Wednesday, April 30, 2008

The Triggerman's Daily Top 20 @ 12

He's back!
Because the listeners clamored for it.. you demanded it.. you've got it!
Local radio's iconic DJ The Triggerman is back riding the airwaves on Campus 99.5,
hosting the longest-running, most popular daily hit countdown in the Philippines and Asia,
The Top 20 @ 12! Get your daily dose of the most requested, most popular hits in the land,
daily 11am-1pm. And don't forget the week's hottest hits by your votes on the Weekend Top 20, every Friday night at 10pm-12mn.
And remember, it's not a hit, 'til it's a hit on the Top 20 @ 12!
You asked for him.. you've got him!
Catch the Triggerman on the Daily Top 20 @ 12 and the weekend Top 20, on the #1 Hit Music Station in Metro Manila, Campus 99.5!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

NineTy-Nine Point Fiiive (A Re-post)

A re-post of DLSU's Niko Batallones' blog entry about Campus 99.5.
Fifteen months in the making, he says.
Very extensive piecing-together research. Impressive.
Not bad for a "jilted girlfriend.."
Read on.

NineTy-Nine Point Fiiive..

30 April 2008

Jimmy Jam takes position for his afternoon shift.

I quickly turned the radio on at half past five in the morning on Easter Sunday. Most radio stations were warming up their transmitters, after the customary Lenten break, and the music was sounding very familiar. Online, the forums were abuzz with eager listeners, waiting for word on what the station will sound like when the day finally kicks in.

Then the prayer kicks in. For the past four years or so, I have always heard that prayer during start-up, and every morning, at around five minutes before six, before Joe Schmoe or (eventually) Da Kid would take the console. This time, though, it came fifteen minutes earlier, and we were waiting for other voices to come on air.

After an ad break - which removed doubts from listeners that it is, indeed, a different station - a really tacky dance track came up, ruining the alternative-leaning tracks that were played in the warm-up process. Even before the song could kick in, though, they interrupted it.

“That’s it,” one voice said. “I think I’ve had enough.”

“Yeah,” the other replied. “I think I’m getting nightmares. I feel like waking up from one.”

“Happy easter, everybody.” That was the first voice - John Hendrix.

“Happy easter, everybody!” That was the second, more excited voice - Jimmy Jam.

Cue to stinger: “the number one hit music station in Metro Manila.” Just like before, actually, only a little tweaked, to prevent possible copyright infringement. Kjwan’s Daliri comes in, and after another song, and the top of the hour sting, it was Sting’s Brand New Day. They have come back.

The return of Campus Radio, or at least its spirit and personality - formerly at 97.1 MHz, before GMA controversially flipped it to Barangay LS - to take the place of struggling TRPI station Hit FM was a much-awaited event, at least among radio circles and listeners who were disenfranchised by its close. It is more complicated that the name change - initially 99.5 Campus FM, lately it seems that they will be called Campus 99.5, after the logo was shown to the public for the first time - but rather, it’s a story of two stations seemingly bound together by fate, and a pretty extraordinary ending, at least for me.

Trying to make a mark

Neil presents lunchtime request show You Pick The Hit.

“They’ve killed RT!”

It was during a visit to the studios of 103.5 Max FM - that impulsive visit, as Jaiin and I would call it - that got me exposed to the idea of 99.5 Hit FM rebranding itself. Up to now I can still remember how Kelly said it. She was an RT listener during her younger years, and eventually inspired her entry to the radio industry, citing RT jock Jeremiah Junior as an influence. Also, for four months, she was at Hit FM, drafted in from sister station Magic 89.9.

That was a full month before the flip happened, and by then, Jaiin and I had mixed reactions. I was surprised, but not entirely so - the station, despite having popular shows such as The Homerun and, later, Brewrats with Strangebrew stars Tado, Angel Rivero and Ramon Bautista, was still struggling with profits. Jaiin was probably affected, as she was one of the self-styled Homerunners - a group of people that loved the show, and eventually became friends with the hosts, Winner and Lellie.

The entry of Hit FM to the market was an equally controversial one, at least for listeners who grew up listening - and falling in love, to put it loosely - with 99.5 RT for the past thirty years. The station which was known for breaking American chart hits in Manila before anybody else in its heyday was already a shadow of its former self months before it signed off for the last time. The veterans have left - the last ones being Joe Schmoe, who left at the end of 2005 to migrate to Canada, and Jeremiah Junior, who last presented the late night slot playing songs from RT’s golden era for 24K Friday. Thus, some actually welcomed the rebrand as some sort of measure to more accurately reflect the station’s programming - a Top 40 station like its sister station. In fact, some observe that it has started to go that way since TRPI bought RT from its former owners, the Tuasons, in 1996.

A first listen to the then-new station will make one realize that it is seriously attempting to swipe listeners from other pop stations, and even from its sister Magic. The morning show, named Sam vs Sam, saw the radio debut of Korean television host Sam Oh, paired with RT regular Sam YG. Late nights saw Ron, formerly of K-Lite - which also reformatted at the same time to Heart 103.5 - attempt to be a shock jock with The Factory, which didn’t really impress the older listeners.

Its playlist, though, leaned more towards alternative than Magic’s bias towards hip-hop and dance. Initially, also, it played much more older songs - something I found pleasantly surprising.

