UNO rocks out this month with our very special Music Issue, featuring one of the countryâ€™s biggest rock stars on the cover: Nathan Azarcon. (This is, by the way, only the second time in the magazineâ€™s nine-year history that weâ€™ve put a solo male on the cover; the very first one was Manny Pangilinan.)
Inside, we combine two of our biggest passions â€” women and music â€” in a massive section featuring artists established and up-and-coming, including Lea Salonga, Barbie Almalbis, Celeste Legaspi, Sarah Gaugler, Vernie Varga, Katwo Librando, Kitchie Nadal, Myrene Academia, Armi Millare and many more. Also, editors Erwin Romulo and Luis Katigbak show off their picks for the best local music of the 2000s so far.
Those of you who have daydreamed of dating the hotter-than-hot Jacq Yu (or at least gazing at some incredible pix of her): weâ€™ve got you covered. Also, the lovely Denise Montecillo joins us as we stuff our faces at Mercato Centrale. Jinno Rufino meets the NBA All-Stars, Eric Melendez talks about how we acquire music today, Lorely Trinidad tells us about growing up Fil-Am in a hip-hop world, Caliph8 shows us how to dig for rare vinyl, and Tricia Gosingtian says hello to New York City. Thatâ€™s not all of course, but youâ€™ll have to grab the issue to find out more.
(UNOâ€™s Music special should be played at high volume, preferably in a residential area.)
I remembered Eggy today after looking through the archives of our Afterburner section for the magazine. Unlike most, I was introduced to Alexis outside his career in film, as we went to the same college, he being a batch lower. We were friends. Later on in the following semesters, we got involved in a point of conflict, details of which I would rather not talk about â€” but it is suffice to say that these were, in his words to Erwin Romulo, â€œa little bit of weirdness.â€ We parted ways. Many years later, we were in touch thanks to the wonders of Facebook, but never got to speak in person. I was excited to hear from Erwin that Alexis would be working with UNO. That weâ€™d both be working together. But alas, fate had other plans. Today I still read his work. Itâ€™s the next best thing to talking to him again. â€” Jayvee
Itâ€™s been a year since our good friends Alexis Tioseco and Nika Bohinc were murdered in their home. Up until now, there has been no movement on the case and none of us know why they were killed. All I know is that it wasnâ€™t a robbery and that the authorities have not done a proper investigation. I should know. Along with the Tioseco family, Iâ€™ve met too many police officials, bureaucrats, investigators, lawyers, politicians, psychics, and inept people named Agnes to say otherwise.
Alexis, in particular, meant a lot to those of us here in UNO. Heâ€™d even sit in during our editorial meetings. (See picture.) He was very much a part of what this magazine was all about, why we all chose to take on the challenge of doing it. But our friendship with him went well beyond working together. At least for me, he was no less than a brother. And Iâ€™m lucky that I was able to tell him that I loved him before he died. I told it to him quite often actually and he never gave up on me even when I gave up on myself.
Itâ€™s also with heavy hearts that we mark the recent death of another friend, cinematographer Miguel Fabie III. Miguel wrote to me last year, shortly after Alexis died. The letter is excerpted below:
I met [Alexis] after one of the first screenings of Batang West Sideâ€”he approached me, introduced himself, commended me, then slowlyâ€¦ in editing lingoâ€”â€œdissolved to black.â€ That was my first feature film and though he sounded like he knew what he was talking about, I was taken aback by this young punk who seemed so sincere and passionate that my selective-memoried brain decided to keep him in its archives.
Anyway, in his case praise came across not as something to feed my ego but actually inspired me to better my craft. The same way Eddie Romero did on our first introduction when he commented about the same flick (Batang W.S.)â€”â€œYoung man, either youâ€™re extremely stupid and just plain lucky, or a geniusâ€â€¦ To this day, I am trying to prove itâ€™s not the former. The latter is something I believe is a DNA thing; you canâ€™t work to be a genius, but you CAN work to be a better cinematographer/writer/musician/doctor ON YOUR OWN TERMS.
In [his famous letter], Alexis hoped that he and Nika would be together in/â€™till â€œthe end.â€ Maybe theyâ€™re just beginning, but if this is the first step toward that direction or a major leap to the eternal we have yet to find out for ourselves in OUR own time, willingly or otherwise. Wake up call: get ready to be willing.
May we ALL rest in peace, in WHATEVER stage or phase in life.
I couldnâ€™t agree with Miguel more though itâ€™s tough for those of us they left behind.
In that Alexis-written piece reprinted in this issue in its definitive form, he says that â€œThereâ€™s a line in Aguila where a Moro secessionist is told his cause is lost. He replies that winning doesnâ€™t matter, itâ€™s doing what one feels one should do. Thatâ€™s wisdom for you.â€
With this issue we mourn, we mark, we reminisce, we remind. Let not another year pass before justice is done. We fight, not just against forgetfulness and the apathy that follows, but because it is what we feel we should do.
Hereâ€™s to Alexis, Nika and Miguel. And, yes, weâ€™ll keep on going no matter what. â€˜Till we hopefully meet again.