Stories, essays, readings, facts and trivia on Philippine music and the local music industry

Featured Song: Kundiman ni Rizal

Jose Rizal’s nationalism did not only manifest itself in his novels and essays, but also in song, particularly the kundiman. The choice of the musical form was, of course, fitting—because more than just a song about love, the kundiman is a song about intense devotion.

In the melancholic Kundiman ni Rizal, he deplored the country’s state of oppression in the hands of colonizers. However, he still expressed the hope that someday, the name “Filipino” would be admired, even if bloodshed became necessary to reach that goal.

This song, like the novels Noli Me Tángere and El Filibusterismo, was used by Spanish prosecutors to build a case against Rizal. In fact, the line, “Ibubuhos namin ang dugo’y ibabaha,” was used as evidence during his trial.

Tunay ngayong umid yaring dila at puso
Ang bayan palibhasa’y api, lupig, at sumuko
Sa kapabayaan ng nagturong puno
Paglaya’y nawala, ligaya’y naglaho
Tunay ngayong ligaya’y naglaho

Datapwat muling sisikat ang maligayang araw
Pilit na maliligtas ang inaping bayan
Magbabalik man din at laging sisilang
Ang ngalang Pilipino sa sandaigdigan
At laging sisilang ang ngalang Pilipino sa sandaigdigan

Ibubuhos namin ang dugo’y ibabaha
Nang matubos lamang ang sa Amang lupa
Hanggang ’di sumapit ang panahong tadhana
Sinta ay tatahimik, tutuloy ang nasa

Sinta ay tatahimik, tutuloy ang nasa
O, bayan kong mahal
Sintang Pilipinas

Truly, the tongue and heart are silenced
For the country has been oppressed, conquered, and made to yield
Because of the neglect of the colonizers
Freedom is lost, happiness has died
Truly, happiness has died

Nevertheless, the joyful sun shall rise once more
Striving to liberate the oppressed nation
The name Filipino will return and rise evermore the world over
The name Filipino will rise evermore the world over

We shall pour out our blood in a flood
If only to redeem our Fatherland
(But) Until the destined moment (when)
Our beloved is at peace, our yearning will live on.

(Till) Our beloved is at peace
Our yearning will live on
Oh, my beloved country
Beloved Philippines


Kundiman ni Rizal (1997). Tawid Publications.