“It’s the coco fruit of the coco tree from the coco palm family.”

Great Philippine Song Hits“Da Coconut Nut” by Smokey Mountain | This one’s another last-minute inclusion, as I actually planned to write about “Paraiso”. But then I rediscovered both this song, and the revolving door that was teen group Smokey Mountain. Formed by musical great Ryan Cayabyab and producer Judd Berlin, it initially had Geneva Cruz, Jeffrey Hidalgo and Tony Lambino (who, yes, performed the original “Harana”). The three left the group to pursue either a solo career or studies, and the group reformed with James Coronel, the last remaining original, and another bunch of kids: members have since included Shar Santos, Chedi Vergara and, for a blip, Anna Fegi. Across the three line-ups there have been a bunch of hits: “Kailan” from the early days, “Kahit Habang Buhay” from the second line-up… and yes, the group’s been mostly forgotten, but its members have gone on to fame (Geneva Cruz being, of course, the most popular example). Arguably Smokey Mountain’s a relic of a bygone era – you weren’t there to be famous; you were there to sing. And producers weren’t just anonymous generic hit-churners. [NB]

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