Entry 094

Kay Tamis ng Buhay

Many Filipino musicians were inspired to create an audible music to the song of Maria Clara in chapter 23 of José Rizal’s Noli me tángere (1887). The first, I learned from a source, was by Ladislao Bonus in 1888, as instructed by Rizal himself. I am not aware if Rizal provided the tune.

I have earlier written a post about this, prominently about Felipe Padilla de Leon, National Artist for Music, breathing life into Rizal’s text. You can read it here.

Curiously his son Felipe “Jun” Mendoza de Leon, current chairperson of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, composed another version of the song, using a different translation (or text) altogether. IMG_7123

I procured a music sheet from a friend, and later transcribed it using a music software, the output of which you will hear below. But first, the words.

Kay tamis ng buhay sa sariling bayan
Ang lahat ay magiliw sa ilalim ng araw
Kay tamis ng hangin mula sa palayan
Walang hapdi ang pag-ibig, walang pait ang pagpanaw

Kay tamis ng paggising ng musmos na sanggol
Sa yapos ng kanyang mapagkandiling ina
Hangga’t naroon siya’y di daranas ng hirap
Masaya ang kislap ng kanyang mga mata

Kay tamis ng mamatay sa sariling bayan
Ang lahat ay mutya sa ilalim ng langit
Mapait ang pagsimoy ng hangin sa taong
Walang bayan, ina, at tunay na pag-ibig

Kay tamis ng buhay sa sariling bayan

This file is your guide while listening to the music: Kay Tamis ng Buhay (FML) – Vocals

I never took notice of this at first when a friend gave me the music sheet as I was then looking for the older Felipe’s composition that was specifically an aria in an opera adaptation of the Noli.

I first heard of F.M. de Leon’s version at “Tatlong Ipê: Isang Konsiyerto”, a tribute concert on 4 December 2015 featuring the music of the three Felipe de Leons (Felipe Padilla, Felipe Mendoza, and Diwa Felipe Sarabia).

Another trivia is that this song was composed for Dulaang UP’s staging of Noli Me Tangere in 1987 as commissioned by theatre director Antonio Mabesa.


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