Kundiman love songs from the Philippines

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Kundiman love songs from the Philippines
University of Iowa
Iowa Research Online
Theses and Dissertations
2015
Kundiman love songs from the Philippines: their
development from folksong to art song and an
examination of representative repertoire
Quiliano Niñeza Anderson
University of Iowa
Copyright 2015 Quiliano Nineza Anderson
This dissertation is available at Iowa Research Online: http://ir.uiowa.edu/etd/1821
Recommended Citation
Anderson, Quiliano Niñeza. "Kundiman love songs from the Philippines: their development from folksong to art song and an
examination of representative repertoire." DMA (Doctor of Musical Arts) thesis, University of Iowa, 2015.
http://ir.uiowa.edu/etd/1821.
Follow this and additional works at: http://ir.uiowa.edu/etd
Part of the Music Commons
KUNDIMAN LOVE SONGS FROM THE PHILIPPINES: THEIR DEVELOPMENT
FROM FOLKSONG TO ART SONG AND AN EXAMINATION OF
REPRESENTATIVE REPERTOIRE
by
Quiliano Niñeza Anderson
An essay submitted in partial fulfillment
of the requirements for the
Doctor of Musical Arts degree
in the Graduate College of
The University of Iowa
August 2015
Essay Supervisor: Professor John Muriello
Copyright by
QUILIANO NIÑEZA ANDERSON
2015
All Rights Reserved
Graduate College
The University of Iowa
Iowa City, Iowa
CERTIFICATE OF APPROVAL
__________________________
D.M.A. ESSAY
__________________
This is to certify that the D.M.A. essay of
Quiliano Niñeza Anderson
has been approved by the Examining Committee
for the essay requirement for the Doctor of Musical Arts
degree at the August 2015 graduation.
Essay Committee:
_____________________________________
John Muriello, Essay Supervisor
_____________________________________
_____________________________________
Stephen Swanson
_____________________________________
William La Rue Jones
_____________________________________
Susan Sondrol Jones
_____________________________________
William Theisen
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
I would like to acknowledge my voice professor and mentor, Dr. John Muriello for
guiding me during my research on Kundiman art songs. I have learned much about this scholarly
work and have been inspired to do more research in this topic. Secondly, I would like to thank
Dr. José Uriarte, D.M.A. graduate in Piano Performance from the University of Minnesota and
private piano instructor at McPhail Center for the Arts, Minneapolis, MN, for his language
expertise and contributions in proof-reading my text translations of the Kundiman art song
selections in my essay.
I would also like to thank Dr. Colleen Jennings for her encouragement and making it
possible for me to become acquainted with Dr. Raymond Leslie Diaz, a Senior Lecturer at the
University of the Philippines and Voice Faculty member at St. Scholastica’s College in Manila.
His unique knowledge and experience with the International Phonetic Alphabet system as it
relates to the Tagalog language has given me a deeper insight in transcribing the special nuances
in the pronunciation of the Tagalog language.
Last but not least, I would like to thank my mother, Mrs. Josie Anderson, for inspiring me
and exposing me to numerous Filipino folk songs and Kundiman songs since I was a child in the
Philippines. She has been a great resource on my Tagalog language translations. Her love for
singing has made me what I am today.
ii
PUBLIC ABSTRACT
In the Philippines, a type of love song known as the Kundiman had existed since the early
19th century. But in the early 20th century Kundiman had developed into art song. The term
Kundiman comes from the Tagalog phrase “kung hindi man” or “if it were not so”. Written in
the Tagalog language, these folksongs were subtly patriotic but typically disguised as love songs.
Filipinos, in their long struggle against an oppressive Spanish regime, saw it as a tool that would
ultimately unite Filipino revolutionaries to wage war against the Spaniards in 1896 during the
Spanish-American War.
The composer Francisco Santiago (1889-1947) is sometimes called the “Father of
Kundiman Art Song.” While his masterpiece is considered to be his Concerto in B flat minor for
pianoforte and orchestra, one of his most significant piece is his song “Kundiman, (AnakDalita)”, the first Kundiman art song. Santiago regarded the Kundiman art song as something
“that expresses the lofty sentiment of love, and even heroism in a melancholy mood.” Given the
cross-fertilization of Spanish and Filipino cultures in the 19th century, Kundiman art songs were
typically a blend of melodic material from native folksong and European music traditions. The
result is a song characterized by smooth flowing lines and beautiful melodies. The piano
accompaniments are typically full in texture, sometimes containing countermelodies, sometimes
merely harmonizing with the vocal line in thirds and sixths. One other significant early
composer of Kundiman art songs was Nicanor Abelardo (1893-1934). His songs, together with
those of Santiago’s became models for other Filipino composers such as Constancio De Guzman
(1903-1982) and Miguel Velarde, Jr. (1913-1986) in the decades following Abelardo’s death.
The purpose of this essay is to shed some light on this unique genre of song, and provide
the tools necessary to study and perform these representations of Filipino culture and history. To
iii
do this, I have provided brief background information on the origins of Kundiman art song. I
have also provided a guide to pronunciation, grammar and the idiosyncracies of the Tagalog
dialect. Finally, this essay contains a performance guide for 20 representative Kundiman art
songs, including original texts, literal and prose translations, International Phonetic Alphabet
(I.P.A.) transcriptions, and suggestions for interpretation and style.
In researching and analyzing these songs I have gained an understanding of the aesthetic
appeal of Kundiman art songs. More importantly, these songs are not widely known in the
classical world. But because of their unique connection to Filipino history and culture, they
deserve serious attention. These songs would indeed make a great addition to a recital program.
iv
Table of Contents
List of Music Examples ................................................................................................................ vii
List of Figures .............................................................................................................................. viii
Chapter One: Introduction .............................................................................................................. 1
Kundiman: Beginnings and Influences ...................................................................................... 1
A Cultural Melting Pot: Inspiration for the study of Kundiman art songs .................................. 3
Need for study ............................................................................................................................. 4
Methodology ............................................................................................................................... 4
Literature Review ........................................................................................................................ 5
Santos, Ramon Pagayon, Tunugan: Four Essays on Filipino Music, (Quezon City:
University of the Phlippines Press), 2005. .............................................................................. 5
Hila, Antonio C., Music in History: History in Music, Manila: University of Santo Tomas
Press, 2004, pp. 57-69. ............................................................................................................ 6
Chapter Two: Background on the origin of Kundiman .................................................................. 8
Philippine Culture: Beginnings and Transformation .................................................................. 8
Earliest Existence of Kundiman Songs ....................................................................................... 9
Spanish Influence in Music and Culture ................................................................................... 10
Nationalism in Kundiman.......................................................................................................... 11
From Folksong to Art Song: Francisco Santiago and Nicanor Abelardo ................................. 12
Chapter Three: A Brief Description of the Tagalog language ..................................................... 14
Consonant sounds .................................................................................................................. 16
Vowel sounds ........................................................................................................................ 17
Syllabic stress ........................................................................................................................ 18
Reduplication ......................................................................................................................... 18
Affixes ................................................................................................................................... 18
Tagalog Grammar .................................................................................................................. 20
Gender ................................................................................................................................... 21
Chapter Four: A Performance Guide to 20 Representative Kundiman Art Songs ....................... 23
Notes on analyses and interpretation ......................................................................................... 23
Song Selections ......................................................................................................................... 24
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
“Kundiman” by Francisco Santiago / text by Deogracias A. Rosario ............................. 24
“Pakiúsap” by Francisco Santiago / text by Jose Corazon De Jesus ............................... 30
“Madaling Araw” by Francisco Santiago / text by Jose Corazon De Jesus .................... 36
“Ano Kayâ Ang Kapalaran” Music and text by Francisco Santiago ............................... 43
“Kung Hindî Man” Music and text by Nicanor Abelardo ............................................... 50
“Nasaán Ka Irog?” by Nicanor Abelardo / text by Jose Corazon de Jesus ..................... 56
v
7. “Pahimakas” by Nicanor Abelardo / text by Jose Corazon De Jesus .............................. 62
8. “Bituing Marikit” by Nicanor Abelardo / text by S. Angeles ......................................... 68
9. “Himutok” Music and text by Nicanor Abelardo ............................................................ 73
10. “Ikaw Rin…!” Music and text by Nicanor Abelardo ...................................................... 79
11. “Kundiman” by Bonifacio Abdon / text by Pat Mariano ................................................ 82
12. “Bayan Ko” (My Country) Music and text by Constancio De Guzman ......................... 88
13. “Babalik Ka Rin” Music and text by Constancio De Guzman ........................................ 93
14. “Ang Tangì Kong Pag-íbig” Music and text by Constancio C. De Guzman .................. 97
15. “Dáhil Sa Iyó” by Miguel Velarde, Jr. / text by Dominador Santiago .......................... 102
16. “Lahat Ng Araw” by Miguel Velarde, Jr. / text by Dominador Santiago ..................... 108
17. “Ugoy Ng Duyan” by Lucio San Pedro / text by Levi Celerio ..................................... 113
18. “Hindî Kitá Malímot” Music and text by Josefino Cenizal .......................................... 118
19. “Ang Una Kong Pag-íbig” Music and text by Francisco Buencamino ......................... 123
20. “Ulila Sa Pag-íbig” by J.S. de Hernandez / text by Deogracias A. Rosario .................. 131
Conclusion .................................................................................................................................. 136
Appendix A ................................................................................................................................ 137
Copyright Permissions Documentation ................................................................................... 137
Appendix B ................................................................................................................................. 139
Vowel and Consonant Sounds in Tagalog .............................................................................. 139
Email Interview with Dr. Raymond Leslie Diaz: .................................................................... 141
Bibliography ............................................................................................................................... 142
vi
List of Music Examples
Music Example 1: “May Isang Bulaklak Na Ibig Lumitao” ...................................................... 11
Music Example 2: “Kundiman: Cancion Filipina” .................................................................... 28
Music Example 3: “Kundiman: Cancion Filipina” .................................................................... 29
Music Example 4: “Pakiúsap”.................................................................................................... 33
Music Example 5: “Pakiusap” - B section ................................................................................. 34
Music Example 6: “Pakiusap” - A section ................................................................................. 35
Music Example 7: “Madaling Araw” ......................................................................................... 41
Music Example 8: “Madaling Araw” ......................................................................................... 42
Music Example 9: “Ano Kaya Ang Kapalaran” ........................................................................ 46
Music Example 10: “Ano Kaya Ang Kapalaran” ........................................................................ 46
Music Example 11: “Leron-Leron Sinta” .................................................................................... 47
Music Example 12: “Ano Kaya Ang Kapalaran” ........................................................................ 48
Music Example 13: “Ano Kaya Ang Kapalaran” ........................................................................ 48
Music Example 14: Santiago’s “Kundiman in 1800”................................................................. 52
Music Example 15: “Kung Hindi Man” ....................................................................................... 53
Music Example 16: “Kung Hindi Man” - B section .................................................................... 54
Music Example 17: “Nasaan Ka Irog?” ....................................................................................... 60
Music Example 18: “Nasaan Ka Irog” ......................................................................................... 61
Music Example 19: “Pahimakas” ................................................................................................. 66
Music Example 20: “Pahimakas” ................................................................................................. 67
Music Example 21: “Bituing Marikit” ......................................................................................... 71
Music Example 22: “Bituing Marikit” ......................................................................................... 72
Music Example 23: “Himutok” .................................................................................................... 76
Music Example 24: “Himutok” .................................................................................................... 77
Music Example 25: “Himutok” - B section ................................................................................. 78
Music Example 26: “Ikaw Rin…!” .............................................................................................. 81
Music Example 27: “Kundiman” ................................................................................................. 86
Music Example 28: “Bayan Ko” .................................................................................................. 91
Music Example 29: “Bayan ko” ................................................................................................... 92
Music Example 30: “Babalik Ka Rin” ......................................................................................... 95
Music Example 31: “Babalik Ka Rin” - B section ....................................................................... 96
Music Example 32: “Ang Tángi Kong Pag-íbig” ......................................................................... 99
Music Example 33: “Ang Tángi Kong Pag-íbig” ...................................................................... 100
Music Example 34: “Dahil Sa ‘Yo” ........................................................................................... 106
Music Example 35: “Dahil Sa 'Yo” ........................................................................................... 107
Music Example 36: “Lahat Ng Araw” ....................................................................................... 111
Music Example 37: “Lahat Ng Araw” ....................................................................................... 112
Music Example 38: “Ugoy Ng Duyan”...................................................................................... 117
Music Example 39: “Hindi Kita Malimot” ................................................................................ 122
Music Example 40: “Ang Una Kong Pag-ibig” - A section ...................................................... 127
Music Example 41: “Ang Una Kong Pag-ibig” - B section ....................................................... 128
Music Example 42: “Ang Una Kong Pag-ibig” - C section ....................................................... 129
Music Example 43: “Ulila Sa Pag-ibig” .................................................................................... 134
vii
List of Figures
Figure 1: Consonant Sounds ......................................................................................................... 16
Figure 2: Affixes ........................................................................................................................... 19
Figure 3: Pronouns ........................................................................................................................ 21
viii
Chapter One: Introduction
Kundiman: Beginnings and Influences
The term Kundiman translates from the Tagalog as “if it were not so”. But I would
interpret this phrase as “if it were only” to signify a lover’s wish to be united with his or her
beloved. Kundiman folksongs came into being in the early 19th century as love songs that
originated from the Tagalog-speaking regions in the Batangas province of the Philippines.
When the Spaniards arrived in the Philippines in 1521, Western influence became an
important part in the early development of Kundiman folksongs. Spanish colonization brought
Christianity and Spanish culture to the Filipino people. But it was also their plan to assimilate
Filipinos into Spanish culture. They did not make an effort to preserve the customs and
traditions of the Filipino people. However, as Filipinos assimilated Western influences brought
about by Spain, they realized that they could actually write songs that pertained to their own
culture and began to incorporate Spanish music styles into their own. It was in this sort of crossfertilization that the first Kundiman folksong, “Kundiman Ng (Of) 1800” was created by an
anonymous composer in 1800.1
But the cultural and religious changes imposed upon the Filipino people were met
with a growing resistance that led to a revolt in 1896. Filipino revolutionaries, led by
the katipunan movement (a secret society of Filipino revolutionaries let by Andrés Bonifacio
(1863–1897)), waged war against the Spanish regime.2 The revolution came to an end when
the United States, seeing that the katipuneros revolutionaries were no match against the
1
Antonio C. Hila, Music in History, History in Music; (Manila: UST Publishing House, University of Santo Tomas,
2004) p. 30.
2
Raul M. Sunico, Mga Awit Ng Himagsikan: Songs of the Philippine Revolution, 1896-1898, (Quezon City: Tawid
Publications. 1997). p. iii.
1
Spanish army, stepped in and helped defeat the Spaniards during th e Spanish-American war
of 1898 at the Battle of Manila Bay.3 It was during this time that the revolutionaries used
Kundiman folksongs to inspire unity and nationalism among the Filipinos. And while
Kundiman folksongs are largely about love and courtship, the songs often contained
undertones of subtle nationalism, and a yearning for liberty. The typical themes of unrequited
love found in Kundiman songs became symbols of the chains of Spanish oppression. The
songs therefore provided the inspiration for Filipinos not only to gain their freedom from
foreign rule, but also to create a national identity.
It is ironic that U.S. annexation of the Philippines began a year later in 1899.4 Now
within an American educational system, Filipinos learned both English and Tagalog (the
newly designated national language of the Philippines.) Additionally, buoyed by the
continued exposure to Western music and culture by way of such visiting performers as violin
virtuosos Eduard Reményi (1886), Mischa Elman (1921), Yehudi Menuhin (1948), guitar
master Andrés Segovia (1929), pianists Jan Kubelík (1929) and Rudolf Friml (1933), and
cellist Pierre Fournier (1949), Kundiman art songs couldn’t help but take on the vestiges of
Western music.5
The strong educational system established by the United States contributed to quality
music training at the newly established University of the Philippines in 1908. The Conservatory
of Music Annex was later established in 1916. As music education in the Philippines
strengthened over the next several years, there was a push to preserve the country’s beautiful
3
Ibid., p. vi.
Teodoro Agoncillo, Philippine History. Manila: Inang Wika Publishing Co., 1969, p. 240.
5
Ramon Pagayon Santos, Tunugan: Four Essays on Filipino Music, (Diliman, Quezon City: University of the
Philippines Press, 2005), p. 3.
4
2
culture. To that end a group of faculty members from the University of the Philippines formed a
committee in 1934 to collect folksongs and dances from the various regions of the country.
Interestingly, Francisco Santiago made significant contributions to this project by setting them to
music notation and harmonizing many of the folksongs. The significance of these folksong
harmonizations became apparent as other Filipino composers began to follow the examples of
Santiago and Nicanor Abelardo by using segments from folksongs and converting them into art
songs.
It wasn’t until 1946 that the Filipino nation gained its independence from U.S.
sovereignty. Nonetheless, throughout these periods of turmoil and uncertainty, Kundiman folk
songs were the underlying thread that accompanied the Filipino struggles for independence.
A Cultural Melting Pot: Inspiration for the study of Kundiman art songs
Filipino culture itself is a melting pot of various indigenous peoples. They live in
separate regions or provinces each with their individual dialects and traditions. The dialects
spoken in the various regions are distinct enough to be considered individual languages. Indeed,
people from different regions typically cannot understand one another beyond common words
from the Spanish language. To further add to this multiculturalism, centuries ago the
neighboring countries of China and Malaysia established long lasting trade exchanges with the
Philippines even before the Spanish occupation in the mid-16th century. Yet, since the U.S.
annexation of the country in the early 20th century, Tagalog became the official language of the
Philippines. However, the Philippines has had a long history of cultural pluralism, and it is
appropriate for them to have a representative blend of these cultures in their art and music.
3
Need for study
Kundiman art songs are not well known among Western musicians, yet they are a
significant representation of the merging of Filipino folksong and Western Music
traditions. Because of the historical significance of Kundiman art songs in the Philippines, these
songs stand as an interesting repertoire of music that would appeal to singers who are interested
in songs from a different culture. By virtue of their multicultural form, the distinctiveness of
these songs will provide a refreshing change of pace for the adventurous art song recitalist. With
these songs I hope to educate musicians, specifically vocalists, and expose people
to Kundiman art songs and their reflections of the pluralism found within the Philippines.
Methodology
In order to understand and perform a Kundiman art song well, particularly given the relative
obscurity of Philipino language, history and culture to Westerners, I will provide brief
background information on the origins of Kundiman. The majority of Kundiman art songs texts
are in Tagalog, the principle dialect of the Filipino language. A brief discussion of Tagalog that
includes the origin of the dialect, some basic rules of grammar and word structure, and a
phonetic description of Tagalog pronunciation are necessary. A performance guide to 20
representative Kundiman art songs by various Filipino composers is included. The guide
includes literal and poetic translations, and I.P.A. transcriptions of each song text. For each
song, I will offer my own thoughts and interpretive ideas in order to shed light on some subtle
nuances in the songs, and thus make the performance of the songs more authentic. No such
performance guide to the Kundiman art song repertoire currently exists. And while the songs
discussed in this essay are but a small fraction of the repertoire, this guide can serve as the
beginning steps into this exciting new area of the art song genre.
4
Literature Review
Santos, Ramon Pagayon, Tunugan: Four Essays on Filipino Music, (Quezon City:
University of the Phlippines Press), 2005.
A current scholar on Filipino music, Ramon Pagayon Santos, wrote four essays about
Filipino music in “Tunugan: Four Essays on Filipino music.” Santos describes how
the Kundiman song genre became elevated into art song status, with the help of Francisco
Santiago and Nicanor Abelardo. The works of both of these composers were milestones in the
development of Kundiman art song. Both were also music directors at the Conservatory of
Music at the University of the Philippines when it was first established in 1916.
Santos continues to describe early accounts of Nicanor Abelardo’s (1893-1934)
biography. Abelardo was considered a young prodigy, composing and performing piano as early
as eight years old. He was able to experience performances by various Western artists who
visited and gave concerts in the Philippines. Abelardo began his formal music training at the
University of the Philippines in 1916 studying composition, receiving a teacher’s certificate in
1924. He later became Director of Composition at the University of Philippines’ Music
Conservatory. Abelardo was known for his Kundiman art songs, and like Santiago, he was able
to elevate the genre of Kundiman folk song into an art song with his output between 1920 and
1930. Abelardo also wrote overtures, piano sonatas, a cavatina for violin and piano, a nocturne,
and various short compositions.6
Abelardo’s first Kundiman art song and one of the song selections in this essay, “Kung
Hindî Man” (If It Were Not So) in 1920 is based on a melodic fragment from a folk song. The
piano accompaniment generally follows the contour of the melody. The inner voices of harmony
6
Ocampo, Ambeth, Ang Buhay At Musika Ni Maestro Nicanor Abelardo, (Manila: Cultural Center of the
Philippines, 1980), p.25.
