La la Land

Uncanny Saturday afternoon when Jean, Tish and I had to rush to Robinson’s Magnolia, to catch a screening of La la Land. I asked: What?

My two girls rattled about seven Golden Globe awards including Best Picture. I think.

I sort of thought, if it was Best Picture, why is no one swooning gaga over it on facebook? I would have noticed.

Anyways, I went along, wondering about the title. If it’s Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling, it’s a treat.

Excitement hushed as I took a bite on my organic chicken burrito. Nah. It was the Los Angeles highway packed with traffic scene, and young people started hopping out of their cars, swaying to a rolling twenties(?) music. I remembered Jean and Tish saying this film garnered Best Music, too.

Okay, a musical. After enduring High School Musical for my two teens a decade ago, I swore I will not watch any teeny boppy flick.

But there goes the story, a man and a woman, Sebastian, a jazz pianist, and Mia, a talented actress auditioning for her place in the theater, accidentally meeting each other here and there, and because of one incidence too many, decided to be together. For four seasons.

It would have been a good love story, except for the part that both are in search of their dreams. As destiny would have it, Mia got her role in Broadway, and Sebastian, after a touring stint with a modern jazz band, built his own jazz bar.

Fast forward five years later, Mia comes back to Los Angeles, now a deemed theater artist, with her husband and a toddler of a daughter. And by some strange pull, she is led to Seb’s, Sebastian’s jazz nook.

And the two saw each other again. No hellos. No words. Just a look and an acknowledgement that, I suppose, they have reached their respective dreams.

Do I like it?

My daughters were disappointed. I had my reservations. Will hold my comments until further feelings arise from reviewing the film in my mind.

And now, after two days, here I am, trying to find the satisfaction one expects from watching a movie.

If this was Best Picture, surely it would have a great impact on me. There was none. Sadly.

And so I had to think more. Those Golden Globe judges must have seen something that would have impacted the viewers.

And so I came up with credits for this movie, even if in my view it is a tragedy.

First, it is a story of the ordinary people. The dreamers, specifically.
Which brings me to the title that I googled for meaning, La la Land, meaning “Los Angeles or Hollywood, especially with regard to the lifestyle and attitudes of those living there or associated with it; a fanciful state or dreamworld.”

These ordinary people have this illusion that their lives will only have meaning if they attain their dreams. And, more often, they miss out on one important thing: LOVE. These dreamers mistake that success and happiness can only be achieved after realizing their dreams. And love can be set at bay. These dreamers, unbeknownst to themselves, have been reduced to a mechanical existence, mere robots, or even slaves of their own passion. Thus, the tragedy.

Second, this movie brought isms for revaluation. The idealist and the realist, for one, comes in conflict. Holding on to tradition, as sustaining the art form of original jazz, for another, as against reinventing the music to fit in to the new techno-aided sound.

Third, the slow, or rather seemingly unhurried presentation of events, as contrasted to the quick flashback of what could have been, allowed the audience to create misgivings, hoping, as I did, that I could have my happy ending. Nah, again. It was a ploy utilized to make the viewer own the tragedy. For who amongst us did not miss on true love, and lived with what we bargained for.

Fourth, the music was jazzy, and it brought the audience, including the juvenile, to a time melancholic, like dream time.

There are many other things worth commenting about, such as the acting, remarkable, and the costumes, appropriate and nice, ha ha, and the dancing, and the museums, and the stars. Oh, well. But I leave that for others to see.

Christmas Music

We get lost with the wonderful lights and decorations, the hustle and bustle, the shallow exchange of recycled gifts.

I feel bad about it, too.

But whenever I hear Christmas music, the Carol of the Bells, the jingling and giddy-yap of all merry a gentlemen come ships a sailing, a drummer boy drumming, all on a quiet, silent night, one holy night, for a Babe born in a little town of Bethlehem, oh, I do feel all warm and wonderful,

Today, though, my daughter sang and played on the piano Hallelujah, Hmmm. Pretty intense. And how mind-boggling on a Christmas Day.

Then she played “I wanna build a snowman” and said it’s on Disney’s Christmas playlist. Okay.

Nothing to this post Just enjoying the Christmas music.

Bridged by love of singing…

My daughters and my niece love to sing, especially when they are most tested by the intense academic work and projects. You’d find them huddled in a nook, blending voices, their way of relaxing. My niece, though, had to migrate to America, with my sister, to care for my Mommy who is old now and ailing. Still, the three girls would find snippets of time from their hectic schedules to record songs, and the following song, raw and unrefined, is lovingly dedicated to my Mom.

Hope you guys like the effort, ha ha.


Deliver Us!

My daughter Tish had gone on to join the St. Luke’s College of Medicine Chorale. Remember? She loves to sing!

Recently, the SCLM Chorale cupped the first place honors in the MedRhythmia competitions, an inter med school chorale singing contest participated in by the best med schools in the country. It was held 10 February @ the Aliw Theater, CCP Complex.

Here’s the winning performance:

Just to say, the chorale started learning the two songs, the other was the contest piece “All I Ask of You,” from the Phantom of the Opera, and “Deliver Us” is from The Prince of Egypt, with touches of Maranao sentiments, as required in the competition, just a fortnight before the competition. The members did burn the midnight oil, and I, forever waiting for my Tish, right outside the school grounds, watching the deprived children play peekaboo round my Buzz.  🙂 The honors was worth all the wait. Yehey!

I Love You, Lord.

Here is Jean and Tami rendering an invocation. Piano accompaniment by Adam.

As the deer panteth for the water

I suppose I have not talked about my God as much as I think of Him. So I am sharing here my favorite Communion song, hoping that this would spell how much I long for my God. And if anyone wonders who wrote this, well, this came from a shepherd boy who rose to become king….

As the deer panteth for the water
So my soul longeth after Thee
You alone are my heart’s desire
And I long to worship Thee

You alone are my strength, my shield
To you alone may my spirit yield
You alone are my heart’s desire
And I long to worship Thee

You’re my friend and you are my brother
Even though you are a king
I love you more than any other
So much more than anything

I want you more than gold or silver
Only you can satisfy
You alone are the real joy giver
And the apple of my eye

When a child is born…

A ray of hope flickers in the sky
A tiny star lights up way up high
All across the land dawns a brand new morn’,
This comes to pass when a child is born.

A silent wish sails the seven seas
The winds of change whisper in the trees
And the walls of doubt crumble tossed and torn,
This comes to pass when a child is born.

A rosy dawn settles all around
You got to feel you’re on solid ground
For a spell or two no one seems forlorn
This come to pass when a child is born.


This come to pass when a child is born.

It’s all a dream, an illusion now.
It must come true some time soon somehow
All across the land dawns a brand new morn’
This comes to pass when a child is born

A chance for me to post this soothing song, we have a new baby in the clan. She is named Erika,  meaning ruler, and she is kinda long and pink and with a solid coo.

On Making It Different

Jean wrote another song, this time for a contest. Here it is.

My Jean during her composing moment…

I didn’t know my Jean would write songs, but she did compose one for her college graduation, and now she wrote a perky tune for our high school alma mater.  Here she is, recording her composition for her batchmates…

Kulasa Ako

Here’s my daughter’s SSAM Batch 2007, practicing for the SSAM@50 Kulasa Got Talent.

Here’s the lyrics and the music.

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