When my wife Nang texted me that music legend and rapper Francis Magalona just passed away I felt sad and was in disbelief that such a good and young man would leave the world so soon. I dont't know but I felt a distant relative has passed away.
Looking back, how influential FrancisM in my life first manifested when I learned to rap Mga Kababayan Ko in full. I mean who would not know that song every grade school that time knew how to rap the song by heart. I sang a long with this guy when his music plays on the radio while I recorded it on my cassette tape player. I was a fan more of fan of Francis M than Alma Moreno on dancing wearing tanga in Loveliness and thought Yo! expression was very very cool.
Like a true radical poet FrancisM bravely commented on social issues, wrote powerful verses against corruption and drug addiction and had a say or two about life simplicity and hope. FrancisM had defined OPM music well way better than his contemporaries that sadly exploited good music.
From poppy synth rythym, the Master Rapper experimented and jived perfectly rock music to his opuses. I remember in the 90’s that if you like rock you hate hiphop music or viceversa. There were so much hate and cursing with these two groups, but FrancisM was one of the instrumental force that unite these opposing poles with the birth of EraserheadsSuperproxy and launching of FrancisM FreeMan album sparked a harmonious blend of rock and hiphop/rap music in the Philippine scene.
Francis M died on a Friday, 44 years of age. Francis M, may God bless your soul. Thank you for your art and music and for the inspiration for self expression and sheer love for countrymen and Motherland.
Pahimakas, Francis M!!! Maraming maraming salamat!!!