Ever had an unforgettable encounter with someone you’re a fan of? 24-year-old Martti Franca has. This musician and marketing strategist has been a fan of Jose Mari Chan since he was 7 or 8 because his mom was a fan and she made him listen to his music growing up.
However, the first time Martti heard of him was from a Lea Salonga concert. “She had her own rendition of ‘Can We Just Stop and Talk Awhile’. Absolutely loved that song,” Martti shares. “Everything else followed like ‘Beautiful Girl’, ‘Constant Change’, and of course when you’re in elementary, you’ve gotta learn all the moves to ‘Christmas in Our Hearts’.” So imagine Martti’s surprise when he met Jose Mari Chan himself at the airport one day.
Martti says the encounter was surprising in a good way. “When you approach a celebrity, you say hi, they say hello, you take a picture, then giggle off to your own business,” he explains, but Jose Mari Chan actually made time to make conversation! Martti shares that they talked about life, family, music, and business, before he offered to send Martti some CDs. “No one does that,” he exclaims. “And to actually receive it in the mail means he cares about people who listen to him. Truly admirable.”
“There are so many things to love about his music,” Martti gushes. “The timelessness of his music comes from a lot of things. Lyrically, he writes songs as if he’s speaking directly to you. For those at a loss of words, he says exactly what we means to say. ‘Beautiful girl wherever you are, I knew when I saw you, you had opened the door.’ Sakto eh. As a singer in the Philippine landscape, iba rin siya. While everyone’s trying to out-sing each other, here’s Jose Mari Chan singing as if he were whispering to you. That kind of singing is honest. Those words feel more real.”
After Martti’s post went viral, what really surprised him were the stories in the comment section. Apparently, he was not alone! A bunch of people started sending messages about their own experiences where Jose Mari Chan took the time to talk to them, and also send them signed CDs, some with personal messages. Some were from decades ago, and some were even sent abroad. “I guess I just wanted to thank him in behalf of all these fellow fans. He’s the perfect symbol of Christmas and he deserves more attention beyond the memes.” We couldn’t agree more!
Got any memorable celebrity encounters of your own to share? Share them with us!