Durian City’s home for booze & rock n’ roll: Sales Bar – Tekanplor

These are good times for rock n’ roll in Davao. Bands are playing and original music is at the forefront. It’s getting heard in what I consider the home of rock n’ roll in Davao these days, Sales Bar – Tekanplor.

What started as a place to jam for friends turned out to be a melting pot for Davao’s original music to be heard. Various organizers have been producing shows every weekend for a number of months already at a steady pace. It also brings together the rock scene. Gone are the days where I would yearn for a place to drink, unwind and hear my kind of music. Well it’s here and a few minutes away from my place, Davao Imperial Hotel to boot!

They are also looking for people to gig during weekdays as their new place can accommodate these and they also have a roof deck for those who just want to unwind under the starry sky.

I got to take some pictures of Kwatro Medya and Jad Montenegro last weekend. Kwatro Medya has a fresh take on post-punk while Jad Montenegro has this ethereal sound  that tugs your heartstrings and makes you smile. Both bands rock in my book. Check out Sales – Tekanplor, Sales Street to experience rockin n’ rollin, Davao style.

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Tanduay and Rock n’ Roll

Davao isn’t really a favorite destination for Manila based bands.  Logistics and economics dictate that the only way a promoter can recoup expenses is that the public would be willing to pay a premium for a concert and I am not sure if people are willing to do so, what with limited disposable income and all.

But thanks to Tanduay Rum Rockfest 2012, we get to see premium bands with an ex-deal.  Buy your rum and get tickets.  Getting drunk and watching a concert is always a good deal in my book.

Getting to Crocodile Park was a pain.  It was a snail’s pace at Circumferential Road and bumper to bumper upon reaching Diversion Road to the venue.  Walking to the gate, I could hear 6 Cyclemind playing.  No big loss missing them as I don’t really think much about their music.

And just in time as I went in, Dong Abay took the stage.  He greeted the audience and started to play.  In between songs, he was cajoling the crowd to let loose.  As usual, the Davao crowd was insipid.  Yes, they sing but not much motion comes out.  I don’t know if people just don’t know how to behave in a rock concert because of the lack of it, or that they know that it’s ok to wave  hands in the air to show love or bobbing heads or hopping or dancing is completely normal in a concert.  But as always, I suspect that we’re always too cool to do silly things for performers.  Going back to Mr. Abay, he sang with his usual ferocity and antics.  He was backed by drummer extra-ordinaire, Mark Escueta and Imago’s guitarist and Gaijin’s singer-guitarist, Tim and Jessie respectively.  For the life of me, I couldn’t remember who the bassist was.  Going through traffic for Dong Abay’s performance was completely worth it.  I will forever admire this guy for his songwriting and performance.

After the set, the Dawn played which I didn’t bother to see because it’s not the same without Francis Reyes.  My friend arrived, got some drinks and was just chilling as Wency Cornejo and band played.  Nostalgia effect for Next In Line.  It still is a good song.  More drinks as Urban Dub was playing.  Again, the crowd in front was too cool to show love.  Sorry Urban Dub.  Damn, I remember seeing them at Saguijo a few years ago, the whole venue shook like a motherpunker while they played First of Summer.

I think Rico Blanco played next.  He has gone theatric and electronic.  Cool versions of Yugto and some old song I couldn’t remember.  He is another performer I really admire.   Always with much energy and gusto even with a stale crowd who somehow managed to show a bit of love.

I don’t know who played next but I remember Franco with a new backing band.  He played new and unfamiliar songs.  Sounded rockin’ but crowd again was lethargic.  He played Song for the Suspect last and somewhat managed to liven the crowd up a bit.  I think Gloc 9 played next, I didn’t really pay attention as more drinking ensued.

Then Wolfgang, oh lord, they bust balls completely.  Sanctified was like a wash of rock n’ roll energy to the crowd.  Maybe we’re just too picky eh?  Silly dancing and head banging reserved only for choice bands.  I couldn’t remember the other songs, I think Mata ng Diyos and Halik ni Hudas were also played or could it be a memory from other Wolfgang concerts I’ve seen?

Let me jump to Parokya ni Edgar.  These guys have re-earned my respect for them.  The crowd was now ecstatic while they played.  Chito masterfully played the crowd.  And he might  be the only person who can convince Basti to sing “Boys Do Fall In Love?” with them.

By the time Chicosci played, we were too tired to stand or watch.  We then decided to leave the venue but got stuck.  Vehicles were parked on the road and there was no way to go out.  Ended up sitting at some curb till Kamikazee finished playing.  Dang, I was dreaming of ice cold beer to cap off the night at Saless Diner, where a burgeoning Davao rock scene is being nurtured and where Dong Abay incidentally turned up after the Rockfest.

Now I begin to think that people’s interest in music is not as diverse as I would have thought. Judging from the crowd reaction, people came to see Wolfgang, Parokya and Kamikazee. Some dug Urban Dub and Rico Blanco.  But acts who don’t get mainstream “I-memorize ba yan” radio airplay like Dong Abay and Franco who in my opinion are just as talented in another genre of rock barely got any love.  That was my perspective from the Press/Sponsors crowd though.  Who knows what mayhem happened at the back.  Still, I know there were fans in front, but the too cool to show love won over.

