After news broke about The Jerks frontman Chickoy Pura’s battle with the Big C, many friends and musikeros got together to do fundraising gigs. This is what we do after all in a country where artists have no unions, and they are left on their own to deal with health and security needs. This is also what “RAGE! Presents: Rak for Chickoy” wants to do. Plus extra.
Organized by musician and writer Aldus Santos, music writer and concert producer Ian Urrutia, and arts and culture critic Katrina Santiago, the goal of “Rage!” is not just to raise funds, but also to bring in a young(er) audience and introduce them to the music of Chickoy. The task was to have younger bands and musicians perform a cover or two of a Jerks song. It’s really hitting two birds with one stone: we help Chickoy out, but also we pay tribute to him and the work he’s done for local music, the example he’s set for many musicians and cultural workers in this country.
After all, while not as famous as the rakenrol bands of the ‘60s, the ‘80s punk scene had as one of its icons Chickoy, doing music that stood for the rebellions of those times, seeing as it did the socio-political shift from dictatorship to democracy and finding it wanting. The Jerks’ music continues to resonate because it knew in the ‘80s what we now all know about nation and governance: the leaders change, but not much else does.
Chickoy’s persona is also interwoven with his being a musikero for the people. A fixture in protests against tyranny and human rights violations, a constant voice talking about landlordism and oppression, farmers’ rights and poverty, his songs are a measure of how the best ones can cross over from the airwaves to the streets, from the gig to the protest.
This event is itself inspired by one of his band’s more famous songs called “Rage,” and as inspired by him, it is hoped that “Rage! Presents” can become a sustainable project for gathering younger music audiences to talk about the musicians that are important, but also to discuss relevant issues of nation.
“Rage! Presents Rak For Chickoy” happens on September 18, 2019, Wednesday, 8:00PM at Saguijo in Makati. Playing are Ultracombo (featuring Rayms, Buddy, and Paulo), Ebe Dancel, Johnoy Danao, Bullet Dumas, Autotelic, The Purplechickens, and Pikoy.
Meanwhile, watch performances from Pura and Dwight Gaston here: