Heber Bartolome

Heber Gonzalez Bartolome (born November 4, 1948) is a Filipino folk and rock singer, songwriter, composer, poet, guitarist, bandurria player, bluesman, and painter. His music was influenced by the "stylistic tradition" of Philippine folk and religious melodies. He was the founder of Banyuhay, a "protest band" that carried the trademark sound of the kubing, a native musical instrument in the Philippines.[1] His compositions were described as a "unique synthesis of rock and blues, and Philippine ethnic rhythms".[1] Bartolome's song "Nena" became a hit in 1977. His song "Tayo'y Mga Pinoy" ("We're Filipinos") was a finalist during the 1978 first Metro Manila Popular Music Festival.[1][2]

Heber Bartolome
Birth nameHeber Gonzales Bartolome
BornNovember 4, 1948 (1948-11-04) (age 72)
Cabanatuan, Philippines
GenresPinoy folk, Pinoy rock
Occupation(s)Musician, singer-songwriter, guitarist, poet, painter
InstrumentsVocals, guitar, bandurria, kubing
Years active1960s–present
Associated actsBanyuhay


Bartolome was born in Cabanatuan City in Nueva Ecija, Philippines to Deogracias Bartolome and Angelina Gonzalez. Deogracias Bartolome was a pastor and violin and guitar maker, and a rondalla band leader while Angelina Gonzalez was a singer in the zarzuela. During his school days, Heber Bartolome was a member of the ROTC Band and the University of the Philippines Concert Chorus. Bartolome started his professional career in music in folk houses during the late 1960s.[2] In 1973, Bartolome obtained the degree in Fine Arts from the University of the Philippines. He was a professor of Filipino Literature at the De La Salle University from 1981 to 1984. As a musician, he held performances throughout the Philippines. Abroad, he staged concerts in Australia and Europe. In 1993, he launched Mga Awit ni Heber ("Heber's Songs"), a collection of Bartolome's greatest songs. Apart from being a musician, Bartolome also exhibited artworks and was an active lobbyist for the rights of Filipino composers.[1] He was the founder of the UP Astrology Society back in 1974 which also went nationwide.

Career in musicEdit

Bartolome's famous songs include "Pasahero" ("Passenger") (1977), "Almusal" ("Breakfast"), "Inutil na Gising" ("An Awake Fool") (1985), and "Karaniwang Tao" ("Ordinary Person") (1985). He was the songwriter of the tune for Bulwagang Gantimpala's Ibong Adarna, a 1989 musical drama with a libretto written by Rene O. Villanueva.[1] Bartolome was a former member and trustee of the Filipino Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, Inc. (FILSCAP),[3] an organization in the Philippines responsible for collecting royalties for its members after holding public performances and for songs used on television and radio broadcast, movies and the like[4] FILSCAP's responsibility of royalty collecting extends to members of foreign affiliates such as the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (Ascap), Broadcast Music Inc. (BMI), Composers and Authors Society of Hong Kong (CASH), and more than fifty other organizations.[2]


  • Katotohanan Lamang (Akasha Records, 1988)


  1. ^ a b c d e Heber Gonzalez Bartolome, Cultural Heritage, globalpinoy.com
  2. ^ a b c Ramos, Neil. Heber Bartolome on the warpath against FILSCAP Archived 2 March 2010 at the Wayback Machine, 24 February 2010, mb.com.ph
  3. ^ PEP: FILSCAP weighs in on Heber Bartolome copyright issue, gmanews.tv, 2 March 2010.
  4. ^ Concepcion, Pocholo. Musicians’ group kicks out Heber Bartolome in money squabble Archived 28 February 2010 at the Wayback Machine, Philippine Daily Inquirer, 25 February 2010.

External linksEdit