This, however, wasn’t really a successful formula for them - one quarter’s audience ratings saw them tied for dead last in the NCR! Thus, sometime in the middle of the year, a seeming jerk reaction led to a wave of programming changes to the station. New shows were rolled out - a new morning show, after Sam YG moved to Magic, and for two weeks, a new afternoon show with Kelly and Tin, a former Magic student DJ. (They were later moved to midmornings.) Later, Old School Wednesday - a day dedicated to playing 90s hits - was discontinued to be replaced by the similar Number 1 Hit Weekend on Saturdays, and the return of 24K Friday - a realization that for some listeners, Hit FM is still 99.5 RT, and that perhaps is the only reason it’s in their radio’s presets. That would last for only six weeks, however - it was quickly scratched, to be replaced by Number 1 Hit Weekend’s move to Fridays.

Hit FM, however, somewhat happened at the right time. Six weeks after it launched, GMA reformatted its Manila FM station and made it similar to its provincial FM stations, targeted at a more mass audience. This move was seen as being inspired by its high ratings in television - or, perhaps, an attempt to replicate that on radio. The aim was simple: put the station on top of the ratings.

All but one of the Campus Radio jocks were kept, however, but were asked to change their identities in order to relate more with the new audience. Spiels were done in Filipino, and jokes were being cracked in each, to ill effect - it sounded forced, and the jocks sounded similarly forced. Nevertheless the station rose from sixth to fourth in audience ratings.

Some Campus Radio listeners, left adrift by the sudden flip, started listening to Hit FM. It seemed like the perfect fit - it somehow had a similar, although more limited, playlist. It wasn’t as tight, but the upside was in the entertainment, provided at this time by the likes of The Hit Morning Crew, hosted by Sonny B and Magic import Bennii, Mornings with Kelly and Tin, and The Homerun. It even had started to attract a following, especially the latter two, and more so with the entry of Brewrats, which attracted a rabid fan base that demographically was different from the rest of the station.

Still, though, it wasn’t enough.

Itchy feet?

Kelly hosts one of her last shows on Hit FM.

Perhaps the Hit FM flip was, in the wider picture, a victim of terrible timing. Older listeners to the frequency still called it RT, and were still reminiscing the station’s heyday. Elsewhere on the dial, Mo Twister was still raking in audiences to the station - perhaps his popularity during Hit FM’s first sign-on made it a more low-key affair than expected. 2007 was, even, a year of station rebrands, tweaks and whatnot, with stations filling the void of past ones: Jam 88.3 adapting the K-Lite demographic in March, and in June, Heart flipping (again) to contemporary pop station 103.5 Max FM, managed by former Magic DJ Sgt. Pepper, and including imports from both Magic and Hit, particularly the perenially successful King DJ Logan initially doing late nights.

Hit FM may have found itself a place in the radio dial, with listeners and fans tuning in and liking what they hear, but advertising money wasn’t flowing in. At the latter parts of the year, you can hear the same ads rotating, as compared to Magic sometimes having nine-minute ad breaks in peak times.

But events elsewhere, ironically, somewhat sealed the fate of the station. In January of this year, RGMA fired all but two of the Barangay LS jocks - including most veterans like Johnny Baby (John Hendrix), Atong Bomb (Jimmy Jam) and BossSirAmo (Triggerman) - in an aim to refresh the station’s sound and align it further with provincial programming.

Nothing else is known about what happened in the three months between the terminations and the Hit FM flip. All that the public was told, via the forums, was that the Triggerman facilitated the entry of the Campus Radio jocks to the TRPI fold, and all done away from the public. However, the DJs seem to have noticed and started leaving one by one.

On 31 December 2007, Mornings with Kelly and Tin ended, with Kelly announcing her departure from the station. Two weeks before, she told me that she’d be retiring from the industry, after being in it for almost fifteen years. Almost at the same time, Sonny B vanished from the morning show, to attend to personal matters; Tin was drafted in immediately to captain the show.

The rumors of a Hit FM flip started flying, however, when news broke that Tracy, who at the time was hosting the lunchtime request show You Pick the Hit with Migz (known on air as “Migz with a Z”), was moving to Jam 88.3. This was early in March; somebody mentioned that the pending reformat was the reason. It was funny, on my part, that after keeping quiet for two weeks - as Kelly specifically asked us to do - I was the one who confirmed the news. (After three weeks, Kelly moved to Max FM and started her late night show, Kellybites Nights. Tracy took over Jam’s lunchtime slot, Hang-out High.)

Later I was chatting with Tin, who by then had already announced her (sudden, by her accounts) departure from Hit FM. “Not true,” she said upon realizing that some were thinking that TRPI were shuffling DJs from their five radio stations around. “None of us were told to leave. [No one forced Tracy to] leave Hit. Same with me. Same with Kelly.”

Despite her being excited about her move back to Magic, she had concerns, too. “I’m worried about Hit too,” she said earlier. “I have no idea [about] what’s going to happen. I was set to leave way before the rumors started circulating, so when people started talking about the takeover I felt bad.”

The Campus Radio jocks, at this point, have announced on PinoyExchange that Campus Radio is, indeed, coming back. The public was teased with the idea of having jocks like the Triggerman coming back, and being in the own element after eleven months in their masa personalities. Somewhere, someone speculated that the timing was uncanny - with Hit FM reformatting and Campus Radio returning, perhaps it’s the latter that will replace the former? Their mouths were shut.

The final sign-off

A week before the Lenten sign-off, however, it was becoming imminent that Hit FM was in its last days. Tin and Tracy have left, and daytime saw four-hour shifts, with former early morning and later afternoon DJ Slyde heading the morning show. Lellie was left alone to host The Homerun’s last week. Some weekend shows, like Migz’ Big Night Out and Joshua’s The 24K Experience - a show that rectified the cancellation of 24K Friday - hinted at a change happening on Easter Sunday. It was later announced that Sam Oh would leave the station, and indeed, she wasn’t around during the last days.

