Can you Fili-pito?


It’s a bird sound.

It’s an act of culinary activism.

It’s the most exciting Filipino contribution to the music scene since DJ Scratching

It’s the Fili-pito! The Polvoron Whistle!

Say what?

Polvoron is a Filipino  shortbread-style dessert made of toasted flour, powdered milk, sugar, butter and flavorings. A Filipino game calls for popping the cookie then immediately attempting to whistle through a mouthful of the dry crumbly stuff. (Polvo is the Spanish word for powder.) The result is more spray than sound, more sputter than song. This uniquely Filipino sound is weirdest tone since Scratching and is about to hit the mike!

At the Saturday September 21, 2019  SF Undiscovered Night Market — themed SeptYamber for ube purple yam— featured artist O.M.France Viana, the empress of ube art, will host an open call for the “Fili-pito” (pito is the Filipino word for whistle), aided and abetted by inimitable musicians Mister REY and DJ ET IV at the Flower Lounge stage. At the top of the hour at 5pm and 7pm, France will serve ube-flavored polvoron, and invite participants to whistle a tune selected by Mister REY and DJ ET IV who will cue and scratch.

Culinary Activism meets revolutionary music. Polvoron is a dessert with a long colonial history. Introduced by the Arab Moors as an almond flour-based dessert when they invaded Spain, the cookie made its way into the cuisine of all the Spanish colonies including the Philippines. There it continued to be made after the American “liberation” with the added ingredient of powdered milk left behind from U.S. army rations. To cap it off, this Filipino dessert is traditionally wrapped in crepe paper – a legacy of the Japanese occupation! So expelling polvoron is tantamount to spitting out four generations of colonizers in one grand gesture!

The Fili-pito, the wildest FilAm contribution to music since DJ Scratching, will make you drool (not). Come help us make music history. Or, more likely, make a historic mess!

Saturday Sept 21, 2019. 5-8 p.m. Undiscovered is free and open to the public. Featuring food vendors, wares, crafts,  entertainment and more. Enter at 598 Stevenson, corner 7th street in the heart of SOMA Pilipinas.