5
run in contrary motion to the melody. Abelardo set the text to music, making the piano
accompaniment match the declamation of the text and creating text painting.7 His subsequent
song compositions showed a more mature technique of text painting with more interplay
between text and music. He also used various ranges in the piano to achieve tone colors that
match the text.8 The Conservatory of Music at the University of the Philippines became a venue
for introducing Western Music tradition under the colonization of the United States in the late
teens through the 1920s. 9
This essay describes the development of Kundiman art song from its early beginnings
as folk songs in the early 1800s to its transformation to art song genre in the 1920s and
1930s. Francisco Santiago and Nicanor Abelardo were instrumental in developing
Kundiman into a genre of art song, thanks to their formal music training at the University of the
Philippines as well as their studies abroad. They have succeeded in creating a unique
representation of Filipino culture through the incorporation of Western influence and traditional
Filipino folksongs.
Hila, Antonio C., Music in History: History in Music, Manila: University of Santo Tomas
Press, 2004, pp. 57-69.
Hila’s chapter on “Defining the Nationalist Tradition in Philippine Music” begins by
describing nationalism in the early 20th century that was essentially a protest against anything
that was foreign. In the 1930s, Francisco Santiago had already reached the peak of his
7
Ramon Pagayon Santos, Tunugan: Four Essays on Filipino Music, (Diliman, Quezon City: University of the
Philippines Press, 2005), p. 19.
8
Ibid., p. 34.
9
Ibid., p. 180.
6
productivity with his Kundiman art songs. Noted poets were being used for song texts as well as
using text painting to enhance the collaboration between music and text.
The two resources outlined above represent the current principle scholarship on
Kundiman song. They provide useful background information on the origins of Kundiman, as
well as its significance in Filipino history and culture. However, neither resource provides the
necessary information to perform these songs, particularly crucial guidance with the Tagalog
language, stylistic information and suggestions for interpretation for the singer unfamiliar with
the language or the style. Through my translations and some help from my mother, Josie
Anderson, a speaker of Tagalog, I have made music analyses as well as performance guides for
interpreting each of the song selections.
7
Chapter Two: Background on the origin of Kundiman
Philippine Culture: Beginnings and Transformation
Anthropological studies have shown that a developed Filipino culture had existed prior to
the arrival of the Spaniards in 1521. Furthermore, archeological excavations have found
evidence of tools that date back to the Stone Age and the Bronze Age. The early period of the
Philippines consisted of the Negritos tribe migrating from Southeastern Asia. The Indonesians
and the Malays followed between 200 and 1500 C.E. In addition, Chinese merchants were
known to have traded goods with Filipino natives beginning in the 10th century, indicating a
thriving commerce as well as a variety of ethnicities in the Philippines.10
However, historical records of the Philippines have been greatly limited because of the
way their history was recorded. Cultural traditions had been handed down through generations
but were written down on perishable materials such as bamboo, leaves and tree bark.11 As a
result, ancient records were lost. Furthermore, when the Spaniards came in 1521 they saw little
value in Filipino culture and history, and did nothing to preserve what records existed.
With Spanish colonization came the spread of Catholicism among the
Filipinos. Franciscan and Jesuit missionary priests taught Filipinos about their religion and
Western culture.12 Christian celebrations such as Easter and Christmas depended upon the use
of singers and instrumentalists. Spanish clergy trained the Filipinos to read and play music, and
to make musical instruments such as violins, guitars, flutes, and an organ constructed from
bamboo. Hymns and chants composed by friars were written in Latin as well as in the native
10
Raymundo C. Bañas, Filipino Music and Theatre, (Quezon City: Manlapaz Publishing Co., 1969), p. 4.
Ibid., p. 34.
12
Antonio C. Hila, Music in History: History in Music, (Manila: University of Santo Tomas Publishing House,
2004), p. 4.
11
8
languages of the various regions. Such music training proved to be invaluable to the
advancement of Catholicism in the Philippines.
At the peak of Spanish occupation in the early 19th century, western secular music was
also taught to Filipinos, and was received with great enthusiasm. Perhaps more than religious
music training, it was through secular music education (typically Spanish dances such as
the habañera, danza, and marcha or paso doble) that Kundiman began as a Filipino folksong
tradition. 13 The introduction of Western music cultivated an environment for vibrant musical
creativity in the Philippines.
Earliest Existence of Kundiman Songs
The word Kundiman had its beginnings in the early 19th century. There are three theories
as to how the word Kundiman first began. The first theory claims that Kundiman was mentioned
in a song composition containing the word, “cundiman” (Kundiman lullaby). 14 A second theory
asserts that origin of Kundiman, simply first appeared in the title of the song, “Kundiman Ng
1800” (Kundiman of 1800). A third theory claims that Kundiman was a red piece of cloth worn
by males during rituals of dance performances. But the relationship of this cloth to Kundiman
folksong is not precisely known.
It is possible that it grew out of the Kumintang, a type of war song that was sung as part
of festivities that honored triumphant warriors. Kumintang later developed into a more plaintive
type of song that accompanied a dance performed by a man and a woman involving a fermented
drink. A sexual connotation is implied with this dance. This was performed usually before a
13
14
Ibid., p. 6.
Ibid., p. 11.
9
battle, hummed by the aborigines to strengthen the courage of the warriors.15 Eventually the
Kumintang was probably replaced by Kundiman folksongs because of their popularity,
representing a new Filipino folk song tradition.
Spanish Influence in Music and Culture
With the influx of Spanish music and culture, Filipinos began to realize how important it
was to transcribe their own folk music. They began to create their own music within the formal
education they received from the Spaniards. Filipinos created music that imitated many Spanish
song genres. These folksongs were a spontaneous kind of song that was created by people who
were not formally trained in music. In most cases writers typically remained anonymous. But
overall, the influence of Spanish culture was a vital ingredient of Kundiman folksongs.16
An example of this influence is found in the song, “May Isang Bulaklak Na Íbig Lumitao
(1800)” translated “There is one flower that wishes to float up”. Emilia S. Cavan arranged the
music excerp song from a harmonization realized by This harmonization by Francisco Santiago
in 1924. Notice the tempo marking adopts a habañera style (a dance that originates from Cuba)
(see Music Example 1).
15
Raymundo C. Bañas, Pilipino Music and Theater, (Quezon City: Manlapaz Publishing Co., 1975), 81.
Antonio C. Hila, Music in History: History in Music, (Manila: University of Santo Tomas Publishing House,
2004), p. 6.
16
10
Music Example 1: “May Isang Bulaklak Na Ibig Lumitao” 17
Nationalism in Kundiman
There were two significant events in the late 19th century that would spur the Filipino
people to rise up against the four century-long oppressive rule by Spain. In 1872 three Filipino
17
Emilia Cavan. "Filipino Folk Songs / Collected and Arranged by Emilia S. Cavan ; Harmonized by Francisco
Santiago." Filipino Folk Songs / Collected and Arranged by Emilia S. Cavan. Accessed March 12, 2015.
http://quod.lib.umich.edu/p/philamer/AGN4492.0001.001/34?rgn=full text;view=image. p. 28-29.
11
priests were executed for their part in a small revolt by shipyard workers in Cavite. Then in
1896, the novelist Dr. Jose Rizal (1861-1896) was executed by firing squad for his published
criticism of the oppressive rule of the Spaniards. His fearless indictment of the treatment of
Filipinos appeared in his novels, an even in some of the Kundiman songs he wrote, such as
“Kundiman Ni Rizal” (Kundiman of Rizal).
“Truly, the tongue and heart are silenced,
for the country has been oppressed, conquered,
and made to yield.
Because of the neglect of the colonizers
freedom is lost, happiness has died.
Truly, happiness has died.” 18
Rizal’s execution eventually led to an uprising in 1896 that culminated in the end of
Spanish rule and the eventual annexation of the Philippines by the United States. All during these
tumultuous years, Kundiman folksongs were a potent vehicle for the emotional life of Filipinos
as they struggled against oppression from foreign rule.
From Folksong to Art Song: Francisco Santiago and Nicanor Abelardo
Francisco Santiago described Kundiman art song as “a song that expresses the lofty
sentiment of love, and even heroism, in a melancholy mood.” 19 Inspired by the work of
Santiago, composer Nicanor Abelardo published his first Kundiman art song in 1920. Like
Santiago, he was a music instructor at the Conservatory of Music at the University of the
Philippines. After his teaching career at the Conservatory, Abelardo studied composition at the
18
Raul M. Sunico, Mga Awit Ng Himagsikan = Songs of the Philippine Revolution of 1896-1898. (Quezon City,
Philippines: Tawid Publications, 1997), p. 15.
19
Hila, Antonio C., Music in history, history in music, (Manila: UST Publishing Press, 2004), p.7.
12
Chicago Musical College in the United States, where he refined his compositional skills, and
brought greater sophistication to this new genre of song.20
These two pioneers of the genre would inspire other Filipino composers after them to
write Kundiman art songs, nurturing a nationalistic music trend that lasted until the outbreak of
the 2nd World War.
20
Ramon Pagayon Santos, Tunugan: Four Essays on Filipino Music, (Quezon City: The University of the
Philippines Press, 2005), p. 7.
13
Chapter Three: A Brief Description of the Tagalog language
The Philippine archipelago is made up of over seven thousand islands whose inhabitants
lived in relative isolation for centuries. Because of this there exist some one hundred seventyfive varying dialects within the eight major cultural-linguistic groups – Bikol, Cebuano,
Hiligaynon, Ilocano, Kapampangan, Pangasinan, Tagalog, and Waray-waray.21 While some of
the dialects have common words, many are different enough to cause considerable language
barriers. These different dialects in the Philippines, therefore, are more accurately described as
languages.
In 1939 Tagalog was designated the national language, as it was spoken by the most
influential segments of Philippine society. It has been taught in the public schools since the late
1930s. Today more than half the Filipino population understand Tagalog, although not everyone
can speak it fluently.
The original Tagalog script was used by Tagalog speakers in the period before the
Spanish colonization. They used an Indic syllabary consisting of three vowels and fifteen
consonants. The Latin letters promptly replaced the original Tagalog script when the Spaniards
arrived in the mid-1500s. The three vowels used previously by the Indic syllabary were now
replaced by five vowels. The ancient vowel symbol
was replaced by /o/ and /u/; and vowel symbol
was replaced by /e/ and /i/; vowel symbol
was replaced by /a/.22 Modern Tagalog
uses 20 letters as illustrated in the alphabet below:
A B K D E G H I L M N NG O P R S T U W Y
21
William R. Pfeiffer, Indigenious, Folk, Modern Filipino Music, (Dumaguete City: Silliman Music Foundation,
Inc., 1976), p. 1.
22
Carl R. Galvez Rubino, Tagalog-English, English-Tagalog Dictionary (Revised and Expanded Version), (New
York, NY: Hipprocrene Books, Inc. 2002). p. 8.
14
The letters C, F, J, Q, V, X and Z do not exist in Tagalog, and K really is the third letter
of the alphabet. In addition, the frequently occurring consonant sound [ŋ] exists as its own letter
“NG”.23 Further examples of vowel and consonant sounds with specific word examples are
found in Appendix B.
An important aspect of Tagalog pronunciation is the glottal stop, wherein the affected
vowel sound is abruptly cut short. There are many instances where this stop occurs. As it is
beyond the scope of this essay to list them all, I advise the reader to refer to a reliable dictionary
such as the Hippocrene Standard Dictionary, edited by Carl. R. Galvez Rubino. In this particular
resource the glottal stop is indicated by a circumflex accent above the stopped vowel. The IPA
transcriptions of the songs discussed in this essay also indicate where a glottal stop should occur
with the phonetic symbol [ʔ].
23
Ibid., p. 8.
15
Consonant sounds
A note about Tagalog consonants: spoken Tagalog uses consonants in a way that makes
the flow of speech sound somewhat percussive. It is not as liquid as Italian. This has to do with
the short duration of the vowels. The vowel /a/ for instance will often move quickly towards a
nasalized /n/, or a dental, labial, bi-labial or plosive consonant. In addition, many words will
also have a glottal sound within a word. Some will appear in words that end with a vowel that
must be pronounced with a glottal stop, such as “luha” [lu.haʔ] (tear) or “po” [poʔ] (sir). A
combination of all these factors creates an overall atmosphere of sound that is percussive in
nature. It is important to keep these linguistic nuances in mind when singing Kundiman art
songs.
Figure 1 is designed to help the reader understand the various consonant sounds and
glottal stops that are common in Tagalog language.24
Voicing Bilabial
Stops
+
Fricatives
Nasals
Laterals
Trill/Flap
Glides
+
+
+
+
p
b
m
w
Dental/
Alveolar
t
d
s
n
l
(r)
y
Alveo-palatal
Velar
Glottal
(ts, t(i)y) [tʃ]
(dy) [ʤ]
k
g
[ʔ]
h
(ny) [ɲ]
ng [ŋ]
Figure 1: Consonant Sounds25
24
Carl R. Galvez Rubino, Tagalog-English, English-Tagalog Dictionary (Revised and Expanded Version), (New
York, NY: Hipprocrene Books, Inc. 2002), p. 8.
25
Ibid., p.13.
16
Vowel sounds
Tagalog has five vowels. These are pronounced the same as English:
a [a]
e [e]
i [i] o [o] u [u]
The vowels /a/ and /i/ occur more frequently than the vowels /e/, /o/ and /u/. According
to Professor Raymond Leslie Diaz, Senior Lecturer at the University of the Philippines, Diliman
and Voice Faculty member at St. Scholastica’s College in Manila, “there are just five vowels in
the Filipino language but one may hear several versions of any vowel depending on
regional/dialect, social and educational factors.”26 He describes the vowels as follows:
[a] – is the Filipino “ah” vowel. It is very similar to the Italian [a]
[ɛ] – open “eh” can sometimes be heard as closed [e]. Diaz believes that the open [ɛ] is
closer to a closed [e] and definitely not like the Italian open [ɛ] as in “bella”
[bɛl:la].
[i] – is the standard Filipino [i] vowel.
[o] – is more of a closed [o] rather than an open [ɔ]
[u] – is the same as the Italian [u]
Diphthongs (vowels with two sounds, as in “ride” and “dual”) occur less frequently,
except in words that contain glides such as “pamilya” [pa.ˈmil.ja] (family) and “bumbilya”
[bum.ˈbil.ja] (lightbulb). Neighboring vowels are separated by a glottal sound. The word
“babae” [ba.ˈba.ʔe] or “woman” illustrates this. Another example, “kaíbigan” [ka.ʔi.ˈbi.gan] or
26
Raymond Leslie Diaz. "International Phonetic Alphabet Transcription of Tagalog." E-mail interview by author.
May 19, 2015.
17
“friendship” has two vowels in the first syllable. The first vowel /a/ is followed by a glottal /i/.
It does not form a diphthong; for example, “boot” and “deer.”
Syllabic stress
The stress in a word generally falls on either the last or penultimate syllable. Stressing
the correct syllable is quite important in Tagalog because the meaning of a word can change
depending on which syllable is being stressed.
Reduplication
Reduplication is repetition of a word or word segment to augment or diminish its
meaning. For example, the word “mahiyahiya” (from “hiya” or “to be ashamed”) repeats the last
two syllables of the word. In this instance, reduplication diminishes the potency of the the word
and its meaning becomes “to be a little ashamed.”27
Affixes
To modify the meaning of a word, Tagalog uses a variety of prefixes, suffixes and infixes
(an affix placed in the middle of a word).28 The following examples illustrate the use of affixes
in the Tagalog language:
27
28
Ibid., p. 16.
Ibid., p. 9
18
Prefixes:
Examples:
ka-
ka-tuwaan (from tuwaan), ka-looban, ka-pangalan
ipag-
ipag-tagumpay (from tagumpay), ipag-tawa, ipag-buwis
i-
i-hadlang, i-galang, i-damit
di- (with hyphen)
di-mataba, di-maari, di-malayo
Infixes:
-in-
b-in-asa (past tense of read, from root word basa)
h-in-intay (past tense of wait, from hintay).
Suffixes:
- an
ting-an (from tingin)
sulat-an (from sulat)
-ero, -era (Spanish)
basur-ero (addition of suffix makes “basura” (garbage) into a
garbage man, the noun form.
-ado (Spanish)
muskul-ado (changes muskul into an adjective, “muscular”)
kontrol-ado (changes “kontrola” into an adjective, kontrolado
(controlled))
Figure 2: Affixes
19
Tagalog Grammar
Unlike English, Tagalog sentences usually begin with the predicate phrase in front
followed by the subject. For example, “Kumakain sila” (They are eating) has a predicate verb
phrase “kumakain” in the beginning of the sentence and subject “sila” at the end. A literal
translation would read, “eating-are-they”. In some cases the subject begins the sentence but will
have a linking verb “ay” (am) after it: “Ako ay mayaman” (I am rich). However, this particular
example of a subject-predicate order would not apply to “Kumakain sila.” It would be
grammitcally improper to say, “Sila ay kumakain” (They are eating).
A prefix will determine the meaning of a sentence. When using negation, the word
“hindî” is simply added in front of the phrase or sentence: “Hindî kumakain ang mga bata” (The
children are not eating). When asking a question beginning with the word “What”, “ano” (what)
is placed in front of the sentence: “Ano ang kinakain ng mga bata?” (What are the children
eating?). When asking yes or no questions, the word “ba” (then) is inserted after the first word
of the sentence: 29 for example, “Kumakain ba ang mga bata?” (Are the children eating?)
Sometimes “ba” can be placed after the second word of a sentence; for example, “Kumakain ka
ba?” (Are you eating?)
To make a word plural, the article “mga” is added in front of the word: “mga” plus
noun. This is illustrated in the following example: “mga Pilipino” (the Filipinos).
When using articles and determiners, the words “ang” (singular form of “the”), “mga” and “ang
mga” (plural form of “the”), are placed in front of the noun that they modify. Personal forms
include the words “si” and “sina” or “ni”, “niná”, “kay”, and “kiná” as an indirect object article
29
Ibid., p. 17.
20
and/or determiner. Their equivalent words in English are “his”, “her” or “their.” The
determiners “si” and “sina” have no corresponding word in English.
Gender
Gender specific pronouns do not exist in native Tagalog, except for words that were
borrowed from Spanish with “–o” and “–a” endings. These denote masculine and feminine
forms. But generally masculine and feminine pronouns (he/she, him/her) are given the same
word. The following table shows the translation of pronouns and their cases in Tagalog:30
Pronoun
Topic
Genitive
Oblique
I
akó
ko
sa akin
You (fam.)
ikaw
ka , mo
sa iyó
s/he
siyá
niyá
sa kaniyá
we (excl.)
kami
naming
sa amin
we (incl.)
tayo
natin
sa atin
you (pl, pol.)
kayó
ninyó
sa inyó
they
silá
nilá
sa kanilá
Figure 3: Pronouns31
Like most languages, Tagalog has many idiosyncrasies. This overview should help in
understanding some basic structures of the language. There now remains the challenge of
30
31
Ibid., p. 21.
Ibid.
21
authentic pronunciation. The IPA transcriptions in Chapter Four will serve as a guide to
achieving an authentic declamation of the Tagalog text.
22
Chapter Four: A Performance Guide to 20 Representative Kundiman Art
Songs
Notes on analyses and interpretation
As a performance guide, I have included my own translations and pronunciation guides
using the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) system. These are especially helpful for nonTagalog speakers in pronouncing each word and expressing them with some authenticity. The
IPA is a very useful tool in helping to understand the linguistic nuances of the Tagalog language.
The genre of Kundiman includes Tagalog language, Visayan language and other regional dialects
that are spoken in various islands of the Philippines. However, I have excluded these other
dialects of Kundiman from my essay in order to focus specifically on Tagalog Kundiman. I
decided to choose works mainly by Francisco Santiago (4) and Nicanor Abelardo (6) because of
their significance in this genre. Seven other composers were included to show a range in
compositional styles.
Most of the songs in the following selections are in public domain. However, those
songs requiring permissions are noted in the music examples. Please refer to Appendix A for
Permission Letters. The songs discussed can be obtained via WordCat, which is an online
reference source.
23
Song Selections
1. “Kundiman” by Francisco Santiago / text by Deogracias A. Rosario
Ako’y anak ng dalita
At tigib ng luha
Ang naritong humihibik
Na bigyan ang awa
Buksán mo ang langit
At kusa mong pakinggan
Ang áking ligalig
Saka pagdaramdam.
I am a child of poverty
And overflowing with tears
I am here crying out
for your mercy
Open the heavens
And listen with purpose
My obsession
And what I am feeling.
Ay kung hindî ka mahahabag
Sa lungkót kong di naranas
Puso’t diwang nabibihag
Sa libing masasadlak
Magtanong ka kung di tunay
Sa kislap ng mga tala
Magtanong ka rin sa ulap
Ng taglay kong dalita
If you will not have pity
On my sadness that is unrealized
Heart and spirit are captivated
To fall into the grave.
Ask if it’s not real
To the twinkling stars
Also ask the sky
Of this poverty I carry.
Sa dilim ng gabing
aking nilalamay
Tánging larawan mo
Ang nagiging ilaw.
Kung ikaw ay mahimbing
Sa gitna ng dilim
Ang iyong ihulog
Puso mo sa akin.
Ang iyong ihulog
Buhay pag-asa.
In the dark of night
I stay up thinking,
Only your image
Will be my light
If you are sleepy
In the middle of the night
What you will bring
To me is your heart.
What you will bring
Is a life of hope.
