2016 July 14
For many of those who attended it, the first concert of the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila for School Year 2016-2017 turned out to be a nostalgic trip down memory lane.
Held last July 12, 2016 at a jampacked Justo Albert Hall, the concert featured American music icon John Ford Coley who treated his audience that included Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada and Vice Mayor Maria Shielah "Honey" Lacuna to an evening of love songs from the 1970s.
The show was a thanksgiving concert for the appointment of Dr. Benjamin Diokno, former chairman of the PLM Board of Regents, as the Department of Budget and Management Secretary of President Rodrigo Duterte, as well as for the election of Mayor Estrada and the other officials of the city government of Manila. The Mayor, Vice Mayor and Councilors who make up the City Council, constitute PLM's Board of Visitors.
Coley is best known as one half of the Grammy-nominated duo England Dan and John Ford Coley which made its mark in the '70s and early '80s with such hits as "It's Sad to Belong," "Just Tell Me You Love Me," "Love is the Answer" and "I'd Really Love to See You Tonight."
Dubbed "The Crown Prince of Love Songs," he continues to write and record music, produce albums for other talents, and go on concert tours. He has performed in the Philippines several times and is a friend of Dr. Maria Leonora "Lenny" de Jesus, PLM President, a musician herself who plays with the Glass Onion Band.
"I've known John for almost 10 years now, and I usually perform with him whenever he is in Manila," President De Jesus said. "And believe it or not, I was a featured flutist in one of his CDs."
The two, in fact, reprised one of the numbers in this CD during the PLM concert to the great delight of the audience. He played the guitar and sang, while she played the flute.
President De Jesus was also part of the concert's opening act. She played rhythm guitar for the Glass Onion Band, a group of veteran musicians she supports and co-leads with businessman-philanthropist Antonio "Tonyboy" Cojuangco. Cojuangco likewise performed with the band for this opening act.
Kyle Vincent was the PLM concert's other featured performer. An American singer and songwriter who frequently tours with Coley, he sang several Barry Manilow numbers and truly wowed the audience with his rendition of the popular Tagalog song "Hanggang."
"Both John and Kyle donated their talent fees as a token of their commitment to the cause of educating poor but talented students, PLM's primary mission, and for this I thank them sincerely," President De Jesus said. "I also want to express PLM's gratitude to Danee Samonte, aka Steve O'Neal, who produces the concerts of John and Kyle in Asean countries."
"I hope he can bring more of his talents to PLM this year," she added. "We definitely want to stage more concerts to continue the cultural series we launched last school year."