Monday, May 26, 2008

Howlin' Dave signs off

Dante "Howlin' Dave" David.
Rock jock par excellance. Bar none.

I was doing v.o. for SOP when I get a call from my good bud Papadom.
"Nasa ICU si Dante.." he sullenly said.
"Mukhang malabo.." he ashenly added.
"Kelangan ata mag-fundraiser," he said.
I agreed.
"Balitaan mo ako kung ano.." I replied.
I get a call from my friend Buddy T.
"Chong, Dante's in the hospital," he said.
"Yeah, I heard. Domeng gave me a call earlier.." I retorted.
Having been one of the countless bands he helped out in the early 80's
by playing their recordings over DZRJ AM on his seminal Sunday noontime show
Pinoy Rock N" Rhythm, we felt we owed Dante a debt of gratitude, and decided to
put together a fundraiser to come to his aid.

It's Buddy.
"Chong, Dante's gone. He passed away this morning."
That numbing sensation of unbelievable realization, where you hold your breath for a
split instant, that's what I felt when I heard the news.
"Aww man, I can't believe this.." is all I could answer.

The confines of this blog entry is not enough to extol upon the merits and achievements of
DZRJ's Howlin' Dave. I'll leave the creds to some other hack, and just keep it to how Dante profoundly touched my music, as well as my psyche.
Starting out as a voice on the radio, whom I came to admire, not only for the manner upon which he carried himself, but because of the music he bravely pioneered. Be it the music that other stations would dare not touch with a ten-foot tonearm like Malcolm McLaren's Duck Rock album or The Creatures, early pre-sellout U2, G.B.H. or the tons of Punk Rock gems I only got to hear back then, to the unsigned, local music that he aired without care nor prejudice, only the man himself, Howlin' Dave, could pull it off. And make it work, and make it sound right.

It was through Howlin' Dave I got to hear bands like Chaos. College. The Zoo. Even the band I'd eventually get to join, Betrayed. Integrated Circuit. To name a few.
"Ang Pilipino ay magaling.." he would interject, as he introduced XC by IC.
The eclecticity of his music made you forget RJ's AM static it was mired in.
"The music tends to augment the times.."
Only Dante could say it and actually give meaning to it.

I shall miss Dante.
There will only be one.
God bless his soul.
And thanks for all the music.


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