August 12, 2014

I do want to make a comment here regarding those guitar players who early on have made this tune visible in many ways and brought it to the forefront for all those who love this kind of music. Youtubers like Stratpeter, BurnsErnst and special thanks to Rudy Dela Vega. There are of course many others who have taken an interest in this tune and worked with it. Good on ya. Thanks guys.

I have posted a remix of this tune. It's at the top of the playlist (Jun 11, 2016).

About this Video
This tune has been around for quite some time (about 30 to 40 years) and recorded by several (not so well known) artists over that period before it caught on here in North America as a cult piece.

Originally written and recorded by Danny Holmsen (at times mistaken for D. Holmer), The Ramrods, Electromaniacs and Cesar Manalili, all took a stab at it. Each iteration sounding more modern and smoother than the last, but keeping the style and arrangement more or less intact.

I would say the last version by Cesar Manalili is a more nicely arranged and orchestrated version, with the Electromaniacs release not far behind. Just as a note, you will notice that the Manalili and Electromaniacs versions has a different opening series of bars.

Faithful Love has quite a strong following with both Filipinos, where the tune gained popularity (Manalili, Electromanics) and the eclectic music scene. It is not unusual to have Faithful Love requested at a Filipino wedding event even today.

I'm playing this musical work in the Key A and to the original Manalili arrangement. Though the original tune was written in the key of A, I've heard other amateur renditions in other keys and free improv styles.

I don't have the original CD's where more information like publishing house markings would be present. If there is someone with this information, please forward it and I will gladly post it here in an update.

What gives this song its appeal is its hook of nicely layered notes in the main verses. The rest of the tune (the break or bridge section) is somewhat flat and loses a bit of its steam in the original, but applying some improvisation fills this void. Non-the-less, Manalili's Faithful Love is a relatively straight forward tune to learn and is a joy to play.

See below for additional information that may be of interest.

...oops pay attention to these points
There are two areas in which to pay attention when playing this tune, and it has to do with good 'ol timing. One is in the layered 'hook' section where the notes must be held and sustained while moving to the next set of notes - almost a note rolling action, and second is the bridge notes before playing the chorus the second time around.

Lastly, listen for the trademark Manalili sound in his somewhat exaggerated (but nice) reverb setting and subtle vibrato action. His reverb is typically deep and sustained without any noticeable fading. So if you have effects pedals that can provide this feature you will be using it. I use the Strymon Flint effects box to give me my reverb and tremolo effect. Lots of diddlin' here. Still workin' on it.

Keep in mind as well, that the effects you are hearing could very well be studio magic at play and getting 'that sound' may be quite difficult if you want to perform it live.
Equipment Used and Settings

  • Fender JazzMaster; pickup switch in treble position, all controls mid range
  • Strymon Flint Reverb is used
  • Vibrato bar (yes it's called tremolo) is used to get that nice twangy effect

Artists and Versions
Listen for the Manalili, Electromaniacs versions on my video Playlist above this text. See Playlist location in upper left hand corner of the video frame - Playlist.

Audio and Video Production Tools
Audio recording is done using REAPER DAW, ART DI boxes and an ART USB based audio interface to get guitar sound to DAW.

Video production work is done in Adobe Premiere CS5. Original and final Video resolution is 1280x720p. Compression is about 7-10mb/s MP4. Youtube will transcode to their transmission specs anyway.

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