Some people inexplicably prefer to end every year by shaving off some fingers with firecrackers. We, however, decide to remember those great people who passed on this year, leaving us momentarily in limbo. It's not the way to get into celebratory mood, but in remembering, we also look forward and continue to live.
October 4, 1964 - March 6, 2009
Things have been relatively quiet in the Pinoy rap music scene since its King, FrancisM, passed away from acute myeloid leukemia earlier this year. His was a classic example of raging "against the dying of the light."
Bald from chemo sessions, FrancisM still managed to record several songs with long-time friend and fellow "sicko" Ely Buendia, who has a heart condition, for an album they aptly dubed The Sickos Project.
Aside from this genius collaboration, we'll always remember the Master Rapper for infusing much-needed patriotic notes into the 90s grunge rock sound. FrancisM strode in hammering out "Mga Kababayan Ko" and virtually made every FIlipino a quasi-rapper at least for that one song. Because of this, among many other things of course, FrancisM united Pinoys without buying them off. His gift of music went beyond itself.
August 29, 1959 - June 25, 2009
Michael Jackson had many quirks—obsessive plasic surgery, ferris wheels in his Neverland ranch, neurotic attempts at privacy, queer rumors, dangling his baby from a third-storey balcony. At the end of the day, though, all that's left to say (that matters) is that Jacko raised the bar of music and performance all over the world.
There's zero danger of Michael Jackson's music or dance ever fading away. It's just like little Filipino kids in Olongapo knowing who Elvis Presley is (who, incidentally was Michael Jackson's ex-father-in-law), or at the very least, what Elvis sang.
Unfortunately, during his last years, Michael Jackson was dogged with financial problems after Neverland closed up. Still, upon his death, an estimated 1 billion people all over the world mourned the King of Pop.
It's true. When you go, it doesn't matter that you had trouble managing your millions. All that matters is that you were big enough to inspire a group of inmates (whom you never heard of) to dance to your song and earn recognition for it.
WORDS BY: CECILE JUSI
IMAGE BY: MIKEY AGULTO