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Sheila and the Insects

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Bisrock brouhaha


ARTICLES ON STARTING YOUR OWN ROCK BAND
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Cebu music's golden age
Handuraw farewell
Aktibistas & rakistas
Bisrock brouhaha
Winning attitude
The killing time
Dirty tricks for rock bands
Sex, drugs & rock 'n roll
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The Philippine Bandemic
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I am a believer
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The black army
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The greener grass
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Official etymology/who's Sheila?
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The death of indie
The universal axiom
Addendum: recalculation
Physics of creative momentum
Reason for being
Advertising vis-à-vis music
Ian Zafra mugged
Of chicken holes...
Eight
Doing Disco
Local, vocal, proud?
Killing the disco
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READ OPENING ENTRY
My most hated band

WHAT THEY SAY
ABOUT THE BAND

"I didn't like the name but it doesn't matter. They played great band music."
- Nina Araknida
Sunstar, Flip / September 15, 2002

"Few rock bands in town could stand at the crossroads of a dynamic and evolving music scene and knock down the high walls that divide music genres and audiences with as much success as Sheila and the Insects. "
- Ronald P. Villavelez
Yup!, Issue 1.03 / November 2001

"Sheila & The Insects’ music is new wave-influenced post-punk rock music that is considerably heavy yet still melodic "
- Cris O. Ramos Jr.
The Manila Times / May 31, 2003

"What does an indie band do with the oft-maligned mix of rock and new wave? In the case of Cebu-based Sheila and the Insects, plenty."
- Ganns Deen
PULP , PulpReviews / Issue 13, March 2001




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THIS MONTH'S LYRICS
Softly
Sheila and the Insects
Originally by Apo Hiking Society


:: Download SATI version ::
:: Original Apo version ::
Written by Jim Paredes

Softly, as the morning sun
Comes through my window pane
Thoughts come to me
Memories of you fill my mind and I smile

So gently, and my world transforms
Into a merry carousel
Turning me round
Bringing me back to the place where I found ...

You there, time could have stood still and then
We'd spend all our moments to share
The dreams that we've known sometime, somewhere

And as, we go through the days
Remembering the love we made
I know that you'll stay
Bringing me more than what mere words can say

I know, that time can stand still and then
We'd spend all our moments to share
The dreams that we've known sometime, somewhere.

I know, that time can stand still and then
We'd spend all our moments to share
The dreams that we've known sometime, somewhere.

Notes:
This song appears in the album The Best of Kami nAPO Muna 2CD+DVD.



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Wednesday, January 03, 2007
Aktibistas and rakistas

Years ago when I was still in college, I became an aktibista. I joined many political student organizations. I was active in many student movements and would go room to room to discuss issues and campaign for support and involvement. I joined various street rallies. At one time, I even rallied against Napocor during the anti-power-rate-increase protests risking the fact that my father was a high level executive there. When he learned about my involvement, he went ballistic and almost kicked me out of the house. I almost welcomed it then. At one time, I had even thought of joining the struggle in the countryside. But I didn’t.

What kept me from joining was that I understood fully the sacrifice and commitment that it required. I knew that to be true to my idealism, I had to sacrifice my personal dreams for the dreams of a movement. I knew then that I couldn’t do that.

Roughly coinciding with the same times in college also, I became a rakista. Although being a rakista is a world apart from being an aktibista, I found odd parallels in my experiences joining each ‘underground’, one political, the other music.

I had joined at a time of both movements’ decline. For the leftist movement, it was a time when the echoes of the First Quarter Storm were waning. For local music, it was a time when the glory days of the Local Ground movement were fading. Attendance at rallies was declining. The same went with local concerts.

My parents hated my activist involvement. Similarly, although to a lesser extent, they also detested my being in a rock band. The ideal in activism was to be a people’s hero but I guess my parents worried I’d end up a bandit in the hills. The ideal in rock music was to be a rock icon, but I guess my parents worried I’d end up an addict in a ghetto.

Activists had their heroes like Marx and Mao. Rockers too had their idols, such as Morrissey and Morrison. Oddly enough, I found it amusing that not a few activists actually liked to listen to Morrissey’s bitterly poignant poetry and the classic rock of Morrison’s The Doors while not a few rockers too considered Marx and Mao as their personal heroes.

Activism and rock music both required a sense of mission and calling. In activism, it was called consciousness. In rock it was called attitude. One invoked critical thought while the other meant faithful abandon.

Both espoused ‘simple living’. In activism, because it was a conscious choice; while in rock, because you didn’t have a choice. For both, you couldn’t make much money at all, which was why. That was why aktibistas and rakistas typically wore dirty jeans, worn out sneakers and shabby t-shirts.

After college, I was faced with the question of whether or not I’d become a full-timer. I tried very briefly to be a full-time activist but quickly gave up. I wasn’t up to it. I also gave a decent shot at becoming a full-time musician but gave up after a couple of years. I couldn’t cut it.

To survive, I took up a day job while half-trying to continue both endeavors. Not exactly the best arrangement but the only practical choice I had. I had bills to pay and had in later years a family to feed. I meet a lot of my colleagues in the activist movement and the rock movement over the years and found that many of them followed a similar path. Apparently, and to my slight surprise, it was a common choice of many of my contemporaries. I found this fact comforting.

I discovered an unspoken understanding among many of my colleagues that the realities of life had forced upon us these difficult choices. Choices not necessarily agreeable to the idealism that we once proclaimed with hubris, but choices that we had to and did make.

But some did choose to go fulltime. I know quite a few who have continued their struggle for the people’s cause and a few also who’ve continued to pursue a difficult career in music. Theirs is an admirable struggle both noble and true. More so since I understand fully the sacrifice and commitment needed in either. You have to have the balls and the heart.

So to the full-time activists and musicians who’ve continued through the years still driven by their youthful idealism, my hats off to you. There is nobility in believing in something and staying the course in the face of the stacked odds. So whether you spit at a megaphone or a microphone, or whether you’re slinging an M-16 or a Stratocaster on your back, you are, in my book, true heroes.

Posted at 07:53 pm by bisoy

nicko real
September 8, 2009   05:08 AM PDT
 
oh shit! i remembered this article.. na publish ni sa sunstar i forgot what year though...
joy
February 2, 2007   05:22 PM PST
 
very well said...
jinky
January 19, 2007   01:37 PM PST
 
maalab na pagbati!

wow! i was able to catch u last night sa handuraw. great music! i was really amazed to see u perform live! first time. interested with ur band so, checked ur blog.. i myself is a blogdrive user, but kinda stagnant na..not updated... anyhow, i have read this post/article of urs and was really touched.... i was once an activist... (still an activist at heart) yes.. we have to set priorities and set our dreams and live with it... self centerd eh? however, so long as we have principles to follow, we know in our hearts that we do things our own way to make a difference... rock on.... yeah! mabuhay ang STAND!
tess
January 4, 2007   09:38 PM PST
 
soy, korek na korek jud ka. but i really thought ikaw ang mulungtad ug mo cross-over sa underground, kay mura ikaw man to ila gi-protege, anyways, glad you're back in the mainstreams. let them be the heroes for not all of us can become one. were also following our own dreams and looks like were succeeding in it. mabuhay ka BISOY! mabuhay and STAND!
 

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