Jun Lopito, Pinoy rock guitarist and icon, passes away

Published March 30, 2022, 12:44 PM

by Punch Liwanag

Pinoy guitarist and singer-songwriter Jun Lopito, died Tuesday, March 29.

Tributes from Pinoy music fans poured out in social media in praise and tribute of the man and musician.

Jun played with rock icons The Jerks, Pepe smith, Gary Perez and Edmond Fortuno of The Airwaves, Sampaguita, Pinikpikan, Cocojam, Spy, and Grace Nono, among others.

He had his own band the Bodhisattvas (Jun Lopito and the Bodhisattvas) that made its mark on the Pinoy rock scene in the mid 90’s.

Jun is considered by the Pinoy rock community as one of its biggest guitar heroes.

Pinoy rock personalities such as Cooky Chua, Francis Reyes of The Dawn and others paid tribute to Jun Lopito on his passing.

Cooky Chua simply said: “Paalam nyor Jun Lopito. Salamat sa musika.”

In his own Facebook post, The Dawn guitarist Francis Reyes referred to Lopito as “the real deal” and “Jeff Beck ng Pinas.” The latter comment, alluded to the similarities in style and rockstar cool vibe that Lopito had in common with the English rock icon.

Jun practiced Buddhism and his affiliation with Buddhism seeped through to his music. His band’s name The Boddhisatvas came from the Mahayana Buddhist word that means “a person who is able to reach nirvana but delays doing so through compassion for suffering beings,” and has strived for enlightenment through music.

Jun, real name Wilfrando Lavalan Jr. died in the early hours of March 29. An official cause of death is unavailable at this time. He was 64.

He was an active musician until the time of his death.

He released the album “BODHI3NMRK” under the Offshore Music label back in 2020, his first recording in 25 years.

 
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