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Throwing It All Away

By N. Mark Castro

hands together MJ

Throwing It All Away” was the seventh track on the 1986 album Invisible Touch by Genesis. The working title was “Zephyr and Zeppo”, which was structured around a guitar riff by Mike Rutherford (Mike & The Mechanics), who also wrote the lyrics.

This haunting piece was a big hit back in my youth, and to those unfamiliar with the ancient mysteries of arithmetic, that’s 26 years ago, far older than my assistant Rachel.

Wait, did I say in my youth?

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Rest In Peace Andy Williams

To a man whose sheer talent made a lasting impact in mankind’s history of music.

In Memoriam:

Rolling Stone Cafe Jakarta: The Food, The Music, The Place

By N. Mark Castro

Touted as the 2nd Rolling Stone Café to open in the world aside from Japan — and its headquarters in the US — Rolling Stone Café Indonesia has become the IT place for Indonesia’s celebrity musicians for concerts, gigs, or simple musical jam, while opening its doors for aspiring bands to perform and hone their skills.

That it’s become a Music Factory is a welcome opportunity for Asian musicians, having a platform to perform as humongous as this place. Rolling Stone Café Indonesia can actually hold 3 simultaneous concerts, evenly distributed in its sprawling grounds, with a swimming pool, and fantastic large serving of food. The manager said that the open air backyard is about 3,000 square meters and equipped with concrete stage that meets international standards, which is a perfect fit for band concerts, exhibits or my birthday party, assuming I could fill its 4000 crowd capacity.

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Rolling Stone Cafe Jakarta: The Interior

Proudly proclaiming to be only the second Rolling Stone Cafe to open in the world aside from Japan, Rolling Stone Cafe Jakarta boasts of an expanse so spacious it could hold 3 concerts … All at the same time.

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Viva La Vida: Music, Art, Religion, Politics, Sport, Sex

By N Mark Castro

Seldom has one song managed to combine so many of life’s elements than Coldplay’s Viva La Vida which, in Spanish, can have two meanings: “Long Live Life” or “Live Life”.

And though there have been various and vague interpretations as to the meaning of the song, one thing remains certain: that the song’s Spanish title was taken from a painting by 20th century Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, which translates into English as “Long Live Life.”


I am a bitch. I am a painter.

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By N. Mark Castro

TROPICAL Storm Juaning hit the country yesterday with such unbelievable force most everyone was either stranded or frozen in time … but such force was nothing compared to the public’s reaction to the Hotdog’s Reunion Concert last night.

In what was perhaps the most expensive real estate space in the country, the entire ballroom of the Dusit Thani Hotel was packed with people vying for their precious seats at the table. The cost of the ticket and sponsorships could probably initiate a Third World country project. The entire room was filled with the country’s who’s who: from top government officials, socialites, tourists, to avid groupies and, well, me.

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By N. Mark Castro


Most bands who reunite do not produce anything that remotely matches their original time together.

The list is long.

The thing is, to some, a band reunion is an unfortunate chance to relive past glory. To others, an opportunity to make money off their legacy, tainted by their spiral descent.

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Father & Son

ONE of the most haunting pieces about fatherhood that you can come across is the lyrical song “Father and Son,” written and performed in 1970 by singer-songwriter formerly known as Cat Stevens (Yusuf Islam).

The song is an exchange between a father not understanding a son’s desire to break away and shape a new life, and the son who cannot really explain himself but knows that it is time for him to seek his own destiny.

It’s one of the most emotive songs sung by the same person, but with a transition to a deeper vocal range to depict the father’s voice. The back-up vocals was provided by Stevens’ long time guitarist Alun Davies, singing an unusual chorus of simple words and sentences such as “No” and “Why must you go and make this decision?”; beginning mid-song, so softly, they are only perceptible with a slight increase in volume towards the end of the song.

I hated that song.

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The Cat That Sings

WHILE working with my 21 year old assistant, the song “Wild World” was played in a pipe-in music and while we were both humming to the same tune, I said that the original was even better, to which she replied: “Oh, you mean this isn’t the original?”

I was devastated.

And so here are my fingers, finding its own outlet.

Steven Demetre Georgiou, famously known around the world as Cat Stevens, is an English singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, educator, philanthropist who was renowned for songs like “Morning Has Broken, Father & Son, First Cut Is The Deepest,’ and “Wild World,” to name a few.

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Charlotte Setijadi

Anthropologist & Contemporary Historian of Chinese Diaspora in Southeast Asia


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