Ako’y
[ʔa.'koɪ
I am
anak
ʔa.'nak
child
ng
naŋ
of
dalita
'da.li.ta]
poverty
At
[ʔat
And
tigib
ti.'gib
filled
ng
naŋ
with
luha
'lu.ha]
tears
24
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
naritong
'na.ri.toŋ
here
humihibik
hu.'mi.hi.'bik]
pleading
Na
[na
To
bigyan
big.'jan
give
ang
ʔaŋ
the
awa
'ʔa.waʔ]
compassion
Buksán
[buk.'san
Open
mo
mo
you
ang
ʔaŋ
the
langit
'la.ŋit]
heaven
At
[ʔat
And
kusa
'ku.sa
voluntarily
mong
moŋ
you
pakinggan
pa.kiŋ.'gan]
listen
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
aking
'ʔa.kiŋ
my
ligalig
li.'ga.lig
trouble
sa
sa
of-the
kapagdaramdam.
ka.pag.'da.ram.'dam]
feelings
Ay
[ʔaɪ
Is
kung
kuŋ
if
ka
[ka
you
mahahabag
ma.'ha.ha.'bag]
feel-pity
Sa
[sa
Of
lungkót
luŋ.'kot
loneliness
kong
koŋ
my
Puso’t
['pu.sot
Heart-and
diwang
'di.waŋ
spirit
nabibihag
na.bi.'bi.hag]
captured
Sa
[sa
To
libing
li.'biŋ
grave
masasadlak
ma.sa.sad.'lak]
to keep
hindî
hin.'di]
not
di
di
not
25
naranas
na.'ra.nas]
experience
Magtanong
[mag.ta.'noŋ
Ask
ka
ka
you
kung
kuŋ
if
di
di
not
tunay
'tu.naɪ]
real
Sa
[sa
To
kislap
kis.'lap
sparkle
ng
naŋ
of
mga
ma.ŋa
the
tala
'ta.la]
stars
Magtanong
[mag.ta.'noŋ
Ask
ka
ka
you
rin
rin
also
sa
sa
to
ulap
'u.lap]
clouds
Ng
[naŋ
Of
taglay
tag.'laɪ
endured
kong
koŋ
my
dalita
'da.li.ta]
anguish
Sa
[sa
To
dilim
di.'lim
darkness
ng
naŋ
of
gabing
ga.'biŋ]
night-that
aking
['ʔa.kiŋ
My
nilalamay
ni.la.'la.maɪ]
keep-vigil
Tánging
['ta.ŋiŋ
Only
larawan
la.'ra.wan
image
mo
mo]
your
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
nagiging
na.'gi.giŋ
becomes
ilaw.
'ʔi.laʊ]
light
Kung
[kuŋ
If
ikaw
ʔi.'kaʊ
you
ay
ʔaɪ
are
mahimbing
ma.him.'biŋ]
weary
Sa
[sa
In
gitna
git.'na
middle
ng
naŋ
of
dilim
di.'lim]
darkness
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
iyong
ʔi.'joŋ
your
ihulog
ʔi.'hu.log]
deposit
26
Puso
['pu.so
Heart
mo
mo
your
sa
sa
to
akin.
'ʔa.kin]
me
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
iyong
ʔi.'joŋ
your
ihulog
ʔi.'hu.log]
deposit
Buhay
[bu.haɪ
Life
pag-asa.
pag.'ʔasa]
hope
One of the most frequently performed Kundiman songs is “Kundiman: Cancion
Filipina.” Written in ternary form with an added violin part, this was Francisco Santiago’s very
first Kundiman art song. The poetic text written by Deogracias A. Rosario depicts a lover who
hopes that the girl he is serenading would open her window and give her heart to him.
The violin seems to flow along harmoniously and sometimes contrapuntally with the
singer’s vocal line. Sometimes it enhances the melody of the vocal line by playing eighth-note
figures to accompany the long notes in the vocal line. But overall, the violin part functions as a
supportive imitation and harmony to the voice part. Santiago has successfully created a trio
ensemble that flourishes and complements each other in a contrapuntal manner. In mm. 53-57
the violin answers the vocal phrase “ang iyong ihulog” (what you will bring) and imitates the
vocal line from the previous measures at the beginning of the C section. The chords in the piano
accompaniment become more full in texture. To contrast the forte and pianissimo dynamics in
the vocal line (measure 50), it is answered by a short four-measure instrumental interlude in
measure 54 with a fortississimo dynamic marking. In measure 58 the vocal line re-enters with a
softer dynamic marking. The piano accompaniment becomes more subdued and allows the vocal
line to be sung in piano marking. Hence, the text “tanging larawan mo ang nagiging ilaw” (only
27
your image will be my light) is supported by a chordal accompaniment that imitates the quarter
note rhythm of the vocal line (see Music Example 2).
Music Example 2: “Kundiman: Cancion Filipina”32
Overall, the vocal melody is lyrical, moving smoothly and fluidly as the waltz-like
rhythm matches the declamation of the text. At the beginning the piano accompaniment is
simple and sparse so as not to get in the way of the vocal line and the violin. It functions as
chordal harmony in ascending block chords. But as soon as the violin solo begins, the piano
texture becomes fuller. In the C section (mm. 66-77) the dynamics of the vocal line builds and
32
Ibid., p. 74.
28
the vocal range rises to a higher tessitura, requiring more breath support using a full voice on the
higher notes (see Music Example 3).
Music Example 3: “Kundiman: Cancion Filipina”33
33
Ibid.
29
2. “Pakiúsap” by Francisco Santiago / text by Jose Corazon De Jesus
Natutulog ka man
Irog kong matimtiman
Tungháyan mo man lámang
Ang nagpapa-álam.
Dáhan-dáhan mutyâ
Buksán mo ang bintána
Tanáwin mo’t kahabágan
Ang sa iyó’y nagmamahál
You are asleep
My modest darling
Only look out
To one who bids farewell.
Slowly my jewel
Open your window
View with pity
The one who loves you.
Kung sakali ma’t salát
Sa yama’t pangárap
May isang sumpáng wagas
Ang áking paglíngap
Pakiúsap ko sa iyó
Kaawaan mo akó
Kahit mamatáy
Pag-íbig ko’y minsan lámang
If you are in need
Of wealth and dreams
There is one oath pure:
It is my thought.
My plea to you
Is to have pity on me
Even to death
My love only happens once.
Natutulog
[na.tu.'tu.log
Sleeping
ka
ka
you
man
man]
are
Irog
['ʔi.rog
Darling
kong
koŋ
my
matimti’man
ma.tim.'ti.man]
modest
Tungháyan
[tuŋ.'ha.jan
Look at
mo
mo
you
man
man]
even-if
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The-one
nag-papa-álam.
nag.pa.pa.'ʔa.lam]
who-says-goodbye.
Dáhan-dáhan
[da.han.'da.han
Slowly
mutyâ
mut.'jaʔ]
jewel
Buksán
[buk.'san
Open
mo
mo
you
ang
ʔaŋ
the
30
bintana
bin.'ta.na]
window
Tanawin
[ta.'na.win
Look-at
mo’t
mot
you-and
kahabagan
ka.ha.'ba.gan]
compassion
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
sa
sa
to
yo’y
joɪ
you-are
nagmamahál
nag.ma.ma.'hal]
who-loves
Kung
[kuŋ
If
sakali
sa.'ka.li
perhaps
ma’t
mat
even if
salat
sa.'lat]
in-need
Sa
[sa
Of
yama’t
'ja.mat
wealth-and
pangárap
pa.'ŋa.rap]
dreams
May
[maɪ
There-is
isang
ʔi.'saŋ
one
sumpang
sum.'paŋ
oath
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
aking
'ʔa.kiŋ
my
paglingap
pag.'li.ŋap]
thought
Pakiúsap
[pa.ki.'ʔu.sap
Plea
ko
ko
my
sa
sa
to
Kaawaan
[ka.ʔa.'wa.ʔan
Have-pity
mo
mo
you
ako
ʔa.'ko]
me
Kahit
['ka.hit
Even-if
mamatáy
ma.ma.'taɪ]
to-die
Pag-íbig
[pag.'ʔi.big
Love
ko’y
koɪ
my-is
minsan
min.'san
once
31
‘yo
jo]
you
lámang
'la.maŋ]
only
This text by Jose Corazon de Jesus describes how the purity of one’s love is the only
thing that matters. The protagonist has no wealth to give but only the pureness of his oath of
love. He remains constant until death. Therefore his final plea is for her to have pity on him and
consider his undying love. “Pakiúsap” or “plea,” written in 1921, draws upon this sentiment of
purity of love. The poet makes a plea to declare his love to his beloved.
Francisco Santiago has effectively set to music the proper flow of the Tagalog language.
He frequently sets to music a syllabic stress on the second syllable of each line of text. This
demonstrates the typical style of Kundiman. A stress is usually found in the second beat of the
beginning of each musical phrase, and sometimes it is on the first beat of the measure. This
method of text setting also follows the natural flow of declamation in the poetry. An example is
shown in the opening line “Natutulog ka man, irog kong matimtiman” (You are asleep, my dear
who is modest.) Letters in bold signify the proper syllabic stress for these two words.
A singer should pay close attention to the syllabic stress of each line of text in order to
accurately express the meaning of the text and the flow of the language. The second sentence
contains syllables that have glottal stops. For example, the fourth syllable of the word “nagpapaálam” or “bidding farewell” is pronounced with a glottal /a/.
It is up to the singer to observe the glottal stops at the ends of phrases. But sometimes,
for the sake of maintaining a legato, it will be necessary to make a compromise. As a result, not
all glottal strokes will be observed. For example, the final /a/ of the word “mutyâ” will have a
glottal stop during regular conversations in the Tagalog language. However, when sung, the
word “mutyâ” should not have a glottal stop after the final syllable.
Overall, these linguistic idiosyncrasies play an important part in expressing the nuances
of the Tagalog language. Certain words that end a phrase or sentence like “mutyâ” (jewel),
32
“adhikâ” (desire) or “dalitâ” (pauper) are pronounced with a glottal stop at the end of the /a/
vowel. This is unusual for non-Tagalog speakers because it abruptly breaks the flow of the
legato line in classical singing. It is usually designated by the circumflex accent â. This only
happens in some words with ending /a/ vowels that contain a cieumflex accent. There is no
general rule that requires a Tagalog word that ends with /a/ to be given a glottal stop. It only
happens to specific words. To be sure of this, I would suggest consulting an unabridged
Tagalog-English dictionary or the Hippocrene Standard Dictionary.34
A lyrical melodic structure is depicted throughout the song. The smooth flowing contour
of the melodic line is similar in character to the smooth flowing melodies inherent in the Western
Romantic musical style. The lower and upper neighbor notes in the opening line functions as a
leading tone to the dominant note of G in the key of c minor. This effectively accentuates the
sadness portrayed about unrequited love (see Music Example 4).
Music Example 4:“Pakiúsap”35
After some analysis, I have surmised that this song imitates the smooth waltz style
of Viennese operettas similar to the style of Franz Lehar after the turn of the 20th century. In
34
, Carl R. Galvez Rubino, and Maria Gracia Tan Llenado. Tagalog-English, English-Tagalog Dictionary. Rev. &
Expanded ed. Conshohocken, PA: Hippocrene Books, 2002.
35
Bureau of Physical Education and School Sports Department of Education, Culture and Sports. Kundiman At Iba
Pa. (Manila: Likhawit Enterprises, 1994), p. 122.
33
general, these songs render a swaying effect. A Romantic style of performance is essential to the
accurate stylistic portrayal of this song.
This is more apparent in the B section of this song on the text, “Kung sakali ma’t salat sa
yama’t pangárap.” A slight rubato should be played on the second beat of the first and following
measures to be consistent with Kundiman style of Francisco Santiago. There should also be a
slight cresecendo and decrescendo from the first beat going into second beat of measure 25 and
tapering off after the second beat on the words, “Kung sakáli” (If perhaps) and repeating the
crescendo into the words, “ma’t salát” (even if in need) at the remainder of the two measure
phrase (see Music Example 5).
Music Example 5:“Pakiusap”36 B section
Overall, the top line of the right hand piano accompaniment doubles the vocal melody.
In general the chordal texture is thick, and there are some slight chromaticisms found in the inner
voices, giving it an interesting characteristic similar to the style of the Romantic period.
36
Ibid.
34
The phrase, “ang nag-papaalam” (one who bids farewell) begins with a neighboring tone of
A-sharp that leads to B-natural which is the third tone of the G major chord in “ang nagpapaalam” in mm. 15-16 (see Music Example 6).
Music Example 6: “Pakiusap”37 A section
The melody then leaps to a high note G4. Underneath this note is a first inversion c minor
chord with chromatic passing tone in the second beat of the measure leading to a second
inversion dominant G major chord in the third beat. The mixture of chromatic passing tones in
the inner voices of the piano gives this song a mood of anguish that enhances the poet’s intention
of bidding farewell to his beloved. This Romantic style of piano accompaniment by Francisco
Santiago successfully merges with the melancholic mood of the text.
37
Ibid.
35
3. “Madaling Araw” by Francisco Santiago / text by Jose Corazon De Jesus
Irog ko’y dinggin
Ang tibók ng puso
Sana’y damdamín
Hirap ng sumuyo
Manong itunghay
Ang matang mapungay
Na siyang tánging ilaw
Ng buhay kong papanaw
Listen my darling
To the beating of my heart
Wishing you could feel
The sufferings of one who woos
Elder brother look
At the tender eyes;
That she is the only light
To my fading life.
Sa gitna ng kadimlan
Magmadaling araw ka
At akó ay lawítan
Ng habag at pagsintá
Kung akó’y mamamatáy
Sa lungkót niaring buhay
Lumápit ka lang
At mabubuhay.
In the heart of darkness
Let your dawn come
And I am suspended
In mercy and passion.
If I am to die
Of sorrow in this life
Only come near to me
And I will live.
At kung magkagayon mutyâ
Mapalad na ang buhay ko
Magdaranas akó ng t’wa
Ng dáhil sa iyó
Madaling araw ka sintá
Liwanag ko’t tanglaw
Halina irog ko,
At mahálin mo akó.
And if we are together beloved
My life would be blessed
I will feel delight
Because of you.
You are the dawn, my love;
My light and my torch
Come now, my beloved,
And love me.
Mutyâ’y mapalad na ang buhay ko
Ng dáhilan sa ganda mo
Liwayway ng puso ko’t tanglaw
Halina Irog ko
At mahalín mo akó.
Manungaw ka liyag
Ilaw ko’t pangárap
At madaling araw na!
My life is now blessed
Because of your beauty.
Dawn of my heart and my torch;
Come now, my beloved,
And love me.
Look my darling,
My light and my dream.
And here is the dawn!
Irog
['ʔi.rog
Dear
ko’y
koɪ
my
dinggin
diŋ.'gin]
listen
36
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
tibók
ti.'bok
pulse
Sana’y
['sa.naɪ
Hoping-that
damdamín
dam.da.'min]
you feel
Hirap
['hi.rap
Suffering
ng
naŋ
of
Manong
[ma.'noŋ
Older brother
itunghay
ʔi.tuŋ.'haɪ]
raise-up
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
matang
ma.'taŋ
eyes-that
mapungay
ma.'pu ŋaɪ]
languid
Na
[na
That
siyang
si.'jaŋ
she-is
tánging
'ta.ŋiŋ
the-only
ilaw
ʔi.laʊ]
light
Ng
[naŋ
Of
buhay
'bu.haɪ
life
kong
koŋ
my
papanaw
pa.'pa.naʊ]
that-is-fading
Sa
[sa
In
gitna
git.'na
middle
ng
naŋ
of
kadimlan
ka.dim.'lan]
darkness
araw
ʔa.raʊ
dawn
ka
ka]
you
Magmadaling
[mag.ma.da.'liŋ
Become
ng
naŋ
of
puso
'pu.so]
heart
sumuyo
su.'mu.yo]
beloved
At
[ʔat
And
ako
ʔa.'ko
I
ay
ʔaɪ
am
lawítan
la.'wi.tan]
suspended
Ng
[naŋ
Of
habag
'ha.bag
compassion
at
ʔat
and
pagsintá
pag.sin.'ta]
love
37
Kung
[kuŋ
If
ako’y
ʔa.'koɪ
I-am
mamamatáy
ma.'ma.ma.'taɪ]
going-to-die
Sa
[sa
Of
lungkót
luŋ.'kot
loneliness
niaring
'ɲa.riŋ
in-this
Lumapit
[lu.'ma.pit
Be near
ka
ka
you
lang
lʔaŋ]
only
At
[ʔat
And
mabubuhay.
ma.bu.'bu.haɪ]
will-live
At
[ʔat
And
kung
kuŋ
if
magkagayon
mag.ka.ga.'yon
we-are-united
mutyâ
mut.'jaʔ]
beloved
Mapalad
[ma.'pa.lad
Fortunate
na
na
now
ang
ʔaŋ
the
buhay
'bu.haɪ
life
Magdaranas
[mag.da.'ra.nas
Feel
ako
ʔa.'ko
I
ng
naŋ
of
t’wa
twa]
joy
Ng
[naŋ
Of
dáhil
'da.hil
because
sa
sa
to
iyó
ʔi.'jo]
you
Madaling
[ma.da.'liŋ
Become
araw
'ʔa.raʊ
dawn
ka
ka
you
sintá
sin.'ta]
beloved
Liwanag
[li.'wa.nag
Light
ko’t
kot
my-and
tanglaw
taŋ.'laʊ]
lamp
Halina
[ha.'li.na
Come
irog
'ʔi.rog
dear
ko,
ko]
my
38
buhay
'bu.haɪ]
life
ko
ko]
mine
At
[ʔat
And
mahálin
ma.ha.'lin
love
mo
mo
you
Mutyâ’y
[mut.'jaɪ
Treasure-is
mapalad
ma.'pa.lad
fortunate
na
na]
now
ang
[ʔaŋ
the
buhay
'bu.haɪ
life
ko
ko]
my
Ng
[naŋ
Of
dáhilan
da.hi.'lan
because
sa
sa
to
ganda
gan.da
beauty
mo
'mo]
your
Liwayway
[li.waɪ.'waɪ
Ray
ng
naŋ
of
puso
'pu.so
heart
ko’t
kot
my-and
tanglaw
taŋ.'laʊ]
light
Halina
[ha.'li.na
Come
irog
‘ʔi.rog
dear
ko
ko]
my
At
[ʔat
And
mahalin
ma.ha.'lin
love
mo
mo
you
Manungaw
[ma.'nu.ŋaʊ
Gaze
ka
ka
you
liyag
li.'jag]
beloved
Ilaw
['ʔi.laʊ
Light
ko’t
kot
my-and
pangárap
pa.'ŋa.rap]
dream
At
[ʔat
And
madaling
ma.da.'liŋ
become
araw
'ʔa.raʊ
dawn
39
ako.
ʔa.'ko]
me
ako.
ʔa.'ko]
me
na!
na]
now
In the opening line of “Madaling Araw” (Break of Dawn) (1929), the melody begins with
an anacrusis on the phrase, “Irog ko’y” or “My dear” that arrives at the word “dinggin” or “to
hear”. Similarly the word “puso” or “heart” in measure 13 is emphasized by an appoggiatura
that imitates a sigh (see Music Example 7). This motivic line repeats throughout the whole
song. Francisco Santiago skillfully sets the flow of the text through his use of melodic phrases
that fit the rhyming scheme of the poetry. Certain nuances in the Tagalog language such as
glottal stops in the word “ang” or “the” need to be observed, especially in the opening line, in
order to achieve a level of authenticity and specificity in linguistic expression.
Santiago is able to demonstrate the declamation of Tagalog by giving emphasis to
specific words and syllables. In essence the composer carefully chooses the word “hirap” in
measure 16 as a word that represents the overall mood of the piece. This common use of minor
keys and melodic devices that create a general mood of a sigh is typical of the Kundiman art
song style (see Music Example 7)
40
Music Example 7: “Madaling Araw”38
In the same example above, one can see that piano accompaniment imitates the vocal
line. In this case it is accompanied by parallel thirds that harmonize with the vocal melody.
Overall, Santiago uses this harmonic style to support the singer’s line. However, in the last page
of the song, in the C section, the piano accompaniment takes on a more prominent role (see
Music Example 8).
38
Ibid., p. 92.
41
Music Example 8: “Madaling Araw”39
The vocal part then becomes more like an instrument that supports the piano line. The
interaction between the piano and the voice are seen in the switching of roles (see mm. 63-65).
The C section takes on a completely different character where the both the piano and the voice
take part in an ensemble sharing the spot light.
39
Ibid., p. 94.
42
4. “Ano Kayâ Ang Kapalaran” Music and text by Francisco Santiago
Dito sa mundó’y
Walâng kasing tamís
Gaya ng umáwit
Ng sariling himig
Bawa’t tagintíng.
Ang wika’y pag-íbig
Siyang humahabi
Ng pusong nagiliw.
Here in this world
Nothing is more pleasant
Than to sing
One’s own melody.
With every sound
The language is love.
She weaves
A heart that is charmed.
Mahirap nga palang umirog,
Sintá’y dalhin-dalhing may lunos.
Araw gabi ang puso
Ang tibók ay siphayò
Ano kaya ang kapalaran
Ng abat imbing lagáy.
Asahan mo’t di palad,
Kakamtan mo’y sakláp.
How hard it is to love,
My dear quickly bring compassion.
Day and night
The beating heart is oppressed.
