Acapellago wins 2nd place at the Vocal Asia Festival in Taiwan

After winning the International Acapella Championship in Singapore last year, viral vocal group Acapellago once again represents the Philippines and bagged second place in the 2016 Asian Acappella Cup at the Vocal Asia Festival in Taitung, Taiwan.

Vocal group Gili from Taiwan took home the first place while Doowop from Korea and The Groovies from Japan snatched the third place.

Fresh from their Philpop 2016 stint where they interpreted the song “Stars are Aligned” by JC Jose, the group consists of Michelle (soprano), Happy (bass), Almond (countertenor), Josh (tenor) and Bogart (beatbox) flew to Taiwan for their second international music competition.

According to their website, Vocal Asia is a Platform for Asia’s Contemporary A Cappella Music In 2010, Vocal Asia was established with the mission to unite the Asian a cappella musicians and fans together, and share the beautiful harmony of Asian a cappella music to the world. Our goal is to serve the a cappella audience by connecting the a cappella organizations to create a musical world without borders.

Acapellago is the first winner of the Akapela Open by One Meralco Foundation and PLDT Smart Foundation in 2013 and won again in 2015.

Nobody ever thought I would be here – Quest

Pinoy singer-songwriter, Quest spent years in Manila’s top artist management companies performing, releasing songs, featured on TV and radio; even releasing his first album. While some might consider this a success route, the growing music business left Quest pondering. Being in these well-oiled industry management machines has its merits, but Quest forged a new path for himself to become an independent artist.

Quest can be described as a non-protégé type. He came out differently unlike stars from reality TV shows or a lineage of artists. Everything else is hard work, perseverance and faith that kept Quest to where he is right now.

In this journey, Quest learned so much about himself and allowed to trust himself to push further. Late nights in the studios, writing proses while in transit, dreaming in broad daylight – and doing what it takes every day to be an inch closer to his dreams – Quest gravitated towards the underdogs of the industry. He saw value in working on refining his craft and growing his brand. He learned that achieving a shared dream is bigger than the spotlight being offered to him. He believes and refers to his fans as his team mates (Team Quest) – an integral part of his being, a support group.

While developing the album – songs like Sige Lang, Saludo, Digmaan were slowly being recognized as strong pillars of his next album. These songs gained notoriety online and topped charts nationwide; and allowed Quest to travel the Philippines to share his story and music. You might not see Quest on regular weekly gigs but he is in various regional festivals that allows him to be more visible among youth and making impact to their lives.

“Sige Lang” gained the #1 spot in various music charts and granted Quest to fly to Spain and catch the 2014 FIBA World Cup with Gilas Pilipinas.

On the other hand, “Life of a Champion” – considered as the soundtrack of the modern day winner speaks of dream and our everyday struggle for self-improvement.

“Being a champion can be as simple as saying ‘no’ and making better choices in life. I want this album to find its way into your days – there are days when you celebrate, days where life leaves you broken, days when you heal and get back on your feet; these are emotions you will feel while listening to this album,” Quest shared.

In order to reach more fans, Quest’s album was independently released in November 2015, with over 3,000 sold copies to boast.

“And then I ask them, what are the three songs from the album they like? I want to show them that I am as regular as they are and it is a great jump start for anyone who has a dream.” Quest said.

Imagine an independent artist in 2016 – selling 3,000 copies of his album in this day and age – unheard of. This album has also churned out three number one hits so far – “Higher” was #1 on WAVE 89.1; “No Greater Love” featuring Clara Benin was #1 on MAGIC 89.9 “Sige Lang” was also #1 on MAGIC 89.9 in 2012. The album also features Aicelle Santos (Rak of Aegis) on “Kalawakan”, Reese Lansangan on “Paborito” and of course, Juliane Tarroja on “Digmaan”. Songs like the superhero themed “Speed of Light”, celebrating on “Champions”, serenading the sexy on “Golden” round up the album.

Quest recently partnered with Warner Music, as the digital distributor for the album.

“Exciting times ahead” Quest said about this partnership. To add value to the album, months after its first release – Quest decided to add two songs to the digital offering.

The Chrizo produced “Better Days” and the tear jerker “Walang Hanggan”. There are talks of adding more to this album later on this year and also the highly anticipated “So Amazing” song collaboration with UK’s own Joss Stone.

Now that this partnership is moving forward, Quest is in the midst of putting together a nationwide tour entitled Underdog Season independently. Scheduled stops are in Davao, Cagayan De Oro, Bacolod, Cebu, Batangas and a few more cities. He has also been tapped by various brands for projects in relation to his music expertise and has been known to build anthems over jingles. He keeps his integrity in music by continuously learning, questioning the norm and participating in nation building. He wants to use his story and music to help build a nation of champions.

When asked what’s next for him? He just simply said, “A Grammy!”

Listen to Quest – Life of A Champion Album:

Bamboo returns with “Bless This Mess” via PolyEast Records

After almost four years of being side tracked, Pop Rock Royalty Bamboo Manalac returned to writing music with the release of his sophomore album Bless This Mess at the 12 Monkeys Music Hall and Pub in Makati City.

With the success of his 2011 album No Water, No Moon, Bamboo eases into his second phase with Bless This Mess released by PolyEast Records saying that writing good music should take time and enough space.

Recorded in Grand Street Recording Studio in Brooklyn, New York featuring ten brand new well-crafted compositions, Bless This Mess offers broad selection of songs from emotional “Last Dance” to intriguing song like “Mr Wang” which was inspired by Bamboo’s former neighbor. Also taking subtle risks such as the bluesy but energy-boost kick-off single Firepower, written at the time of his 2011 No water, No Moon but thought it won’t match the tone of the other songs in his first solo album.