Online, John Hendrix - the main spokesperson with regards to how the Campus Radio comeback was going at the time - announced that the return would be on Easter Sunday. The picture was becoming more and more complete. Jimmy Jam summed it all up perfectly in a blog entry: “Slowly, but surely, they’re piecing the puzzle together, the open secret revealing itself in sheddings that shock as more layers to the story are outlayed, further thickening the already intricate plot.”

Avid listeners marked 19 March - Holy Wednesday - as a must-listen day, as it was expected that the remaining DJs would bid goodbye. Not everybody has, it seems - nothing from Slyde or Neil. Migz was out that day, and already ended his last show the day before with “see you next time” rather than “see you tomorrow.” The Homerun, however, saw Winner coming by to host the last show. The Homerunners were surprised to see that, as he wasn’t around for the last two weeks or so. Even more surprising, he was calling himself as Da Kid.

“I don’t know if I went [to] the right place,” Jaiin texted me that night. “Somehow it feels right and… out of place at the same time.”

Being one of the so-called “hardcore Homerunners” - a group of listeners that really stayed throughout the show - she felt she had to be at the Hit FM studios to watch the very last show unfold. She was texting me all these updated about what’s happening inside, as I was reduced to tuning in through the radio in my mobile phone. “The atmosphere has been tense here since [17.00],” she said. “Campus jocks everywhere earlier.”

Another Homerunner, Jalein, told me later that Winner did seem tense. “Pinagpapawisan siya kahit malamig sa booth,” she said. “Labas-pasok siya. Nagme-meeting ata sa conference room.

The show’s 8-Ball segment was dedicated to playing the songs that got the most votes through the countdown’s history. In between, they were receiving thank-you and miss-you messages on the text line, one of which came from me - at one point a Homerun listener until I gave up on pop music again. Winner would later announce that Lellie would be leaving the station, too, after working seven years, most of which as a newscaster for RT. As the Homerunners proceeded to have dinner with Lellie, the Brewrats came on board, and with them, their own bunch of followers. (Lellie would later show up at Magic 89.9, working with CJ and Sarah on the newly-relaunched The Carpool.)

On the “conference” at Kelly’s Multiply site, for her show on Max FM, the conversation was about Hit FM, too. It also had a following - the so-called Kellybiters, with me leading them at one point, and still one of them until now - but that day they were also tuned in to the last 8-Ball countdown. I wasn’t around that time, instead preferring to listen to the station’s final hurrah. One of the biters started asking about the absence of the rest of us. “Prolly listening to something else,” Kelly chuckled.

“I also feel bad for them,” Kelly later told me through a phone call that night. “They’ll be losing their jobs, di ba? I hope that doesn’t happen. I wish them all the best.”

I woke up at twenty minutes before midnight, still tuned in to Brewrats, which was already in their batian portion. The self-patterned Brewsters were packed inside the studio, greeting each other, as if nothing was to happen. However, this group were very vocal with the news of the Hit FM reformat, fearing that their favorite show would go off the air with it. This moment, though, was really living up to its being Hit FM’s last hurrah; the closing moments were simply celebratory.

“We are the Brewrats!” everybody in the studio exclaimed. Cue to the show’s theme song, which made it to the 8-Ball countdown at one point.

After the sign-off message - which was there since 99.5 RT’s days - and the national anthem, that was it.

“Hallelujah, the good Lord has risen…”

“…and in 32 minutes, so shall Campus Radio.” Jimmy Jam posted that on his blog on Easter Sunday, as I woke up and proceeded to the computer to check the forums. Anticipation is indeed high, and listeners and “radio afficionados” were eager to know how it will come out.

It was Campus Classic Weekend - a direct descendant of Campus Radio’s Retro Jam, only extended to both Saturdays and Sundays, and four songs in, it’s already catering to the old listeners and being freakishly familiar at the same time: for instance, their particular fondness towards the Itchyworms’ Love Team, the last song to top the last Top 20 at 12 countdown, and is still a station recurrent.

Online, the Campus FM thread that I set up had already reached two pages within less than an hour. Their newly-created Yahoo! Messenger account was presumably full of responses, too. I eventually got through.

“I’m following the launch,” I typed in. “Yes, I’m the ‘jilted girlfriend’ on PEx.”

“Hey jilted GF, happy easter,” Jimmy Jam typed in. “You now have a new nick!”

The day continued with what seems to be a grand hurrah for the resurrected Campus Radio personalities, trying to get used to the different console and playout system that Hit FM utilized in its run. Those that made the move - John Hendrix, Jimmy Jam, Joe Spinner, Jaybee and Braggy - had shifts throughout the entire day. The only Hit FM holdover to board that day was Neil, who usually hosted Sunday Sessions for RT and Hot - but it wasn’t there. Even more surprising, he introduced him as a nameless DJ. “I’m… what’s my name again?” he went. “Anyway…”

The Hit FM DJs have been apparently asked to change their on air monickers. “Soon,” Neil answered. “I don’t know [when we will have new names] din.” He even disclosed that Sunday Sessions was in threat of being cancelled outright. “Dapat Sunday pa rin!” he said.

Campus FM sought to actually differentiate itself from Hit FM - and, consequently, from 99.5 RT itself. The first most obvious element would be how they pronounce the frequency. “Long has it been the RT tradition to roll their ’99’s’ in a slang-ish manner, for loss of a better term,” Jimmy Jam said in the forums. Thus, their “99″ instead becomes “ninety-nine,” with the stress on the letter T. What seems to be awkwardness from the DJs is apparently deliberate. Signs around the studio at unit 906-B of Paragon even stress this point.

