25 January 2011

Patronizing foreign concerts

Taylor Swift or Kuh Ledesma?

The answer would depend on how old the prospective viewers are. In the Philippines, almost 60% are aged 15-64. If all of them would be willing to spend P12,680 for a one-time event is beside the point Pilipina Ako is going to make.

The fact is not few would prefer an American pop singer from a Filipino pop and jazz celebrity. And it isn’t about age. If it is, The Cascades wouldn’t have come back after singing in the country four years ago.

Kasi ang nangyayari ang hirap talaga,” Vice President Gary Valenciano for internal affairs of the Organisasyon ng Pilipinong Mang-Aawit (OPM) said. “Unang-una ang sponsors mo they would rather support kung ano ang bihirang makita ng tao. But that's okay for as long as ‘yong hindi tipong one after the other [ang show]."

"May ibang nagsasabi, ‘Bakit kayo pumupunta sa States?' Ang laki-laki naman ng United States. At kahit mag-concert tour ka sa States you will not probably encounter any problem unless mayroon kang kasabay na Pinoy artist na ganoon din ang route.”

Last year, the Philippine music scene was serenaded by the Jung Ji-Hoon (Rain), Jay Sean, Kelly Rowland, John Mayer, Jack Jones, David Foster, and Adam Lambert.

Online buddy Apang dissents regulating how often foreign acts can come over. “This only goes to show how incompetent nowadays our local artists and singers are. No matter how many foreign acts come here, if local artists and singers are like the same as back in the day, people will also watch them.”

”Sadly, the present OPM is just a shadow of what it once was. Gary V doesn’t sing and compose songs anymore like he used to; Martin Nievera does only revivals lately; and we don’t have the likes of NeoColors, ballads of Kuh Ledesma, Zsazsa Padilla, Joey Albert, Jam Morales and bands like the Minstrels and Apo Hiking. Even our underground music was way better than before. No more Eraserheads. Only Wolfgang is saving the day.”

But user ? agrees obliging foreign artists to pay taxes. “Let’s curb colonial mentality by promoting our own. We’re such American slaves that we idolize people without talent just because of the color of their skin. Regulation is an intelligent choice, unless brainless lawmakers choose to hold the reigns on this issue.”

Freedom ends when another's freedom begin. Much as international artists are welcome to perform in the country, native artists have the right to suggest fees from them. Much as every Filipino are free to choose and idolize, an unwritten rule that would uplift local artists’ morale should be implemented.


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