Anyhow, it was fun.  I so missed rock n’ roll.  The rock scene is the only thing I miss about Manila.  I hope more concerts can be done here.

Kadayawan 2012 – Street Pic

 I decided to take a walk yesterday for my cardio exercise and ended up in San Pedro Street where I couldn’t help but notice the buntings that hung over the street.  They looked good and certainly helped bring in the vibe of the Kadayawan festival this month.

San Pedro Street is a good 10 minute walk from Davao Imperial Hotel.  This part of the city is where trading of various kinds of goods abound.  From ukay-ukay to general merchandise to DVD’s to tailoring to eye glasses and anything you can imagine of, it’s there.  My cardio work-out for the day turned out to be an impromptu sight-seeing as I don’t usually wander in these streets because work doesn’t bring me here often.  I also saw a place to buy and eat durian at the corner of JP Rizal and Inigo Street and was reminded that durian is in season.  I’d love to eat one again one of these days.  I came home at the Davao Imperial Hotel around 45 minutes of walking and sight seeing.  It was a good afternoon.  Thank God for simple pleasures.

A working day at Pearl Farm

One of the perks of being a Real Estate Broker is that you get invited to events from developers and the banking industry when there are new projects, promos and incentives.

Yesterday was an event sponsored by East-West Bank as they are partnering with Filinvest Land in mortgage financing their different projects.  The launch was held at Pearl Farm at the Malipano Island side.  Its been years since I’ve been in Pearl Farm and was curious on what they could offer and how it looked now.

I was fetched by my friend at the Davao Imperial Hotel before heading off to the Pearl Farm marina.  As soon as we arrived, the East-West staff guided everyone to the boat that brought us to Pearl Farm.   Stepping foot at Malipano Island has always brought me happy childhood memories of swimming in this island when it was undeveloped.  This was more than 25 years ago before the Floirendo’s acquired this property.

Kudos to East-West bank for their Broker’s Incentive Program which is the best in the industry at present.  Brokers were specially excited about the program, more so for sure is that we get to enjoy Pearl Farm without burning our pockets.  The lunch was superb and destroyed my diet for the day.  The fresh salad, tomato pasta and fried fish dory were exquisite.  We then chatted with the East-West bigwigs after lunch over a couple bottles of beer. I took some pictures and just soaked in the scenery as I was too lazy to change and swim.  After all, I was just swimming in the beach last Sunday.

The event ended around 3pm and we headed off back to the Pearl Farm marina.  A work and pleasure day is a good day indeed.  Shameless plug, here’s my other website for real estate services in Davao City, mypatchofland.wordpress.com.

Durian City of Davao

One of the simple joys in living in Davao City is enjoying durian.  That strong unique scent which many find offensive is aroma heaven to my olfactory sense.  I admit that eating durian  while growing up, took me time to appreciate it.  I usually run from the dining table upon smelling the scent of durian served after meals.  Then one day, I may be around 11 or 12 years old when I realized that I was missing out on something.  My family enjoyed the fruit except me and there was a gnawing curiosity that I needed to fill.  The need to taste durian.  I remember the apprehension and getting past the smell before I took my first bite of the fruit.  But after that bite, I understood the joy that came with eating durian.  The smell suddenly made sense and I couldn’t imagine eating the fruit without the smell.  The aroma and flavor was perfect!  And there my friends started my love affair with durian.

Drawing from my childhood experience, I realized that appreciating the fruit first took guts. To get past the smell and fill your soul with adventure to try something new.  Usually, when my out-of-town friends ask me about durian and how we can eat such a smelly fruit, I’d tell them to open their senses to a new experience and they will certainly appreciate it.  Alas, only a few are brave.

Last week, I had a friend from Manila who was willing to taste durian.  We got to squeeze a few hours to go to the local market which is a jeep ride away from the Davao Imperial Hotel before their flight and picked a nice durian fruit for his taste test.  What do you know?  The guy totally enjoyed it!  2 fruit filled seeds sucked clean. Yeah.. Only the brave who’s open to new experiences can enjoy this world more right?  So if you find yourself in Davao, try the magnificent durian.

District Treelogy afternoon

A semi-cloudy sunday afternoon makes for a good time to check out the long boarding community in Davao.   The race event, held at Sun City, was organized by District Tree, who manufactures carbon-fiber long boards that rival the quality of foreign brands.   Every  couple of months or so, race events are organized to get the downhill long board enthusiasts to showcase their skills to the community.   But what really was appealing to me was that the race didn’t have that air of  uptightness that comes with these types of competition.  The organizers, participants and spectators gathered like a big group of friends out to have fun.  Yes, there was competition, but there were lots of fun too.  Lots of laughter, silly and frivolous remarks were going on while riders fell, slid, scraped their skin or bumped into each other without causing animosity to fellow rider or spectator.

Before the winners were announced, there was also a roll-call of groups present and I was surprised to hear that there were kids coming as far as Gen San.   Talk about passion for the sport huh.  But with the type of atmosphere you get with this crowd, there’s no doubt that you’d want to join their events again and again.  They also had their beer soaking going on for the winners and riders.  Good times.  Good times indeed.  Had a few beers and some grilled pork while lounging around after the race and went on home before it got dark.  Yesterday was a fun and relaxing sunday afternoon.