As mentioned earlier, the Hit FM DJs have also adopted new names. Neil became “Boy Toy,” Slyde became “Mister E,” Migz became “Zack Attack,” and Joshua - who is back on doing weeknights - is now “Big Z.” Ron has been given pinch-hitting duties as “Jagger.”

The first few days of Campus FM obviously showed its attempts to get up. There were miscues with the newscasters in the other booth (they’re still Cristina - or Nana, her actual nickname - and Dada), mistakes with the console, and even a few on-air bloopers. “Force of habit,” John Hendrix said on his first shift, explaining him saying 97.1 on the air. Behind the scenes, things were more tense: probably surprised at the takeover, and scared for their jobs, resistance from the former Hit Squad and the Campus Radio jocks emerged. John Hendrix, however, was happy that it was over, and eventually the jocks worked together perfectly fine.

Sixty people in line

Something seems to be wrong with the PC holding the music in Joe Spinner's shift...

I finally dropped by the station on 7 April, trying my luck for the fifth batch of Campus Aircheck - its student DJ program, which it has taken pride of. There were around sixty who auditioned that say, according to the list Jaybee was holding - I was surprised that Jaiin was there, even - and twenty more on the phone lines, according to Joe Spinner, who boarded while I was waiting for my turn.

Looking around, it seemed that Campus FM has indeed started to run back to what it missed after RGMA’s flip. It’s been so long, and indeed the musical landscape has changed, with songs being “owned” by other radio stations. Support for local acts somewhat waned, even, with Campus Radio’s demise on its former frequency. But it seems ready to get back up there, and while more shows are yet to be launched - the latest was Revenge of the 80s, two one-hour shows on Sundays - they’re still keeping the radio enthusiasts and their listeners excited.

Maybe one can say it has successfully molded both factors of the new station. Two former Hit FM jocks are at primetime: aside from Big Z, Zack Attack’s doing midmornings after Braggy left to work in Singapore. And, after furor over the initial decision to muck around with Brewrats‘ time slot and format - and an envelope full of letters which, as Jalein described it, had terrible grammar - they’re back in their old slot, and their old antics, too. Perhaps all but the batian portion, as the station has a no greeting policy clearly posted on the studio’s walls. That probably explains why the station still doesn’t have a text line, relying instead on the two phone lines and Yahoo! Messenger for requests.

One funny thing with the auditions was the topic they decided to ask aspiring student DJs about: their transition. After fifteen months of following these events, it felt weird that it all boiled down to roughly ten minutes with John Hendrix at Campus FM’s production booth, discussing all that’s happened to them, and what happened afterwards. Then again, as he himself said, “it feels good to be back.”

With Campus FM’s launch, there are even hopes that it would be better than the old Campus Radio - obviously my objections to their programming was no secret. Right now, the adage of keeping spiels short is being reinforced in the station, although there’s still a case of imaging overkill. “Don’t talk until it makes sense to broadcast positivity,” the white board says. And Joshua - the proud RT jock who actually got into radio after listening to WLS-FM, at least before it became Campus Radio - is hopeful that the station will bring radio programming out of a rut. “For the first time in a long time, it actually has a chance to rise above all the mediocrity being passed off as entertainment, which has plagued the FM band for too long a while,” he said. “And it’s an opportunity for a very popular radio brand to regain its former glory.”

As for Barangay LS, if only to mention that, the latest ratings show them slipping from fourth to sixth place.

At this point, you tune in to Campus FM and don’t think about whether you’re listening to Hit FM or Campus Radio, despite the signs of it being so still around. (The motto, in fact - the number one hit music station in Metro Manila - is a nod to both, and elicited a response from Magic’s Joey, wondering in jest about they’re being already in number one immediately after launch.) A success, it seems, of their plans. It perhaps feels a bit weird when Triggerman - currently their station manager - has finally come on board, after much clamor from the public, with the first weekly countdown starting earlier than expected, and ending later than intended. He was very open about his experiences, even citing the old station by frequency - and said that the shift was an audition. “I’ve been jobless for three months,” he said. “I’m kinda rusty.”

It feels weird because I still have the urge to call it RT. Call it force of habit.

This entry was fifteen months in the making - different blog entries changing concepts and being procrastinated on until it becomes what you see now. Many thanks to the DJs I have talked to, in one way or another, throughout those months: Joe Spinner, Jimmy Jam, John Hendrix, Joshua, Kelly, Lellie, Neil and Tin. Many thanks also to fellow biters Jaiin Bitalac and Jalein Sanchez.

The Owl has landed!

Or should I say.. woo-HOOT!

The "owl" has landed. And it landed in Mall Of Asia.Yup, Hooters Bar & Restaurant is now in Manila! The bonafide, true blue, original Hooters, that is. Before you begin drooling uncontrollably and go sliding to Pasay City over your own saliva, bear in mind that..
the Hooters Girls are Pinays, not busty blonde American girls. And unlike their caucasian counterparts, they are not, I repeat, NOT, as errr uhm, well endowed as you'd expect.
But hey, nevertheless, Pinays are the most beautiful girls in the
entire Southeast Asian Rim, so there! And don't forget, their press release sez they have the tastiest uhm, Buffalo wings that are just begging to be sample, and they also boast of the coldest beers (but hey, so are the ones at home..).
It's located along Restaurant Row at MoA's San Miguel By The Bay.
A Hooters Calendar and even a magazine are coming in 2009.

