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Chilling Out

Elvis goes to Everest!December 5, 2006

Elvis goes to Everest!

Band Lineup
Perhaps the biggest perk to my coming down to Manila was being on time for the 17th annual Elvis concert by my org, UP Mountaineers. This year's theme is Elvis goes to Everest in honor of UP Mountaineers members who recently scaled the big one. The town is painted red on this big night with performances by the country's top rock and alternative bands. Check out the line-up: Romeo Lee and the Brownbriefs, Pepe Smith, Snakecharmers, Juan Pablo Dream, Brass Monkeys, Dong Abay, Reggae Mistress, Chubibo, Kiko Machine, Coffee Break Island, Pupil, Narda, FMD, Tado with Live Tilapia, Jeepney Joyride, Bembol Rockers and many more. Price tag for this chock-full-of-bands night? An exceptionally reasonable P100 (shit dude, that's just one meal).

Touching Base
Informally, it's also a kind-of Christmas party for the org. Members from then and now, near and far, make the time to be there and bond, dance (moshpit style), drink and shoot the breeze with long-lost members. It's my chance to hook up with my batchmates too whom I haven't seen since I moved up Sagada. Overall, it's a familiar crowd - same faces over the years: UP Mounataineers members, their friends, the same bands, and their extended netword as well. Yeah, party on!

Romeo Lee and Pepe Smith
Perhaps the last 2 remaining bastions of rock and roll, these 2, more than anyone else, bring rock and roll, front row, center, and in-your-face. With their manic stage presence and performance, rock and roll comes alive. To those who think they'd been born too late for Janis Joplin and Hendrix, snap out of it! Savor these 2 icons while they're still around. They are the Morrisons, Joplins and Hendrix of the next generation. Good while supply lasts.

The Fuzz
With everyone hammered, tempers rose and someone got beaten up. As Dennis catchingly puts it, "Black and Blue are the colors of Rock and Roll!!!". Admittedly, not exactly our finest moment. The event is our thing and we have to own up to it. The mountaineer core value must be upheld.

Wild Thing
No, it's not Lee's signature song. It's about this Supreme Court lawyer (name witheld to protect the innocent) who recently passed the bar and gets a career head-start working for the highest court in the land. A legal stiffy? You're way off the mark. Hammered and dancing her heart out with the moshpit hooligans, she hands me her beer and says, "...hold this. I'm jumping off the stage." You guessed it - she's also a friend. Making sure there's at least one guy to catch her, I said, "...look for me first in the crowd and jump in my direction". Already up on stage (while the band was still playing) and preparing for her dive, the moshpit hooligans paused, backed up to catch her dive as well. As she jumped, she slipped with no one to catch her - resulting in a face-plant. Oh shit! Holy motherf@$#ing shit! Bruised and bleeding, she gets up, shakes the grass and dirt off her face and front, and tells me, "...that didn't go well. I'll jump again!" And she did, with me catching her this time. Yeah, tell me about it...wild thing!

Ending Thoughts
Like all UP Mountaineers events, this one is loads of fun. I'll give credit to Romeo Lee for keeping the faith in making this a continuing tradition. On stage and off, he tirelessly books the bands, makes logistical arrangements, helps set up the stage...of course, with a lot of help from his friends. If that's not enough, he emcees the event, and performs as well, with his inimitable style of rock & roll. With him as the driving force behind the event, Elvis is here to stay.

--- TheLoneRider

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Dec 5, 2006

Reader Comments:

Wild ThingWild Thing
(Jan 16, 2007) ...not a very accurate account if my memory serves me right (of course my memory can get a bit faulty after a gallon or two of beer). The way I remember it, NO-ONE, except you of course, even ATTEMPTED to catch me. In fact, I could've sworn that the second time I jumped, the crowd parted like the red sea, leaving you all alone to get squashed under me like a bug. Thanks for breaking my fall that second time :-) some guy nearby actually told me that I should have gone backwards. That's how warped pinoy chivalry is - my honor apparently comes first before my life. Rather than risk touching my boobs, they'd let me break my neck instead.

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