Friday, August 19, 2011


(This column appears in today's edition of the Leyte-Samar Daily Express)

Hi there! It’s another weekend. Yes, today’s title was inspired by the recent controversy about some supposedly work of art. And this is also a continuation of the Bahandi Samarnon award in my Alma Mater Christ the King College

But first this which blew me away: an online campaign for Ernie and Bert to get married? Just what got into their minds?

And that art show at the CCP. What freedom of expression? It’s not a matter of freedom of expression. It’s regulating one’s freedom of expression. Okey, it’s a government agency, but 70% of those who financed it are Catholics. Ok, while we are into it, maybe the artist would like to consider coming up with similar work which will distort the images of Mohammad, Buddha, the Dalai Lama and other great religious leaders. I am no art connoisseur, but I do not disagree with F. Sionil Jose when he said “It isn’t art” when he referred to that CCP display which caused this much brouhaha.

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Book Launching. The CKC Community will be hosting the launching of two new books by Fr. Antonio Maria Rosales, OFM. The books entitled “The Jesus’ Letters” and “My Son, Francis” will be launched at 3:00 pm tomorrow at the Frs. David and Leopold Auditorium at Christ the King College.

The CKC President Fr. Mar Tubac and the author Fr. Tony will deliver their respective messages. The CKC VP for Academic Affairs Dr. Florita Calesa will present her review on “The Jesus’ Letters” while Mr. Venancio Bajet, the Dean of the College of Teacher Education will deliver present a review on “My Son, Francis”.

The event will capped by cocktails and a performance of the CKC Youth Chamber Orchestra.

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As I have earlier mentioned in this column, the late Jose Gomez was honored during the 1st Bahandi Samarnon Awards. I thought I’d like to share some materials about the man which I got from Carl Bordeos. Here’s the first part:

“An American SVD Father referred to him as ‘The Music Man of Samar’ in a published article in the Leyte-Samar Studies journal of the Divine Word University (of Tacloban
City. An admirer was quoted to have referred to him as an ‘Immortal Communicator of the sweetest sounds’ to Calbayognons and Samarenos. A cultural worker called him a ‘genius’”

“Whatever accolade we may give to the most prolific composer of Samar songs, lest we forget, Jose Cinco Gomez was a Maestro, a fitting title to a great and humble man who consecrated his life to give every Calbayognon and Samareno music and pride.”

“Born on February 27, 1911 in Barrio Tabuk (now Obrero) of Calbayog City, Jose was the eldest among the seven children of Licarion Gomez and Benigna Cinco. His siblings were Conrado, Ricardo, Angeles, Josefa, Francisca and Trinidad.”

“He took his elementary and one year in high school at the Colegio De San Vicente De Paul (CSVP now Christ the King College. Formal education stopped for Jose in high school, but the process of informal education continued.”

“In his autobiography, he claimed that he was ‘interested in music since he was a child’ and was very much influenced by his father, brothers and sisters who often met together to have a family concert.”

“Both of his parents had musical training. His father while studying Surveying at Ateneo Municipal once conducted the Ateneo Band. His mother studied at the La Concordia College. It was his father’s hobby to play the piano after each working day, and the young Jose would tinker on the ivory keys. Seeing interest in music, Licarion provided him with a tutor, Sofio Camilon and further exposure came when he played at the CSVP as a banjo-playing character.”

“He once worked industriously at mastering an instrument that he borrowed from his cousin Antonio Gomez. Since the instrument lacked the pads for stopping the air, he experimented with many different kinds of materials as substitute for commercial pads. One of his solutions was to use animal skin. In order to keep the skin soft it had to be repeatedly immersed in water. So the young musician played with a pail of water at his side in which he would periodically dip the entire instrument. With his brother, he learned to prepare home-made bamboo reeds for the saxophone.”

“His interest expanded to musical arrangement and he pursued it with the aid of an old family victor phonograph. To identify the arrangement of each instrument on a particular recorded selection, he had his brother Conrado hold the adjustment lever of the phonograph to maintain the ‘slow’ speed while he took notes of his observations on paper.” (to be continued)

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This is it for now. Let m leave you with something to ponder about this weekend. From Harvey Fierstein: “Never be bullied into silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim. Accept no one’s definition of your life; define yourself.”

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Have a nice weekend everyone! Ciao!

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