And what about that "other Hooters" along Macapagal Avenue?
Y'know, the one that got everyone falsely excited not too long ago..
the sports bar going by a similar name.. but using a Tarsier instead of
the trademark Owl in their logo.. Kaz Endo, managing director and partner
of Paradise Wings Llp., a Guam-based company that owns the Hooters
franchise for Guam and Asia, including the Philippines
"Hooters of America and the principles of that specific operation
are currently in a legal dispute over
trademark and concept infringment.
Now that's a hoot.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

The Best Ground (Re-post)

Browsing through my blog on, a comment on an entry led me to DisKorner, a site by djron81. Here's his entry about Campus 99.5. You can check out his blog at

Friday, April 25, 2008

The Best Ground

I've been away from Manila for almost a year now. I only found out about the BIG change of 99.5 RT the other night! I am so glad that Campus is now residing at that frequency. I could still remember when I was still in Makati, I was going home from an 8hr shift when I heard a DJ talking in a very lame way mentioning the 97.1 frequency!


I al
most fell off my chair 'cos I couldn't believe my ears! Campus Radio 97.1 talking like Kadyot Lang? I was so disappointed and felt sad for the jocks, I know how it feels like being taken away from what you love doing. I had that experience back in 2005, a siavu manager (selfish, insecure, and very unprofessional) took me out of the booth at the middle of my show and gave me the paper that I had to sign to then never gave me a chance to say goodbye to my three good years of adored audience.

Don't get me wrong.. I've never done any crime!

People were asking where I went, they were telling them that I had to leave due to some reasons! He should have given me the damn thing after my show! Is it fair to lie to your audience? Do you get what I mean? Anyway.. moving on...

This new frequency for a renowned station like Campus is the best news that I heard! In fact I was just talking to BigZ on their YM (campusfm995) and now I am listening to Triggerman who's playing La Isla Bonita!

Whew! This is overwhelming and mind-blowing!

Oh I miss being on air! I'll try to buy a sand paper tomorrow 'cos I'm rusty! LoL

So guys don't forget, it's now
Ninety-Nine Point Five
Campus FM!

6330995 or 7060940 Call Now!

You can also listen online!

Thanks to JimmyJam for this logo.

This blog is paid by Campus... Not!

Paul Davis passes on

If you grew up on the music of 99.5 RT,
specially around the pivotal period of the late 70's
into the early 80's, then mourn with me.

JACKSON, Mississippi (April 23) - Paul Davis,
a singer and songwriter whose soft rock hit "I Go Crazy"
stayed on the charts for months after its
release in 1977, died Tuesday.
He was 60.
Davis died of a heart attack at Rush Foundation Hospital in Meridian,
the city where he grew up, cousin James Edwards said.

Davis' other popular hits included "You're Still New To Me,"
a country duet with Marie Osmond; and "Ride 'Em Cowboy."

His 1977 album "Singer of Songs -- Teller of Tales"
featured the ballad "I Go Crazy."
The song slowly climbed the charts,
peaking at No. 7 eight months after its release,
according to Billboard's Web site.
The song stayed in the Top 100 for 40 weeks,
according to Billboard -- a record at the time
for the magazine's Hot 100 chart.
The mark has since been surpassed many times;
the current record holder is LeAnn Rimes' "How Do I Live,"
which stayed on the Hot 100 for 69 weeks.

Davis is best known in the Philippines for his 24K RT classics
"'65 Love Affair" and "Cool Night."
Another singer-songwriter bites the dust. But Paul's music shall
live on in our collective memories, as well as our music collections.

My Revenge-free Sunday

Don't get me wrong.
REVENGE OF THE 80'S is still on.
The best of the 80's still come alive every Sunday on Campus 99.5.
And in full swing.
You've probably noticed some minor schedule adjustments
for this week, John Hendrix had to hie off to Bora for the
Nestea Volleyball tourney, which he hosts yearly.
So everybody's slot did a slight waltz this week.

In a nutshell, Joe Spinner, who took over the morning show, and
The Big Z, who comes in on Sunday, will be hosting REVENGE
only for this week. So for now, it's a REVENGE-free Sunday for me.
Given his excellent hosting of the 24K Experience in the past, I rest easy
with the fact that The Z will be more than able to exact REVENGE.
Will post their shows later in the day. Don't miss them..
8-9am with Joe Spinner
5-6pm with The Big Z.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

And now.. Campus Aircheck Batch 5 2008

Campus 99.5 's Summer Crash Course 2008 is well underway, as we proudly present to you Batch 5 of Campus Aircheck 2008!

Anne Cristabel De Leon

UP Diliman

Miguel Bonifacio


Theresa Carbonel


Cherry Sun

UP Diliman

Sienna Salamat


Grechell Silvestre


Katwin Santiago

Mkt. Med. Ctr.

Raisa Tan


Cecilia Javier


Jiff Caban


Nairisse Vispo

San Sebastian College

Angelica Orais


Melanie Fernandez


Francis Galura


Deedah Velasquez


Johanna Estrada

St. Paul’s Pasig

Edzhel Ramos


Matthew Quiros


Marilyn De Mesa


Iris Isaguirre

UP Diliman

Christine Manansala

UP Diliman

Jan Marie Sison


Xeres Guia


Kristen Morados


Sabrina Ragudo


Czarina Flores


Leonardo Larrazabal


Paulina Savillo


Hazel Elizes


Aphrodite Samson


Patricia Lazatin

UP Diliman

Anna Canlas

UP Diliman

Arnold Garcia


Klarizza Laza


Congrats to all of you!
Orientation happens on April 30, Wednesday, 1PM
at Campus 99.5
Rm. 906B
9th Floor
Paragon Plaza Bldg.
EDSA cor. Reliance St.
Mandaluyong City, MM.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Meeting The Mole

My compadre, Manny Casaclang aka The Mole. Started out at the seminal rock station RJFM 100.3, formerly known as DZUW, the FM counterpart of The Rock Of Manila, DZRJ-AM 810.
Back in the day, these two stations were the pioneering proponents of Rock music in Metro Manila, especially Pinoy Rock, its home at 810 via another seminal Rock Jock, Dante "Howlin' Dave" David's radio show Pinoy Rock N' Rhythm. Rock was alive on the airwaves thanks to these two stations.

