You’re probably singing it in your head right now. That question from the hit 90s song Harana still rings true today. You’ve probably only seen it in old Filipino movies as everything that we do nowadays, even dating, is done online.
Harana is a traditional form of courtship where a guy introduces himself to a girl he likes by singing underneath her window, usually at night. There is actually a code of conduct and a type of music specific to harana.
Although nobody practices it anymore, harana became popular again when composer Eric Yaptangco wrote a song about it. “I wrote the song Harana when I was 19 years old,” he told Summit OG in an exclusive interview.
“The lyrics were relatively quite easy,” he shared. “It’s straightforward because it was so real.”
Eric was a part of the group called Harana Boys. “Siguro at that time, we’d probably have done three or four haranas and we do it in Antipolo,” he reminisced.
“Laging malamig ‘yung hangin, the sky is clear,” he added. “It was always fun. We’d wear barong. It’s putting together everything that we were doing and trying to capture that heart, that special thing that we were doing.”
Eric said it wasn’t just his story, but the story of the whole group. “I was the guy who was always playing the guitar,” he explained.
They try to do their haranas properly. “We need to practice. At least sabay-sabay, maski sablay-sablay,” he joked. “We need to dress up so that we don’t look like we’re making fun of this.”
"Puno ang langit ng bituin at kay lamig pa ng hangin."
“When I started writing the first and second stanza, it was pretty good, typical,” he said. “But when I got to the refrain, it flowed. I didn’t even have to think about it.”
Eric never submitted it for publication. He did give it to his friend singer and radio DJ Cholo Mallilin, who then gave it to singer Tony Lambino, who did a version of the song on Ryan Ryan Musikahan.
“Pasa-pasa lang talaga,” Eric said. “I shared it with friends and it just kept on going. I’m happy that it connects with a lot of people.”
There’s one more stanza you’ve probably never heard before
The band Parokya ni Edgar picked up the song, but they ended it with the refrain. Tony Lambino’s version has the original stanza with lyrics that bring the song together.
“It goes back and it slows down again,” Eric explains. “It ends very, very simply, ‘At mahal kita, sinta.’”
Watch the full Summit OG interview below to see how that last stanza brings the story of the song "Harana" to a heartwarming close.
What’s your favorite '90s song? Share it in the comment section!
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