Thursday, February 23, 2012

Why Avida is a staunch advocate of OPM

ORIGINAL PILIPINO MUSIC (OPM) is the soundtrack of our lives. That’s something many Filipinos easily take for granted—but just think: what better way to feel hope and inspiration than to hear “Umagang Kay Ganda” in the morning? How could we express romantic love if we didn’t have “Harana”?

Knowing that OPM is a vital part of Filipino culture and identity, Avida Land Corp. is doing its part to keep original Filipino music alive, meaningful and relevant to a new generation of Filipinos. 

Aside from providing families with quality, affordable homes, Avida is fully supporting OPM-related projects. Two of these projects are the “Tunog Natin!” series of all-OPM concerts and the compilation album “Tunog Natin: Songs From Home”.

“Avida is always looking for ways to help nurture Filipino culture for nation-building. And it happens that OPM is a powerful way to unite us and strengthen our national identity. This is why Avida chose to be part of the concert series and produce the OPM album,” says Tess Tatco, Avida Land Marketing Head

“While Avida is known for building quality dream homes for Filipinos, we also wish to build a strong foundation and home for OPM in the hearts and minds of Filipinos. And besides, we at Avida are big fans of OPM and we wish even more Filipinos would love it as we do,” Tatco adds.

Bridging  past and present
Avida believes that one of the best things about OPM is it allows Filipinos to reminisce about the past as well as enjoy the present. “Tunog Natin: Songs From Home”— which is composed of 10 tracks of authentic OPM music—blends a harmony of classic OPM songs and new musical creations. These songs talk about first love, first heartbreak, coming of age, and other things that everyone can relate to.

OPM likewise links history to younger listeners. Tatco says, “In the album, collaborations between artists of different music genres gave old OPM hits a unique and fresh sound; even young listeners would enjoy the songs. It’s a great way of linking the great, meaningful music of the past to the younger generation.”

An example of such collaboration is rapper Gloc-9 and jazz singer Tricia Garcia’s recording "Kahit Maputi Na Ang Buhok Ko", which was popularized by Sharon Cuneta and written by Rey Valera. Tricia gave the song a sweet, romantic feel, while Gloc-9 added rap verses.

A showcase of talents
Filipinos are among the best singers and musicians in the world—and their talent shines brightest when they perform OPM. This is yet another reason to love original Filipino music. For the compilation album, Avida gathered together 16 of the best Filipino musical acts from various genres. From promising young singers to OPM legends, “Tunog Natin: Song’s From Home” is a great showcase of Filipino musicianship.

Artists who took part in the album include OPM legends Joey “Pepe” Smith; Jim Paredes; Medwin Marfil of True Faith and Gloc-9; as well as pop divas Faith Cuneta and Arnee Hidalgo. OPM’s most promising young acts also joined the album, including Sheng Belmonte, Princess Velasco, Letter Day Story, boyband 1:43, Myrus, Tanya Markova;, Kiss Jane and Tricia Garcia. 1990s alternative rock icons Mcoy Fundales and Barbie Almalbis complete the line-up. 

“We have so many great artists and each of them contributes in cultivating OPM. We’re glad we’ve worked with local artists who are very passionate about promoting local music. The album is a celebration of the beauty of our very own brand of music,” says Tatco.

Homegrown artists were likewise featured in the “Tunog Natin!” concert series that Avida supported. Some of the noted performers that joined in the free OPM concerts were Jim Paredes, The Dawn, Noel Cabangon, Jaya, True Faith, Myrus, Arnee Hidalgo and Callalily, among others.

“Both the ‘Tunog Natin’ concert series and compilation album are major contributions to Filipino music. They benefit the audiences who get exposed to quality Filipino music and they help Filipino music artists as well, who get the opportunity to reach their listeners. “We are very thankful to Avida for supporting us,” says multi-awarded singer-composer Myrus.

These sentiments were echoed by Jaq, vocalist of the band Kiss Jane, who is part of the “Tunog Natin” album. “All artists, especially newcomers, need the right opportunities to bring their music to Filipino listeners. Our band joined the ‘Tunog Natin’ concert and the compilation album because we believe in the same advocacy as Avida. We thank Avida for this opportunity,” she said.

OPM unites Filipinos
OPM likewise brings people together, according to Tatco. Music, as they say, is a common language that breaks through physical barriers and dissolves differences.

“A simple song can help in nation building. When we develop a commonality, we are able to communicate with other people despite our differences. In a way, OPM becomes our common language—something that binds us together,” she says.

Calling for support
Avida takes the lead in preserving our Filipino musical heritage through its advocacy; now it encourages Filipinos to renew their appreciation for homegrown artists and locally-produced records.

“We urge every Pinoy to help bring new life to our local music and save the heritage and legacy of Filipino musicians. It’s time we all rediscover and promote OPM,” Tatco concludes.

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