RJFM 100.3, also known as The Source, was managed by The Mole. Together with the other Rock Jocks such as The Madman (Alfred Gonzalez), The Spirit (Jamie Evora), Jimmy Mo J (Jimmy Javier), The Domino (Joel Gregorio), Bob Sellner among others, tailored the rock tastes of countless listeners and rockers, broadening their minds and ears with some of the best rock music of that time. It is at DZRJ where I first met The Mole, as an avid listener, who joined their contests, claimed prizes and eventually began hanging out there during my College days, with dreams of becoming a Rock Jock.

After the military-controlled DZRJ got folded and reformatted into the all-female DJ-ed DWNK or WINK, a few years passed before I finally got my start on radio in 1986, and crossing paths again with The Mole at 97.1 WLS-FM in 1988. Having gotten my feet wet in Radio, and having known him from the RJ days, I was a shoe-in at LS.

Sometime in the 90's, we parted company once again, with The Mole moving to, first, Kool 106, then to DM 95.5. He went off-air after his stint with Pinoy Radio. Then did a shortie with Rock 990, RJ's other AM station, but the station didn't last. Now he's back on-air at RJUR 105.9 Underground Radio. Doing the Sunday swing from 9am-12nn, The Mole is back to what he does the best.. playing Classic Rock the way no other newbie jock nowadays could ever do or even imagine.

20 April 2008.
Listening to The Mole on a Sunday morning puts a smile on my face. Why?
Coz of all the great stuff he plays; stuff I never would have thought of hearing on radio again.
Stuff from Fleetwood Mac. Poco. Emerson, Lake & Palmer. Pousette-Dart Band. Stuff I used to trip on back in 1982 on The Source RJFM. The Little River Band. Steely Dan. I could go on and on.

In short, I paid my compadre a visit that Sunday morning, even putting me on-air for a bit of the old chit-chat banter we used to do back in the old LS days. I miss my compadre. Just like old times. After his shift, and over a burgers-and-fries lunch at Wendy's, we caught up, just jammin' the breeze. It was good to see my compadre again. I'll be seeing him again soon, I promised him a shitload of cd-r's worth of material for his Sunday show, which excites us to no end, just thinking of playing and hearing them on-air. Again.
We're the true blue DJs. Those who go beyond the paycheck. The DJs who actually care about what they play. And not how much they're paid. Sure, it puts food on the table. But there are the DJs who are passionate about what they do. And what we play. Me and The Mole.. we're two of a kind. A dying breed, perhaps. Those who, as Bad Company would say,
live for the music. Coz that's what it's all about, baby.. the music.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

REVENGE OF THE 80'S - Week ending 20 April 08

Revenge is absolutely sweet!
Be sure to tune in every Sunday for the hottest.. the coolest.. the best of the 80's
8am-9am with John Hendrix and 5pm-6pm with Jimmy Jam on The Campus Classic Weekend
on Campus 99.5!

Here's what we played this weekend..

Revenge One
John Hendrix

Shellshock - New Order
Some People - Fra Lippo Lippi
When Smokey Sings - ABC
I Heard A Rumour - Bananarama
The Glamorous Life - Sheila E
The Hurting - Tears For Fears
Shakedown - Bob Seger
Top Gun Anthem - Harold Faltermeyer with Steve Stevens
One Vision - Queen
Love Vigilantes - New Order

Revenge Two
Jimmy Jam

Da Da Da (I Don't Love You You Don't Love Me Aha Aha Aha) - Trio
I Wanna Be Sedated - Ramones
Heart And Soul (Dance Mix) - Huey Lewis & The News
Harvest For The World - The Power Station
Got My Mind Set On You - George Harrison
Don't Disturb This Groove - The System
Like A Cannonball - Menudo
Miami Vice Theme - Jan Hammer
Far From Over - Frank Stallone
Rush Rush - Debbie Harry
Knight Rider Theme
A Girl In Trouble (Is A Temporary Thing) - Romeo Void

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Grasping at straws

An interesting read from yesterday's paper on our former employ..
"grasping at straws.." my first impression.
This piece was written by my High School batchmate, Pocholo Concepcion,
by the way. His former writing stints were the seminal 70's songhit magazine Jingle, he also wrote for the Red Rocks fanzine Red Racket, and was also a one-time DJ at LA 105.9 and RJ 100.3 before they went flaccid. He was also band manager for Yano.
Poch, you got our name wrong.. it's Campus 99.5, dude.

Race for top FM radio station intensifies

By Pocholo Concepcion
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 20:01:00 04/15/2008

MANILA, Philippines—Fierce competition and an obsession with ratings have driven Metro Manila’s FM radio stations to revamp their programming.

For the past several years, a number of these stations have been changing their names—“branding” in marketing parlance—to go with the format shift.

The former jazz station City Lite is now Jam 88.3, which plays acoustic pop-rock. DMZ (Dance Music Zone) has mutated into Wave 89.1, which champions R&B.

