks big time with melody making :)

October 12, 2008 8:27 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Wow! That's some painting, Ka Tony! Perfect for a Lennon anthology album. You should send it to Yoko. Serious!

My posting this blog article was purely coincidental to Lennon's birthday. I had no idea it was his birthday on the 9th. No wonder he loved the number 9.

Your local band opened for the Beatles??? Whoa! Awesome!

By the way, my favorite local band famous for covering Beatles tunes was Dynasouls. Remember them?

From what I understand, the Beatles played less than a dozen songs which they played throughout this particular tour. In addition, the screaming fans prevented the enjoyment of hearing their music performed live; thus, they eventually decided to stop touring altogether and mainly focused on studio work.

Thanks for the URLS! Checking out the interview now.

October 12, 2008 8:43 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

In retrospect, Luna, this adventure of seeing the Beatles' motorcade marked the end of an era for our group of childhood friends; reminiscent of the film, "Stand By Me."

October 12, 2008 8:45 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Thank you, Ka Tony. Although I like that photograph very much, I had no idea it would attract the attention of photo editors. By the way, it was also one of the finalists of a photo contest sponsored by Inter-Continental Hotels.

"Because" is one of my favorite tunes from the White Album!

October 12, 2008 8:49 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

I had no idea it was Lennon's birthday the other day, Luna. This was completely coincidence.

I loce all those songs you mentioned. "Here, There and Everywhere" is one I love to belt out now and then ... hehehe.

I was also affected deeply by Lennon's sudden death :(

October 12, 2008 8:53 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

I didn't get a chance to ever see Marcos in person, Mario, but I did get a chence to see the entire remaining family during a cocktail reception of Basi art exhibit at National Museum.

I ran into John Lennon and Yoko a few times while in New York; however, like most New Yorkers, I respected them and let them by regular New Yorkers.

October 12, 2008 8:56 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Love those memories of Beatle nights, Bernadette :)

I have got to mention this: one of the reasons I was lost in thought while sitting next to my father after coming to see the motorcade was because I was trying to figure out how on earth I've thought of that particular u-turn and what made me drag my group of friends to betray our parents' trust and head on over to Dewey Boulevard yet everything seemed so auspicious; as if the universe wanted it for us to be that close to this group of stars.

I should also mention, Bernadette, that this was the beginning of a series of weird phenomenons that I was about to experience, which I'd probably discuss with your dad once we get together.

October 12, 2008 9:02 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

That's right, Dennis. They got pushed, shoved and everything else. Brian Epstein even threatened to sue for an injury he sustained.

I really felt bad for the Beatles. It wasn't at all any of their fault.

October 12, 2008 9:10 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Wow! That was some interaction, Anonymous!

During the '70s in NYC, my friend Jack was working part time as a messenger when he chanced upon John and Yoko sitting at the reception of a law office in which he had to deliver an envelope.

He couldn't help but extend his arm for a handshake and say, "Wow! John Lennon! I've been wanting to meet you!"

He said John Lennon got up from his seat and shook his hand firmly as he said, "Been wanting to meet you, too!" with a wide smile on his face. That was Lennon all right!

Incidentally, a lucky turn of event for this guiy Jack who was a pretty good looking Irish kid. He delivered an evelope as well to a ritzy guest at a fancy Manhattan Hotel who turned out to be Elton John. soon thereafter, he quit his job as a bike messenger and started working for the Star magazine as a photographer, thanks to Elton John. Over a few bottles of beer we'd ribbed him; asking if there ever was a sort of "forbidden quickie liaison" that prompted him getting such a prized job ... hehehe.

October 12, 2008 9:20 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Thank you, BCS!

However, since we didn't talk about it, the memory of which somehow got blurred through the ensuing years. When I returned to Manila, when passing the Manila Yacht Club on our way to Coastal Road, I asked my sister if she remembered our having gone to see the Beatles' motorcade. She immdiately said yes! I was glad to hear her say that because I was beginning to think that it was all simply a dream. She helped me recall many of the details. God bless her!

Her memory recall is astonishingly sharp to this very day as compared to mine, which I appreciate so much; otherwise, many other childhood memories would have gotten lost deep in the recess of my mind.

October 12, 2008 9:27 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Sige, Pete, maghanap ako ng "Tribute to George." Natatandaan ko ang malaking concert niya sa Madison Square for Bangladesh. Kasama din ata niya si Eric Clapton doon. Kaya lang sold-out agad ang tickets, hindi ako naka-attend.

