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WATCH: The *Heartwarming* Story Behind The Hit '90s Song 'Harana'

"Uso pa ba ang harana?"

Chances are, you sang that line in your head just now. In fact, that question from the hit '90s song "Haranastill rings true today. You've probably only seen it in old Filipino movies as everything that we do nowadays, even dating, is done online. 

If you're not familiar with what it is, a harana is a traditional form of courtship where a guy introduces himself to a girl he likes by singing outside her house or underneath her window, usually at night. There is actually a code of conduct and a type of music specific to harana.

Although nobody really 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. The lyrics were relatively quite easy. It's straightforward because it was so real," he told Summit OG in an exclusive interview. 

Eric was part of the group called Harana Boys. He mentioned that back in the day, the group would usually do three or four haranas and it'd be performed in Antipolo. He reminisced, "Laging malamig yung hangin. The sky [was usually] clear [and] it was always fun. We'd wear [our barongs]. It's putting together everything that we were doing and trying to capture that heart, that special thing that we were doing."

"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. But when I got to the refrain, it flowed. I didn't even have to think about it," Eric shared.

Fun fact: He 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. ICYDK, Tony did a version of the song on Ryan Ryan Musikahan"Pasa-pasa lang talaga. I shared it with friends and it just kept on going. I'm happy that it connects with a lot of people," Eric said.

the story behind the song harana
COURTESY OF ERIC YAPTANGCO

There's actually one more stanza you've probably never heard before.

Eventually, the band Parokya ni Edgar picked up the song. But what you probably didn't know is that they ended it with the refrain. Tony Lambino's version has the original stanza with lyrics that bring the song together. Eric explained, "It goes back and it slows down again. It ends very, very simply, 'At mahal kita, sinta.'"

Watch the full Summit OG interview below to see how the last stanza of Harana brings the story of the song to a heartwarming close.

What's your favorite '90s song? Share it with us in the comments!

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