"I'm Stoney Burke, and I was in Manila!"
Feb. 14-28, 2010
The last time I was in Manila was in 1990 when I visited my Dad, who passed away the following year. That visit was very short; I managed to meet up with only a few close friends.
This 2010 trip, on the other hand, was geared to become a milestone because it's been 20 years since my last visit and 24 years (I migrated to the U.S. in 1986) since I last saw many of my fellow rockjocks and radio friends.
This trip was also my first time to meet (in the flesh) the folks who have recently become very close virtual friends (on Facebook and on the air), like Allan Roy Magturo (aka Mr. A), who insisted on picking us up at the airport at 2 in the morning. Thank you, Allan, for your generosity!
2/15/10: My first night out in Manila was at Howzat Bar, Makati. Denny and Lotlot picked me up at the Holiday Inn Galleria (where Ruby and I were booked for the first week of our stay). The last time we saw each other was decades ago. Oh ye, how we've all "grown."
L-R: Denny Munoz, Angelita Tubojan, Me
2/16/10: Ovation Productions (c/o Renen de Guia) comped me a couple of tickets to the Chicago Live in Manila concert at the Araneta Coliseum. We met some folks at the concert like Raul and Poe Blay, Ronnie de Asis and Suzie, the winners of the Chicago tickets giveaway on my Rockin' Classics show, some RJ-UR listeners, and Allan's brother, Ramil. Allan bought us an authentic Pinoy dinner at Cafe Adriatico by Gateway Mall.
L-R: Ruby, Me, Ronnie de Asis, Suzie, Allan Magturo
More photos: Chicago Live in Manila
2/17/10: I had to find my way to the famous "The Fort" (there was no "The Fort" to speak of the last time I was in Manila) to meet up with Maribet and Kat. They had just come from a massage and wanted to unwind at the Agave Mexican Restaurant at Bonifacio High Street. Margaritas all around.
L-R: Me, Katrina Legarda, Margot, Maribet de Ubago
2/18/10: I was supposed to just meet up with Wayne at Spicy Fingers, Greenbelt, Makati. I can't remember how it happened, but suddenly there we were with Denny and a camera crew. Denny interviewed Wayne and me for his show, RJ and the Riots.
L-R: Denny Munoz, Me, Wayne Enage
More photos: Interview with Denny and Brother Wayne
After the interview, we chased the night away at the outdoor long table of Spicy Fingers, hee-hawing at Wayne's endless jokes. When you go there, look for Brother Wayne -- he owns the place. Kinda.
L-R: Wayne Enage, Denny Munoz, Ruby, Me, Wayne's friends Eddie and Joji
While at Spicy Fingers, some old friends called to say they couldn't make it to Greenbelt because they were at the Heritage Hotel running the John Ford Coley gig. So, with Denny at the helm, we skidaddled to the Heritage Hotel and met up with these jocks, however briefly. We did catch a bit of John Ford Coley's show.
L-R: Denny Munoz, Danee Samonte, Me, Manny Pagsuyuin, Howard Medina, Johnny Cesar.
More photos: Sneaked into the John Ford Coley Show at Heritage Hotel
2/19/10: It was Allan's idea. The 70s Bistro has been known for decades as "The" Pinoy Rock joint. Every self-respecting Pinoy Rock group's claim to fame is having performed live at the 70s Bistro. That night, The Jerks were on stage. Mole got me on stage too, but that's another story.
It was a momentous gathering... we not only had a "rockjocks reunion" of sorts, we also celebrated Allan's birthday! Watching The Jerks and meeting Chikoy and his wife, Monette, were a triple plus.
L-R: Allan Roy Magturo, Chikoy Pura, Me
Pictures all around at the 70s Bistro. We were like celebrities. I could get used to this.
L-R, Front: Jimmy Javier (Sneakers), Manny Pagsuyuin (Jimmy Jam), Manny Casaclang (Mole)
L-R, Back: Jaime Lontoc (Gaucho), Me, Wayne Enage (Brother Wayne)
Then we spotted Tom, the Blues Man. Then the Captain arrived.
L-R: Allan Roy Magturo (Mr. A), Tom Colvin, Eddieboy Santos (Capt. Eddie), Me
Then the ladies made us line up for our pictorial. That was fun! Thanks, folks, for making this trip one I will always fondly remember.
L-R: Eddieboy Santos, Allan Roy Magturo, Me, Wayne Enage, Manny Pagsuyuin, Jaime Lontoc, Manny Casaclang, Jimmy Javier, Angelita Tubojan
More photos: Rockjocks at 70s Bistro
More photos: Stoney Burke's in town! by Marivic Barriga-Babiano
More photos: bday reunion welcome and rockroll by Allan Roy Magturo
2/20/10: A highlight of this trip was the Star Wars Wedding of Regina Layug and Oneal Rosero. Ruby is one of the Principal Sponsors. In preparation for the costume wedding, we bought my Obi-Wan Kenobi full attire (complete with belt and accessories) from Singapore. Ruby made a few minor adjustments to the pants and sleeves. And she made her own costume (from scratch) based on the Breha Organa character (Queen of Alderaan and wife of Senator Organa who raised Princess Leia) in Episode III. The wedding and reception were held at Fernwood Gardens in Quezon City.
