I was still in Grade school when I first heard his hit, Mga Kababayan ko. In my memory, he was and is the first and only rapper who had songs that were not only good, they made sense and had values.
I also remember watching him on the movie Bagets 2, along side Aga Mulach and Herbert Bautista.
Sadly, just this month, he finally succumbed to his sickness, Leukemia. It was a battle that was highly publicized and read. Francis even shared his stories through his interviews and blog/site. I was never an avid fan, but I always thought of him as an icon. I also appreciate his music and art - his love for the Philippines that is very apparent in all his works.
If there is one positive thing that resulted from his passing, it's probably the awakening of Pinoy Pride. His works are now more valuable and more people are interested in them. Just last March 18, he was awarded by the National Commission for the Culture and the Arts. He was given a posthumous Presidential Medal of Merit. The award's was a recognition of “his musical and artistic brilliance, his deep faith in the Filipino and his sense of national pride that continue to inspire us.”
Another sign of his massive impact in the Philippine culture is his T-shirt business, Three Stars and a Sun. The business is currently is booming. A long queue of fans and supporters, wait for their turn to purchase one of his shirt designs. A note of concern though, I hope that people don't take advantage of this. I hope that they buy ONLY the original shirts and support legitimate concert and tributes for the man.
FrancisM wears his latest best selling shirt, "PRIDE." Photo taken by artist and business partner at FMCC, FrancisM's official clothing line, Carlo Maniquiz.
Francis Magalona is the son of popular 1940's and 1950'sFilipino actors, Pancho Magalona and Tita Duran. For more information on Francis Magalona, please visit his official site (http://www.magalona.com/).