What fate lies ahead
Of a humble state.
Expect not fortune,
You will receive bitterness.
Ah! Araw gabi’y ang puso,
Ang tibók ay siphayò, Ah!
Ng abat imbing lagáy
Asahan mo’t di palad
Kakamtan mo’y sakláp, Ah!
Ah! Day and night
The beating heart is oppressed
Of humble state
Expect not fortune
You will receive bitterness, Ah!
Dito
['di.to
Here
sa
sa
on
mundo’y
mun.'doɪ]
earth is
Walâng
[wa.'laŋ
None
kasing
ka.'siŋ
as
tamis
ta.'mis]
sweet
Gaya
['ga.ja
Like
ng
naŋ
as
umáwit
ʔu.'ma.wit]
to-sing
Ng
[naŋ
Of
sariling
sa.'ri.liŋ
own
himig
'hi.mig]
melody
43
Bawa’t
['ba.wat
Every
tagintíng.
ta.gin.'tiŋ]
sound
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
wika’y
'wi.kaɪ
language-is
Siyang
[sjaŋ
She
humahabi
hu.ma.ha.'bi]
weaves
Ng
[naŋ
Of
pusong
'pu.soŋ
heart
nagiliw.
na.'gi.liʊ]
charmed
Mahirap
[ma.'hi.rap
Difficult
nga
ŋa
indeed
palang
pa.'laŋ
then
Sintá’y
[sin.'taɪ
Dear is
dalhin-dalhing
dal.'hin.dal.'hiŋ
bringing
may
maɪ
some
lunos.
'lu.nos]
compassion
Araw
['ʔa.raʊ
Day
gabi
ga.'bi
night
ang
ʔaŋ
the
puso
'pu.so]
heart
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
tibók
ti.'bok
heartbeat
ay
ʔaɪ
is
siphayò
sip.'ha.jo]
sadness
Ano
[ʔa 'no
What
kaya
ka 'ja
then
ang
ʔaŋ
the
kapalaran
ka pa 'la ran]
fate
Ng
[naŋ
Of
aba’t
ʔa.'bat
mistreated
imbing
im.'biŋ
humble
lagáy.
la.'gaɪ]
state.
Asahan
[ʔa.'sa.han
Hope
mo’t
mot
you-and
di
di
not
palad,
'pa.lad]
fortune
pag-íbig
pag.'i.big]
love
44
Kakamtan
[ka.kam.'tan
Receive
mo’y
moɪ
you-is
sakláp.
sak.'lap]
bitterness
Written in 1938, the seemingly cheerful melody of the song starkly contrasts with the sad
mood of the text. The dance-like rhythm depicts a matter-of-fact treatment of the gloomy
disposition in the text. A jovial mood is found in this Kundiman waltz but it is a mere façade
when compared to the mournfulness of the text. In the end, bitterness is the outcome when
pursuing love and happiness. It is a state of helplessness that tends to be a recurrent theme in
Kundiman art songs. Happiness is not necessarily about finding one’s beloved but being free to
sing his or her own melody as an expression of one’s self. The B section modulates from the
previous d minor key of the A section to the parallel key of D major (see Music Example 9).
45
Music Example 9: “Ano Kaya Ang Kapalaran”40
Overall, the song is arranged in ABB’ binary form, where the B’ section is a modified
embellishment of the B section. The melismatic section of this song makes it suitable for a
coloratura soprano. Ascending staccato eight notes on “ah” require a light vocal mechanism that
engages breath control. An example of this is found in measure 91 (see Music Example 10).
Music Example 10: “Ano Kaya Ang Kapalaran?”41
40
41
Ibid., p. 36-37.
Ibid., p. 39.
46
This skipping pattern of eighth notes represents freedom and an inherent ability to
express one’s self without consequence of oppression. Moreover, the vocal freedom of the
coloratura portion in this song could prove a challenge for a young aspiring soprano because of
the vocal agility that is required.
It is also interesting that Santiago directly quotes the opening phrase of a popular folk
song, “Leron-Leron Sintá” (Sea Shells, Sea Shells, Darling) (See Music Example 11).
Music Example 11: “Leron-Leron Sinta” 42
He then combines these note segments to form a unique composition that is similar to the
previously mentioned popular folksong (See Music Example 12).
42
Cavan, Emilia S., Filipino Folk Songs: Collected and Arranged by Mrs. Emilia S. Cavan (harmonized by
Francisco Santiago), 1924, p. 2.
47
Music Example 12: “Ano Kaya Ang Kapalaran”43
In the text “araw gabi” (day and night) the piano accompaniment is chordal and climaxes
with an octave leap of the f-sharp minor chord in second inversion. The octave leap in measure
65 functions as an interjection or a music exclamation point that answers the text of the vocal
line (see Music Example 13).
Music Example 13: “Ano Kaya Ang Kapalaran”44
43
Bureau of Physical Education and School Sports Department of Education, Culture and Sports. Kundiman At Iba
Pa. (Manila: Likhawit Enterprises, 1994), p.36.
44
Ibid., p. 37.
48
Similarly, this occurs in the text “ang tibok ay siphayo” (beating is oppressed). In this
occurrence the octave displacement of the G chord is strategically place between “ay” (is) and
“siphayo” (oppressed). The seemingly comic nature of this octave leaping chord is used as a
device for irony to the one who searches for love. Out of the four songs by Santiago selected in
this essay, this song seems to be the most light-hearted. This serves as a nice change of pace for
the usual melancholic music theme.
49
5. “Kung Hindî Man” Music and text by Nicanor Abelardo
Irog sandaling dinggin
Ang áking pagtángis
Irog sandaling tunghan
Ang humihibik
Kung di man nararapat
Sa iyong dikit
Isang sulyap mo lámang
Aliw na ng dibdib.
Beloved, for a moment listen
To my weeping.
Beloved, for a moment look
At the one who pleads,
And see if he is not deserving
Of your loveliness.
Only one glance from you
And my heart will be comforted.
Kung sa’ki’y walâ nang
Inilaang paglingap
At ang pagdurusa ko
Ang siya mong pangárap
Sa isang ngiti mong
Sa aki’y igawad
Libo mang kamatayan
Aking tinatanggap.
If I have already lost
A compassionate care,
And my suffering
Is your dream,
If I but receive
One glance from you,
Even a thousand deaths
I would accept.
Irog
['ʔi.rog
Beloved
sandaling
san.da.'liŋ
for-a-moment
dinggin
diŋ.'gin]
hear
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
aking
'ʔa.kiŋ
my
pagtángis
pag.'ta.ŋis]
weeping
Irog
['ʔi.rog
Beloved
sandaling
san.da.'liŋ
for-a-moment
tunghan
tuŋ.'han]
look-at
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
humihibik
hu.mi.hi.'bik]
one-who-pleads
Kung
[kuŋ
If
di
di
not
man
man
too
Sa
[sa
Of
iyong
ʔi.'joŋ
your
dikít
di.'kit]
loveliness
nararápat
na.ra.'ra.pat]
worthy
50
Isáng
[ʔi.'saŋ
One
sulyáp
sul.'jap
glance
mo
mo
your
lámang
'la.maŋ]
only
Aliw
['ʔa.liʊ
Comfort
na
na
now
ng
naŋ
of
dibdib.
dib.'dib]
heart
Kung
[kuŋ
If
sa
sa
to
’ki’y
ki
my
walâ
wa.'la]
lost
I-ni-laang
[ʔi.ni.'la.ʔaŋ
Provided
paglingap
pag.'li.ŋap]
care
At
[ʔat
And
ang
ʔaŋ
the
pagdurusa
pag.du.'ru.sa
suffering
ko
ko]
my
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
siya
si.'ja
she
mong
moŋ
your
pangárap
pa.'ŋa.rap]
dream
Sa
[sa
To
isang
ʔi.'saŋ
one
ngitî
ŋi.'tiʔ
smile
mong
moŋ]
your
Sa
[sa
To
aki’y
'ʔa.ki
me
igawad
ʔi.'ga.wad]
grant
Libo
['li.bo
A-thousand
mang
maŋ
ever
kamatáyan
ka.ma.'ta.jan]
deaths
Aking
['ʔa.kiŋ
I-will
tinatanggáp.
ti.'na.taŋ.'gap]
accept
51
“Kung Hindi Man” (If It Were Not So) (1920) by Nicanor Abelardo is set in binary form.
More specifically, it is in AABB form. Abelardo uses this binary form to make a contrast
between the melancholic A section in the key of g minor and the hopefulness of the B section in
the parallel key of G major. It begins in the key of g minor because it represents a main
character who longs for his beloved.
Additionally, Abelardo In the opening four measures, mm. 6-9, the vocal line loosely
resembles a Kundiman folksong, “Kundiman in 1800” (see Music Example 14).
Music Example 14: Santiago’s “Kundiman in 1800”45
Notice the similarity in the opening vocal line in Abelardo’s “Kung Hindi Man.” Both
songs have opening eighth-note patterns followed by a dotted eighth/sixteenth note combination
and a half note in mm. 6-7 (see Music Example 15).
45
Cavan, Emilia S., "Filipino Folk Songs / Collected and Arranged by Emilia S. Cavan; Harmonized by Francisco
Santiago, 1924. Accessed March 26, 2015.
52
Music Example 15: “Kung Hindi Man”46
The opening melody directly quotes the folksong and transforms this thematic material
into the g minor instead of the original major key from which the popular Kundiman folk song
“Kundiman in 1800” was inspired.
In “Kung Hindi Man”, the piano accompaniment mirrors the melodic line in the treble
line. The vocal line outlines a g minor chord. This in turn is supported by some upper and lower
neighbor tones in the right hand of the piano line which moves in unison with the vocal line. The
vocal line gives the music statement and the piano line anwers with its own harmonic
commentary on the given melodic line. Some important words in the first stanza are: “dinggin”
(listen); “pagtángis” (weeping); “humihibik” (pleading) from the root word “hibik” (pleading)
with added prefix, “humi-“ that transforms a root word to a verb phrase that means “the act of
[doing something]”; “dikit” (loveliness); and “dibdib” (breast or heart).
46
Bureau of Physical Education and School Sports Department of Education, Culture and Sports. Kundiman At Iba
Pa. (Manila: Likhawit Enterprises, 1994), p.80.
53
The word “dinggin” (listen), which is represented in IPA as [diŋ.gin], consists of two
inner consonants /ng/ and /g/ that are pronounced simultaneously. Incidentally, the consonant
sound [ŋ] seems to be prevalent in this song.
By contrast, the B section has a more positive musical outlook despite the seemingly
hopeless situation (see Music Example 16).
Music Example 16: "Kung Hindi Man"47 - B section
The right hand of the piano accompaniment doubles the vocal line, a common feature of
these early Kundiman art songs. However, here the left hand of the accompaniment finishes
each short phrase with an eighth-note figure, which maintains the flow of the song.
47
Ibid., p. 81.
54
According to the poem, the character needs but one little smile from his beloved and he
will have enough courage to face a thousand deaths. The sudden optimism is manifested in the
major key quality and is a contrast to the minor key quality of the previous A section. This song
follows a strict binary form rather than the ternary form that was introduced in Santiago’s new
Kundiman genre. It would seem that Abelardo has achieved the same end result of having new
material in the final section but with a major key, representing hopefulness and confidence. It
symbolizes a renewed love for country and nationalism.
55
6. “Nasaán Ka Irog?” by Nicanor Abelardo / text by Jose Corazon de Jesus
Nasaán ka Irog?
At dagling naparam
Ang iyong pag-giliw
Di baga sumpa mong
Ako’y mamahálin?
Iyong itatángi
Magpahanggáng libíng
Subalit nasaán
Ang iyong pagtingín?
Where are you, beloved?
Suddenly your affection
Has faded
Did you not promise
You will love me?
You would set me apart
Until death.
But where
Is your gaze?
Nasaán ka Irog
At natiti-ìs mong
Ako’y mangulila
At hanap-hanapin ikaw
Sa ala-ála?
Nasaán ang sabi mong
Ako’y iyong ligaya’t
Ngayong nalulungkót,
Ay di ka makitá.
Irog ko’y tandaan
Where are you, beloved,
How can you endure
My being orphaned
While I search for you
In my memory?
Where now is your assertion
That I am your happiness?
So sad it is for me
To not see you.
Beloved remember!
Kung akó man ay iyong
Ngayo’y sinipháyo
Mangá sumpa’t lambing
Pinaram mong bo-o
Ang lahat sa buhay ko
Ay hindî maglalaho’t
Magsisilbing bakas
Ng nagdaan tang pagsuyo
Even if you
Now reproach me,
Your promises and tenderness
You take away
Everything in my life,
They will not fade away
But will serve as a memory
Of our past affection.
Tandaan mo Irog,
Irog ko’y tandaan,
Ang lahat sa buhay ko
Ay hindî maglalaho’t
Magsisilbing bakas
Ng nagdaan tang pagsuyo.
Nasaán ka Irog!
Nasaán ka Irog?
Remember beloved,
My beloved remember,
Everything in my life
Will not fade away
But will serve as a memory
Of our past affection.
Where are you beloved!
Where are you beloved?
Nasaán
[na.sa.'ʔan
Where-are
ka
ka
you
Irog?
'ʔi.rog]
beloved
56
At
[ʔat
And
dagling
dag.'liŋ
suddenly
naparam
na.'pa.ram]
faded
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
iyong
ʔi.'yoŋ
your
pag-giliw
pag:'gi.liʊ]
affection
Di (hindi)
[di
Did-not
ba
ba
was
gasumpa
ga.sum.'pa
promised
Ako’y
[ʔa.'koɪ
Me-you-will
mamahalín?
'ma.ma.ha.'lin]
love?
Iyong
[ʔi.'yoŋ
You-will
itatángi
ʔi.ta.'ta.ŋi]
determine
Magpahanggáng
[mag.pa.haŋ.'gaŋ
Until
libíng
li.'biŋ]
death
Subalit
[su.'ba.lit
But
nasaán
na.sa.'ʔan]
where
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
iyong
ʔi.'yoŋ
your
pagtingín?
pag.ti.'ŋin]
gaze?
Nasaán
[na.sa.'ʔan
Where-are
ka
ka
you
Irog,
'ʔi.rog]
beloved
At
[ʔat
And
natiti-ìs
na.ti.ti.'ʔis
suffering
mong
moŋ]
your
Ako’y
[ʔa.'koɪ
I-am
mangulila
maŋ.u.'li.laʔ]
make-orphan
57
mong
moŋ]
your
At
[ʔat
And
hanap-hanapin
ha.nap.ha.'na.pin
searching
ikaw
ʔi 'kaʊ]
you
Sa
[sa
Of
ala-ála?
ʔa.la.'ʔa.la]
memories
Nasaán
[na.sa.'ʔan
Where
ang
ʔaŋ
the
sabi
'sa.bi
said
Ako’y
[ʔa.'koɪ
I-am
iyong
ʔi.'joŋ
your
ligaya’t
li.'ga.jat]
happiness
Ngayong
[ŋa.'joŋ
Now
nalulungkót,
na.lu.luŋ.'kot]
saddened
Ay
[ʔaɪ
Is
di
di
not
ka
ka
you
Irog
[‘ʔi.rog
Dear
ko’y
koɪ
my
tandaan
tan.da.'ʔan]
remember
Kung
[kuŋ
If
ako
ʔa.'ko
I
man
man
too
Ngayo’y
[ŋa.'joɪ
Now
sinipháyo
si.nip.'ha.jo]
to-mistreat
Mangá
[ma.'ŋa
Some
sumpa’t
sum.'pat
promise-and
lambing
lam.'biŋ]
caressing
Pinaram
[pi.'na.ram
Vanish
mong
moŋ
you
bo-o
bo.'ʔo]
whole
mong
moŋ]
your
makitâ.
ma.'ki.ta]
see
58
ay
ʔaɪ
am
iyong
ʔi.'joŋ]
your
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
lahat
la.'hat
all
sa
sa
of
buhay
'bu.haɪ
life
Ay
[ʔaɪ
Is
hindî
hin.'di
not
maglalaho’t
mag.la.'la.hot]
vanish-and
Magsisilbing
[mag.si.sil.'biŋ
To-serve-as
bakas
ba.'kas]
footprint
Ng
[naŋ
Of
nagdaan
nag.da.'ʔan
past
tang
taŋ
our
Tandaan
[tan.da.'ʔan
Remember
mo
mo
you
Irog,
'ʔi.rog]
beloved
Irog
['ʔi.rog
Beloved
ko’y
koɪ
my
tandaan,
tan.da.'ʔan]
remember
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
lahat
la.'hat
all
sa
sa
of
Ay
[ʔaɪ
Is
hindî
hin.'di
not
maglalaho’t
mag.la.'la.hot]
vanish-and
Magsisilbing
[mag.'si.sil.'biŋ
To-serve-as
bakas
ba.'kas]
footprint
Ng
[naŋ
Of
nagdaan
nag.da.'ʔan
past
tang
taŋ
our
Nasaán
[na.sa.'ʔan
Where-are
ka
ka
you
Irog!
'ʔi.rog]
beloved!
pagsuyo
pag.'su. jo]
affection
buhay
'bu.haɪ
life
59
ko
ko]
my
pagsuyo.
pag.'su.jo]
affection
ko
ko]
my
Nicanor Abelardo inadvertently created a music term, “tempo di Kundiman,” similar to
andante cantabile. A singer should pay special attention to how the word “irog” (beloved) is
given emphasis on the first syllable with a pure /i/ sound and less emphasis on the final syllable.
Similarly, the two g’s in the word “pag-giliw” [pag:'gi.liʊ] (regard) should be treated as a double
consonant. Emphasis should be given on the syllable “gi” of “giliw”. Additionally, the syllable
“liw” is produced by combining an [i] and [ʊ]vowel to form a dipthong.
The sudden leap of an octave from an eighth-note F3 to half-note F4 in “subali’t nasaán”
in measure 20 fits the text declamation well (see Music Example 17).
Music Example 17: “Nasaan Ka Irog?”48
The word “nasaán” (where) has an emphasis on the final syllable that is separated by a glottal
stop on the vowel /a/. It categorically has three syllables; namely, “na”, “sa” and “an”. Tagalog
has three syllables for “where,” which provides for more emotional expression, especially with
the glottal “an” from the word “nasaan” (where) that is produced viscerally from the diaphragm.
48
Ibid., p. 110.
60
In general, the piano accompaniment parallels the vocal line, sometimes in intervals of
parallel thirds and sometimes in parallel sixths. In the opening prelude, the piano summarizes
the melody of the vocal line. Afterwards, the vocal line enters with a recitative-like motif, which
is answered by a short piano motif with a dotted eight and sixteenth note followed by a quarter
note chord in the dominant chord of C from the f minor tonic chord in measure 6 (see Music
Example 18).
Music Example 18: “Nasaan Ka Irog”49
49
Ibid.
61
7. “Pahimakas” by Nicanor Abelardo / text by Jose Corazon De Jesus
Umága na nag-aawítan
Ang ibon sa parang
Ang kasawí-an ko’y
Pinag-uusápan
Ay! Walâ na
Hangáng mag-umága’y
Ayaw ka-pang manungaw
Pa-âlam na Irog
Kung di man ini-ìbig
Ng nabúhay pa
Ang bangkáy ko man lámang
Ka-awáan mo na
Morning comes
And the birds sing in the meadow
My misfortune that
They chat about
It is gone.
Even in the morning
You do not bother to wake up.
Farewell then, my love
If you do not love me
While I am alive.
At least have pity
On my corpse.
Ako’y pa-álam na
Hindî ko malaman
Ang patutunguhan
Kung akó ay dáratal
Sa luksáng libíngan
kung di na magbalík
Iyong ipalagáy
Na akó’y walâ na
Pa-álam, pa-álam.
I bid you farewell.
I know not
Where my journey lies.
If I arrive
At my mournful grave,
If I do not return,
Assume that
I am gone.
Farewell, farewell!
Kung sa tapat ninyo
Magdaán ang bangkay
Makipaglibing ka
Ikaw ay umílaw
Ako’y ipagdasal
Ay! Pa-álam!
If in your path
You come across my corpse,
Please bury me.
Light up a candle
And pray for me
Ah! Farewell!
Umága
[ʔu.ma.ga
Morning
na
na
now
nag-aawítan
nag.ʔa.ʔa.wi.tan]
they-are-singing
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
íbon
ʔi.bon
birds
sa
sa
in the
parang
pa.raŋ]
meadow
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
kasawí-an
ka.sa.'wi.ʔan
misfortune
ko’y
koɪ]
my-is
pinag-úusápan
pi.nag.'ʔu.ʔu.'sa.pan]
talked-about
62
Ay!
[ʔaɪ
Ah!
