Joe Mari shares ‘platinum’ honors with Christmas album singers, et al.

FUNFARE - Ricky Lo - The Philippine Star

Used to receiving “gold,” “platinum” and “diamond” honors for his best-selling albums, Jose Mari Chan has done a “first” in the local music industry by selflessly sharing the honors with his co-artists, lyricist/composers and musical/vocal arrangers of Going Home To Christmas which has turned platinum (more than 15,000 records sold), his second Christmas album recorded in 2010, roughly 20 years after the first, Christmas In Our Hearts (a “triple diamond,” with more than 1.2 million sold).

“Very few artists reach ‘platinum’ these days,” said Joe Mari during the “sharing” event held the other day at the exclusive Tower Club (atop Philam Life Building in Makati City), no thanks to piracy and free downloading sources on social media. “Before, you had to sell 40,000 albums to reach ‘platinum.’ The number has been lowered to 15,000,” adding with a laugh, “I was a late bloomer. I got my first platinum when I was 41 for my album A Golden Collection.”

After two Christmas albums, Joe Mari can’t think of something new to say.

“People have been asking me when I will do another Christmas album,” shared Joe Mari, “but I tell them, ‘There’s nothing new to say.’ What, you’ll talk about Santa Claus?”

Going Home To Christmas was produced by Joe Mari’s own company, Signature Music, Inc.

Present at last Tuesday’s affair were Joe Mari’s wife Mary Ann and their children Michael, Joe, Franco and Liza (who duets with her dad on Christmas In Our Hearts which effectively spreads the spirit of the season year in and year out for the past two decades and a half).

“In the past,” noted Joe Mari, “recording companies would give ‘gold’ and ‘platinum’ awards only to the main artists of the albums. But I feel that the commercial and critical success and recognition of an album are not due largely to the sum of its parts but the quality of each part that goes into the production of the album. That’s why as a new producer, I’m happy to share with all those who worked hard to create an excellent product that, hopefully will stand the test of time.”

How touching it was when the songs they have written were played as each artist received the award (some were represented by relatives).

Here’s the Honor Roll:

• Ramona Isabel Buñag Chan (Joe Mari and Mary Ann’s granddaughter), vocalist, Song of The Firefly;

• Pinky Valdez, co-writer, The Bells At Christmas;

• Jimmy Santiago, co-writer, Pagdating Ng Pasko;

• Trina Belamide, co-writer, Christmas Air and Starlight;

• Ogie Alcasid, co-writer, Pinoy Na Krismas;

• Lilibeth Tan, writer, It’s Christmas;

• Joel Trinidad, co-writer, Christmas Anyway;

• Fr. Johnny Go, SJ, co-writer, Come Let Us Adore Him;

• Freddie Santos, co-writer, Let Love Be The Gift;

• Loren Steele, co-writer, That Time of Year;

• Homer Flores, arranger (Christmas Air, A Christmas Song For You, It’s Christmas and Christmas Anyway);

• Jun Latonio, arranger (Come Let Us Adore Him, With The Eyes of a Child, Starlight and Christmas Story);

• Noel Mendez, arranger (Going Home To Christmas, Song of The Firefly and Christmas Moments);

• Louie Ocampo, arranger (Let Love Be The Gift);

• Rudy Lozano, arranger (Christmas Memories);

• Marvin Querido, arranger (Ring In The New);

• Ria Villena-Osorio, arranger (Pinoy Na Krismas);

• Robert Delgado, arranger (December 25);

• Kahlil Refuerzo, arranger (Pagdating Ng Pasko);

• Gerard Salonga, arranger (That Time Of Year);

• Doming Amarillo, arranger (A Child Again At Christmas);

• Jude Roldan, vocal arranger (The Bells At Christmas);

• Lindie Achacoso, vocal arranger/vocalist (Ring In The New);

• Kitchy Molina, vocal arranger/vocalist (It’s Christmas and Christmas Story);

• Moy Ortiz, vocal arranger (Pinoy Na Krismas and Christmas Memories);

• The CompanY, vocalists (Pinoy Na Krismas);

• Sheila Valderama, vocalist (That Time of Year);

Cris Villonco, vocalist (December 25);

• Psalmo 47 Male Chorale, vocalists (Come Let Us Adore Him);

• Hail Mary The Queen Children’s Choir, vocalists (The Bells At Christmas, Christmas Air and A Child Again At Christmas);

• Hannah Flores, vocalist (Christmas Anyway);

• Noelle Casandra, vocalist (Starlight);

• Teenee Chan, vocalist (Christmas Story);

• Liza Chan-Parpan, vocalist (Let Love Be The Gift and Christmas Moments);

• Joe Chan, vocalist (Christmas Moments);

• Michael Chan, vocalist (Christmas Moments);

• Franco Chan, vocalist (Christmas Moments); and

• Junie Devecais, sound engineer.

Witty/funny signs that should make your day

I can’t resist sharing the following witty/funny signs from this section’s contributor Edu Jarque who said he got them from his friend in Sydney. Ready to laugh? Go!

• Gynecologist’s Office: “Dr. Jones, at your cervix.”

• In a podiatrist’s office: “Time wounds all heels.”

• On a septic-tank truck: Yesterday’s Meals on Wheels

• At an optometrist’s office: “If you don’t see what you’re looking for, you’ve come to the right place.”

• On a plumber’s truck: “We repair what your husband fixed.”

• On another plumber’s truck: “Don’t sleep with a drip. Call your plumber.”

• At a tire shop in Milwaukee: “Invite us to your next blowout.”

• On an electrician’s truck: “Let us remove your shorts.”

• In a non-smoking area: “If we see smoke, we will assume you
are on fire and take appropriate action.”

• On a Maternity Room door: “Push. Push. Push.”

• At a car dealership: “The best way to get back on your feet
— miss a car payment.”

• Outside a muffler shop: “No appointment necessary.
We hear you coming.”

• In a veterinarian’s waiting room: “Be back in five minutes. Sit! Stay!”

• At the electric company: “We would be delighted if you
send in your payment. However, if you don’t, you will be.”

• In a restaurant window:

“Don’t stand there and be hungry; come on in and get fed up.”

• In the front yard of a funeral home: “Drive carefully. We’ll wait.”

• At a propane filling station: “Thank heaven for little grills.”

• And don’t forget the sign at a Chicago radiator shop: “Best place in town to take a leak.”

• And the best one for last. Sign on the back of another
septic-tank truck: “Caution — This Truck is full of Political Promises.”

(E-mail reactions at [email protected]. You may also send your questions to [email protected]. For more updates, photos and videos visit www.philstar.com/funfare or follow me on www.twitter/therealrickylo.)

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