A lot of music critics admired the way George Harrison sort of grew up and developed his skills as a guitarist from the early days of the Beatles to his being a solo artist. I love his "All Things Must Pass" and the live Bangladesh concert recording at Madison Square Garden.

I remember those Beatle boots! My brother Pepsi had a pair custom made which he later passed on to me. You can imagine how "sikat" it made me look back then amongst my schoolmates :)

Thank you for sharing with us the evolution of the harana songs as influenced by the Beatles. I wonder how effective their tunes to the pretty maidens of the barrios, though, who preferred to be serenaded with Tagalog songs ... hehehe.

October 12, 2008 9:49 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Hi Amadeo,

I remember the time when my older siblings and cousins were gathered around in front of our house and they were lamenting the King's signing up for the Army. They were all very much enamored by Elvis and his music.

Another pop idol at that time whom I loved for his zany piano playing style was Jerry Lee Lewis who was expected to take over the King's reign since Elvis had joined the military. Unfortunately, that scandalous affair he had with his 13-year-old cousin did him in.

I heard that Elvis, at some point, was up for the chance to meet with the Beatles but the Colonel oppsed the idea.

After that Asian tour, the Beatles pursued and allocated their efforts to their studio recordings as guided by the true fifth Beatle, George Martin, their producer. It was his background in classical music that gave the Beatles' music a certain 'élan.'

October 12, 2008 9:58 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Thank you, ur-prince! Perhaps, a balikbayan vacation is in the offing? Hehehe.

October 12, 2008 9:59 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

A fellow photographer had said exactly the same thing, MTan, the smell of the waters behind the club is indeed revolting. I wonder if its chemical composition erodes the bottom of the boats ... hehehe.

As with my father, since he was mainly a source of my interest in diverse genres of music, I'm sure he felt bad that he couldn't take me to see the Beatles perform live.

I may have also mentioned this before: he was a member of the a Chinese business organization in Santa Cruz, Manila, which the members occasionally gathered for meetings and fine Chinese lauriat dinner. Whenever my mother didn't want or couldn't attend with him, he'd usually take me along. There was one meeting/dinner when I noticed a noticed a somewhat forlorn look on my father's face. So what I did was get up and approached the band leader if I could sing a couple of Beatle tunes, he galdly obliged and it was my very first public performance as a singer -- belting out a couple of Beatle tunes. My father's face brightened up with pride for his bunso entertaining the entire crowd. It was fun!

So I guess, with that in his mind, he forgave me for betraying his trust for day to see the Beatles in person :)

October 12, 2008 10:11 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Hi Caryn!

It was only that particular experience that I'd consider an adventurous childhood episode without the knowledge and consent of my parents. For the most part, I was a good law-abiding kid ... hehehe.

October 12, 2008 10:19 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

To fellow bloggers who emailed me:

Have pertinent problems in which comments posted on my blog sometimes do not get published, for this I apologize and had notified Blogger accordingly.

Enjoy the sunny Sunday everyone!

October 12, 2008 10:22 AM  

Blogger NOYPETES said...

Tribute to George or Concert for George....on 2 DVD edition....A must see for Beatles fans and George Harrison songs.

October 12, 2008 10:47 AM  

Blogger ka tony said...

Hi Eric,

Thanks for your compliment on my "Lennon painting" & hope you had a chance to download "Lennon's last interview"

Eric & Ka Peter if you want to watch a portion of "Tribute for George Harrison's First Death Anniversary (Nov. 29, 2002), London's Albert Hall" One of the performers was PRINCE and we all know that PRINCE have Filipino blood. Check the portion where played "While my Guitar Gently Weeps" on his "telecaster butterscotch." here's my website...

Eric, does your Irish messenger friend Jack knew that John Lennon & Elton John were mag "kumpadre?" Lennon's son, Sean is Elton John's godson. The story goes, since the break up of John & Yoko, Lennon didn't have a single # 1 hit. Elton & Lennon collaborated on one song "Whatever Gets You to the Night" and Elton made a bet with Lennon that it'll be # 1. And if it made it to the # 1 position on the chart, Lennon will appear & perform on Elton's live concert. The song went to # 1 for two weeks. Lennon performed on Elton's concert & after his two songs "I Saw Her Standing There" & "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" he went backstage & Yoko Ono was there, waiting for Lennon! So ginawang "kumpadre ni John Lennon si Elton John, when Yoko gave birth to Sean!