Walâ
wa.la
Gone
na
na]
now
Hangang
[haŋ.gaŋ
Until
mag-umága’y
mag.ʔu.ma.gaɪ]
morning-is
Ayaw
[ʔa.jaʊ
Reject
kapáng
ka.paŋ
you-still
manungáw
ma.nu.ŋaʊ]
to-look
Pa-álam
[pa.ʔa.lam
Farewell
na
na
now
Irog
ʔi.rog]
beloved
Kung
[kuŋ
If
di
di
not
man
man
ever
Ng
[naŋ
While
nabúhay
na.bu.haɪ
living
pa
pa]
still
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
bángkay
baŋ.kaɪ
corpse
ko
ko
my
Ka-awáan
[ka.ʔa.wa.ʔan
Have-pity
mo
mo
you
na
na]
now
Ako’y
[ʔa.koɪ
I-am
pa-álam
pa.ʔa.lam
bid-farewell
na
na]
now
Hindî
[hin.di
Not
ko
ko
I
maláman
ma.'la.man]
know
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
patutungúhan
pa.'tu.tu.'ŋu.han]
path
63
ini-ìbig
ʔi.ni.'ʔi.big]
loved
man
man
ever
lámang
la.maŋ]
alone
Kung
[kuŋ
If
ako
ʔa.'ko
I
ay
ʔaɪ
am
Sa
[sa
To
luksáng
luk.'saŋ
mourning
libíngan
li.'bi.ŋan]
burial
kung
[kuŋ
If
di
di
not
na
na
now
magbalík
mag.ba.'lik]
return
Iyong
[ʔi.'yoŋ
You
ipalagáy
ʔi.pa.la.'gaɪ]
assume
Na
[na
That
ako’y
ʔa.'koɪ
I-am
walâ
wa.'la
gone
na
na]
now
Pa-álam,
[pa.'ʔa.lam
Farewell
pa-álam.
pa.'ʔa.lam]
farewell
Kung
[kuŋ
If
sa
sa
in
tapat
ta.'pat
front-of
ninyo
nin.'jo]
you
Magdaán
[mag.da.'ʔan
Pass-by
ang
ʔaŋ
the
bangkay
baŋ.'kaɪ]
dead-body
Makipaglibing
[ma.ki.pag.li.'biŋ
Bury-me
ka
ka]
you
Ikaw
[ʔi.'kaʊ
You
ay
ʔaɪ
are
Ako’y
[ʔa.'koɪ
I-am
ipagdasal
ʔi.pag.da.'sal]
prayed-for
umílaw
ʔu.'mi.laʊ]
lit-up
64
dáratal
'da.ra.tal]
going-to-reach
Ay!
[ʔaɪ
Ah
Pa-álam!
pa.'ʔa.lam]
farewell!
Written in 1925, “Pahimakas” (Farewell) was composed in a binary form, AABB’. In the
A section the verse is repeated twice without any variation in the text. The B section consists of
new material that corresponds with new text that enters into a deeper level of despair and
disorientation. Then it repeats in B’ section but only as an incomplete version. The B’ section is
shorter and begins with the phrase “Hindi ko malaman ang patutunguhan” (I know not where my
journey lies).
In the opening vocal line the main character, being disheartened, departs from his
beloved thinking that he will never be with her again. Because she does not share a mutual love,
he finds it necessary to bid her farewell. The word “pa-álam” translates to “farewell” and seems
to represent the singular mood of this poem. This word is repeated twelve times in the entire
song and hence it is important to be able to pronounce this word properly. The word “pa-álam”
[pa-ʔalam] must be pronounced with a glottal stop on the second /a/ vowel that follows the prefix
“pa-“. Equally important is how the [a] vowel must be pronounced as a pure vowel, being
careful to keep the vowel bright. Likewise, the author’s method of repeating this key word, “paálam,” also brings to light the use of the glottal stop.
The poem evolves drastically as a farewell to life in the second stanza as the main
character wallows in his despair. If he can’t obtain the love of his life then he prefers not to live
at all. But he wishes at least for her to have mercy on his corpse if she happens to pass by it.
It is interesting to note that Abelardo departs from his usual doubling of the vocal line in
the right hand piano accompaniment. Instead, the piano introduction presents some playful
65
motifs that sound like a gypsy violin melody. In the beginning, the piano intro presents some
short playful motifs with an overall descending pattern (see Music Example 19).
Music Example 19: “Pahimakas”50
Notice the basic chordal accompaniment and the flourishes in the right hand. While this
may look like supportive material for the voice, in effect this text painting gives prominence to
the piano accompaniment (see Music Example 20).
50
Ibid., p. 116.
66
Music Example 20: “Pahimakas”51
51
Ibid.
67
8. “Bituing Marikit” by Nicanor Abelardo / text by S. Angeles
Bituíng marikit
Sa gabi ng buhay
Ang bawat kislap mo’y
Ligaya ang taglay
Yaring áking palad
Iyong patnubayan
At kahit nasinag
Ako’y bahaginan.
Beautiful star
Of the night of life
With every little twinkle
Happiness is possessed.
My destiny
You will guide,
Though you spread your rays
You share it with me.
Natanim sa puso ko
Yaong isang pag-íbig
Na pinaka-sasamba
Sa lo-ob ng dibdib
Sa iyong luning-ning
Laging na-sasabik
Ikaw ang pangárap
Bituíng marikit.
In my heart
A certain love is planted
That is most worshipped.
In your heart
In your sparkle
Always I’m eager.
You are my dream,
Beautiful star.
Lapitan mo akó
Halina bitu-in
Ating pag-isahin
Ang mangá damdamin
Ang sabik kong diway.
Huwag mong uhawin
Sa batis ng iyong wagas
Na pag-giliw.
Approach me
Come to me, star.
Let us make one
The feelings,
My eagerness for beauty.
Do not deprive me
Of the brook of your pureness,
Of your affection.
Bituíng
[bi.tu.'wiŋ
Star
marikit
ma.ri.'kit]
lovely
Sa
[sa
To
gabi
ga.'bi
night
ng
naŋ
of
buhay
'bu.haɪ]
life
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
bawat
'ba.wat
each
kislap
kis.'lap
shine
mo’y
moɪ]
of-yours-is
Ligaya
[li.'ga.ja
Happiness
ang
ʔaŋ
the
taglay
tag.'laɪ]
possess
68
Yaring
['ja.riŋ
This
aking
'ʔa.kiŋ
my
palad
'pa.lad]
destiny
Iyong
[ʔi.'yoŋ
You
patnubayan
pat.nu.'ba.jan]
guide
At
[ʔat
And
kahit
'ka.hit
even-if
Ako’y
[ʔa.'koɪ
I-am
bahaginan.
ba.ha.'gi.nan]
dispensed
Natanim
[na.ta.'nim
Planted
sa
sa
in
puso
'pu.so
heart
Yaong
[ja.ʔoŋ
That
isang
ʔi.'saŋ
one
pag-íbig
pag.'ʔi big]
love
Na
[na
Of
pinaka-sasamba
pi.na.ka.'sa.sam.ba]
most-worshipped
Sa
[sa
From
lo-ob
lo.'ʔob
inside
ng
naŋ
of
Sa
[sa
To
iyong
ʔi.'yoŋ
your
luning-ning
lu.niŋ.'niŋ]
sparkle
Laging
['la.giŋ
Always
nasasabik
na.'sa.sa.bik]
eager
Ikaw
[ʔi.'kaʊ
You
ang
ʔaŋ
the
nasinag
na.'si.nag]
beaming
ko
ko]
my
dibdib
dib.'dib]
chest
pangárap
pa.'ŋa.rap]
dream
69
Bituing
[bi.tu.'wiŋ
Star
marikit.
ma.ri.'kit]
lovely
Lapitan
[la.'pi.tan
Come-near
mo
mo
you
Halina
[ha.'li.na
Come-now
bituín
bi.tu.'win]
star
Ating
['ʔa.tiŋ
We
pag-isahin
pag.ʔi.'sa hin]
join-together
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
mangá
ma.'ŋa
those
damdámin
dam.'da.min]
feelings
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
sabik
sa.'bik
eager
kong
koŋ
my
Huwag
[hwag
Do not
mong
moŋ
you
uhawin
u.'ha.win]
thirst
Sa
[sa
To
batis
ba.'tis
spring
ng
naŋ
of
Na
[na
Of
pag-giliw.
pag:'gi.liʊ]
affection.
akó
ʔa.'ko]
me
diway
'di.waɪ]
spirit
iyong
ʔi.'yoŋ
your
wagas
wa.'gas]
pureness
At the opening section of the piano prelude in mm. 1-6, Abelardo uses a repeating pattern
of short sighing motifs that occurs in a descending sequence. This sighing motif is a nice
contrast to the regularity of the habañera rhythm in the accompaniment that repeats throughout
70
the entire song. Although this motif does not develop itself compositionally in the melody, it
does relate to the melancholic disposition of the song.
Harmonically, the opening A section (mm. 9-12) with the text “bituing marikit sa gabi ng
buhay” (beautiful star in the night of life) in the tonic chord of f minor is followed by a
subdominant chord that also has a minor quality in b-flat minor with the words “sa gabi ng
buhay” (in the night of life) (see Music Example 21).
Music Example 21: “Bituing Marikit”52
This points out an interesting pattern because the prepositional phrase “sa gabi ng buhay”
is an elaboration on the sadness of the beginning noun phrase “bituing marikit” (beautiful star).
Two important words here are “gabi” (night) and “buhay” (life) and are two likely places where
word emphasis is appropriate.
In contrast, the transitional chord to E-flat major in “yaring áking palad” (of this is my
destiny) in mm. 17-18 is a dominant chord that modulates for a brief moment to A-flat major in
52
Ibid., p. 48.
71
“iyong patnubabyan” (you will guide) (see Music Example 22). Measure 18 begins a sequence
of modulations:
Music Example 22: “Bituing Marikit”53
It modulates further to its final key of C major in measure 24 of this transitional section.
This sudden change to a major chord quality foreshadows what it would be like to achieve
happiness. Here is a representation of the concept of “Kundiman.” It describes what the
situation would be like if love had no obstacles. After the A section is repeated it is followed by
a transitional B section that develops into it goal key of F major, which is found in the C section.
At this point the mood changes to one of flirtation and optimism, having fulfilled the dream of
love. This song is not very long – only two pages, but the numerous key changes represent the
anguish and unrequited love that the character in the poem is experiencing.
53
Ibid.
72
9. “Himutok” Music and text by Nicanor Abelardo
Dibdib ko’y tumanggáp
Ng matindíng sakit,
Sanhi sa pagsintá’t
Wagas na pag-íbig
Puso ko’y lúnod na
Sa dagsá ng hapis
Saán kukúha pa
Ng pagtiti-ìs?
My heart accepts
The extreme agony
Caused by the passion
And purenes of love.
My heart drowns
In the torrent of anguish.
How much more
Can I endure it?
Gayon iyong alám
Nawalâ ng lúnas
Sa hírap kong itó
Kung di ang iyong habag
Ano’t natutuwáng
Iyó pang ma-málas
Mangá mapapa-it
Na lúhang nana ah!
For you know
There is no remedy
To my suffering
Without your compassion.
How delightful that
You can perceive
The bitter
Tears of pus, ah!
O giliw ko’t áking mutyâ
Nasaán ang iyong awa,
Dina makaya pang bathin
Ang dulot mong hilahil;
Bigyán mo ng pag-ása
Yaring pusong sumisintá!
Oh, my beloved and my jewel,
Where is your mercy?
I can no longer endure
Your offering of distress;
Give hope
To my heart that loves!
Dibdib
[dib.dib
Heart
ko’y
koɪ
my
tumanggáp
tu.maŋ.'gap]
accepts
Ng
[naŋ
Of
matindíng
ma.tin.'diŋ
deep
sakit,
sa.'kit]
pain
Sanhi
[san.'hi
Caused
sa
sa
by
pagsintá’t
pag.sin.'tat]
love
Wagas
[wa.'gas
Pure
na
na
of
pag-íbig
pag.'ʔí big]
love
73
Puso
['pu.so
Heart
ko’y
koɪ
my
lunod
'lu.nod
sinking
na
na]
now
Sa
[sa
Of
dagsá
dag.'sa
crowd
ng
naŋ
of
hapis
ha.'pis]
gloom
Saán
[sa.'ʔan
Where
kukuha
ku.'ku.ha
to-take
pa
pa]
still
Ng
[naŋ
Of
pagtiti-ìs?
pag.'ti.ti.'ʔis]
suffering
Gayon
[ga.'jon
Like
iyong
ʔi.'yoŋ
you
alam
ʔa.'lam]
know
Nawalâ
[na.wa.'la
Lost
ng
naŋ
of
lunas
'lu.nas]
remedy
Sa
[sa
To
hirap
'hi.rap
hardship
kong
koŋ
my
ito
ʔi.'to]
this
Kung
[kuŋ
If
di
di
not
ang
ʔaŋ
the
iyong
ʔi.'yoŋ
your
Ano’t
[ʔa.'not
Why-and
natutuwang
na.'tu.tu.waŋ]
is-pleased
Iyó
[ʔi.'yo
You
pang
paŋ
still
Mangá
[Ma.'ŋa
Some
mapapa-it
ma.'pa.pa.'ʔit]
bitter
ma-malas
ma.'ma.las]
be-unlucky
74
habag
ha.'bag]
charity
Na
[Na
Of
luhang
'lu.haŋ
tears-of
nana
'na.naʔ
pus
ah!
ʔa]
ah!
O
[o
O
giliw
'gi.liʊ
beloved
ko’t
kot
my-and
aking
'ʔa.kiŋ
my
Nasaán
[na.sa.'ʔan
Where
ang
ʔaŋ
the
iyong
ʔi.'yoŋ
your
awa,
'ʔa.waʔ]
compassion
Dina
['di.na
I-cannot
makaya
ma.'ka ja
able
pang
paŋ
yet
bathin
bat.'hin]
endure
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
dulot
'du.lot
offering
mong
moŋ
your
hilahil;
hi.'la.hil]
hardship
Bigyán
[big.'jan
Give-me
mo
mo
you
ng
naŋ
of
pag-ása
pag.'ʔa.sa]
hope
Yaring
['ja.riŋ
This
pusong
'pu.soŋ
heart-that
sumisintá!
su.mi.sin.'ta]
loves!
mutyâ
mut.'jaʔ]
jewel
In the opening line, the poet seems to accept his fate of unrequited love. It is important to
give emphasis to the phrase “matinding sakit” (extreme agony), making sure that on the word
“matinding,” the letter “t” is pronounced deliberately and that both “i’s” are pure /i/ to give the
word a more heartfelt significance. The word that follows should also have a stress on the first
syllable of “sakit” (agony) in order not to be confused with the word “sakit” or “illness,” which
has an unstressed first syllable and a stressed second syllable.
75
Consequently, this text is set to music with a perspective that detaches itself from the
emotion of the poetry. The apparent mood of detachment comes with the composer’s use of a
chord progression that momentarily shifts to an A-flat chord on the words “pagsintá’t wagas”
(passion and pureness) in mm 10-11 (see Music Example 23).
Music Example 23: “Himutok”54
For a moment this cadence alters the intended authentic proper cadence. This thirdperson view emphasizes a quality of nonchalance that occurs with the disruption of the A-flat
chord in measure 10. Additionally, the “s” on the word “wagas” (pureness) should be given a
slight bit more duration and the setting of two eighth notes should be more like a sixteenth note
followed by a dotted eighth note, for interpretive purposes.
As a rule, hyphenated words will have a glottal stop on the vowel sound that follows the
hyphen. The word “pag-íbig” (love) must have a glottal sound after the prefix on the first vowel
54
Ibid., p. 56.
76
on the root word “íbig”, and the word “sa-an” [sa.'ʔan] (where) will have a glottal sound at the
beginning of the second syllable.
The subsequent lines of text are set to a sequence of phrases taken from the introductory
motif with an anacrusis of five eight-notes that leads to half note and quarter note combinations.
These phrases are presented in a statement and answer form, which resolve to a half cadence on a
dominant chord in measure 20 (see Music Example 24).
Music Example 24: “Himutok”55
However, the B section contains a key change that modulates from the original key of g
minor to its dominant key relationship in D major. Not only does it depart the previous key but it
also progresses to new music material that seems to be unrelated to the A section of the song. In
this section, the new music material is accompanied by a mood of hopefulness. In slow waltz
55
Ibid.
77
rhythm, the B section proceeds with a simpler scheme of pulsing quarter notes combined with
half notes. Beginning in measure 30, the text “Oh, giliw ko’t aking mutya, nasaan and iyong
awa” (Oh my beloved and my jewel, where is your mercy) is set to music with quarter notes (see
Music Example 25).
Music Example 25: “Himutok”56 - B section
In the above example, the poet no longer dwells on the sorrows of unrequited love but
picks himself up to have hope once again. Now he is able to gather enough courage to ask for
her love in the B section. In a similar fashion, the piano accompaniment imitates the melody by
having the top line of the right hand chord follow the notes of the vocal line.
56
Ibid., p. 57.
78
10. “Ikaw Rin…!” Music and text by Nicanor Abelardo
Irog! Masdan mo ang pagtangis
Ng abang pusong api
Sa pag-ibig
Tanging lunas na ngâ lamang
Dilag moy masilip
At itataghoy-taghoy
Ang manga pasakit
Na tini-tiis.
Beloved! Look at the mourning
Of a humble heart that is deprived
Of love.
The sole remedy then is that
I see your magnificence
And that I bemoan
The suffering
That I endure.
Yaring pag-ibig ko man
Ay iyong dustain
Madlang pasakit
Ibunton sa akin
Asahan mo, Irog!
Magpahangang libing
Ikaw rin ang siyang gigiliw-giliwin.
My love then
You will mistreat;
Any suffering
You will pile up on me;
Be assured, beloved!
Until the grave
I will still be fond of you.
Irog!
[ˈʔi.rog
Beloved
Masdan
mas.ˈdan
gaze-upon
mo
mo
from-you
ang
ʔaŋ
the
Ng
[naŋ
Of
abang
ˈʔa.baŋ
humble
pusong
ˈpu.soŋ
heart-that-is
api
ʔa.ˈpi]
Maltreated
(deprived)
Sa
[sa
Of
pag-ibig
pag.ˈi.big]
love
Tanging
[ˈta.ŋiŋ
Sole
lunas
ˈlu.nas
remedy
na
na
now
ngâ
ŋa
then
Di.lag
['di.lag
Magnificence
mo’y
moɪ
your
masilip
ma.ˈsi.lip]
be-seen
79
pagtangis
pag.ˈta.ŋis]
mourning
lamang
ˈla.maŋ]
only
At
[ʔat
And
itataghoy-taghoy
ʔi.ta.tag.ˈhoɪ.tag.ˈhoɪ]
bemoan
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
manga
ma.ˈŋa
some
pasakit
pa.ˈsa.kit
suffering
na
na
that-is
Yaring
[ˈja.riŋ
This
pag-ibig
pag.ˈʔibig
love
ko
ko
my
man
man]
although
Ay
[ʔaɪ
Is
iyong
ʔi.ˈjoŋ
your
dustain
ˈdus.ta.ˈʔin]
to-mistreat
Madlang
[mad.ˈlaŋ
Any
pasakit
pa.ˈsa.kit
suffering
ibunton
ˈi.bun.ˈton
pile-up
Asahan
[ʔa.ˈsa.han
Be-assured
mo,
mo
you
Irog!
ˈʔi.rog]
Beloved
tini-tiis
ti-ˈni-ti-ʔis]
endured
sa
sa
on
akin
ˈʔa.kin]
mine
siyang
sjaŋ
one
gigiliw-giliwin.
gi.ˈgi.liʊ.gi.ˈli.win]
to-be-fond-of
Magpahangang
libing
[mag.pa.haŋ.ˈgaŋ li.ˈbiŋ]
Until-the
grave
Ikaw
[ʔi.ˈkaʊ
You
rin
rin
also
ang
ʔaŋ
the
“Ikaw Rin” (You Also) was written in 1929. Set to a pervasive, sensual habañera rhythm,
the poem first speaks of the mistreatment that a lover endures from his beloved. This thought is
set in the key of A minor. The song then modulates to A major when the poet assures her that he
will be fond of her until his death.
Abelardo uses pitch and rhythm to bring out certain important words. For example, in the
first line of text in mm. 14-16, the word “api” (maltreated) has a tonic stress on the second
80
syllable “pi”. The composer emphasizes the word by putting this syllable at the top note of the
phrase within a dotted rhythm, thus effectively enhancing the meaning of the word. Likewise,
the word “pag-ibig” (love) which immediately follows “api” is set to even 8th notes with the high
note on the second syllable “i”. These simple means effectively emphasize the conflict of the
two words. (see Music Example 26).
Music Example 26: “Ikaw Rin…!”57
Until his death, the poet assures his lover that he will always be fond of her. This thought
is the underlying theme throughout the song.
57
Ibid., p. 68.
81
11. “Kundiman” by Bonifacio Abdon / text by Pat Mariano
Sa tapát ng laging
Palangiting araw
Na lumalagánap
Sa dágat silángan
May mutyâng masúyo’t
Libid kayamánan
Nagíliw ang handóg
Sa pusong may damdám.
In the presence of
The ever-shining sun
That spreads its rays
To the eastern sea.
There is a pearl that is gentle
And surrounded by treasures.
The offering becomes affection
To the heart that feels.
Oh! Báyang maligáya
Ng áking pag-gíliw
Pusông lakambini
Ka lang salamisim
Ang iyong pagluha’y
Sandaling pigilin
Ang Kundimang ito, Mutyâ!
Oh, jubilant nation
Of my affection,
Heart of modesty you are,
My remembrance.
Hold back your cries
For a moment,
This Kundiman, Oh jewel!