KY 91.5, which played classic rock in the late ’80s, has become Energy, a pop and oldies station. The easy-listening, no-DJ, Crossover-sound-alike that was Joey 92.3 first became xFM, which experimented with club music, then settled down with smooth jazz. KC 93.9 is now i-FM but still plays the same mainstream pop. K-Lite 103.5, which used to play alternative rock, switched to easy listening and called itself Heart, and then diverted to contemporary pop as Max FM. And what used to be the eclectic pop sound of Kool 106 has been altered into a jazz-flavored adult contemporary mix now known as Dream FM.

Note that two of them, xFM and Max, have changed formats twice within a few months. And at least three of them have changed ownership.

Most drastic overhaul

But the most drastic overhaul, which seemingly became a protracted struggle and triggered a backlash from loyal listeners, happened recently at 97.1 WLS—formerly known as Campus Radio and which now calls itself Barangay LS.

The flagship FM station of GMA Network, LS is directly under the supervision of Mike Enriquez, vice president of Radio GMA.

The station actually relaunched itself as Barangay LS on Feb. 14 last year. It was as a move to improve its rating and sales.

As Campus Radio, LS was ranked No. 6 out of some 24 stations.

A source, who declined to be identified because he was not authorized to talk about the matter, said Enriquez had been attempting to “tweak” LS’ sound after he was hired by Menardo Jimenez in 1995 to oversee GMA’s AM and FM operations.

Enriquez allegedly wanted LS to divert from its CHR (contemporary hit radio) or Top 40 format to a “more masa” pop sound. As a result, the station started playing more dance tunes and OPM ballads. It also launched the Campus Radio Greetings and Message Center, which allowed listeners to talk on-air.

The shift was an instant hit. Ratings improved and by 1997, LS was said to have shot to No. 1. But ratings do not necessarily translate to sales, the source contended.

Reviving the sound

The station’s marketing department reportedly persuaded Enriquez to revive LS’ Top 40 sound, which had already gained a strong fan base among high school and college students from middle-income families. This was also what advertisers preferred, said the source.

The source claimed Enriquez again instigated changes in LS’ song playlist in 2003, which unfortunately didn’t strike the right chord among many listeners.

But in 2007, the source said that Enriquez gathered the LS staff in a meeting and announced the station’s reformat from Campus Radio to Barangay LS. The DJs, who had to assume more street-friendly monikers, were also asked to do their spiels in Tagalog and crack jokes. In January this year, all but two of the announcers were fired and replaced by young jocks from RGMA provincial stations.

Some of the dismissed announcers were recently hired by the former 99.5 RT, which is now called 99.5 Campus Radio.

“The change of image from Campus Radio to Barangay LS was successful, but it needed a surge, a further boost to widen the audience,” said Enriquez in an interview at his GMA office. “The decision was to bring in new blood, a group of disc jockeys who would remain consistent with the Barangay LS image.”

New format, DJs

Enriquez belied allegations that he was solely responsible for changing the LS format and axing the DJs. “There were a lot of research, brainstorming and discussions … consultations with our advertising partners … It was a collective effort. We needed a radical shift in image, a brand name that would immediately establish the fact that from one end of the listening spectrum, which is upscale, yuppies, etc., we were shifting to the mass audience, which is younger…”

He added that LS needed the change “to fortify the barangay image and sound… because that’s what radio is all about, the sound and the image, that’s what makes radio stations.”

Before heading GMA’s radio operations, Enriquez was VP of Radio Mindanao Network (RMN), whose Manila FM station, DWKC, proclaimed itself in the late ’80s as “The No. 1 pop music station in Metro Manila,” a feat that was attributed to DJs who spoke Tagalog and also cracked jokes, though in a more spontaneous manner at the time.

But it’s 2008 and the city’s top mainstream pop station is 90.7 Love Radio. It is said to bring in a monthly advertising revenue of P13 million. It’s the kind of money that any station owner would certainly want to make, and which reportedly posed a challenge to Enriquez. He has vowed to make LS No. 1 soon.

There are, however, some very crucial factors that Enriquez has to deal with squarely. Love Radio, for instance, has the wacky lady DJ Nicole Hyala who talks and cracks jokes in a pioneering style that everyone else is desperately copying—with disastrous results.

Nicole Hyala on LS?

Has LS found its own Nicole Hyala?

“No, not yet,” replied Enriquez. “Who knows, she may be with us one of these days. Nicole Hyala on LS … We’re offering career paths to people, because we are a TV network, so the horizon and the ceiling of anybody on radio become much wider and higher here.”

If that sounded like an offer to Nicole Hyala, it merely confirmed Enriquez’s own description that the competition in radio has become “ruthless.”

But if there’s at least one home-grown program that LS is proud to have launched, it’s the advice segment “Talk to Papa” which airs 1-3 p.m. daily. It was first heard on LS’ Davao FM station and reportedly caused controversy due to its sexually suggestive content.

“The local bishop wrote our provincial station and complained about it,” said Enriquez. “Local government employees come late for work because of it … So we said, ‘Let’s do this in LS Manila’… and now it sizzles!”

The nagging question is, has such a program convinced advertisers to go to LS big time, enough to push it to the top of the ratings?

Enriquez did not give concrete numbers, but nevertheless sounded upbeat: “Revenue is picking up. We don’t have research numbers yet. Nagpa-rank kami ng aming internal research, not the industry … like Nielsen or Radio Research Council … Magpapa-rank kami ng post-change research, we’ll do that in a couple of months.”

Consistency, creativity

And yet amid this raging battle for ratings, how does one explain the prominence of Magic 89.9—a station that’s supposedly nowhere in the Top 10, but which is said to pull in a neat P8 million in advertising billings monthly?

In the end, it seems to boil down to how consistent and creative these stations handle everything that comes out of their transmitters. For most listeners, the music is what matters most.

And how does LS define its new sound?

