Posts tagged ‘filipino’

From Manila streets to world stage: Arnel Pineda and his fairytale-like journey

By Omar Jaru
YouTube Review

In a lottery called life, fate sometimes, is very kind.

No. It’s not only about being a cover band singer waking up one day fronting a legendary rock band. It’s more of being a homeless kid living in the inhospitable and dark streets of Manila and waking up one day finding that the warm and well-lighted world stage is now his home.

Arnel Pineda’s story has been celebrated by the international media as a cyber-age Cinderella story. But unlike Cinderella, Arnel’s asset to stardom is his talent. But like Cinderella, he also has to fit in something: the voice left void by Journey’s most popular vocalist—Steve Perry, to forever alter his future.

Like in any fairytale story, Arnel had to suffer first to set the stage for his eventual redemption. As a kid, he had to endure painfully trying to live in the filthy and mean streets of Manila in an almost endless cycle of surviving and near-surviving.

Before that, he had to lose his mother to a lingering disease that did not only drain her body but also whatever savings they had. He had to stop attending school. He had to live in the streets.

Fast forward, years later, in the smoke-filled room in music bars in Hongkong, Arnel would sooth tired souls with his beautiful voice singing ballad and blues, rock and reggae. Consumed by his own loneliness and alienation, he went into drugs and all those stuff that band members most often fall into. In the process, he lost his voice—that precious voice honed for him by his mother. (In another fairytale story, Arielle–the Little Mermaid– also lost her voice.)

Fast rewind in Manila, years ago, whenever Barbra Streisand or Karen Carpenter’s voice would play through their transistor radio, his mother would call the young Arnel and they would sing together, sowing the seed in Arnel the talent that he would use years later to survive.

Back in Hongkong, his doctor said he could never sing again. Broken, he went back to Manila and later to his senses. He started all over again.

He found again his voice. Restarted singing in Manila bars. Recorded a forgettable album. Meanwhile, a friend who did not stop believing in him, kept posting Arnel’s videos on YouTube. Until one day, he got a phone call from guitar god Neil Schon of the legendary rock band Journey—the Prince in this fairytale story—and offered him a job he could not even dream of.

The rest is rock and roll history, and the denouement in Arnel’s fairytale story.

Journey is currently in Manila for a March 14 “homecoming” concert. Expectedly, Arnel is being given the much-deserved media attention and publicity. His countrymen and women are pouring their genuine support and admiration to Arnel for what he has become.

Meantime, in the dark, filthy and dangerous alleys of Manila, street kids continue trying to live the everyday cycle of surviving and near-surviving.

Let’s just wish that in next turning of the wheel, fate would also be kinder to them.

Advertisements

7 February 2010 at 12:03 am 1 comment

Filipino singing sensation Rhap Salazar wows Ellen DeGeneres

The Mindoro Post

MANILA, Philippines–“Wow!” “You’re unbelievable… unbelievable.”

Emmy-award winning talk show host Ellen DeGeneres was in awe as studio audience sprang to their feet following a powerful performance of 12-year-old Rhap Salazar on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.

“Your voice is incredible,” DeGeneres told Salazar, the singing sensation from the southern Pinamalayan town of Oriental Mindoro in the Philippines. “So much power and emotion. We can feel everything.”

Salazar’s live performance on the syndicated talk show on November 17 was his debut on US television. His voice seems seamless even as he hits the high notes in his rendition of Celine Dion’s “All By Myself.”

The Star Magic talent was chanced upon by Ellen DeGeneres on YouTube, exactly how she found the now world-famous Charice Pempengco. Aside from Salazar and Pempengco, Filipino singers Arnel Pineda of Journey, and Rin on the Rox guested on DeGeneres’ show.

Just recently, Salazar also wowed his international audience when he bagged two titles—Junior Grand Champion Solo Vocalist of the World and Junior Grand Champion Performer of the World—in the prestigious World Championships of Performing Arts (WCOPA).

Salazar, who got the 2005 Brightest Star award in the ABS-CBN’s “Little Big Star” singing competition, began belting out tunes when he was three years old. Then at seven, he was already joining music contests.

Today, the child singing sensation has his self-titled album already out in the market.

During a brief interview after his song number on DeGeneres’ program, Salazar told the visibly moved host: “I’ll never forget this.” To which DeGeneres, who replaced Paula Abdul as a judge of the ninth season of American Idol, responded: “I’ll never forget it either.”

So after The Ellen DeGeneres Show, will Oprah be next?

Read more news about Mindoro on The Mindoro Post

15 December 2009 at 11:49 pm Leave a comment

Journey concert in Blaisdell Arena, Honolulu, Hawaii (March 25, 2009)

YouTube Review

Here are some of YouTube videos on Journey concert in Honolulu, Hawaii held at Blaisdell Arena on March 25, 2009:

Video posted by owe129:

Videos posted by theyseebada:

27 March 2009 at 9:13 am 2 comments

YouTube videos on Journey Macau Concert

YouTube Review

Here are some of  Journey Macau concert videos posted on YouTube. The concert was held at  the Cotai Arena, Venetian Macau Resort Hotel on March 20, 2009.

Videos posted by jee2k:

Video posted by sissyganda1:

22 March 2009 at 11:16 am Leave a comment

Manila rocks with Journey (COMPLETE CONCERT VIDEOS)

YouTube Review

Here are the videos posted on YouTube by tecknowledgecenter on Journey’s Manila concert. These videos cover all the 25 songs played during the concert held at the Concert Ground of SM Mall of Asia on March 14, 2009. It was attended by 30,000 fans.

Videos posted by tecknowledgecenter:

15 March 2009 at 10:16 pm 17 comments

Journey concert in Osaka, Japan

Youtube Review

The following are the phone camera videos taken by tetshushelaine in the Osaka, Japan concert of Journey on March 11, 2009. These are the only available videos on YouTube for the Japan leg of the Asian Tour because taking video or photo is prohibited in concert venues in Japan.

14 March 2009 at 1:07 pm 1 comment

Arnel Pineda: Journey’s Asian X-factor

Kukul Khan, YouTube Review

In this era when an African-American can be the president of the most powerful country in the world, having an Asian to front a legendary band that prided itself for almost three decades as an all-American band can never be a bad idea.

Home to four billion people and has the world’s fastest growing economy, Asia can no longer be ignored—even in the music scene.

Journey’s choice of Arnel Pineda as its new front man has sparked interest not only in his home country, the Philippines, but also in other parts of Asia. His cyber-age Cinderella story of rise to international stardom has captivated the imagination of countless Asian artists, who like him until two years ago, have been playing in bars doing covers of western songs and a few original compositions.

Though Journey’s music is already popular in some parts of Asia, the reinvigoration of the band led by Pineda offers an opportunity for Journey to penetrate the rest of the region and get to its fold millions of new and young (and moneyed) Asian fans.

8 March 2009 at 11:10 pm 2 comments

Older Posts


Blog Stats

  • 43,637 hits

Top Clicks

  • None

Archives

Flickr Photos