Iyong dinggin
Bulaklak ng áking
Laging pinithaya
Ang ikaw makitáng
May sariling laya’t
Sa dagat Silanga’y
Butihing diwata,
Mayama’t puri,
Bihis sa dalita
Magandang diwata!
Listen
Oh flower
Of my fervent desire,
To see you
With your own freedom,
And in the eastern sea
Is a gentle nymph,
Rich and praised,
Clothed with poverty,
Beautiful nymph!
Sa
[sa
In
tapát
ta.'pat
front
Palangiting
[pa.la.'ngi.tiŋ
Shining
araw
'a.raʊ]
sun
Na
[na
That
lumalagánap
lu.'ma.la.'ga.nap]
spreads
ng
naŋ
of
laging
'la.giŋ]
always
82
Sa
[sa
To
dágat
'da.gat
sea
silángan
si.'la.ngan]
eastern
May
[maɪ
There-is
mutyâng
mut.'jaŋ
pearl
masúyo’t
ma.'su.jot]
gentle
Libid
['li.bid
Surrounded
kayamánan
ka.ja.'ma.nan]
treasures
Nagíliw
[na.'gi.liʊ
Becomesaffection
ang
ʔaŋ
the
handóg
han.'dog]
offering
Sa
[sa
To
pusong
'pu.soŋ
heart-that
may
maɪ
has
Oh!
[o
O
Báyang
'ba.jaŋ
Nation
maligáya
ma.li.'ga.ja]
joyful
Ng
[naŋ
Of
áking
'ʔa.kiŋ
my
pag-gíliw
pag:'gi.liʊ]
affection
Pusông
['pu.soŋ
Heart-of
lakambini
la.kam.'bi.ni]
muse
Ka
[ka
You
lang
laŋ
just
salamisim
sa.la.'mi.sim]
remembrance
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
iyong
ʔi.'joŋ
your
pagluha’y
pag.'lu.haɪ]
crying-is
Sandaling
[san.da.'liŋ
Momentarily
pigilin
pi.'gi.lin]
held-back
damdám.
dam.'dam]
feelings
83
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
Kundimang
kun.'di.maŋ
Kundiman
ito,
ʔi.'to
this,
Mutyâ!
mut.'jaʔ]
Jewel
Iyong
[i.'joŋ
You
dinggin
diŋ.'gin]
hear
bulaklak
[bu.lak.'lak
Flower
ng
naŋ
of
Laging
['la.giŋ
Always
pinithaya
pi.nit.'ha.jaʔ]
desiring
Ang
[ʔaŋ
That
ikaw
ʔi.'kaʊ
you
makitáng
ma.'ki.taŋ]
be seen
May
[maɪ
Having
sariling
sa.'ri.liŋ
own
laya’t
'la.jat]
freedom-and
Sa
[sa
To
dagat
'da.gat
sea
Silanga’y
si.'la.ŋaɪ]
eastern-is
Butihing
[bu.'ti.hiŋ
Gentle
diwata,
di.'wa.taʔ]
nymph
Mayama’t
[ma.'ya.mat
Rich-and
puri,
'pu.ri]
praised
Bihis
[bi.'his
Clothed
sa
sa
with
Magandang
[ma.gan.'daŋ
Beautiful
diwata!
di.'wa.taʔ]
nymph!
áking
'ʔa.kiŋ]
my
dalita
da.li.'taʔ]
poverty
84
Bonifacio Abdon was born in 1876 in Santa Cruz, Manila. He was a violinist, conductor,
composer and music teacher. At an early age he sang in the choir at the Ateneo Municipal
School in Pandacan, Manila. At 13 years of age, Abdon studied violin and later composition
under Ladislaw Bonus. He also worked as a valet for visiting Italian opera companies and was
exposed to this venue of performing arts at age 18. Abdon was known for his Tagalog sarswela
(Tagalog spelling of the Spanish zarzuela) compositions in the early 1900s. These include: Ang
Sampaguita, Deni, Ang Tulisan, Luha’t Dugo, and Ang Anak Ng Dagat. He also wrote music for
plays by Aurelio Tolentino in 1908-09, was a conductor at Carmelo’s Rizal Orchestra in 1902,
founded the Orchestra Oriental in 1910, and was Music Director at the Ateneo Seminary Musical
Group and the Asociacion Musical de Filipinas in 1912. Abdon carried on as a successful
teacher of violin in his residence in Quiapo, Manila, later known as Escuela de Violin. In 1920
he was appointed as a violin instructor at the Conservatory of Music at the University of the
Philippines. One of his students was renowned Filipino violinist, Ernesto Vallejo. Bonifacio
Abdon’s career as a violinist, music teacher, and conductor lasted until he died of chronic
nephritis in Manila on April 23, 1944.58
Abdon wrote “Kundiman” in 1920. The essence of this song lies in the use of flowery
imagery in the text. The imagery depicts a longing for happiness in a country that is figuratively
poor with freedom but richly blessed by her beauty. Symbolically, the beautiful nymph
embodies the beauty of this country. But the melancholy minor key represents the unattainable
love that this nymph so richly deserves.
58
E. Arsenio Manuel, Dictionary of the Philippine Biography, vol 1. (Quezon City: Filipiniana Publications,
University of the Philippines), 1955.
85
The piano introduction contains the motivic phrase that depicts the mournful nature of the
song. The melody in the first measure begins with an arpeggiated c minor chord that is colored
by a lower and upper neighboring tone. The opening line of the text, “Sa tapat ng laging” (In the
heart of always) (mm. 4-5), repeats this melody, but at “palangiting araw” (shining sun) (mm. 67), the tune contains an E natural and d-flat, outlining the harmonic minor scale. This sets up the
melancholic mood that pervades the song (see Music Example 27).
Music Example 27: “Kundiman”59
59
Bureau of Physical Education and School Sports Department of Education, Culture and Sports. Kundiman At Iba
Pa. (Manila: Likhawit Enterprises, 1994), p. 70.
86
A simple harmonic progression coupled with a beautiful and lyric melody makes this an
easy to sing Kundiman art song. The rhythm and harmony flow continuously throughout the
entire song.
87
12. “Bayan Ko” (My Country) Music and text by Constancio De Guzman
Ang bayan kong Pilipinas,
Lupain ng ginto’t bulaklak.
Pag-íbig ang sa kanyang palad
Nag-alay ng ganda’t dilag.
At sa kanyang yumi at ganda,
Dayuhan ang nahalina
Bayan ko binihag ka,
Nasadlak sa dusa
My country, the Philipines,
Land of gold and flowers.
Love is in her fortune
Offering beauty and splendor.
And with her tenderness and beauty,
Strangers are attracted.
My country, you were imprisoned,
Trapped in suffering.
Ibon mang may layang lumipad,
Kulungin mo at umi-iyak,
Bayan pa kayang sakdal dilag
Ang di magnasang maka-alpás
Pilipinas kong minumutyâ,
Pugad ng lúha ko’t dalitâ,
Aking adhikâ,
Makitá kang sakdal laya!
A bird that has freedom to fly,
When caged it cries,
How much more for a majestic country,
To not desire to be set free?
Philippines, my beloved,
Nest of my tears and poverty,
My desire
Is to see you completely free!
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
bayan
'ba.jan
country
kong
koŋ
my
Pilipinas,
pi.li.'pi.nas]
Philippines
Lupain
['lu.pa.ʔin
Land
ng
naŋ
of
ginto’t
gin.'tot
gold-and
bulaklak.
bu.lak.'lak]
flowers
Pag-íbig
[pag.'ʔib.ig
Love
ang
ʔaŋ
the
sa
sa
to
kanyang
kan.'jaŋ
her
Nag-alay
[nag.'a.laɪ
Offering
ng
naŋ
of
ganda’t
gan.'dat
beauty-and
dilag.
di.'lag]
splendor
At
[ʔat
And
sa
sa
to
kanyang
kan.'jaŋ
her
yumi
'ju.mi]
tenderness
at
[ʔat
and
ganda,
gan.'da]
beauty
88
palad
'pa.lad]
destiny
Dayuhan
[da.'ju.han
Foreigners
ang
ʔaŋ
the
nahalina
na.ha.'li.na]
are-attracted
Bayan
['ba.jan
Country
ko
ko
my
binihag
bi.'ni.hag
taken
Nasadlak
[na.sad.'lak
Fallen
sa
sa
into
dusa
'du.sa]
suffering
Ibon
['ʔi.bon
Bird
mang
maŋ
that
may
maɪ
has
layang
'la.jaŋ
freedom
Kulungin
[ku.lu.'ŋin
Encage
mo
mo
you
at
ʔat
and
umi-iyak,
u.mi.ʔi.'jak]
cries
Bayan
['ba.jan
Country
pa
pa
even
kayang
ka.'jaŋ
therefore
sakdal
sak.'dal
absolute
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
di
di
not
magnasang
mag.'na.saŋ
desire
maka-alpás
ma.ka.ʔal.'pas]
to-escape
Pilipinas
[pi.li.'pi.nas
Philippines
kong
koŋ
my
minumutyâ,
mi.nu.mut.'jaʔ]
beloved
Pugad
['pu.gad
Nest
ng
naŋ
of
luha
'lu.ha
tears
ko’t
kot
my-and
Aking
['ʔa.kiŋ
My
adhikâ,
ad.'hi.kaʔ]
wish
Makitá
[ma.'ki.ta
To see
kang
kaŋ
you
sakdal
sak.'dal
completely
laya!
'la.jaʔ]
free
89
ka,
ka]
you
lumipad,
lu.mi.'pad]
to fly
dilag
di.'lag]
beauty
dalita
'da.li.taʔ]
poverty
Constancio Canseco De Guzman was born November 11, 1903 in Guiguinto, Bulacan
and died in August 16, 1982. Having grown up in Manila, De Guzman studied piano and
composition under Nicanor Abelardo. In 1928 he studied at Jose Rizal College and finished his
degree in BS Commerce. Interestingly, he became a certified public accountant, having passed
his board exam in 1932. But De Guzman was better known for his talents as music director for
movie productions with some local companies in Manila.60
The nationalistic appeal of “Bayan Ko” (My Country), written in 1929, is more evident
than most Kundiman songs since the word “Pilipinas”, the Tagalog word for “Philippines” is
actually mentioned in the first line. This song is perceived more as a patriotic song rather than a
love song. Symbolically, it is a celebration of freedom and a remembrance of a country that has
been colonized by Spain for almost four centuries. The meter is set in ¾ time signature with a
melancholic mood - typical of a Kundiman art song genre. The mention of a bird desiring
freedom poignantly symbolizes the desire of Filipinos to gain their own freedom.
Word stress is important in performing this song. Having the proper stress provides an
authentic declamation of the Tagalog text. For example, in the first phrase, “Ang
bayan kong Pilipinas” (My country the Philippines), the important stress is placed on the third
syllable of the word “Pilipinas” (see Music Example 28).
60
Himig: The Filipino Collection of FHL. Accessed May 21, 2015. http://www.himig.com.ph/
90
Music Example 28: “Bayan Ko”61
(Used with permission from Mrs. Armida Siguion Reyna, see Appendix A)
Additionally notable is the text painting in the beginning of the contrasting B section that
modulates from d minor to the parallel key of D major. A slight stepwise descent of eighth
notes paints a picture of a bird gliding freely in the air. This melody is repeated two lines later
with text describing the longing for freedom (see Music Example 29).
61
Bureau of Physical Education and School Sports Department of Education, Culture and Sports. Kundiman At Iba
Pa. (Manila: Likhawit Enterprises, 1994), p. 46.
91
Music Example 29: “Bayan ko”62
(Used with permission from Mrs. Armida Siguion Reyna, see Appendix A)
Likewise, the piano accompaniment mirrors the voice in stepwise descent in parallel
thirds in measure 22, thus setting the text, “Ibon mang may layang lumipad” (A bird that has
freedom to fly). The composer sometimes uses parallel intervals in the piano accompaniment to
emphasize the word stress.
62
Ibid., p. 47.
92
13. “Babalik Ka Rin” Music and text by Constancio De Guzman
Bakit kaya naulila
Puso’y laging may dusa
Nagtatampo ang ligaya
At laging may lúha ang mata?
Ibon and áking katulad
Na di na makalipad
Dáhil sa hirap at pagod
Sa paghanap ng kanyang pugad.
Why is one orphaned
The heart is always suffering
Happiness becomes brooding
And eyes that always flow with tears?
I’m like a bird
That can no longer fly
Because of the hardship and tiredness
Of finding its nest.
Kung batid mo lang
Ang tunay kong dinaramdam
Buhat ng akó ay iwan mo,
Aking sintá
Babalik ka rin
Upang akó ay aliwin
Sa mangá tinitiís kong kalungkutan.
If you only knew
Of my true feelings
Since you left me
My love.
Someday you will return
So that you can comfort me
From the loneliness I am suffering.
Bakit
['ba.kit
Why
kaya
ka.'ja
I-wonder
naulila
na.ʔu.'li.laʔ]
orphaned
Puso’y
['pu.soɪ
Heart
laging
'la.giŋ
always
may
maɪ
have
dusa
'du.sa]
suffering
ang
ʔaŋ
the
ligaya
li.'ga.ya]
happiness
Nagtatampo
[nag.'ta.tam.po
Sulking
At
[ʔat
And
laging
'la.giŋ
always
may
maɪ
have
luha
'lu.ha
tears
Ibon
['ʔi.bon
Bird
ang
ʔaŋ
the
aking
'ʔa.kiŋ
my
katulad
ka.'tu.lad]
likeness
Na
[na
That
di
di
not
na
na
now
makalipad
ma.ka.li.'pad]
can-fly
93
ang
ʔaŋ
the
mata?
ma.'ta]
eyes?
Dáhil
['da.hil
Because
sa
sa
of
hirap
'hi.rap
hardship
at
ʔat
and
pagod
'pa.god]
weariness
Sa
[sa
To
paghanap
pag.'ha.nap
finding
ng
naŋ
of
kanyang
kan.'jaŋ
its
pugad.
'pu.gad]
nest
Kung
[kuŋ
If
batid
ba.'tid
aware
mo
mo
you
lang
laŋ]
only
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
tunay
'tu.naɪ
real
kong
koŋ
my
dinaramdam
di.na.ram.'dam]
feelings
Buhat
['bu.hat
Since
ng
naŋ
of
ako
ʔa.'ko
I
ay
ʔaɪ
am
Aking
['ʔa.kiŋ
My
sintá
sin.'ta]
love
Babalik
['ba.ba.lik
Returning
ka
ka
you
rin
rin]
also
Upang
['ʔu.paŋ
So that
ako
ʔa.'ko
I
ay
ʔaɪ
am
aliwin
ʔa.li.'win]
comforted
Sa
[sa
To
mangá
ma.'ŋa
those
tinitiís
ti.'ni.ti.'ʔis
suffering
kong
koŋ
my
iwan
'i.wan
left
mo
mo]
you
kalungkutan.
ka.luŋ.'ku.tan]
loneliness.
The title “Babalik Ka Rin” (You will return again), written in 1955, shows an ambiguity
of meaning and may be interpreted as an example of an underlying theme of nationalism in
94
Kundiman art song. On the outside, a melancholic mood reflects the loss of a lover and the
longing for his or her return. Looking beyond the literal meaning of the text, it is possible to
interpret this as a yearning for freedom in a country that was denied this benefit. Images of
being an orphan and a bird that is tired and can no longer fly suggest symbolisms of nationalism
and a country’s longing for unity and freedom. Set in a habañera rhythm, this song has a distinct
downbeat that coincides with the syllabic stress of the second syllable in the word “ulila”
(orphan), intensifying the meaning of this word. (see Music Example 30).
Music Example 30: “Babalik Ka Rin”63
(Used with permission from Ronaldo Villar, FILSCAP member, Manila, Philippines)
Set in a modified binary or AB form, “Babalik Ka Rin” could be seen as a more
simplistic type of Kundiman art song. In the beginning of the vocal line in mm. 5-6, “Bakit kaya
naulila” (Why is one orphaned), the descending and ascending eighth notes are mirrored by an
ascending then descending line in the bass part of the piano. This functions as harmonic support.
63
Bureau of Physical Education and School Sports Department of Education, Culture and Sports. Kundiman At Iba
Pa. (Manila: Likhawit Enterprises, 1994), p. 42.
95
The gentle swaying rhythm of the vocal line supported by the doubling in the right hand of the
piano part effectively brings out the melancholic mood of the song (see Music Example 31).
Music Example 31: “Babalik Ka Rin”64 - B section
(Used with permission from Ronaldo Villar, FILSCAP member, Philippines)
64
Ibid., p. 48-49
96
14. “Ang Tangì Kong Pag-íbig” Music and text by Constancio C. De Guzman
Ang tangì kong pag-íbig
Ay minsan lámang
Ngunit ang ‘yóng akalà
Ay hindî tunay
Hindî ka lilimutin
Magpakylan pa man
Habang akó ay narito
At may buhay.
My only love
Happens just once.
But what you are thinking
Is not true.
I will not forget you
Forever more
While I am here
And alive.
Malasin mo’t nagtitiís
Nang kalungkutan
Ang buhay kong unti-unti
Nang pumapánaw.
Wari ko ba sintá
Ako’y mamámatáy
Kung di ikaw ang kapíling
Habang buhay.
Curse me and I suffer
With loneliness.
My life that slowly
Is fading.
It seems that
I will die
If you are not by my side
While I am alive.
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
tangi
'ta.ŋi
only
kong
koŋ
my
Ay
[ʔaɪ
Is
minsan
min.san
once
lamang.
'la.maŋ]
only.
Ngunit
[ŋu.nit
But
ang
ʔaŋ
the
‘yong
joŋ
your
Ay
[ʔaɪ
Is
hindî
hin.'di
not
tunay
'tu.naɪ]
real.
Hindî
[hin.'di
Not
ka
ka
you
lilimútin
li.li.'mu.tin]
will-forget
Magpakaylan
[mag.pa.kaɪ.'lan
Forever
pag-íbig
pag.'ʔíbig]
love
akalà
ʔa.'ka.la]
belief
pa
pa
still
man
man]
indeed
97
Habang
['ha.baŋ
While
ako
ʔa.'ko
I
ay
ʔaɪ
am
narito
na.ri.'to]
here
At
[ʔat
And
may
maɪ
have
buhay.
'bu.haɪ]
life
Malasin
[ma.'la sin
Look-at
mo’t
mot
your-and
nagtitiís
nag.'ti.ti.ʔis]
suffering
Nang
[naŋ
Of
kalungkutan
ka.luŋ.'ku.tan]
loneliness
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
buhay
'bu.haɪ
life
Nang
[naŋ
That
puma-panaw.
pu.ma.'pa.naʊ]
fades-away.
Wari
[wa.ri
It-seems
ko
ko
my
Ako’y
[ʔa.'koɪ
I will
mamamatay
ma.'ma.ma.taɪ]
die.
Kung
[kuŋ
If
di
di
not
Habang
['ha.baŋ
While
buhay.
bu.haɪ]
alive.
kong
koŋ
my
unti-unti
ʔun.ti.ʔun.'ti]
small
ba
ba
so
sintá
sin.'ta]
beloved.
ikaw
ʔi.'kaʊ
you
ang
ʔaŋ
the
kapiling
ka.'pi.liŋ]
near
“Ang Tangi Kong Pag-ibig,” written in 1955, is an example of a simple love song.
According to the poem, the main character cannot live without his or her loved one. The key
98
signature begins and ends in g minor, suggesting a melancholy mood. De Guzman does not
follow the typical ¾ time signature of a Kundiman art song. Instead, he uses a 2/4 time signature
in habañera form.
The melody line complements the rhythmic accompaniment with smooth flowing quarter
notes and eighth notes. This pleasant swaying effect in the melody resembles the waves of a
calm sea.
The overall pulse of the quarter notes and eighth notes is juxtaposed with lilting sixteenth
notes. Interestingly, these sixteenth notes function as an anacrusis to the strong downbeat of the
measure, supporting the inflection of the word “pag-íbig” or “love”, with the stress falling on the
second syllable (see Music Example 32).
Music Example 32: “Ang Tángi Kong Pag-íbig”65
(Used with permission from Ronaldo Villar, FILSCAP member, Philippines)
65
Ibid., p. 34
99
In all cases, a combination of the prefix “pag” (to do [something]) with a hyphen
connected to a root word produces the effect of a glottal sound on the first vowel in “íbig”, which
in itself means, “desire”. Syllabic accent in the melody is achieved by enhancing the inflection
of the phrase “ang tángi kong pag-íbig”, with the main syllabic stress on the second syllable of
the word “pag-íbig”. This is followed by the text “ay minsan lámang” (is only a fleeting
moment). In this phrase, the word “lámang” (only) is emphasized and a syllabic stress is placed
on the syllable “la”. The composer made careful attempts to set the text properly by placing the
proper accents on the right syllables.
In mm. 28-30, the text “nang pumapanaw” (that fades away) is set in a pattern of
descending notes (see Music Example 33).
Music Example 33: “Ang Tángi Kong Pag-íbig”66
(Used with permission from Suarez Music Publishing Co., Quezon City, Philippines)
The meaning of the text “pumapanaw” (fades away) is enhanced when it is set by this
descending pattern of notes. Specifically, in measure 29 the third syllable “pa” of “pumapanaw”
is emphasized by a quarter note downbeat in the piano, followed by a stepwise downward
66
Ibid., p. 35
100
descent of another quarter note chord. A downward descending note pattern signifies a text
painting that elaborates the sorrowful character of the word “pumapanaw” (fades away).
