Next wave of Visayan hits

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Monday, March 3, 2014


TO STATE it simply, these artists are ready to get the word out that Visayan pop songs are just as great—if not—better than any other radio pop hit. Of course, this isn’t a statement they would make only to brag, but rather, a cause they all believe in supporting as well.

Here in this article are the six finalists chosen to compete during this year’s Vispop 2.0 songwriting campaign. The competition basically encourages Visayan-speaking composers and music enthusiasts to write quality Visayan songs that speak of today’s generation. Vispop is a brainchild of Artist KO, a non-profit, non-stock organization that supports individual creativity, skill and talent.

Since the first batch of Vispop finalists were revealed, the songs have taken the country by storm. Chart-topping songs like Duyog and Balay ni Mayang have become household tunes; In fact, the latter landed third in a popular radio station’s countdown in Manila. From 120 entries submitted, here are the six finalists. Also, here’s what they have to say about the importance of hearing Visayan songs on the radio.

“There are many Visayan-speaking individuals in the country who appreciate and relate to Visayan music so OPM (Original Pilipino Music) shouldn’t be exclusive only to English and Tagalog songs. Visayan songs definitely have a share out there for music lovers. It is fortunate that more Filipinos are expanding their taste in music and including Visayan songs in their playlists. Now anything Bisaya is widely recognized and accepted. It shows that ang mga Bisaya kaya rang makig competensya sa mga ininglis ug tinagalog basta naa lay suporta.”

- Kaye Margaja Dinauto and Keith Jonas
Margaja Dinauto

“[Visayan songs on the radio] are very significant because it will help in lifting up our own kind of music; Visayan music. This was proven when bisrock became popular, Vispop 1.0’s products and other bisaya songs. During my stay in Manila, I’ve observed that even majority of the locals there listen to Visayan songs.
- Kenneth Corvera

“Cebu right now is pretty progressive and when it comes to music, we can’t help but compete with the industry in Luzon. Of course, we also want to be proud of our very own original material written in our dialect. I think it’s important for us to continually find ways how to promote bisaya songs, because at the end of the day, Visayan songs are OPM songs as well.”
- Gasser Perez

“It’s the first language I speak, and so do millions of other music lovers in the Philippines. It makes sense to write songs in the Visayan language in the genre that most appeals to listeners. I believe that with the right guidance, music enthusiasts such as myself can craft quality songs that would speak to music lovers of this generation.”
- Johnever Canlom

“Writing and producing Visayan pop hits would mean that OPM isn’t all in the Tagalog language. This country would then appreciate better if they hear more of good Bisaya music; they will beg for it. Visayan songs should be given a chance to be showcased to the whole Philippines, and better yet, to the whole world because after all, it only shows how diverse and unique talent can be in all parts of this country.”
- Jerika Teodorico

“The importance of writing and producing Visayan songs is to encourage Cebuano people to write and make music using our dialect and to make them hear and see that dili tanang visayan song is “baduy” and that Visayan music is also competent in the music industry.
- Michael Vincent Tuico

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on March 04, 2014.

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