Archive for Philippines Current Events

Philippine Music Scene: Eraserheads Reunion Concert Making A Big Buzz

Posted in All About The Philippines, Duke420 Articles, Philippine Current Events, Philippine Events, Philippine Music, Philippine News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 15, 2008 by South Arts Festival

I heard the rumor around the Metro Manila that the Eraserheads were going to have a reunion concert. I didn’t take it that seriously at first. But then, it didn’t seem far from probable. Some memorable flashbacks brought me back to circa 1996 or 1997 when the Eraserheads were formed in the University of the Philippines and began gaining huge popularity in the music scene for that wonderful hit Pare Ko – the song still an anthem on many drinking sessions with any barkada. Eraserheads members Ely Buendia, Raimund Marasigan, Buddy Zabala and Marcus Adoro would become household names and eventually reach rock star status.

I can imagine it now. It would be an awesome reunion concert for sure because the Eraserheads know how to rock! And the fans of the E-heads – they know how to party! The buzz about the reunion concert was getting louder, but there was no real confirmation of what was going on. Well, not until today.

Miggy Matute, one of the geniuses of OdysseyLive.net sent out the news on the availability of tickets to the Eraserheads reunion concert on his blog. Details say that it is a free concert which will be held on August 30, 2008 at The Fort Open Field, and that the concert will be a 45 song set that will play for hours. There will be no opening acts – just the Eraserheads blasting their music the entire time. What a treat!

While the concert is deemed free, there is a catch. Apparently, the free tickets are by invitation only, or something to that effect. I still don’t know the exact details, but then there really haven’t been any official announcements about the Eraserheads reunion concert, or when it’s really going to be. According to Miggy Matute’s blog at OdysseyLive.net, there will be an official announcement by August 18th.

Anyway, from what I understand, those who want tickets have to sign up at Marlboro.ph , and just follow the details. They’ll be needing a valid ID and some verification that you are at least 18 and older. They give you a tracking number, and then some other stuff happens. I have yet to check what happens really.

Anyway, apparently Marlboro is the sole sponsor of the Eraserheads reunion concert. But then, the big buzz around this is that Marlboro isn’t allowed to sponsor any kind of event like this. Undersecretary Alexander Padilla of the Department of Health (DOH) issued a warning against the involvement of Philip Morris Philippines Manufacturing, Inc. (PMPMI) in supposedly being the major sponsor of the event.

The DOH cited Republic Act No. 9211, otherwise known as the Tobacco Regulation Act of 2003. RA 9211 prohibits tobacco companies from sponsoring sports, cultural, and artistic events of individuals or team athletes, artists and performers, since any sponsorship endeavor would practically entail some sort of advertisement or promotion for cigarettes. It is clearly stated in RA 9211 that it is illegal for “advertisement or promotion of any cigarette or tobacco company, tobacco product or tobacco use, name, logo or trademarks, and other words, symbols, designs, colors or other deceptions commonly associated with or likely to identify with a tobacco company.”

Well, maybe the reason why the promotions haven’t been as loud, or the details of the Eraserheads reunion concert are still blurry is due to the fact that Marlboro is keeping quiet about it. Or maybe because it would be an “illegal” concert to begin with.

Dr. Maricar Limpin, the chairperson of the Council on Tobacco or Health and Air Pollution appealed to the members of the Eraserheads to disassociate themselves with Marlboro.

Public Affairs and Communications Manager for PMPMI Dave Gomez released in a statement:

“The event is not open to the general public. Access to the event is age-restricted, strictly by invitation only and intended for members of PMPMI’s adult smokers’ database, trade and business partners, and selected adult guests. Invites to the event will be distributed exclusively through PMPMI’s website, http://www.marlboro.com.ph, which is restricted only to persons 18 years old and above. Invites will be issued free of charge, with a corresponding control number, and will be non-transferable. For admission to the event itself, invitees are required to present the personalized invite containing their name and birth date and a corresponding government-issued ID for verification. The event will be held on August 30 at the Bonifacio Global City open grounds in Taguig City.”