The frequent use of the /a/ vowel and nasalized /ng/ consonant in the Tagalog language
helps to maintain a smooth legato line in terms of diction for singing. When pronouncing the
word “pag-íbig” one should not aspirate the ending /g/ consonant. Be careful to pronounce a
glottal /i/ after the prefix.
101
15. “Dáhil Sa Iyó” by Miguel Velarde, Jr. / text by Dominador Santiago
Sa buhay ko’y labis
Ang hirap at pasakit,
Ng pusong umi-íbig
Mandi’y walâ ng langit
At ng lumigaya.
Hinango mo sa dusa,
Tánging ikaw, Sintá,
Ang áking pag-asa.
In my life that exceeds in
Hardship and pain,
From a heart that loves,
That knows no heaven
And joy.
You save me from suffering
Only you, my love,
Are my hope.
Dáhil sa ‘yo,
Na-is kong mabuhay.
Dáhil sa ‘yo,
Hanggang mamatáy.
Dapat mong tantuin,
Walâ ng ibang giliw,
Puso ko’y tanungin,
Ikaw at ikaw rin.
Because of you,
I wish to live.
Because of you,
Until I die.
You should realize,
There is no other love but you,
Ask my heart,
It is you and only you.
Dáhil sa ‘yo,
Ako’y lumigaya,
Pagmamahál ay alayan ka,
Kung tunay man
Ako ay alipinin mo
Ang lahat sa buhay ko’y
Dáhil sa ‘yo!
Because of you,
I will be joyful,
Love is offered to you,
If it is true
Then enslave me
Everything in my life
Is because of you!
Sa
[sa
To
buhay
'bu.haɪ
life
ko’y
koɪ
my-is
labis
'la.bis]
excess
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
hirap
'hi.rap
hardship
at
ʔat
and
pasakit,
pa.'sa.kit]
pain
Ng
[naŋ
Of
pusong
'pu.soŋ
heart-that
umi-íbig
ʔu.mi.'ʔibig]
loves
Mandi’y
[man.'di
Realizes
walâ
wa.'la
nothing
ng
naŋ
of
langit.
'la.ŋit]
heaven
102
At
[ʔat
And
ng
naŋ
of
lumigaya
lu.mi.'ga.ja]
to be happy
Hinango
[hi.'na.ŋo
Extract
mo
mo
you
sa
sa
of
Tánging
['ta.ŋiŋ
Only
ikaw,
ʔi.'kaʊ
you
Sintá,
sin.'ta]
beloved
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
aking
'ʔa.kiŋ
my
pag-asa.
pag.'ʔa.sa]
hope
Dáhil
['da.hil
Because
sa
sa
of
‘yo,
jo]
you
Na-is
['na.ʔis
I-wish
kong
koŋ
me-to
mabuhay.
ma.'bu.haɪ]
live
Dáhil
['da.hil
Because
sa
sa
of
‘yo,
jo]
you
Hanggang
[haŋ.'gaŋ
Until
mamatáy.
ma.ma.'taɪ]
death
Dapat
['da.pat
Should
mong
moŋ
you
tantuin,
tan.tu.'win]
realize
Walâ
[wa.'la
None
ng
naŋ
of
ibang
ʔi.'baŋ
other
Puso
['pu.so
Heart
ko’y
koɪ
my
tanungin,
ta.nu.'ŋin]
ask
dusa,
'du.sa]
suffering
103
giliw,
'gi.liʊ]
love
Ikaw
[ʔi.'kaʊ
You
at
ʔat
and
ikaw
ʔi.'kaʊ
you
rin.
rin]
too
Dáhil
['da.hil
Because
sa
sa
of
‘yo,
jo]
you
Ako’y
[ʔa.'koɪ
I will
lumigaya,
lu.mi.'ga.ja]
be happy
Pagmamahál
[pag.'ma.ma.'hal
Love
ay
ʔaɪ
is
alayan
ʔa.'la.jan
offered
Kung
[kuŋ
If
tunay
'tu naɪ
true
man
man]
indeed
Ako
[ʔa.'ko
I
ay
ʔaɪ
am
alipinin
ʔa.li.'pi.nin
enslave
mo
mo]
you
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
lahat
la.'hat
all
sa
sa
of
buhay
'bu.haɪ
life
Dáhil
['da.hil
Because
sa
sa
of
‘yo!
jo]
you
ka,
ka]
you
ko’y
koɪ]
my-is
At an early age, Miguel Velarde, Jr. (1913-1986) learned to play piano and violin from
his mother. At the Zamboanga Normal School he was a member of the school orchestra.
Although he began to study Medicine at the University of the Philippines, Velarde soon realized
that his real passion was music and soon began to study harmony and composition from Antonio
Molina and Ariston Avelino. As a jazz arranger and composer, he performed in a weekly show,
Stardust Program. Velarde found a new career composing film scores with Sampaguita Films, a
104
company in which he became the advertising manager. During the Japanese Occupation,
Velarde became the music director for Avenue Theater. His concert arrangement of a folk song
“Planting Rice” was well-received by the audience. Velarde’s talents also extended to story
writing and screenplay, winning an award from the Filipino Movie Arts and Sciences (FAMAS)
for Luksang Tagumpay (1960). As a song composer, Verlarde’s early influences were Irving
Berlin and Cole Porter.67
“Dahil Sa ‘Yo” (Because of You), written in 1938, has long been a favorite among
Filipinos not only because of its beautiful melody but also because of its ability to reach out to
the nationalistic sentiment of the people in the Philippines. It speaks of unrequited love for one’s
beloved and yet she is the symbol of hope for his life. If taken in the context of nationalism,
“Dáhil sa ‘yo” or “Because of you” can be interpreted as the love for one’s own motherland and
how she is the reason for living.
Unrequited love is the subject matter of the first stanza.
This plaintive song in ABB’ form begins in the key of f minor in the A section and
proceeds in the B section to the parallel key of F major, signifying a shift from sorrow to
hopefulness. The A section is made up of a two-measure melody with a poignant appoggiatura,
sequenced in descending motion. This melodic sequencing strengthens the expression of despair
moving to hope in the verse (see Music Example 34).
67
Helen F.Samson, Contemporary Filipino Composers: Biographical Interviews, (Quezon City: Manlapaz
Publishing Company, 1976).
105
Music Example 34: “Dahil Sa ‘Yo”68
The beginning words of the B section, “dáhil sa ‘yo” (because of you) are very important
since they are the crux of the song. Perhaps a singer should evoke a feeling of gratefulness or
love to accurately capture the mood of the song (see Music Example 35).
68
Bureau of Physical Education and School Sports Department of Education, Culture and Sports. Kundiman At Iba
Pa. (Manila: Likhawit Enterprises, 1994), p. 50
106
Music Example 35: “Dahil Sa 'Yo”69
69
Ibid.
107
16. “Lahat Ng Araw” by Miguel Velarde, Jr. / text by Dominador Santiago
Verse:
Sa bawat sandali
Tayo ay magkapíling
Ang bawat lunggáti
Pakinggán ang hiling,
Ang puso ko’t budhi
Ay hindî sinungáling
Sana ay ulinígin,
Damdamin ko giliw.
Every moment
We are together
Every aspiration
Listen to my plea,
My heart and conscience
Does not lie.
Wishing you would hearken
To what I am feeling, beloved.
Chorus (duet):
Asáhan pangárap nitong buhay
Lahat ng araw
Kitá’y mamahálin.
Iwasan ang iyong alinlangan
Lahat ng araw
Kitá’y mamahálin.
Be assured, my life’s dream
Is to love you
All of my days.
Avoid your doubts
All of my days,
I will love you.
Verse:
Sa labis ng imbing kamatayan
Itángi yaring pagmamahál
Chorus (duet):
Tulutang magtapat sa iyó hirang
Lahat ng araw kitá’y mamahálin.
From the certainty of death
Set my love free.
Allow me to confess to you, my beloved,
I will love you all of my days.
Sa
[sa
With
báwa’t
'ba.wat
every
sandalì
san.da.'liʔ]
moment
Táyo
['ta.jo
We
ay
ʔaɪ
are
magkapíling
mag.ka.'pi.liŋ]
near each other
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
báwa’t
ba.wat
every
lunggáti
luŋ.'ga.tiʔ]
fervent wish
Pakinggán
[pa.kiŋ.'gan
Hear
ang
ʔaŋ
the
hiling,
'hi.liŋ]
request
108
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
puso
'pu.so
heart
ko’t
kot
my-and
budhi
bud.'hiʔ]
conscience
Ay
[ʔaɪ
Is
hindî
hin.'di
not
sinungáling
si.nu.'ŋa.liŋ]
a-lie
Sana
['sa.na
Hope-that
ay
ʔaɪ
is
ulinigin,
ʔu.li.'ni.gin]
to-hear
Damdamin
[dam.da.'min
Feel
ko
ko
I
giliw.
'gi.liʊ]
beloved
Asahan
[ʔa.'sa.han
Expect
pangárap
pa.'ŋa.rap
dream
nitong
ni.'toŋ
of-this
Lahat
['la.hat
All
ng
naŋ
of
araw
'ʔa.raʊ]
days
Kitá’y
[ki.'taɪ
You I will
mamahálin.
'ma.ma.ha.'lin]
love
Iwasan
[ʔi.'wa.san
Avoid
ang
ʔaŋ
the
iyong
ʔi.'joŋ
your
Lahat
[la.'hat
All
ng
naŋ
of
araw
'ʔa.raʊ]
days
Kitá’y
[ki.'taɪ
You-I
mamahálin.
'ma.ma.ha.'lin]
will-love
Sa
[sa
To
labis
'la.bis
excess
buhay
'bu.haɪ]
life
alinlangan
ʔa.lin.'la.ŋan]
worry
ng
naŋ
of
imbing
ʔim.'biŋ
iminent
109
kamatayan
ka.ma.'ta.jan]
death
Itángi
[ʔi.'ta.ŋi
Distinguish
yaring
'ja.ring
this
pagmamahál
pag.'ma.ma.'hal]
love
Tulutang
[tu.'lu.taŋ
Allow
magtapat
mag.'ta.pat
to-be-honest
sa
sa
to
Lahat
[la.'hat
All
ng
naŋ
of
araw
'ʔa.raʊ]
days
Kitá’y
[ki.'taɪ
You-I-will
mamahálin.
'ma.ma.ha.'lin]
love
‘yo
jo
you
hirang
'hi.raŋ]
chosen
This text by Dominador Santiago is another example of his expressive poetry. The
author uses a form of rhyming scheme as a poetic device. The poetry flows with regularity. In
addition, the strong and weak syllables that frequently appear in most words enhance the beauty
of the text and the simplicity of the melody. For example, in the B section, the phrase, “Asahan
pangárap nitong buhay” or “Hope for the dream of this life” contains syllables that follow a weak
to strong syllabic pattern, which is slightly similar to the iambic pentameter. I have underlined
the stressed syllables and these should be pronounced with such syllabic stresses in mind.
The word “sandali” or “moment” in the beginning stanza requires a glottal stop in the last
syllable [san.da.liʔ]. Another glottal stop is found in “budhi” or “conscience” within the last
syllable “hi” of “budhi” [bud.hiʔ] (see Music Example 36).
110
Music Example 36: “Lahat Ng Araw”70
However, a combination of glottal stops and weak and strong syllabic stresses create a linguistic
mixture that can be pleasing to listener.
Note that the melodic pattern of this song is simple and repetitive. But this does not
diminish the beauty of this song. In fact this simplicity is what the composer seems to be
striving for. Therefore, the beauty of the poetry is enhanced without the addition of a difficult
melodic theme. The duet in the B section is also noteworthy. Although this is mainly a solo
piece, a second line of harmony that runs in parallel and contrary motion is the main feature of
this song and complements the melody line (See Music Example 37).
70
Ibid., p. 84.
111
Music Example 37: “Lahat Ng Araw”71
The piano accompaniment is simple and chordal; the top line mimics the contour of the
melody line. In measure 28, the d minor chord is suspended in the second scale degree to achieve
the slight elusiveness of the dream of life, which is love.
The texture of the chords is not very
dense and therefore complements the simplicity of the melody line. This does not require much
vocal agility but rather a simple and smooth legato line. The performer might consider using a
lighter sound.
71
Ibid., p. 85.
112
17. “Ugoy Ng Duyan” by Lucio San Pedro / text by Levi Celerio
Sanay di nagmáliw
Ang dati kong araw,
Nang munti pang bata
Sa piling ni Nanay;
Nais ko’y ma-úlit
Ang áwit ni Inang mahál,
Áwit ng pag-íbig
Habang akó’y na sa duyan.
I wish my former days
Did not disappear,
When just a child
In the arms of my Mother;
I wish to repeat
The song of my beloved mother,
The song of love
While I was in the cradle.
Sa áking pagtulog
Na labis ang himbing,
Ang bantay ko’y tala
Ang tanod ko’y bit’win;
Sa piling ni Nanay
Langit ang buhay!
Puso kong may dusa’y
Sabik sa ugoy ng duyan
Íbig kong matulog
Sa dating duyan ko Inang.
In my sleep,
My gentle deep sleep,
My guardians are the planets;
My keepers are the stars;
In the presence of my mother
Life is heavenly!
My heart with suffering
Yearns for the swing of the cradle.
I wish to sleep
In my old cradle, mother.
Sanay
['sa.naɪ
Wishing
di
di
not
nagmáliw
nag.'ma.liʊ]
disappear
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
dati
'da.ti
former
kong
koŋ
my
araw,
'ʔa.raʊ]
days
Nang
[naŋ
When
munti
mun.'ti
tiny
pang
paŋ
still
bata
'ba.ta]
child
Sa
[sa
In-the
Nais
['na.ʔis
Wishing
piling
'pi.liŋ
side
ko’y
koɪ
I-am
ni
ni
of
ma-ulit
ma.'ʔu.lit]
to repeat
Nanay;
'na.naɪ]
Mother
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
áwit
'ʔa.wit
song
ni
ni
of
Inang
ʔi.'naŋ
Mother
113
mahál,
ma.'hal]
beloved
Áwit
['ʔa.wit
Song
ng
naŋ
of
pag-íbig
pag.'ʔi.big]
love
Habang
['ha.baŋ
While
ako’y
ʔa.'koɪ
I
na
na
still
Sa
[sa
In
aking
'ʔa.kiŋ
my
pagtulog
pag.'tu.log]
sleep
Na
[na
That
labis
'la.bis
excess
ang
ʔaŋ
the
himbing,
him.'biŋ]
slumber
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
bantay
ban.'taɪ
guardian
ko’y
koɪ
my-is
tala
'ta.la]
stars
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
tanod
'ta.nod
custodian
ko’y
koɪ
my-is
bit’win;
bit.'win]
stars
Sa
[sa
In-the
piling
'pi.liŋ
side
ni
ni
of
Nanay
'na.naɪ]
mother
Langit
['la.ŋit
Heaven
ang
ʔaŋ
the
buhay!
'bu.haɪ]
life
Puso
['pu.so
Heart
kong
koŋ
my
may
maɪ
have
dusa’y
'du.saɪ]
suffering
Sabik
[sa.'bik
Yearning
sa
sa
to
ugoy
'ʔu.goɪ
swing
ng
naŋ
of
Íbig
['i.big
I wish
kong
koŋ
my
matulog
ma.'tu.log]
to-sleep
sa
sa
in
114
duyan.
'du.jan]
cradle
duyan
'du.jan]
cradle
Sa
[sa
To
dating
'da.tiŋ
former
duyan
'du.jan
cradle
ko,
ko
my
Inang.
i.'naŋ]
mother
Lucio San Pedro was born in 1913 in Angono, Rizal in the Philippines. He died in 2002
in Quezon City, Philippines at the age of 89. As a teen, he began his music career as an organist
for a local church. Later, he studied composition with Bernard Wagenaar as well as harmony
and orchestration with Vittorio Giannini. Spending the rest of his career teaching at Ateneo de
Manila University and at the College of Music at the University of the Philippines, he later
retired in 1978 as a full professor. In 1991 he received the National Artist for Music award.72
“Ugoy Ng Duyan” (Swinging of the Cradle) was written in 1947. This text by Levi
Celerio depicts the speaker reminiscing of the old days when he was a child in the arms of his
mother and wishing they would come back again. Images of a rocking cradle with the
tenderness of a mother’s love seem to fill his memories. The stars accompany him at night and
being with his mother is a heavenly delight to him. She provides for him a general feeling of
safety and security. But those days are gone.
The beauty of this poetry seems to lie in the subject matter that most listeners can relate
to: being safe in the arms of one’s own mother.
It is set in a prose style with no rhyming
schemes but is beautifully enhanced by the choice of descriptive words and imageries.
The melody itself is not wildly flourishing in character since the vocal line is contained in
a limited range, about a third above and below C5. The tessitura of the song settles around C5
and can be easily sung by a high or medium voice, either male or female. Flowing eighth notes
72
Himig: The Filipino Collection of FHL. Accessed May 21, 2015.
115
in a ¾ time signature embodies the gentle character of this song. The melodic simplicity of the
vocal line symbolically depicts a humble child.
This modest range in vocal contours creates a somewhat contemplative mood. This
lyrical vocal line is not very difficult to sing. Therefore it leaves room for a performer to be
expressive, as the performer becomes mesmerized by the tangential hints of major and minor key
qualities on a single vocal line. However, it would be the performer’s job to break the
monotone-like quality of the melody by expressing the meaning of the text. It is not unlike a
monologue in which the meaning of the text has to be apparent through skillful acting and
declamation of the text.
The role of the piano in the beginning creates a certain mood. In particular, the
accompaniment portrays a gentle lullaby through the repeated quarter notes that move back and
forth in stepwise motion (see Music Example 38).
116
Music Example 38:
“Ugoy Ng Duyan”73
The pedal tone in the left hand, with its eighth notes on the afterbeats, contrasts with the
alternating fourths and fifths in the right hand. By juxtaposing the vocal line with the somewhat
dissonant but linear motion of the piano accompaniment, the similarly lyric but slightly linear
melody line further creates a dissonance with the accompaniment that expresses a feeling of
longing for the days that have long been gone as an infant.
Lucio San Pedro’s use of a thinly textured accompaniment is a contrast to the flourishing
chordal accompaniments of his predecessors, Abelardo and Santiago. San Pedro’s use of
dissonance enables the listener to perceive a more pensive view of the text and melody. The lack
of a third enables the listener to perceive a more pensive view.
73
Bureau of Physical Education and School Sports Department of Education, Culture and Sports. Kundiman At Iba
Pa. (Manila: Likhawit Enterprises, 1994), p. 140.
117
18. “Hindî Kitá Malímot” Music and text by Josefino Cenizal
Sa pangárap ko lámang
Lagi kang nakikíta
Dáhil sa nawawalâ’y
Ka sa akin sintá
Ako’y duma-dalángin
Lalo na kay Bathála
Upang huag kang lumímot
Pagkât mahál kitá.
Only in my dreams
Do I see you always,
Because you are separated
From me, beloved.
I am praying
To God even more,
So that you will not forget,
Because I love you.
Hindî kitá malímot
Ala-ála kitá
Hindî kitá malímot
Minámahál kitá
Isinúsumpâ ko
Sa ‘yong kagandáhan
Na ikaw lámang
Ang tángi kong paralúman.
Hindî kitá malímot
Huag kang madimdíman
Hindî kitá malímot
Manálig ka sintá
At kung ikaw man
ang lumímot
Iyong ala-lahánin
Mahál pa rin kitá.
I cannot forget you,
You are in my mind.
I cannot forget you,
Because I love you.
I swear
To your beauty,
That only you
Are my sole inspiration.
I cannot forget you.
Do not worry,
I cannot forget you.
Trust me darling,
And if you
Forget,
Remember
I still love you.