The song "Because" is in the Beatles last album "Abbey Road" Eric & not in the "White Album" though the "White Album" was the start of the "bad blood," the reason why Harrison invited Eric Clapton to play guitar solo on his "While my Guitar Gently Weeps" to neutralized the Beatles bad behavior.

The original concept of "Let it Be" was a double album. LP # 1 - will be live & raw (no over dubbed, retake, no edit). "Abbey Road" side A, will be John's music & side B will be Paul's. But the Lennon & McCartney can't believe when Harrison came up with his "Something" & "Here Comes the Sun" so they included Harrison's songs!

I beg to disagree with you Eric, that Lennon's melody sucks! McCartney's melody are what Lennon said "Silly Love Songs" and most of the time, with the help of George Martin's piano & strings arrangements. Lennon was the "ROCKER" of the group! Usually opposed the arrangements & help of Martin. The early Beatles' album songs, most of them was Lennon's. To name some "Lennon ballads"... If I Fell - I'll Be Back - You've Got to Hide Your Love Away - Norwegian Wood - Nowhere Man - In My Life - A Day in a Life - Julia - Because, he wrote while with The Beatles! Lennon was also the "experimentalist of the group, the reversed tape in the song "Rain," the one chord song "Tomorrow Never Knows" even Martin can't believe that it can done to strum, a-minor key all throughout whole song! How about a 24 tracks of "Strawberry Fields Forever" How about the Loop recording. Thanks to Lennon, there's now "sound over sound recording" in the studio, minus one, multi-separate tracks, & many more recording wonders that now recording artist & recording technicians now are enjoying & making their recording sessions piece of cake.

Sorry Eric, if I sounded an authority on recordings, but I experienced, I know & we spent hours & hours in recording studios & film production studio, just to come out with a 30 seconds commercial.

Thanks Eric,
ka tony

October 12, 2008 1:37 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, Senor, you have such interesting life experiences!

By the way, do they still make Cosmos sarsaparilla? I remember drinking that as a kid whenever I had 5 centavos to spend.

October 12, 2008 8:43 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Thanks, Pete! I did check out Amazon and had asked my nephew to include one in the next balikbayan box :)

October 12, 2008 9:56 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Whoa! Had no idea Prince has Filipino blood, Ka Tony. He happens to be one of the most prolific songwriter. David Bowie is one, too, but not as much as Prince.

Had also worked in Prince's movie project "Purple Rain," but I'll leave it for a future blog article :)

"While My Guitar Gently Sleeps" is one of the best tunes there is.

You're right, "Because" is in the Abbey Road album.

Yes, Lennon may have come up with those wonderful classic melodies, but what I meant more was the solo albums during the post-Beatle era. As much as I love John Lennon, my personal taste in music leans towards McCartney's melodies, but I couldn't care much for his mundane and downright silly lyrics.

As for studio, looping, and sampling techniques, I got more into it when Brian Eno hit the scene, long after the Beatles.

Nonetheless, the phenomenal success of the Beatles in general, I'd like to think, proves a certain theory that I subscribe to; that is, the key to success is "timing." The Beatles happened to come in at just the right time. Had they arrived a couple of years earlier or later, they may have not attracted as much attention.

And although I may love Lennon for what he had created and for being the 'spirit and energy' of the Beatles, as for being a 'rocker,' I'd say Jerry Lee Lewis got him beat ... hehehe.

Thank you for sharing, Ka Tony!

October 12, 2008 10:20 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Thank you, Heidi!

The Cosmos brand is still in the market and sarsaparilla flavor is still around, but I don't know much about the local soft drink industry since I had given up on them for good.

October 12, 2008 10:23 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...


As I had suggested to Ka Tony once, when posting comments, may I suggest that you copy and save it prior to hitting the publish button. This way, if in case Blogger doesn't publish it, you may just cut and paste, and then resend once more.


October 12, 2008 10:28 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

You were very fortunate to see the greatest band in history in flesh - all of them at once :) Sir Paul and Ringo are still touring around but seeing them is not exactly seeing the Beatles.

I have the Beatles Anthology DVD and the reason why they didn't have a reunion concert again was in utmost respect for John. The group said that without John, they're not the Beatles. Ringo appears to be the most enstimental of the group. One for all- all for one. Hat's off to the Beatles man :)

It is sad that the fab four eanks their Manila visit as one of the worst experiences they had as a group :(

October 12, 2008 10:51 PM  

Blogger Panaderos said...