“Promotions must be directed only to persons at least eighteen years old. No person below eighteen  years old or who appear to be below eighteen years old may participate in such promotions. The participants in promotions must be required to provide proof of age.”

“RA 9211 allows tobacco promotions with restrictions. On the other hand, tobacco sponsorship is not allowed,” noted Gomez.

The statement further added, “Aside from the provisions on promotion that clearly allows us to stage the performance, we are not making a contribution to a third party. We are organizing the event ourselves and the event will not take place without the support given to it by PMPMI.

“The Eraserheads performance is not a form of sponsorship. PMPMI’s participation in the event is not as a sponsor, but as a promoter. And this promotional event is open only to persons 18 years old and above. If any person will present or try to present a falsified or fake invite or government ID, PMPMI will not hesitate to criminally prosecute the offender to the full extent of the law.”

Wow. Big words. To quote the E-heads “O Diyos ko, Ano ba naman ito!” There is sure a big play on the interpretation of legal definitions. But then, I’m sure the whole hoopla over the concert is going to get ugly and louder as the date of the Eraserheads reunion concert grows near. I only hope that the music of Eraserheads will be much louder than the bickering of the politics and policies of the government vs Marlboro. Whatever happens – I know that a lot of people are excited in anticipation of the Eraserheads. In any case, the audience won’t be arrested. The organizers might get a rough shakedown from law enforcement. But what happens if the Eraserheads get arrested? Hmmm. Riot na ito!

For a brief look into what’s in store, I found this old clip of the Eraserheads. Feel free to sing along.

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Philippine Olympic Swimmer JB Walsh Brings Some Good News and Some Bad News From Beijing

Posted in All About The Philippines, Duke420 Articles, Philippine Current Events, Philippine News, Philippines Sports with tags , , , , , , , on August 12, 2008 by South Arts Festival

First, the good news:

Filipino-American JB Walsh emerged as the winner in Heat 2 of the Men’s 200-m butterfly swimming event. Not bad! Walsh finished 1:59.39, and while that time is still a far cry from the Olympic record of 1:54.04 set by USA’s Michael Phelps in the 2004 Athens Olympics, JB Walsh still earns a record as the first Filipino to swim through 200m under two minutes. I guess his training under 1988 Seoul Olympics gold medalist Anthony Nestey is paying off well.

Now, the bad news:

JB Walsh did not make it into the 16-man semis as his time ranked at 29th among the 44 swimmers of the event. He is ranked among the top 30 in the world in this event. At age 22, JB Walsh can still add some more training in order for him to improve in the 2012 London Olympics and possibly bring home an Olympic Gold Medal for the Philippines.

Even if he didn’t qualify for the semifinals, it was amazing enough to see a Filipino come out first in a heat, and besting a whole bunch of others from around the world. That alone is amazing, and was sure a moment of excitement for the Filipinos who got to watch. Olympics iyan, pare! For a brief shining moment, the Philippines stood proud!

Have some Philippine pride. Watch the video!

Philippine Olympic Shooter Dead Last in 2008 Beijing Olympics

Posted in All About The Philippines, Duke420 Articles, Philippine Current Events, Philippine News, Philippines Sports with tags , , , , , , on August 11, 2008 by South Arts Festival
More Practice, Eric Ang!

More Practice, Eric Ang!

Philippine Olympic Trap Shooter Eric Ang had a dismal final round in the trap shooting event, which landed him at dead last in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, and will be taking home the Plastic Medal, or is it the Paper Medal, or is it Rust Medal? There has to be some consolation for someone who comes in dead last.

Anyway, the 37-year old businessman from Laoag, Eric Ang, faired much better in the Men’s Trap event at the ISSF World Cup held in Germany, and was expected to be among the top in the sport in the upcoming Olympics. However, it seems like Eric Ang shot himself in the foot (pun intended).

