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Hotdog’s Rene Garcia dead at 65

 

By REGS PARUNGAO

 

Rene Garcia, guitarist and vocalist of iconic Filipino band Hotdog, succumbed to cardiac arrest Sunday, Sept. 2, at 6:20 p.m.

He was 65.

In a Facebook post, his brother and fellow band member Dennis, uploaded a slideshow of his photos accompanied by what he said was a “new original, Hotdog song,” “Sana Naman.”

“The very last collaboration with my exceptionally gifted brother Rene Garcia. It was a hell of a ride, tol… I will miss you like hell,” he wrote as caption.

Older brother Greg said, “Perhaps the music industry will now give him the recognition he deserves in changing OPM in the country.”

The Garcia brothers formed Hotdog in the ‘70s with lead singer Ella del Rosario.

Media credited them with the so-called “Manila Sound” following hits such as “Pers Lab,” “Bongga Ka Day,” “Ikaw Ang Miss Universe Ng Buhay Ko,” “Manila,” and “Beh Buti Nga,” among others.

Due to its popularity, “Bongga Ka, ’Day” was made into a movie starring Nora Aunor, Vilma Santos, Joseph Estrada, Fernando Poe Jr. and Boots Anson-Roa.

Another hit, “Annie Batungbakal,” was also made into a movie starring Aunor.

Actor Richard Merk expressed grief over Garcia’s passing on Facebook.

He posted, “This is so sad. The music industry just lost a great talent. And I lost a good friend. I will miss you Rene Garcia of ‘Hotdog.’ Tagal mag-sink in sa akin pre! I am a huge fan of yours. The songs you wrote, ibang klase ka Rene!… Rest in heavenly place my dear friend.”

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