Sa
[sa
In
pangárap
pa.'ŋa.rap
dreams
ko
ko
my
Lagi
['la.gi
Always
kang
kaŋ
you
nakikíta
na.ki.'ki.ta]
I-see
Dáhil
['da.hil
Because
sa
sa
of
nawawalâ’y
na.'wa.wa.'laɪ]
separating
118
lámang
'la.maŋ]
only
Ka
[ka
You
sa
sa
from
akin
'ʔa.kin
me
sintá
sin.'ta]
beloved
Ako’y
[ʔa.'koɪ
I-am
duma-dalángin
du.'ma.da.'la.ŋin]
praying
Lalo
[la.lo
Even-more
na
na
now
kay
kaɪ
to
Bathala
bat.'ha.laʔ]
God
Upang
['ʔu.paŋ
So-that
huag
hwag
not
kang
kaŋ
you
lumimot
lu.'mi.mot]
forget
Pagkat
[pag.'kat
Because
mahál
ma.'hal
I-love
kitá.
ki.'ta]
you
Hindî
[hin.'di
Not
kitá
ki.'ta
you-I
malímot
ma.'li.mot]
forget
Ala-ála
[ʔa.la.'ʔa.la
Remembrance
kitá
ki.'ta]
you
Hindî
[hin.'di
Not
kitá
ki.'ta
you-I
Minámahál
[mi.'na.ma.'hal
I-love
kitá
ki.'ta]
you
Isinúsumpâ
[i.si.'nu.sum.'pa
Promise
ko
ko]
my
Sa
[sa
To
‘yong
joŋ
your
malímot
ma.'li.mot]
forget
kagandáhan
ka.gan.'da.han]
beauty
119
Na
[na
That
ikaw
ʔi.'kaʊ
you
lámang
'la.maŋ]
only
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
tángi
'ta.ŋi
favorite
kong
koŋ
my
Hindî
[hin.'di
Not
kitá
ki.'ta
you-I
malímot
ma.'li.mot]
forget
Huag
[hwag
Don’t
kang
kaŋ
you
madimdíman
ma.dim.'dím.an]
worry
Hindî
[hin.'di
Not
kitá
ki.'ta
you-I
malímot
ma.'li.mot]
forget
Manálig
[ma.'na.lig
Trust
ka
ka
me
sintá
sin.'ta]
beloved
At
[ʔat
And
kung
kuŋ
if
ikaw
ʔi.'kaʊ
you
man
man]
indeed
ang
[ʔaŋ
The-one
lumímot
lu.'mi.mot]
who-forgets
Iyong
[ʔi.'joŋ
You
ala-lahánin
ʔa.'la.la.'ha.nin]
remember
Mahál
[ma.'hal
I-love
pa
pa
now
rin
rin
still
kitá.
ki.'ta]
you
paralúman.
pa.ra.'lu.man]
muse
Josefino Cenizal was born on September 14, 1919 in Tanza, Cavite, a province located
south of Manila. At the age of eight, his mother enrolled Cenizal to take piano lessons from
120
Francisco Santiago at the University of the Philippines. Santiago reluctantly accepted him since
Cenizal did not read music. Santiago would teach him only if he performed all the assigned
lessons. Cenizal also took voice lessons from Reysio-Cruz and Mossesgeld Santiago. In 1948
he received a law degree from the Manila Law College. Later on he received a Foreign Service
degree from Lyceum in 1954. Cenizal is known for his love song compositions.74
Although his song “Hindî kitá malímot” has been performed by popular artists, the
original composition in 1940 with piano accompaniment is written in a classical Kundiman style.
The lyrical style of the melody allows the singer to sing with legato phrasing.
In the opening line, the word “pangárap” or “dream” should have a stress on the second
syllable even if it is set with a fermata. There should be a momentary hold after the first fermata
on the second syllable of “pangárap” in order to make sense of this word. Similarly, one should
not give too much emphasis on the fermata sign of the word “sa” in “sa akin sintá” or ‘from me,
my beloved” because the main stress is on the first syllable of “akin.” There should also be a
slight emphasis on this word and a glottal /a/ sound will help to give this needed emphasis.
These syllabic emphases should be on other important words as well. The word “dumadalángin”
should have a stress on the penultimate syllable. But in this case the composer had already set
this to music by using a half note on this syllable.
Throughout the song the composer uses a fermata at the second beat of the beginning
measures of the main thematic material, which is seen in the opening phrase of the refrain “Hindî
kitá malímot, ala-ála kitá” or “I cannot forget you, you are in my mind.” Most of these fermatas
occur during the anacrusis to the downbeat of the main theme (see Music Example 39).
74
Himig: The Filipino Collection of FHL. Accessed May 21, 2015.
121
Music Example 39: “Hindi Kita Malimot”75
In the opening line of the refrain, the fermata occurs on the word “hindî” (cannot) with a
stress on the second syllable. Rubato should be used on the important words, such as
“minámahál” or “I love” giving a stress on the last syllable “hal” from the word. The phrase that
follows, “ala-ála kitá” should be performed with a glottal stop on each of the word units (ala-ála)
in order to sound authentic. These syllabic stresses were not necessarily specified by the
composer but the decision is left to the singer to slightly modify the note values to allow for the
proper declamation of the text.
75
The Women’s Board of the Manila Symphony Society, Pag-ibig Song Book, no publisher listed, no published
date, p. 45.
122
19. “Ang Una Kong Pag-íbig” Music and text by Francisco Buencamino
Sa tapát ng áking
Masuyúing puso
May isáng laráwang
Nagbigáy siphayò
Tahímik kong búhay
Daglíng iguinúho
Sa ubod ng balisang wari’y
Di maitatágo.
In the middle of my
Tender heart,
There is one image
That has given me despair.
My peaceful life
Is suddenly troubled.
At the source, worry seems
It cannot be hidden.
May sakláp at may tamís
Kung akin ngang nam-námin
Ang búnga ng púnong
Sa puso ko’y nataním
Di mai-isásan
Ng akin ngang panimdím
Diliguín ng lúhang
Bumalóng sa aliw.
I can taste the bittersweetness
When I savor
The fruit of the tree,
That is planted in my heart.
I cannot detach it
From my feelings.
Sprinkle it with tears
That flow with comfort.
Langit na ligáya
Anóng sakláp nga ng umíbig
Lalo’t kung ang dáhil
Ay hindî nababatíd
Kauláyaw kang lagui
Nga ng pangánib
Sa báwa’t tibók ng puso
Ay pagtiti-ís.
Kauláyaw kang lagui
Ng ala-ála sa pangánib
Sa báwa’t tibók ng puso
Ay pagtiti-ìs.
Heavenly joy,
How bitter it is to love
Especially if the reason for love
Is misunderstood.
We are always a pair,
While in distress
With every beat of the heart
Is enduring.
We are always a pair
That remembers the suffering
Every beat of the heart
Is enduring.
Sa
[sa
From
tapát
ta.'pat
sincerity
Masuyúing
[ma.su.'ju.ʔiŋ
Tender
puso
'pu.so]
heart
May
[maɪ
There-is
isáng
ʔi.'saŋ
one
ng
naŋ
of
áking
'ʔa.kiŋ]
my
laráwang
la.'ra.waŋ]
image-that
123
Nagbigáy
[nag.bi.'gaɪ
Gave
siphayò
sip.'ha.jo]
mistreatment
Tahímik
[ta.'hí.mik
Peaceful
kong
koŋ
my
Daglíng
[dag.'liŋ
Suddenly
iguinúho
i.gi.'nu.ho]
troubled
Sa
[sa
At
ubod
'ʔu.bod
core
Di
[di
Not
maitatágo
ma.ʔi.ta.'ta.go]
be-hidden
May
[maɪ
There-is
búhay
'bu.haɪ]
life
ng
naŋ
of
balisang
ba.li.'saŋ
worry
wari’y
'wa.ri]
seems
sakláp
sak.'lap
bitterness
at
ʔat
and
may
maɪ
there-is
tamis
ta.'mis]
sweetness
Kung
[Kuŋ
If
akin
'ʔa.kin
I
ngang
ŋaŋ
indeed
nam-námin
nam.'na.min]
taste
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
búnga
'bu.ŋa
fruit
ng
naŋ
of
púnong
'pu.noŋ]
tree-that
Sa
[sa
Of
puso
'pu.so
heart
ko’y
koɪ
mine
nataním
na.ta.nim]
planted
Di
[di
Not
mai-isásan
ma.ʔi.ʔi.'sa.san]
separable
Ng
[naŋ
Of
akin
ʔa.kin
my
ngang
ŋaŋ
indeed
panimdím
pa.nim.dim]
feelings
124
Diliguín
[di.li.'gin
Water-it
ng
naŋ
with
lúhang
'lu.haŋ]
tears-that
Bumalóng
[bu.ma.'loŋ
Flow
sa
sa
with
aliw.
'ʔa.liʊ]
comfort
Langit
['la.ŋit
Heaven
na
na
that-is
ligáya
li.'ga.ja]
happiness
Anóng
[ʔa.'noŋ
How
sakláp
sak.'lap
bitter
nga
ŋa
indeed
ng
naŋ
that
Lalo’t
['la.lot
More-and
kung
kuŋ
if
ang
ʔaŋ
the
dáhil
'da.hil]
reason
Ay
[ʔaɪ
Is
hindî
hin.'di
not
nababatíd
na.'ba.ba.'tid]
understood
Kauláyaw
[ka.ʔu.'la.jaʊ
Companion
kang
kaŋ
you
lagi
la.gi]
always
Nga
[ŋa
That
ng
naŋ
of
pangánib
pa.'ŋa.nib]
danger
Sa
[sa
To
báwa’t
'ba.wat
every
tibók
ti.'bok
beat
Ay
[ʔaɪ
Is
pagtiti-ís.
pag.ti.ti.ʔis]
suffering
Kauláyaw
[ka.ʔu.'la. jaʊ
Companion
kang
kaŋ
you
ng
naŋ
of
lagi
'la.gi]
always
125
umibig
ʔu.'mi.big]
loves
puso
‘pu.so ]
heart
Ng
[naŋ
Of
ala-ála
ʔa.la.'ʔa.la
memory
sa
sa
of
pangánib
pa.'ŋa.nib]
peril
Sa
[sa
To
báwa’t
'ba.wat
every
tibók
ti.'bok
beat
ng
naŋ
of
Ay
[ʔaɪ
Is
pagtiti-ìs.
pag.ti.ti.ʔis]
suffering
puso
‘pu.so ]
heart
Francisco Buencamino, Sr. (1883-1952) was born in San Miguel de Mayumo, Bulacan.
At an early age he was taught music by his father, Fortunato Buencamino who was a church
organist and band master. Later in his teens he studied composition and harmony under Marcelo
Adonay at the Liceo de Manila. Buencamino composed a number of Tagalog operettas, or
Tagalog sarswelas, such as Marcelo (1904), Si Tio Selo (1904, Yayang (1905) and Pangakong
Hindi Natupad (1905). At the turn of the century, Buencamino began to teach at the Ateneo de
Manila University. He was also head of the music department for 30 years at the Centro de
Señoritas University. In 1930 he founded the Buencamino Music Academy where Nicanor
Abelardo was one of his students.76
This song composition by Buencamino is in ternary form ABBC. The melody begins
with a melancholic mood in g minor that reminds the poet of the bittersweet memories that he
felt with his beloved. Words like “larawan” (image) and “siphayò” (despair) are central to the
mood of the first stanza. The text describes a despairing heart that has been neglected. This
76
C. Quirino, Who’s who in Philippine history, (Manila: Tahanan Books, 1995).
126
exposition in the key of g minor pertains to the physical image of a loved one that has suddenly
reminded him of the hurt that he had felt before (see Music Example 40).
Music Example 40: “Ang Una Kong Pag-ibig”77 - A section
A modulation to its relative major key of B-flat signifies a new section that has a glimmer
of hope despite the bittersweet attitude of the central character. Words such as “tamis”
(sweetness) and “bunga” (fruit) create a hint of optimism. The rhythmic and melodic motifs
have suddenly developed into a more forward moving flow of new music material. This is
77
The Women’s Board of the Manila Symphony Society, Pag-ibig Song Book, no publisher listed, no published
date.
127
evident in the dotted eighth and sixteenth note combination that is preceded by an anacrusis in
the beginning of the B section (see Music Example 41).
Music Example 41: “Ang Una Kong Pag-ibig”78 - B section
Finally, the song concludes in the third stanza in measure 43 with confidence in the C
section. It does not return to its relative minor key of g minor but modulates to a parallel key of
G major in measure 44 (see Music Example 42).
78
Ibid., p. 23.
128
Music Example 42: “Ang Una Kong Pag-ibig”79 - C section
This symbolizes a victorious arrival of happiness. Furthermore, this confidence is
manifested in the expansion of the vocal range that peaks to a B5 with a fermata at the “poco
animato” section. The piano accompaniment also develops into a fuller texture and builds to a
climax of tremolos at the very end. It is the lover’s perseverance and determination that gives
him this hope and joy - the idea that everything will be better in the end.
79
Ibid., p. 24.
129
The vocal range and tessitura of this song is suitable for a tenor or a soprano. It lies in
the voice’s middle and upper range, up to a high note of B5. The fact that it has a very high note
in the end makes it a more advanced level in terms of vocal range.
130
20. “Ulila Sa Pag-íbig” by J.S. de Hernandez / text by Deogracias A. Rosario
Sa oras ng paglubog
Ng araw na may hapis,
Lumuluha ang buong daigdig
Naulila sa pag-íbig
Ang buntong hininga
Sa tubig naririnig,
Ng dibdib ng kanlurang
May daluyong ng hinagpis.
At the hour of sunset,
At sun that is covered,
The whole world cries
For the one orphaned from love.
A sighing breath
From the water is heard,
In the heart of the west
There is a surge of lament.
Sandaling malungkót
Sa pusong sumisintá,
Lalo’t nalilining
Na ang sukli’y pangamba;
At kung takip silim,
Ay anong ligaya
Ng mamatáy dáhil
Sa pagkaulila.
Easily saddened
Is the heart that loves,
It becomes more so
And is strickened with anxiety;
And at twilight,
What joy it is
To die because
Of being orphaned.
Sa
[sa
At
oras
'ʔo.ras
hour
ng
naŋ
of
paglubog
pag.lu.'bog]
setting
Ng
[naŋ
Of
araw
'ʔa.raʊ
sun
na
na
that
may
maɪ
has
Lumuluha
[lu.mu.'lu.haʔ
Crying
ang
ʔaŋ
the
buong
bu.'ʔong
whole
daigdig
da.ʔig.'dig]
world
Naulila
[na.ʔu.'li.laʔ
Orphaned
sa
sa
of
pag-íbig
pag.'ʔí.big]
love
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
buntong
bun.'toŋ
sighing
hininga
hi.ni.'ŋaʔ]
breath
Sa
[sa
From
tubig
'tu.big
water
naririnig,
na.ri.ri.'nig]
heard
131
hapis
ha.'pis]
cover
Ng
[naŋ
Of
dibdib
dib.'dib
heart
ng
naŋ
of
kanlurang
kan.'lu.raŋ]
west
May
[maɪ
There-is
daluyong
da.'lu.yoŋ
surge
ng
naŋ
of
hinagpis.
hi.nag.'pis]
lament
Sandaling
[san.da.'liŋ
Quickly
malungkót
ma.luŋ.'kot]
sad
Sa
[sa
To
pusong
'pu.soŋ
heart
Lalo’t
['la.lot
Becomes
nalilining
na.li.'li.niŋ]
gloomy
Na
[na
That
ang
ʔaŋ
the
sukli’y
suk.'li
result-is
pangamba;
pa.ŋam.'ba]
suspicion
At
[ʔat
And
kung
kuŋ
when
takip
ta.'kip
covering
silim,
'si.lim]
dusk
Ay
[ʔaɪ
Oh
anong
a.'noŋ
what
ligaya
li.'ga.ja]
joy
Ng
[naŋ
Of
mamatáy
ma.ma.'taɪ
to-die
dáhil
'da.hil]
because
Sa
[sa
Of
pagkaulila.
pag.ka.ʔu.'li.laʔ]
being-orphaned.
Sa
[sa
At
oras
'ʔo.ras
hour
sumisintá,
su.mi.sin.'ta]
that-loves
ng
naŋ
of
paglubog
pag.lu.'bog]
setting
132
Ng
[naŋ
Of
araw
'a.raʊ
sun
na
na
that
may
maɪ
has
Lumuluha
[lu.mu.'lu.haʔ
Crying
ang
ʔaŋ
the
buong
bu.'ʔong
whole
daigdig
da.ʔig.'dig]
world
Naulila
[na.u.'li.laʔ
Orphaned
sa
sa
of
pag-íbig
pag.'ʔi.big]
love
Ang
[ʔaŋ
The
buntong
bun.'toŋ
sighing
hininga
hi.ni.'ŋa]
breath
Sa
[sa
From
tubig
'tu.big
water
naririnig,
na.ri.ri.'nig]
heard
Ng
[naŋ
Of
dibdib
dib.'dib
heart
ng
naŋ
of
hapis
ha.'pis]
anguish
kanlurang
kan.'lu.raŋ]
west
Juan de Sahagun Concepcion Hernandez was born on June 12, 1881 in Sampaloc,
Manila. In 1901 he graduated with a law degree from the Escuela de Derechos which was later
integrated into the University of Santo Tomas. However, Hernandez decided not to take the bar
exam. Instead, he pursued a career in music. At the age of eighteen he wrote his first waltz. He
later composed a total of fifteen waltzes and was referred to as the “Johann Strauss of the
Philippines.” He earned his bachelor’s degree in music from the Conservatory of Music at the
University of the Philippines. In addition to his fifteen waltzes, Hernandez wrote eight orchestral
arrangements, fourteen songs, six religious manuscripts, three marches, a number of operettas, a
concerto, several piano arrangements, three chamber music, three sarswelas and composed
133
fifteen Kundiman art songs. In 1945, Hernandez died during a bomb blast when the Japanese
had occupied the Philippines in World War II.80
“Ulila Sa Pag-ibig” (Orphan of Love) was composed in 1929. The time signature of this
song is 2/4, not the typical 3/4 of a Kundiman art song. There is a sense of irony in the music that
contrasts with the gloomy, self-pitying words, which are summed up in the song’s title.
Hernandez sets up this irony by setting the piano introduction in C major. There is an abrupt
shift to the parallel minor into the A section, which accurately sets the melancholic mood of
unrequited love. Then, without warning, the B section modulates back to C major (“Sandaling
malungkot, sa pusong sumisinta”, Easily saddened is the heart that loves), revealing a bit of
irony. The lyrics are gloomy and self-pitying, and contrast strongly with the hopefulness
reflected in the melody and harmony (see Music Example 43).
Music Example 43: “Ulila Sa Pag-ibig”81
80
Nicanor Tiongson, CCP Encyclopedia of Philippine Art, Vol. 6: Philippine Music. (Manila: Cultural Center of the
Philippines), 1994.
134
In essence, the piano introduction shows what joy the poet would feel if only he was not
orphaned. Hernandez sets up this joyful mood but immediately he changes to sadness as if the
joyful life was abruptly cut off. Thus the meaning of the word “Kundiman” (if it were not so) is
exemplified in this juxtaposition of sadness and joy.
81
Bureau of Physical Education and School Sports Department of Education, Culture and Sports. Kundiman At Iba
Pa. (Manila: Likhawit Enterprises, 1994), p. 146.
135
Conclusion
During the process of my research I have found that these 20 Kundiman art songs
exemplify a certain rhythmic and melodic fluidity that reflect a distinctly Filipino style. These
Kundiman art songs are a reflection of Filipino creativity during a time of adversity. Not many
people outside of the Philippines know about Kundiman art songs. Even among my FilipinoAmerican friends and acquaintances, most do not know about Kundiman. This leads me to
believe that these songs have not been given enough attention. A search through course listings
in major universities, outside of the Philippines, such as the Juilliard School of Music or Mahidol
University in Thailand shows modest to no attention given to indigenous songs. In depth study
of this kind of song is unique to the Philippines. Kundiman art songs appear in student recitals in
Philippine universities, but outside the country they are rarely programmed. Only
ethnomusicologists may be familiar with these songs. I want people to know about Kundiman
art songs, and that the selections of songs I have presented are only a fraction of what is available
in print. Most of these songs can be found in the collection, “Kundiman At Iba Pa,” which is
listed in my bibliography. I have come to appreciate the value of these Kundiman art songs, and
in the future I intend to transcribe more IPA and translate more of these songs to make them
more accessible to the world. I also intend to record pronunciations of the texts to provide a
guide for the singer who is not familiar with the Tagalog language.
136
Appendix A
Copyright Permissions Documentation
Copyright Permission documentation from Suarez Music Publishing and Ronaldo Villar,
members of the Filipino Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers, Inc. (FILSCAP)
137
138
Appendix B
Vowel and Consonant Sounds in Tagalog
According to Dr. Raymond Leslie Diaz82, Filipinos are not consciously aware of the idea
of diphthongs, although there certainly are some dipththong-like sounds; for example, “buhay”
(life) is transcribed as [ˈbu.haɪ].
Vowel sounds
Tagalog examples
English sound equivalent
a [a]
ang (the)
father
e [e]
baba[e] (woman)
elephant
i [i]
iyong (your)
see
o [o]
oras (hour)
north
u [u]
umi-iyak (crying)
boot
glottal [ʔ] -beginning of or
starting with a vowel
ang (the)
earth (beginning of a word)
glottal [ʔ] –between two
vowels in the middle of a
word
umi-iyak (crying)
Hawaii
glottal [ʔ] –occurs
occasionally in words ending
with a vowel
hindî (not)
No English equivalent for words
ending with a glottal sound -produced
by making a vowel sound and
abruptly closing the glottis.
82
Raymond Leslie Diaz. "International Phonetic Alphabet Transcription of Tagalog." E-mail interview by author.
May 19, 2015.
139
Consonant sounds
Tagalog examples
English sound equivalent
b [b]
babae (woman)
barn
k [k]
kanta (song)
car
d [d]
dahil (because)
dear
g [g]
gumising ( wake up)
give
h [h]
hulog (deposit)
high
l [l]
langit (heaven)
live
m[m]
mahal (beloved)
me
n [n]
narito (here)
near
ng [ŋ]
pangalan (name)
making
p [p]
pag-ibig (love)
pen
r [r]
resibo (receipt)
rain
s [s]
sandalî (moment)
sign
t [t]
tanungin (ask)
turn
w [w]
walâ (none)
wait
y [j]
yumi (tender)
yes
140
Email Interview with Dr. Raymond Leslie Diaz:
141
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