“Basta ang rule, we should be playing well-known, strong, familiar hits,” said Enriquez. “When people listen to 97.1 at any time of the day, they will hear a familiar hit that they know, can sing and hum, relate to, reminisce with... ‘Yun ang rule.”

As Inquirer Entertainment pressed him whether that meant there would no longer be any room for new local talents like bands, or if breaking unsigned artists as LS “exclusives” translated to breaking the rule, Enriquez made a slight turnaround and said the rules are flexible: “Any song, any piece of music, any element that would be consistent with the format, we will play.”

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

THE Campus 99.5 Logo

Need I say more?
Well, maybe just a few words.
Now that we've finalized Campus 99.5's official station logo.. expect it to be emblazoned on upcoming events posters.. foreign act concert posters.. movie premiere tickets.. heck, maybe even a billboard on EDSA, why not (just the logo, no faces please).. and of course, we can now have the regulation stickering campaign.. the tarpoulines.. the streamers.. the full-page glossy magazine ads.. newspaper ads.. of course, school event posters.. and let's not stop there.. merchandising products as well, such as coffee mugs.. pens.. pencils.. rulers.. heck, a tie-up with a major school supplies company would be great.. letterheads.. envelopes.. t-shirts.. sweatshirts.. jackets.. hoodies.. baseball caps.. beanies.. how 'bout custom-made electric guitars.. basses.. drum kits? Okay, the buck stops here.
I'm just glad we finally have a logo.
It's official.
The identity personified.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

REVENGE is sweet!

13 April 2008
The debut episode of REVENGE OF THE 80'S!
Initially, a one-hour two-part all-hit, all-80's radio show, part of 99.5 Campus FM's
Campus Classic Weekend, first at 8am-9am, hosted by John Hendrix, and at 5pm-6pm,
hosted by Jimmy Jam. Revenge was indeed sweet.
Here's what was played.

John Hendrix

DE DO DO DO DE DA DA DA - The Police
THE REFLEX - Duran Duran
MONEY FOR NOTHING - Dire Straits with Sting
RASPBERRY BERET - Prince & The Revolution
PASS THE DUTCHIE - Musical Youth
THE RIGHT STUFF - New Kids On The Block
PRIVATE EYES - Daryl Hall & John Oates

Jimmy Jam

I DON'T LIKE MONDAYS - Boomtown Rats
BRASS IN POCKET - The Pretenders
DRIVE - The Cars
ALL I NEED IS A MIRACLE - Mike + The Mechanics
TOGETHER IN ELECTRIC DREAMS - Phil Oakey & Giorgio Moroder

Revenge is a dish best served cool!
Tune in every Sunday 8am-9am and 5pm-6pm
for a weekly dose of music from the decade whose time has come!
only on
99.5 CAMPUS FM's

Friday, April 11, 2008

The Logo

After reams and reams of printed studies of various shapes and sizes.. after constant consultation with anyone and everyone within opinionated range, we've finally got.. a draft
of our new logo. Yes, it's just a draft, but pretty much what the actual logo for 99.5 Campus FM
is going to look like.

I shall no longer go into the details of the design, and let the draft speak for itself.
Opinions, suggestions, complaints and what-have-you's are all welcome.
You have twenty seconds to come up with one and that's it..

Bear in mind that this is NOT the final design.
Existing elements of the logo will undergo further scrutiny, thus, further changes.
But, like I said, this is what it's gonna look like.. more or less.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Revenge Of The 80's

The most prolific
most eclectic
most adventurous
musical decade of
the 20th Century
is coming!

Featuring the funniest
the weirdest
the biggest
and the best
music of our time!

It's back right before your very ears.. with a vengeance!

80's music so hot.. it's cool.

Revenge is a dish best served cool.
Now serving up
the best
the hottest
the coolest!

on the
Campus Classic Weekend
only on
99.5 Campus FM!

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Noooooooo..!! They're back.. It's the New Kids On The Bleeeeecccchh!!

Like a bad dream, our putrid past has come back to haunt us!
Yup, Jordan Knight, his brother Jonathan, Danny Wood, Joey McIntyre and Donnie Wahlberg bounce back in 2008. The boyband that begot all boybands.. The New Kids On The Block are uhm.. back. In a recent interview with Today's Natalie Morales, the not-quite-youthful quintet
announced plans of a new album and a subsequent tour. Go figure. Bad dream, indeed.
And I thought Joey Fatone was bad news.

Saturday, April 05, 2008


A hilarious post from someone at
re-posted here for your reading pleasure. Grammatical errors notwithstanding, the views are pretty spot-on.

I hate GMA

no… not our dear president but GMA Network… that crappy jologs station… no offense to the kapuso’s out there… but seriously… that station is a whole lot of crap… they cheat with the ratings… and who cares you’re no. 1??? your a crap-on-tube!!!

remember the damn good Campus Radio… after being no. 1, they just tranformed into a stupid station called Baranggay LS… oh seriously? i was shocked when i tuned in campus and heard misteri girl… oh??? right… but i felt that they (the jocks) are not happy on what they are doing… and then last 2 weeks, i think, i read on a blog that campus radio is back as campus fm….. i thought if the former campus jocks will be on the new campus…. but i think, no… i just read awhile ago that gas-hole Mike Enriquez fired them and brought in new crews… o my lord!!!!! that is an evil work…. i read also that it was secretly planned and one day he just said that they are fired…. and what turned out? an even CRAPPIER Baranggay LS… the result? it went down from no.4 to no.6….. shame on you GMA, you rating-thirsty crap-on-tube…. well at least they have jobs now as the airjocks of 99.5 campus fm…