Filipino rock legend Jun Lopito has died at the age of 64.
The guitarist’s passing was announced on Wednesay (March 30) via his label Offshore Music.
“The Offshore Music family is honored to have been part of your journey, Jun. Thank you for the friendship and the music. You will be missed. Rest In Peace,” the label wrote on Facebook.
The Offshore Music family is honored to have been part of your journey, Jun. Thank you for the friendship and the music….
The late musician’s cause of death has yet to be revealed. He died on Tuesday night (March 29) per a Business Mirror report and journalist Aldus Santos.
Lopito was best known for his bluesy guitar style, and has performed with the likes of other Filipino icons such as The Jerks, Grace Nono and Joey “Pepe” Smith apart from his acclaimed solo work.
Lopito most recently released ‘BODHI3NMRK’, his first proper solo album in 25 years, in October 2020 via Offshore Music. The album was his first under the Jun Lopito and the Bodhisattvas banner since 1995.
Jun Lopito would make his professional debut at the young age of 17, when Joey “Pepe” Smith invited him to play alongside him, Edmond Fortuno and Gary Perez in the band Airwaves.
He would then go on to play with Sampaguita, Asin, The Jerks, and the world-fusion collective Pinikpikan, among many others.
In 1995, Lopito released the solo project, ‘Bodhisattvas’, which featured appearances from Joey “Pepe” Smith, Edmund Fortuno, Cocojam, Spy, The Jerks, and Grace Nono.
Looking back on his legendary status in the Filipino music scene, Lopito recalled in a 2020 interview with Aldus Santos for NME: “I didn’t know I was going to be a blues player. I thought I was going to be a pilot or a doctor or something. Maybe an owner of a drugstore.”
Lopito grew up surrounded by music, his brother-in-law Tony Jalandoni bandmates with the late Joey “Pepe” Smith. With Jalandoni and Smith always around, Lopito began honing his craft further, tagging along with them for band practice and jams: “I was with these rock stars, they were doing their thing, and I got to move with them. And I was [a kid], man!”
As a teen, Lopito played guitar in his church and would learn classic rock hits by ear, including George Harrison’s ‘My Sweet Lord’, Eric Clapton’s ‘Bell Bottom Blues’, Dave Mason’s ‘Look At You Look At Me’, and the Allman Brothers’ ‘In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed’.
Despite his fame, Lopito said: “I never considered myself a rock star. I just try to survive.” He added: “Fame and fortune is nothing if you’re not rich in self. What matters most are the treasures of your heart.”
Several artists and members of the Filipino music industry have paid tribute to the late rock icon following the news of his death.
Ely Buendia, who worked with Lopito on ‘BODHI3NMRK’, said on Twitter: “You are truly one of the greatest voices, songwriters and guitar players of OPM.” He also spoke to ABS-CBN News in the wake of Lopito’s passing: “We recorded Jun’s last album at my house and during that time I got to know Jun as a charming, funny, thoughtful and spiritual person.”
“It was a privilege even then to have been regaled by his rockstar stories and to hear him play guitar and sing from the soul. He was very professional and never complained when he was promoting his album. This is a sad day for Pinoy Rock. I will miss him terribly.”
Rock the Heavens, Jun Lopito. Thank you for the privilege of working on your music. You are truly one of the greatest voices, songwriters, and guitar players of OPM. My heart goes out to your family. NMRK
— Ely Buendia (@elybuendia9001) March 30, 2022
Grace Nono wrote: “You shared your immense gifts with us freely, humbly, lovingly, and joyfully. You walked among us with quiet gravity, like a steady chant that permeated the atmosphere, making things lighter, clearer, more potent.”
Read more tributes to Jun Lopito below.
Paalam, Jun Lopito, our Boddhisatva of music. You shared your immense gifts with us freely, humbly, lovingly, and…
Padayon, sir Jun Lopito
— Ebe Dancel (@ebedancel) March 30, 2022
Another good bye to another good friend 🤦♂️😏 🎸🤯I'm so bummed out 💔 Jun Lopito is gone. Seems like the 3rd Stone is…
I had gotten word last night of Jun Lopito's passing from a close friend and we refused to believe it. I cried but I had…
@opmarchive sends@our condolences to the family and friends of guitar legend, Jun Lopito. Rest in peace. Jun Lopito is…
JUN LOPITO a legendary guitarist in The Philippines passed away. I went to his 60th birthday show in Makati a few years…
Late 2000s, Salito Malca from Hit Productions called me, requesting if John Dinopol and I could play guitar on a track…
In 2017 I got to do a quick shoot with Sir Jun Lopito before his set. As we were searching for corners and places to…
such a sad day … Rest in eternal peace, kuya Jun Lopito.sa muling pagkikita.🎶🙏🏽🎶
It was a shock to me when i read about your sudden demise from Sammy 'Faith' Asuncion’s post. It was 5am and i had to go…
This is a developing story