Lou Bonnevie


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In 1999, Philippine female singer Lou Bonnevie released Tisay ("Tisay" is slang for "Girl With Light Skin"). Bonnevie's 1994 album She Knows How to Rock was, as the title implies, steeped in rock music, with touches of blues and gospel. Tisay finds Bonnevie moving in a completely different direction, as the music isn't rock, but is more ethnic/folk-based, and has an overall world-music ambience that's even new age-ish in parts. Western musical influences are heard and used, but are mostly utilized in ways that sound different.

The songs are creatively assembled and feature many imaginative parts. "Langit Na Ba" ("Is It Heaven"), for example, features a guest vocalist singing a hauntingly beautiful Celtic-influenced line. "Gusto Kong Maging Ikaw" ("I Want to Be You") utilizes a penetrating Mediterranean-type sound, while "Tuloy Ang Ikot" ("Continue Going Around in Circles") and "Salamat" ("Thank You") contain wonderful Asian-sounding elements. "Tuloy Ang Ikot" is a mesmerizing, highly creative song, and also includes a searing guitar solo.

Bonnevie's singing style is also different this time around. Where her voice was raspy and geared toward rock on She Knows How to Rock, her singing is more refined and delicate here, particularly on side one of the cassette. Her voice sounds stronger and more forceful on side two, but still reveals little, if any, of the raspiness that marked She Knows How to Rock.

Because the Philippines is highly geared toward straightforward Western music, Tisay did not receive the amount of attention and respect it deserved.