Singer, TV host, and OPM (Original Pilipino Music) legend Rico J. Puno (age 65), aka “The Total Entertainer”, died of heart failure at 1:56 AM at St. Luke’s Medical Center Global City on October 30, 2018.
Rico Puno underwent triple heart bypass in 2015 and had angioplasty in December 2017. Shortly after his angioplasty, he got a new pacemaker.
He was hospitalized in early October 2018 because of complications from diabetes.
Rico Puno was supposed to have a concert titled “Sana Tatlo ang Puso Ko” on November 23 at The Theatre in Solaire, together with comediennes Marissa Sanchez and Giselle Sanchez.
In an interview with ABS-CBN, Rico Puno’s daughter Tosca Puno said her father “was still in high spirits last night and looking forward to his shows and the ABS-CBN Station ID shoot.”
The OPM icon was also seeking to be re-elected as a Makati City councilor in the upcoming 2019 mid-term elections.
Rico Puno as OPM pioneer
Rico Puno is credited as one of the pioneers of OPM. He started the trend of incorporating Tagalog lyrics in foreign songs.
Puno’s version of Barbra Streisand’s “The Way We Were” became a hit in the 1970’s, making him a household name during that time.
Other hits of Rico Puno include “Kapalaran”, “Buhat”, “Macho Guwapito” and “May bukas Pa”.