I read in an old Philippines Free Press article (July 1966) written by Nick Joaquin that even though the Beatles hated being on the Elizalde yacht, they did enjoy the views of the bay. George Harrison was reported to have said to a Ms. Loinaz, one of the ladies on board the yacht, "we want to come back once this craze has died down and we're not famous anymore." By craze, he was obviously referring to the madness of Beatlemania.

It's just too bad that the trip ended on such a sour note.

October 13, 2008 12:16 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

That was indeed quite a magical and mystical part of my life, BW. To this day, whenever the memory would spring up, I'd still wonder how I thought of talking my friends into going with me to see the motorcade, and at such an ideal spot, too.

During the '70s, Lorne Michaels would occasionally get on camera to coax the Beatles into getting together again for one night to host the show. And since the fee is a flat $3,000, he'd suggest that John, Paul and George equally divide the money among themselves and then just hand out Ringo whatever amount they deem appropriate from their respective share ... hehehe.

But more seriously, Ringo was already a pro when he replaced Pete Best as the Beatles' drummer, and I must say that his musicianship enhanced the group's overall sound.

Yes, it was indeed unfortunate that their Manila concerts turned out not to be worth remembering.

October 13, 2008 7:51 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

I would have loved to read that article by Nick Joaquin, Panaderos. From what I heard, Elizalde had about a dozen of his friends aboard as well which didn't give the Beatles any privacy or room for rest; hence, the Beatles eventually moved to Manila Hotel.

Yes, it would have been something else for them to really enjoy the Manila Bay sunset without the madness that beset their entire stay from the moment they landed when their personal carry-on bags were taken from them to be inspected. One could only assume that their initial protest or resistance may suggest drugs inside those bags. Luckily, the custom official who did check their bags probably didn't find anything or just let them get away with them without any hassle.

October 13, 2008 8:02 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

that is one stunning photo, my friend...

October 13, 2008 8:29 AM  

Blogger JayAshKal said...

"...approached the band leader if I could sing a couple of Beatle tunes, he galdly obliged and it was my very first public performance as a singer -- belting out a couple of Beatle tunes. My father's face brightened up with pride for his bunso entertaining the entire crowd."

Wow another side of you Eric, the singer. I love music but my voice does not seem to in tune with the music.

That is why you are the favorite, you are the "bunso" and we know that the yougnest can get away with almost anything!

Would love to see Ka Tony's Multiply site, but unfortunately I have to wait till I get home. My work PC blocks all these dating/networking sites save for blogspot.

Certaily the tandem of Lennon-McCartney is still one of best in the pop-rock era. I guess the magic was there and not so much with just Lennon or McCartney individually. I think they also started integrating social conciousness into their songs, but George Harrison is even famous for his sitar sessions with Indian musician Ravi Shankar (who btw is Norah Jones biological dad!)Even Australian Idols have a Beatles night wherein they sing and/or interpret Beatle songs. Classic Beatles songs!

October 13, 2008 8:52 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Lennon & MCCartney was indeed a fruitful partnership, Mario, but as the title of George Harrison's LP suggests, "All Things Must Pass."

The other notable partnerships of that era that come to mind are Elton John & Bernie Taupin, and Burt Bacaharach & Hal David.

As a kid, with my father as my main audience, I was under the impression that I could do no wrong; however, these days, it'd take a lot of guts and alcohol for me to get up on a stage and sing ... hehehe.

October 13, 2008 12:15 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Many thanks, Nell!

October 13, 2008 12:16 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow!! That was some adventure! Buti ka pa nakita mo ang childhood idols mo. I was a Duran Duran fan way back and I remember asking my father for a plane ticket to Palawan because there was a rumor that they were shooting a video there. Obviously hindi ako pinayagan. A year later I had to settle with the door of the St. Regis kasi dun daw sila nag-stay when they had a concert in New York. Babaw no :)

Btw, I have something for you on my site

October 15, 2008 4:14 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Were you at least able to see Duran Duran at the St. Regis, Cookie?

Thanks much, but until now, tulala pa din ako whenever I think of that Saturday when we saw the Beatles. It was as if someone "whispered" the idea to me.

And many thanks as well for the "Kick Ass Blogger" award, Cookie. Akala ko si Red na ang bibigay mo sa akin, eh ... hehehe.

October 16, 2008 9:15 AM  

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Life in Manila as observed by a former New Yorker who with a laptop and camera has reinvented himself as a storyteller. Winner of the PHILIPPINE BLOG AWARDS: Best Photo Blog in 2007 and three Best Single Post awards in 2008.


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