Sunday, August 21, 2016

Jose Mari Chan- A Musical Poet


“Each song is a story....each story has a song”.
Jose Mari Chan is a musical poet. He is a Filipino-Chinese singer/songwriter who weaves the stories in his songs. He is a musician, lyricist, and performer who started his career in the 1960’s. His triple-platinum and Double-Diamond albums are full of songs that have withstood the test of time. He is a multi-awarded genius whose compositions range from romantic ballads to commercial jingles to theme songs to motion picture scores. How come he is not a National Artist yet?

Chan's musical poetry is something I always come back to, its beautiful melodies and eloquent lyrics are soothing to the soul. Especially today, I needed to clean my ears after I caught snippets of ugly rap music from a passing motorist (ugh!). The beautiful lyrics of Afterglow is an antidote to the nonsensical/disgusting prose of Kanye West.

Growing up in the Philippines, I sang along Jose Mari Chan's many songs, secretly dreaming of someone writing a romantic ballad, just for me. The songs remind me of simpler but joyous times, when the lyrics of the songs paint the picture vividly and fill you with emotions. As there are comfort foods, Constant Change and Love to Last a Lifetime are among my comfort songs. Chan’s compositions are definitely part of the soundtrack of my life.

Afterglow - First Single 1967

We're at the afterglow
Of what we both do know
Known as the spring of our youth.
We've loved and shared the dawn
And hoped that we'd go on
'Cause even that dawn had to go.

Constant Change

We're on the road
We move from place to place
And oftentimes when I'm about to call it home
We'd have to move along
Life is a constant change...

Can We Just Stop And Talk Awhile - Lea Salonga version

Fancy meeting you alone in the crowd
Couldn't help but notice your smile
While everybody else around us is going about
Can we just stop and talk awhile? I've been often told our world's growing old
And that friends are harder to find
Do tell me more about yourself
We could share a thought or two
Now who would mind?

Sing me a song again, Daddy

Sing me a song again, Daddy
Sing me a happy verse.
Teach me those clever lines you sang
As you carried me on your shoulders.
Sing me that hymn that you so loudly
Sang in church with mom.
Sing it again to me and fill me
With all your words of wisdom.

Beautiful Girl

Beautiful girl, wherever you are
I knew when I saw you, you had opened the door
I knew that I'd love again after a long, long while
I'd love again.

Please Be Careful with My Heart - Sarah Geronimo and Christian Bautista version

If you love me like you tell me
Please be careful with my heart
You can take it just don't break it
Or my world will fall apart

You are my first romance
And I'm willing to take a chance
That 'till life is through
I'll still be loving you

Can't We Start Over Again

All through my life of seasons
No matter how far I roam
Always there's something missing inside
Yearning to come back home

You are the one I return to
Love. Only love leads the way
Give us this chance to start over again
Darling, I'm coming home to stay.

My Girl, My Woman, My Friend - featuring Janet Basco

When my work is through at the end of the day
There's nothing else that I'd rather do
Than to be with you at the end of the day
To be right by your side makes me feel brand new
'Cause you're my girl, my woman, my friend
And that's how it's gonna be till the end.
Loving you is what I live for
And I can't ask for anything more
You're my woman, my girl, and my friend
Rolled into one.

Afraid For Love To Fade

I can't let you pass me by
I just can't let you go but I know
That I am much too shy to let you know
Afraid that I might say the wrong
Words and displease you
Afraid for love to fade
Before it can come true

Lea Salonga version

A Love To Last A Lifetime

We're all just merely passing through
Doing what we can do in a lifetime
We have more than one adventure to take
More than one dream to make in our lifetime
As for me there's only one dream
And that's to love you, my love
With a love to last a lifetime

Mamang Sorbetero (from Mr. Songwriter)

The melody of Celeste Legaspi's folk hit 'Mamang Sorbetero' was actually derived from Chan's 'Mr. Songwriter.'

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