More photos: The Star Wars Wed-site with photos of the ceremony and reception
2/21/10: Allan picked us up early from Ruby's home in Cubao where we stayed during the second week of our trip. The plan for that day was to air my Sunday show, Rockin' Classics, live from the UR station at the Ventures Building, Makati Ave, from 3 to 7 PM. But before that, we would drop in on Ramon Jacinto while he was on the air with his Sunday morning show. RJ guested me for a few minutes. That ceramic wall decor Caren is holding was my "pasalubong" to RJ. It says, "Customers over 100 years of age and accompanied by their parents, get their second beer FREE!!!"
L-R: Me, Caren Tevanny Kaunang Mangaran, Ramon Jacinto
The mandatory FB photo, of course.
We caught the Mole's show and messed with him on the air for a bit. Then Allan came on at noon... at about the same time the boxes of Shakey's Pizza arrived. Allan's treat. Again.
The UR setup took some getting used to. Boy, was I glad Neil (our ever reliable tech) was there to assist. I gave away Center Stage t-shirts to listeners who visited us at the station. Thank you, Marivic, for this photo.
More photos: Stoney Burke's in town! by Marivic Barriga-Babiano
The late Howlin' Dave is said to have started the tradition of signing on the walls of the UR station. Session bands, visitors and friends are encouraged to leave their personal graffiti. Stoney Burke was here!
L-R: Noel Tinamisan (and daughter), Gerry Cornejo
I thought t-shirts would be good to give my friends as tokens of my visit. I had a local t-shirt printer hot-press the Center Stage logo that Ruby originally designed for my website. And while at it, I also ordered a tarp banner that I donated to the UR station.
RJ Jr. and his girlfriend dropped by the UR station too.
L-R: Ruby, Me, Allan Roy Magturo, Rj Jacinto, Cristina
And here's our group picture with the Gaucho, who took over the airwaves so I could go home and nurse my jetlag. Thank you, Ed Ordono, for the photos and for taking us home.
L-R: Neil (our tech), Jaime Lontoc, Noel Tinamisan (and daughter), Me, Ruby
More photos: At the RJ 100 and RJ UR stations
2/22/10: This long day started with hunting for local CDs at Cubao Expo. Then we had lunch with friends at The Old Spaghetti House at AliMall, followed by a dental appointment at The Fort. We met up with Denny at Shakey's Magallanes for dinner and beer. A lot of beer. Thank you, Leo, for taking us home.
L-R: Me, Denny Munoz, Ruby, Leo Guzman
2/23/10: This was our Tagaytay day. Newly Star-Wars-weds Rej and Oneal were our tour guides. We had lunch at Josephine's Restaurant then drove to One Tagaytay Place Hotel to check in (Thank you, Mr. A for the GC). We proceeded to Sonya's Garden, where we all enjoyed their famous full body massage and sit-down buffet dinner.
L-R (at Josephine's): Oneal Rosero, Rej Layug-Rosero, Dante Gagelonia, Ruby, Me
More photos: Tagaytay 2010: Josephine's and "Ninang Rina's Place" by Ruby
More photos: Tagaytay 2010: Sonya's Garden by Ruby
2/25/10: I can't remember if this was a spontaneous lunch or another setup by Mr. A, but there we were, the RJ-FM and RJ-UR folks at the Oki Oki Japanese restaurant at the A-Venue Building in Makati.
L-R: Dante Gagelonia, Ruby, Me, Ramon Jacinto, Renen De Guia, Allan Roy Magturo, Ronnie de Asis, Niki Flojo, Rj Jacinto
Reverse angle: Lunch with RJ
2/26/10: RJ and Friends perform at the RJ Bar on Fridays. RJ told us to drop by because it would be the last day of the RJ Bar (they're moving to a more spacious location). Ed Ordono and I watched RJ dedicate a Clapton song to Stoney Burke. Care to guess what the song was?
Ed and I then crossed town to Conspiracy Bar, where we watched Cookie Chua and Color It Red.
2/27/10: As a kind of farewell dinner, the Yalies took us to Adarna Restaurant along Kalayaan Avenue. Pinoy food at its best! Thanks, guys.
Oh, but that was after we were taken by the Roseros to Ruby's dental appointment at The Fort, which was after we peeked into the Mulat Pinoy Kapihan at Bo's Coffee, Glorietta, Makati, after a quick lunch at Luk Yuen.
L-R: Me, Ruby, Paul Catiang, Leo Guzman, Dante Gagelonia, Rej Layug-Rosero, Oneal Rosero
After the sumptuous dinner at Adarna, we capped the night with Leo and Agu and a few beers at Conspiracy Bar where Bayang Barrios was performing. Of course, I got her CD and autograph. Thank you, Agu, for taking us home.
2/28/10: I managed to deliver another live Rockin' Classics show on my regular slot at 6-8PM from the RJ UR station (Thank you, Tech Gerard, for assisting). Six hours later, Ruby and I boarded our Delta flight back to Orlando. So long, Manila and friends. Until next time. Thank you so much for the memories.
More photos: Manila 2010: Snapshots by Ruby
"Laughter shared with friends... priceless." - Stoney Burke