Close  

LOOK: New York Times obituary for Rico J. Puno

/ 08:17 PM October 30, 2018

Updated @ 9:37 p.m., Oct. 30, 2018

ADVERTISEMENT

Rico J. Puno, Makati City councilor and iconic singer known as “The Total Entertainer,” made it to the obituary section of The New York Times on Tuesday, shortly after his death of a heart attack at the age of 65.

The article, written by Hong Kong-based journalist Mike Ives, describes Puno as a “larger-than-life cultural figure” who became famous covering American hits.

FEATURED STORIES

But Ives notes that Puno “channeled American superstars to forge a distinctive brand of local soul music.”

“Mr. Puno made American music his own by adding bawdy lyrics and banter in Tagalog,” Ives wrote. “One of his best-known covers, for example, was ‘You Don’t Have to Be a Star,’ by Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis Jr. And he embellished it with this line: ‘Even if you’re ugly, I still need you’.”

“Mr. Puno’s big break — a deal with Vicor Records — was precipitated by an encounter in the 1970s with the Motown band The Temptations at The Palazzi, a club where the young singer played regularly. It was during this period that he recorded his signature version of ‘The Way We Were,’ among other popular American songs,” Ives added.

“Over the years, Mr. Puno performed solo and with The Hitmakers, a group that included the Filipino musicians Rey Valera and Hajji Alejandro.”

Puno, along with Valera, Alejandro, and many others, pioneered what came to be known as “Manila Sound,” which later would be called “Original Pilipino Music.”

Ives quotes Puno as saying at a news conference last February: “Only God can stop me from singing. He gave me this ‘gift’ and only He can take it back.” /atm

RELATED
Makati mourns passing of Councilor Rico J. Puno
Rico J. Puno died of heart failure, says manager
Filipino music artists pay tribute to late OPM icon Rico J. Puno
Panelo mourns loss of ‘personal friend’ Rico J. Puno
ADVERTISEMENT
Read Next
LATEST STORIES
MOST READ
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.
View comments

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: New York Times obituary, Rico J. Puno
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.
newsinfo

Farm tourism: Albay opens agri one-stop shop

July 21, 2019 05:10 AM

lifestyle

When the bride broke into a song

July 21, 2019 05:10 AM

opinion

Air, water and beauty: For sale?

July 21, 2019 05:10 AM

newsinfo

This Week’s Festivals: July 21 – 27, 2019

July 21, 2019 05:05 AM

sports

San Miguel, TNT, Blackwater join Asia league

July 21, 2019 05:05 AM



© Copyright 1997-2019 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.