PhilPop goes international with #MusicBreakingBoarders

July 4, 2020 - 9:49 AM
This December 2018 photo shows National artist and PhilPop Music Fest Foundation Board Member Ryan Cayabyab taking a selfie with the Philpop 2018 grand winner Chud Festejo. (PhilPop/Handout photo)

PhilPop, the country’s premier songwriting competition, eyes to penetrate the music landscape of the Asia Pacific Region and beyond by promoting homegrown music and forging regional ties.

Breaking borders

With its new tagline, #MusicBreakingBorders, PhilPop is committed to celebrating and the diverse appeal of Filipino music through its songwriting festival this year.

Philpop Music Festival 2018. (Philpop/Handout photo)

For National artist and PhilPop Music Fest Foundation Board Member Ryan Cayabyab, the Original Pilipino Music becomes “more colorful and more diverse when we tear down the barriers that separate us.”

“The color that each language brings, the unique stories that each music creator conjures or creates, and the diversity of possible creations to choose from makes for a more exciting direction for Philippine popular music to take,” Cayabyab, also the boot camp master said in a statement.

“Hence, we in Philpop has adopted the theme, Music Breaking Borders to achieve what we have set out. The other facet of Philpop’s #MusicBreakingBorders is, you probably have guessed – the task of Philippine pop music to break barriers in the international scene,” he added.

Folk icon Noel Cabangon, also echoed the same sentiments and said that this year’s competition, that seeks to break borders, may serve as an opportunity to empower underrated music talents from different parts of the country and giving voice to new and original Filipino pop songs.

“The idea of breaking borders is to somehow break the ‘monopoly’ of music emanating from the National Capital Region,” Cabangon, also the boot camp coach said.

“We have to admit that there is a diverse musical sound of diverse influences from the regions. Music has been one of the popular art forms that expresses the culture and way of life of the people from the region,” he added.

Cabangon stressed that he’s not just talking about indigenous ideas but also the distinct character of people and their sensibility.

“#MusicBreakingBorders is also not just an accommodation of music from the other parts of the country, but the idea being inclusive, in the sense of original Filipino music,” the veteran singer said.

“We somehow want to break the wall of confinement in the center and allow/open the arena, and create a broader stream. Somehow this broader stream can lead all of us to the sea and to the ocean, where borders are opening up to new ideas,” he added.

PhilPop Music Fest Foundation Executive Director Dinah Remolacio likewise said that they want to “diversify the winning entries in every festival.”

Call for new compositions

The 2020 PhilPop Music Festival, started accepting entries from five different clusters nationwide including Northern Luzon, Southern Luzon, Visayas, Mindanao, the National Capital Region since April 25.

More than a thousand entries have already been submitted with original and unpublished compositions not restricted to any genre, and written in various languages—from English to Filipino, from Bicolano to Ilocano, from Cebuano to Waray, and more. They are still accepting entries until July 4 via their official website.

Poster from PhilPop

The biennial music festival is an initiative of the PhilPop Music Foundation, chaired by Manny Pangilinan. It is also co-presented by SMART, MERALCO, and MAYNILAD.

Last July 2, PhilPop also announced that it partnered with Warner Music Philippines as part of its mission to promote quality Filipino music on a bigger, global scale.

Going global

“The value that we bring to this equation, especially connected to the fact that it’s about #MusicBreakingBorders, is that we are international major record label. We do have a network of A&R and marketing people all around the world,” Ian Monsod, managing director of Warner Music Philippines said during a virtual press briefing.

“In terms of judging and production process, we’ll bring that unique value of this presence to the project. We share this ambition to elevate the Filipino artist to a global stage. It’s a difficult path, but I think with our partnership, we can improve the odds,” he added.

With this partnership, the top 15 songs will be given a chance to work with the record label and compete in the final rounds.

Top 3 entries will be awarded the following cash prizes from the MVP Group of Companies:

  • P1,000,000 for the Grand Champion
  • P500,000 for the 1st runner up
  • P250,000 for the 2nd runner up

This year’s PhilPop finals night is slated November 14.

In the last two decades PhilPop has produced some of the biggest songs, including hits performed, composed and written by Ben&Ben, Thyro and Yumi, The Itchyworms, Sam Concepcion, Johnoy Danao, Kyla, and Joey Ayala, among others. —Rosette Adel