“Hilong-hilo pa rin ako after the event (I was still too dizzy after the event)… Pressure in the Olympics is different, you have to prepare long enough,” said Eric Ang, “Actually, this is the fourth or fifth Olympics for at least 75% of the competitors… The others are used to the pressure,” he added.

Well, that’s your reason and we can’t really do much about that, but really now Mr. Ang, what else did you expect in the Olympics? Thanks for the honesty.

Apparently, Eric Ang practices in his own shooting range in Laoag, and maybe that isn’t the real practice required to compete in the level of the Olympics.

Shooting president Art Macapagal said, “Shooting is a mental, psychological game” and apparently Eric Ang just broke down in the mental, psychological game when he couldn’t find his groove.

“I would like to qualify again. Next time I’ll be ready,” Eric Ang said.

Well, next time, I hope we have better representation in that sport. How hard can trap shooting be? You shoot clay birds with a shotgun. Eric Ang’s shotgun was a 3 year-old Beretta DT 10. Not that the shotgun was faulty, but then it’s a bit sad that he couldn’t hit a clay bird with a shotgun. A shotgun!!! Maybe we should give an opportunity for other gun-toting countrymen, like the ones based in the Coridllera Mountains, or maybe in Mindanao. Whether it be from the Philippine Army or from the MILF rebel faction, at least, maybe they might do better than DEAD LAST!

Besides, certainly these shooters are much more prepared and could probably deal with the pressure. I mean – they shoot more than just birds, and they shoot even when being fired at. And surely they have several years of experience firing a gun against all sorts of moving targets. Clay birds with a shotgun should be a breeze!

Send Eric Ang to Mindanao to train for the 2012 London Olympics!

Philippine Olympic Team Ready To Win Gold At 2008 Beijing Olympics

Posted in All About The Philippines, Duke420 Articles, Philippine Current Events, Philippine News, Philippines Sports with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 9, 2008 by South Arts Festival
The Philippine Olympic Team at 2008 Beijing Olympics

The Philippine Olympic Team at 2008 Beijing Olympics

Here is the list of 15 Filipino athletes who will be representing the Philippines as part of the Olympic team that will compete in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Athletics: Marestella Torres and Henry Dagmil
Boxing: Harry Tanamor
Diving: Sheila Mae Perez and Rexel Ryan Fabriga
Swimming: Daniel Cockley, Ryan Paolo Arabejo, Miguel Molina, James Walsh and Joan Christel Simms
Weightlifting: Hidilyn Diaz
Shooting: Eric Ang
Archer: Mark Javier
Taekwondo:Toni Rivero and Tshomlee Go

Apart from these athletes, there are also coaches, Olympics officials, Olympic committee members, and even Philippine President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo was in attendance. Oh yes, and even boxing champion Manny Pacquiao was around to lift the flag for the Philippines during the opening ceremonies at the Bird’s Nest stadium. There are also 5 Filipino athletes who will be participating in Wushu as a special event of the Olympiad.

In any case, the best bet to win an Olympic Gold Medal is Harry Tanamor, who will compete in the boxing event.

I’m not sure if we will be able to access some of the Philippines’ Olympic action on our TV/Cable channels. If there is any information on that, then please share it with the Philippines Fun Wall. But then, while we do support our fellow countrymen in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, we’re also excited to watch Robinho, Ronaldinho, Pato and Kaka play for Brazil in Men’s soccer; Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony and Lebron James for USA in Men’s Basketball; Ana Ivanovic (Serbia), Roger Federer (Switzerland) and Rafael Nadal (Spain) for Tennis; Michael Phelps of USA in swimming, and Usain Bolt of Jamaica in running!

It’ll be great to watch the greatest names play well in their respective sports. Of course, it’ll be greater if the Philippines can win an Olympic Gold Medal and prove that they are among the best athletes in the world in that sport. So anyway – GO PHILIPPINES!!!