Friday, April 28, 2017

Musings on The Eraserheads and Playing Music

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I don’t think there’s anything that can relax me quite like a session spent listening to the Eraserheads. As a lifelong Eheads fan, I can just sit back (or lie back), close my eyes, and sing along to the lyrics that bring me back to those long, sunny afternoons of my youth where there was nothing to worry about, except what song to listen to next.

I don’t exactly remember how I started listening to the band. But I believe my first cassette (yes, cassette) was “Cutterpillow”, their third album with hits like Torpedo and Ang Huling El Bimbo, the latter of which has gone on to become one of the classics, a number that's gone on to be remade and replayed, to the point of obsolescence.

Reading that sentence, I can’t help but think that hey, I grew up listening to a classic! is something I can legit say now, but since I’m at my 33rd year of age, I don’t think I can’t deny that the Eheads have gone the way of the Beatles (or, locally, JDLC) and that the kids will listen to their songs the same way I used to listen to Sinatra or The Brothers Four when my father would play them on the car radio—which is to say, I’d listen to it, but I’d complain after a while.

I also started playing the guitar because of the Eraserheads. I picked up my first guitar, a baby Lumanog, at around the same time I received “Cutterpillow”, along with my very first songhits (which was an issue celebrating Michael Jackson’s recent Manila tour, btw). I remember that the very first song I played on that guitar was Huwag Mo Nang Itanong, which was a strange choice since I didn’t particularly like that song. But it had an easy chord progression.

It was pretty sad that I never got to play in a band that was interested in playing Eheads songs. During my band days, we ended up playing Wolfgang and Razorback, which formed the backbone of (most of) our songs. Then I also played with a band that had a far more eclectic range of music, ranging from Ozzy Osbourne to The Dawn...but again, no Eraserheads.

This was probably a good thing, though. I don’t think I could have ever played the Eheads properly. I enjoyed the music way too much, at least for the first five albums. I can sing almost all of the songs by heart, and if I had more money, I’d probably have bought as much of their merch as I could have, growing up. I wouldn’t have played the songs well; I’d be too busy enjoying them. I’d have probably ended up forgetting my basslines.

But now, who knows? I’m still too busy to actively buy a bass and start practicing again, but I told Nina earlier that in the future, if I manage to free up enough time, I’d love to start playing again. I miss the feel of the bass in my hands, and the vibrations of the low end. I think it’s a very good form of stress relief, and I might be better off with a musical instrument to play with once in a while, even if it were just at home.

And you never know. I might still be able to play in a band again, someday. And maybe make some money out of it. But this time around, I’ll make sure that I get to play at least Sembreak.

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