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December 8 , 2001
RockAwards 2001: And the winners are....
NU107 wraps up another Rock Awards with a bang, a moshpit, and plenty of babes

by Jim Ayson
photographs by vic icasas and jim ayson

Hubba-Hubba: Actress Stella Ruiz just before presenting the Album of the Year award to <S>andwich

It was a cold and stormy night. Torrents of rain poured outside the Le Pavillon tent last Thursday at the Metropolitan park in Pasay City. Inside, with industrial strength air comditioning units revved up high, the temperature was close to freezing. Noticing the chilly combination, ex-Eraserheads band manager Day Cabuhat huddled close by and observed, "Looks like a lot of people are going to end up sick tommorow."

But for the winners of the evening, the warmth of the adulation of their fans more than made up for the artifically induced ice cold climes. Bands blasted away, crowds moshed, and NU 107 president Atom Henares paraded a bevy of celeb babes - Joey Mead, G Toengi, Angela Velez, Vina Morales, Stella Ruiz, and Lana Asanin - whose amply displayed charms could have raised temperatures among the testosterone-drenched portion of the audience all by themseves. And video hosts Tado and Erning from UNTV's bizarre reality-based show "Strange Brew" kept the audience in stitches with their ongoing commentary.

Major Awards

Jamir thanks the crowd for Slapshock's "Band of the Year" award. The band also won the "Listener's Choice" award.

Heavily favored contenders Slapshock, Sandwich, Wolfgang, and the Dawn slugged it out with the most nominations. But it was Slapshock who won the prime awards Band of the Year and Listener's Choice (which is given to the band with the highest number of votes from radio listeners). Wolfgang managed an unexpected guitarist of the year award for Manuel Legarda, while iconic band The Dawn, won no awards. Sandwich made the grade with its win of Album of the Year for sophomore effort "Four Track Mind".

The Hall of Fame award went to broadcast veteran Dante David, a.k.a. "Howling Dave" for being the guiding spirit of DZRJ's "Pinoy Rock N' Rhythm" show in the 70's and 80's that kicked off and nurtured the Pinoy Rock movement. Recognition long overdue, we might add. Fellow RJ alumnus Wayne "Cousin Hoagy" Pardo (currently host of NU's "Crossroads Blues Hour") presented the award to his former comrade in arms.

The by-invitation only event still managed to be packed with fans and radio listeners and was broadcast live over NU 107.5 FM. Station co-owner Mike Pedero later announced that the video coverage of the show is currently in post-production. An edited version will be aired on ABC 5 on December 11, while a full-blown "director's cut" with interviews and other goodies will be aired on UNTV 37 this coming January. A live album of the event is also being mixed and will be part of the station's traditional end-of-the-year giveaway to friends and listeners.

At long last, an award for Cynthia Alexander.


Some surprises: Cynthia Alexander defied what seemed to be a snub on her album Rippingyarns at last year's awards to take the Song of the Year trophy for her single "Motorbykle". Fellow N/A records artist Rayyn came up from nowhere to pick up a best album package award for his eleborately executed self-produced indie effort. And the Itchyworms struggled through heavy traffic in a rainstorm just in time to hear themselves being announced as "Best New Artist" over the radio broadcast.

Writing in the band's mailing list, Itchyworms guitarist Chino Singson describes hearing their name being called out while stuck in traffic in Sugar Free head sugarcube Ebe Dancel's car. "Nagsigawan kami ni Jugs (Jugueta) dun sa loob ng kotse ni Ebe, sa kalagitnaan ng traffic at ulan. As in napa-"putangina" ako nang malakas about five times while pointing to the radio. Sa sobra kong tuwa, naiyak ako!"

Fists of Fury: In the Raw award winners Twisted Halo stoke up the crowd while an amused Francis Reyes looks on

While not exactly shedding tears of joy like Chino, this year's In The Raw award went to indie band Twisted Halo, which had their own emotional reaction. While receiving their award from Francis Reyes, host of both the radio and TV versions of the indie band showcase "In the Raw", bandleader Vin Dancel delivered an emotionally charged speech on the rights of musicians and songwriters - evidently a sly reference to their ongoing struggle with Viva Films over the allegedly unauthorized use of a song from their album in the film "Dos Ekis".

The rant was lost on much of the audience however, who weren't familar with the issue. A bemused Francis Reyes could only look on with a odd smile on his face (as if thinking "do we yank out these guys from the stage or what?") But more on that buzz some other time.

In the meantime, the winners are...

NU107 2001 Rock Awards Winners
Best New Artist Itchyworms
Band of the Year Slapshock
Song of the Year Motorbykle - Cynthia Alexander
Album of the Year Four Track Mind - Sandwich
Best Video of the Year Money for Food - Barbie's Cradle
Best Album Packaging Rayyn - Rayyn
Vocalist of the Year Aia de leon - Imago
Guitarist of the Year Manuel Legarda - Wolfgang
Bassist of the Year Lee Nadela - Slapshock
Drummer of the Year Zach Lucero - Imago
Producer of the Year Louie Talan - Acoustica by Wolfgang
Listener's Choice Slapshock
In the Raw Award Twisted Halo
Hall of Fame Dante David aka "Howling Dave" of DZRJ's Pinoy Rock N' Rhythm


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