Monday, March 17, 2008

Music Lesson #15


As many of the friends of Los Chupacabras know, the band is currently on a sort of "live performance moratorium" until we finish the album. We've already in fact given ourselves a deadline -- 2008ish. Hopefully we'll be able to come out with "Release the Evil" sometime before judgment day.

So now I will be writing about songs I wrote that only a few people have heard.
I had a very bad dream last night concerning the passing of a loved one. I awoke at 4 in the morning, stared at the ceiling, orientated myself in the dark (I am in a foreign country as I write this), then sat up on the sofa I'd been bedding on.
The song "Mundong Ibabaw" started off (as most of my songs do) as a catchy riff playing in my head one morning. By lunchtime I had my guitar in front of the computer in my office and I was typing away.
I guess the song reflects my, ehm, philosophy in living. To anyone who'd care to listen, it goes like this:
a. Life is very short and the prospect of an untimely death hangs constantly over us and our loved ones; so
b. You have to make every moment count, squeeze in all the good (and bad) you can do in the short time you have on earth, and be kind to the people you love and/or love you because when they're dead that's it.
All the time I was writing it I had Karl Roy in mind. I had visions of myself as Karl Roy sweaty and shirtless in a club, doing that Axl Rose snake dance thing while holding up a cuapao (this is the Chinese pao sandwich with asado and vegetable filling) in my right hand. Karl Roy, as many pinoys know, already had heart surgery. I remember that time we played with his band Kapatid at the Bilibid Prison. On the way home, he told us he had something like 20,000 pesos worth of Red Horse Beer at his house that he couldn't touch as he'd stopped drinking.
The next day, I was humming the song in my car. I turned on the mp3 player and on came a song by Devendra Barnhart with a riff almost exactly the same as my song's. I realized I must have ripped it off him since I'd listened to that song before I wrote the song. I felt so embarassed but I can't change the riff anymore so that's how it's going to stay (anyway, it's a fairly generic blues riff). The thing about songwriting (or even poetry writing for that matter) is that some of the art "inputs" that influence you tend to show up in your output without your knowing it. You just have to make the best of it and make something new out of the element you ripped off.
Anyway I hope you like the song. If any of you would like to hear it live just buy me a beer, lend me your ears and I'll sing you the song. And I'll try not to sing out of key.
Here it is:
Mundong Ibabaw
Isang gabing madilim sa loob ng bahay namin
Nakita ko si Tatay tila may suliranin
Ang sabi niya sa akin "Meron bang saysay ang buhay?"
Ewan ko!
May luha sa mata, mukhang nakainom
Tumingin siya sa akin at boses niya'y huminahon
"Makinig ka sakin sa huling habilin ko,"
Ang sabi niya
Chorus:
Di na ako tatagal sa mundong ibabaw.
Nasan na ang ilaw?
Bibilan kang cuapao!
Patayin mo'ng tubig bago pa umapaw.
Kaibigan ko si Nuno, bahay niya ay punso
Sampu silang magkakapatid, di siya ang bunso (Si Clifford!)
Sa lahat ng engkanto, siya lang ang mareklamo.
Sabi niya
Di na ako tatagal sa mundong ibabaw.
Nasan na ang ilaw?
Bibilan kang cuapao!
Patayin mo'ng tubig bago pa umapaw.
Nakita ko'ng demonyo nakatambay sa McDo
Nilibre niya 'kong ice cream dinala 'ko sa zoo
Nang siya ay magpaalam ako ay nalungkot.
Ang sabi niya
Di na ako tatagal sa mundong ibabaw.
Nasan na ang ilaw?
Bibilan kang cuapao!
Patayin mo'ng tubig bago pa umapaw.
Ngayon ako ay may anak, may asawa at aso
Wala nang ginawa kundi kayod sa trabaho
Kaya't party on to the break of dawn,
Ano pa ba ang solusyon dahil

Di na ako tatagal sa mundong ibabaw.
Nasan na ang ilaw?
Bibilan kang cuapao!
Patayin mo'ng tubig bago pa umapaw.
Patayin mo'ng tubig bago pa umapaw.
Patayin mo'ng tubig bago pa,
Bago pa umapaw.

1 comment:

cynicaLeah said...

I felt extremely sad since I haven't heard anything from you guys for a long time. Wish I read this way back, I'd gladly buy a truckload of your brew of choice to hear this song.