Bongga Ka Day!

Forgive me for being cheap. It has been so long since I did this that I think I would play safe. So this time I will analyze the popular videoke/disco song, “Bongga Ka Day.” I think that, popular as it is, young people today don’t appreciate it as well as their parents, and for good reason. A lot of the terms there are intelligible to today’s young set of gimikeras and gimikeros, it is a wonder the song survived in FM radio playlists at all, especially since it is over 30 years old. So now, neckromancer is here to help you out, or not, as the case may seem:

Bongga Ka Day!

Hala, hala, hala, hala (hala, is gay lingo for sexual activities I am not familiar with, but here it means “hail!,” as the song describes a partygoer’s grand entrance to the club. The song predates 50 Cent’s “In Da Club” by more than 20 years, and is a better club anthem.)
Hala, hala, hala, hala

Lahat ay nagulat nang buksan ang pinto (Everyone was surprised when the door was opened. Maybe they thought it was the police.)
Sayaw ng mga tao’y biglang nahinto (The dancers stopped dancing. Maybe they thought it was a raid?)
Buhok mo’y Budji, talampaka’y Gucci (I was thinking the girl’s hair was like a budgerigar’s. But it is another name for a lovebird and Budji referred to Budji “Budjiwara” Layug, a hairstylist famous back then and associated with the old club Coco Banana. Gucci’s an easy giveaway. Just ask Jinkee.)
Suot mo’y gawa ni Pitoy (This referred to Pitoy Moreno.)
Di nanggaling kay Eloy (Back before “UK,” there were thrift shops who sold secondhand, yet still serviceable and even fashionable clothing. One of the most famous was Eloy’s. They had a branch in Legarda Avenue.)
Ahh, hay!
[ Lyrics from: ]
Bongga ka, ‘Day (I used to think “bongga” as a portmanteau of “bobo” and “gaga.” It is merely gay lingo for fashionable.)
Bongga ka, ‘Day
Sige lang, sige lang, itaas ang kilay (Somehow, I constantly think of Raymond Gutierrez during this line.)
Bongga ka, ‘Day
Bongga ka, ‘Day
Sige lang, sige lang, itaas ang kilay

Hala, hala, hala, hala

Tapos na ang araw ng hirap at gutom (Now the song explains the reason why the heroine goes out to party every night. Annie Batungbakal, in the movie of the same name, wants to meet someone rich to elevate herself up in society. She and people like her think that in order to be rich, they must look, act, and think like rich people. That predates The Secret by Rhonda Byrne by several years.)
Swerte ka’t nakahagip ng madatong
Buhoy mo’y Budji, talampaka’y Gucci
Suot mo’y Gawa ni Pitoy
Di nanggaling kay Eloy
Ahh, hay!

[Repeat Chorus]


Bongga Ka Day is phenomenal. It transcends age, sexual persuasion and language to bring its message of economic hope to the people of the Philippines. Thanks, Hotdog.

Here’s a video of a great performance of Bongga Ka Day:

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