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Stephen Speaks returns to the Philippines for music and charity

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Tuesday, February 27th, 2018

Rockwell Ryan Ripperger of Stephen Speaks together with DJ Faye and DJ Robin on Wish 1075 Bus. (Photoville International)

MANILA, Philippines — Ninety’s pop band Stephen Speaks is back in the Philippines to promote his latest single ‘Alive to Fight’. The song debuted on board the Wish Bus of Wish 107.5 FM radio station

Stephen Speaks also took Wishers back in time with some of the band’s biggest singles “Passenger Seat” and “Out of my League”.

“This bus is awesome. When they say I was going to be on a bus, I did not expect this. This is really cool. The quality, the sound quality is amazing. You got good microphones. It’s air-conditioned. So yeah, I love it in here. It’s great,” said the band’s front man, Rockwell Ryan Ripperger, about the Wish Bus.

Apart from sharing his music, Ripperger is also in the country for charity.

“I did a benefit tour for the soldiers of Marawi. I actually went to Fort Bonifacio and sang for the wounded soldiers and the rest of the army. And I’m also donating a portion of ticket sales to them to help them rebuild and support the people who fought there,” said the frontman.

Ripperger even wanted to help in coral reef rehabilitation in Concepcion, Iloilo.

“I went down to Iloilo and I went snorkeling on the beaches and they have some great beautiful corals and there was a lot of dead corals,” he said.

“I said I wanted to talk to some of the government officials here and see if I can set up a little of reef restoration and show them how to take fragments and grow them out and put them back on and kind of rebuild the reef so we go working on that and I’m pretty excited about that too,” he added.

Stephen Speaks promised their fans to return to the country in September. — Leslie Longboen | UNTV News & Rescue

 

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‘Queen of Soul’ Aretha Franklin dies at home in Detroit aged 76

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Friday, August 17th, 2018

Aretha Franklin. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

 

Aretha Franklin, the preacher’s daughter whose powerful voice made her the long-reigning “Queen of Soul” with such hit songs as “Respect” and “Chain of Fools,” died on Thursday (August 16) at the age of 76, officials said.

Franklin, who won 18 Grammys and had some 25 gold records, died at her home in Detroit, according to one of her publicists. She had been battling advanced pancreatic cancer, and her family had asked for prayers.

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan said few people in the city’s history had been as universally loved or had left as indelible a mark as Franklin, describing her as a “performer without peers.”

“Throughout her extraordinary life and career, she earned the love – and yes, the respect – of millions of people, not just for herself and for women everywhere, but for the city she loved so dearly and called home,” Duggan said in a statement.

Franklin’s father was a Baptist preacher in Detroit, and the gospel singing she heard in his church was her musical foundation. She created a uniquely emotional and powerful voice that put her at the forefront of 1960s soul music along with Otis Redding, Sam Cooke, and Wilson Pickett.

Franklin sang at the funeral of slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King, as well as at the presidential inaugurations of Barack Obama and Bill Clinton. In 1987 she became the first woman voted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and in 2010 Rolling Stone magazine named her the No. 1 singer of the rock era.

After recording and touring as a young gospel singer, Franklin’s career took a secular turn in 1961 when she signed with Columbia Records. She had only modest success with Columbia, which had trouble classifying her style and tried to steer her toward pop.

But when she switched to Atlantic Records in the mid-1960s, producer Jerry Wexler knew just what to do with Franklin, putting her powerful voice in a setting that combined gospel, soul, and rock and made her a superstar by letting “the lady wail.” As Franklin put it in her autobiography, she “Aretha-ized” the music. — Reuters

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Joe Jackson, patriarch of U.S. musical family, dead at 89 — media

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Thursday, June 28th, 2018

FILE PHOTO: Joe Jackson, father of the late pop star Michael Jackson, poses on the red carpet as he arrives for the screening of the film “Sils Maria” (Clouds of Sils Maria) in competition at the 67th Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France, May 23, 2014. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau/File Photo

 

Joe Jackson, the patriarch of an American musical dynasty who started his son Michael and his Jackson 5 brothers on the road to stardom but also verbally and physically abused them, has died at the age of 89, CNN reported on Wednesday (June 27).

Jackson, who lived in Las Vegas and had been estranged from much of his family, had been suffering from cancer, according to media reports.

TMZ.com first reported the news. Both TMZ and CNN cited an unnamed source close to the family. — Reuters

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UK’s Prince Harry and Meghan in first royal event after wedding

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Wednesday, May 23rd, 2018

 

Britain’s Prince Harry and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex attend a garden party at Buckingham Palace, their first royal engagement as married couple, in London, May 22, 2018. Dominick Lipinski/Pool via Reuters

Britain’s Prince Harry and his new wife Meghan Markle – the Duke and Duchess of Sussex – appeared at their first official engagement since marrying last weekend when they attended an event in the gardens of Buckingham Palace on Tuesday (May 22).

The couple, whose wedding in Windsor on Saturday (May 19) was watched by millions of TV viewers worldwide, was at a party to celebrate Harry’s father Prince Charles’ charity patronages and military affiliations ahead of his 70th birthday this year.

Also, there were several emergency services personnel who were first responders after the Manchester suicide bombing exactly a year ago which killed 22 people, the Palace said.

Charles and his wife Camilla visited Manchester Arena last June to meet staff who were first on the scene immediately after the bombing.

Heir to the throne Charles, who will be 70 in November, played an impromptu role in Saturday’s royal wedding, accompanying Markle up the aisle in the absence of her own father who was unable to attend.

Harry and U.S. former actress Markle are expected to go on honeymoon later, though no details of when or where have been announced. — Reuters

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