Ric Segreto

Ric Segreto (September 27, 1952 - September 6, 1998) born Richard Vincent Segreto Macaraeg, was an Filipino-American recording artist, singer-songwriter, actor, teacher, journalist and historian, who became popular in the Philippines. Ric Segreto was born in Brooklyn, New York to Bridget Segreto, an Italian-American and Godofredo G. Macaraeg, a Filipino. Ric, the second son of five brothers and one sister was raised for the first five years of his life in New York by his mother, a dietician at a New York hospital and his father was an abdominal surgeon. Ric's father, born in Malasiqui, Pangasinan, educated at the University of Santo Tomas in Manila, was a medic with the rank of Captain in the Philippine Army during World War II. He was captured by Japanese soldiers and made to march in the Bataan Death March and was imprisoned on Corregidor Island. After the War, Dr. Macaraeg travelled to the United States and attended Johns Hopkins University. Dr. Macaraeg was the first Filipino diplomate to the F.A.C.S. Both Ric's parents' love for music influenced his interest in music and singing. The family moved to the Philippines in 1957, where his father set up a physician's practice. Ric went to Lourdes school in Quezon City. In 1959, the family moved to Guam, where growing up in a milder environment furthered Ric's interest in the performing arts. Ric played in rock bands with his brother and with the grandsons of Filipino composer Nicanor Abelardo. At the ages of 12 and 13, The Asteroids, Ric's band members, played military bars. Ric was then sent back to the Philippines to attend high school at the Ateneo de Manila. While there he became friends immediately with Jim Paredes, who later became a member of The Apo Hiking Society. After a year at Ateneo, Ric returned to Guam. He then formed a band that included his brother, Goff,Victor James, Dean Sampaio, and Joe Guererro, called the Salvation Army, singing and playing all over the island every weekend till he finished out his high school. Going to college made Ric look to the States and choosing Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska, he majored in history. During his college years, Ric played in bar bands for military service men in Bellevue, Nebraska (home to Offutt Air Force Base) and acted in college plays. After graduation in 1974, he toured the US with a show band, singing and playing bass guitar at Mountain Shadows in Scottsdale, Arizona, Harvey's in Reno and clubs in Las Vegas, Nevada. Meeting up with another show band bound for Japan out of San Diego, California, Ric played for Japanese audiences during the early 80's. Yearning to reconnect with his Filipino roots, Ric left Japan and went to the Philippines. He played in a few clubs singing until he was discovered by VICOR record company. His first hit "Kahit Konting Pagtingin" was an immediate favorite and launched his career as a Filipino recording artist. Performing many concerts, TV appearances around the world. A lover of history and education Ric's fondness for the written word led him to take a break from performing and dedicate some of his passion to teaching and writing. Touching base with his other home, Ric became a teacher in Guam and endeavored to enlighten high school students with his flair for history. He submitted sociology articles to a local Philippine magazine, MAN Magazine, after returning to the Philippines to record another album. Ric was also working on a thesis that addressed the Philippine music industry. While teaching in Guam, Ric supplemented his free time playing music at local beach bars and night clubs with his younger brother Gordon. Gordon was always frustrated by Ric's refusal to practice and his outright willingness to play a song that they had never played before. By doing this, Ric was trying to sharpen his brother Gordon's chops and musical prowess. Which in a sense worked but Gordon still had to endure many embarrassing moments. Ric was also known for having Gordon start a set and then even before the first verse was started Ric would say, “I'll be right back”. Well into the song Gordon would find Ric sitting at the bar enjoying a beer and happily waving at him from the audience. The band Ric and Gordon started was called the Bunelos Brothers, (name provided by Gordon). Ric being the professional he was thought that name was perfect for their little music project. Not too serious but just serious enough to provoke controversy. And besides, everyone loves Bunelos! The Bunelos Brothers were a regular feature at Tahiti Rama, Barney's Beach House and The Signature Pub. Their repertoire consisted mainly of Beatles music, easy listing tunes, MOR, and ballads. Their voices were homogenous and harmonies came very easily for them. Just like brothers all over the globe, not every decision was 100% mutual. There were fights on stage but most of them were mainly scowling looks and failures to sing back up. In some cases Gordon would get even with Ric and refuse to play. Ric would give his brother the “I’m going to kill you look” but Gordon knew his bark was worse than his bite. The Bunelos Brothers played together for 3 years going through an assortment of other members, including their eldest brother Goff. On September 6, 1998 at around 12:15 PM, on a Sunday, Ric was riding his motorcycle from his home in Makati. He was killed in an accident on the Makati - Buendia Flyover, when he ran into or was hit by debris, possibly caused by workers on a construction project. He was survived by his wife Erica and their son Darby Macaraeg. At the time Ric's career took off the trend in the Philippines had shifted back to English original Filipino songs. He collaborated with Levi Celerio, Odette Quesada, Bodjie Dasig, Gerry Paraiso and Amado Trivino. Ric's first album was entitled Segreto, followed by Man of the Hour. Since then there were several compilation albums.

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