By Nickie Wang
Seven emerging bands and one international music artist set the stage at the SM Mall of Asia Music Hall ablaze when MTV Emerge saw its culmination through a concert that celebrated Filipino culture and musical talent.
Pinoy international star and Black Eyed Peas member Apl.de.ap concluded the music event. Meanwhile, the bands called DRP, Faircatch, Mid Nasty, The Pin-Up Girls, Soul Brothers, The Band Glenn (TBG) and Urbanation impressed the audience with their talents through different genres of music ranging from edgy R&B to reggae, and from hard rock music to novel hip hop and pop rock.
The concert was set to introduce the seven bands that won a one-year recording contract with new music label called Jeepney Music. The contract includes artist management and promotion, digital distribution of three to six songs and a strategic marketing plan for them to be able to break into both the Philippine and international markets.
The lucky and talented seven bands were selected out of 1,858 entries received by the local franchise of MTV. From Oct. 5 to Nov. 15, MTV Philippines opened its doors to local musicians and invited them to upload samples of their original music on the MTV Emerge Web site. The search highlighted the global appeal of up-and-coming Filipino artists, and gave prominence to the Philippines’ musical heritage on the world stage.
The seven bands were judged based on their creativity, the originality of their craft, the eminence of their live performances, strong appeal to the public and the innovativeness of their lyrics and melody.
“The seven winners really are what we were looking for. Their unique talents very well characterize what MTV Emerge is about—homegrown talents trying to reach out to the world through their music while at the same time proudly representing our country,” said Jeepney Music founder Apl.de.ap, who also served as mentor to the seven bands.
MTV Emerge is a result of the collaboration of MTV, Secretary Ace Durano of the Tourism Department and Jeepney Music.
Take U to the Philippines
While Black Eyed Peas conquers the world with its funky hip hop music, Apl.de.ap, Allan Pineda Lindo in real life, has brought his Filipino culture into his collaboration with the band by including songs in their album that reflect his roots and background. Songs with Tagalog lyrics like “The Apl Song” (from the album Elephunk) and “Bebot” (Monkey Business) were among the tracks that make Filipinos proud every time they are being played.
Currently, Apl.de.ap is working on a solo project, which he plans to release after the Black Eyed Peas album.
“The solo album is not finished yet, I’m still planning to include some songs and do some more remix. One of the features in the album is the song ‘Handog,’ which is also my personal favorite,” the artist told Standard Today.
He recently disclosed in an interview that he would be collaborating with fellow Filipino-American Chad Hugo of The Neptunes and Illmind from G-Unit to incorporate traditional Filipino instruments into his songs. Last January, he made a debut with the single, “U Can Dream,” featuring Florante and Billy Crawford. In August, he released a music video for his second single named “Mama Filipina.”
With his worldwide fame, Apl.de.ap is keen in promoting the Philippines through a music video called “Take U to the Philippines.” The song invites the whole world to visit the country to have a one-of-a-kind experience.
“Well, the main purpose of the [music] video is to bring tourism to the Philippines,” said Apl.de.ap and shared with us that Boracay is one of his favorite places in the country.
Aside from promoting tourism and helping local music talents, Apl.de.ap has been active doing benefit shows for the less fortunate. This December, he will hold another benefit concert, which proceeds will go to the foundations he has been helping all these years.
“Growing up in the Philippines and being adopted in the US, an entirely different world of opportunities opened up for me. Jeepney Music is my way of providing local artists an outlet to showcase their talent. I was given an opportunity by people who now have significant contributions to my career. Doing benefit concert, on the other hand, is my way of helping those less fortunate,” he shared.
Apl.de.ap currently helps 20 young kids from Sapang Bato, an impoverished district in Angeles City in Pampanga where he was born, and been involved with the foundation that helped him get adopted in the US.