Bamboo shared, “so it was shelved and developed and was ready for this new album. I think listeners have to figure out for themselves what the songs means. I wanted folks to feel the music, the kick, then they’ll get the lyric”.

Firepower was officially heard on Spotify, iTunes, Deezr, Spinnr, Amazon, Guvera Music as well as local radios all over the country on October 15. PolyEast Records’ YouTube channel also premiered a prelude song “Nothing Like You” which connects to Firepower music video directed by Paolo Valenciano. “In the video, both songs are together because they are meant to be the same thing. If you see the video, you’ll get to interpret how both connect to each other,” Bamboo added.

In a five-month process during his TV stints as coach of The Voice, Bamboo produced and wrote most of the songs winding up a renewed energy pushing different styles as he said, “There’s definitely a shake up– from the quiet feeling of the last album, I wanted this one to be a punch in the face”.

As the album title “Bless This Mess” signifies more than it seems, he explained, “I’ll let folks figure that out but it’s something I’ve whispered to myself before sessions or gigs in past years”.

“I could be wrong with how long the break was and that’s the challenge of why it took so long. There was just so much swimming in my head and this album is part moving forward as well as just fitting another piece to the puzzle — in regards to how my current sets will sound and look like”.

Bamboo’s new offering “Bless This Mess” CD will be available on October 30 at all records bars nationwide. Digital tracks can also be downloaded on iTunes, Amazon and Guvera Music. You may also listen to the full album on Spotify.

For more information, follow PolyEast Records’ official social media accounts at Twitter.com/polyeastrecords, Facebook.com/PolyEastRecords and Instagram.com/polyeastRecords.

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4th Power makes it to X Factor UK 6-chair challenge

Singing Christina Aguilera’s “Show Me How You Burlesque,” Pinoy all-sister group 4th Power made it to the competition’s 6-chair challenge taking seat number 4. But still have to hang on until all contestants in the group category are done with their performances.

Commenting on their breath-taking performance, Simon said “I think you girls are actually amazing. I think you need a little help in the type of music you should be doing, but I’m so happy you chose this show and this country. I think the public is really going to fall in love with you.”

Cheryl who will be the coach for the group category said at first, “I don’t think you’re amazing!” As the crowd loudly disagree, she went on to say, “I think you’re phenomenal! You and I together, I think, can create magic. Please go and sit!”

The Pinay-sisters went a long way from joining local singing contests in the country which include Pinoy Idol and Showtime’s Bida Kapamilya, to the world stage via World Championship of Performing Arts (WCOPA), Superstar K6 – South Korea’s biggest TV talent show and now, the X Factor UK.

Watch 4th Power performance video below:

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Megaworld Lifestyle Malls bring Beer Fest to a whole new level this October

This October, Megaworld Lifestyle Malls is pouring more excitement to the nightlife scene in Eastwood City and McKinley Hill as it uncorks its annual beer festival with exciting activities!

Music + Laughter + Beer at Eastwood City Beer Festival

Non-stop laughter and great music will fill the air from 7PM onwards at the Fuente Circle in Eastwood Citywalk 2 at the Music and Comedy Night happening on October 10 with Comedy Cartel and Hans Dimayuga, on October 17 with Comedy Manila, Basti Artadi and Johnoy Danao, and on October 24 with SPIT Manila and Jeszen Gomez. Music and Comedy Night continues at the Eastwood Central Plaza on October 15 with bands Taken By Cars, She’s Only Sixteen, Techy Romantics and BP Valenzuela. Guests can also join a laughter-filled Quiz Night with Spit Manila also on the same night.

Comedy Cartel along with performers from Amplify.ph, The Sun Manager, Banna Harbera, Rusty Machines and Autotelic, will take over the stage on October 16. Meanwhile, on October 23, music fans can enjoy performances by Ebe Dancel, Assembly General, Flying Ipis, Kjwan and Jensen and the Flips, and watch a fun show of Comedy Manila.

A special and fun-filled Beer Olympics will greet revelers at the Eastwood Central Plaza on October 16 from 7PM to 12MN. Guests can take home exciting prizes by setting the fastest record at the different fun activities and challenges such as the dunk tank, gladiator challenge, foosball, mechanical bull ride, sumo wrestling challenge and more. There will also be drinking and eating trials such as pizza-eating challenge, burger-eating challenge, beer-drinking challenge, hot wings-eating challenge and more!

But there’s more! Great deals are sure to whet the appetite of beer lovers in Eastwood City. Revelers can enjoy up to 50% on beers, spirits and food from participating establishments from October 1 – 31 at the Beer and Spirits Sale.

Party Harder at the McKinley Hill Beer Festival

More awesome parties await revelers at McKinley Hill Beer Festival starting with the Beer and Spirits Grand Party on October 10, 6PM. Highlights include rocking performances from top indie bands Blue Jean Junkies, Bleu Rascals, Indio I and Hale. They can also take part in fun challenges at the different booths such as basket beer, sumo wrestling, drinking games and more.

On October 16, guests can come over with friends and join the Quiz Night and Music Sessions, where they will get a chance to take home exciting prizes and enjoy live performances from different bands like Kjwan, Flippin Soul Stompers and Brisom from 7PM onwards. Quiz Night and Music Sessions continues on October 30, 7PM and will feature live performances from Pulso, Yolanda Moon and Up Dharma Down.

Meanwhile, live heart-pumping mixed martial arts action awaits revelers on October 24 with Spartacus Laban MMA Fight Night taking over the spotlight at 7PM.

Those looking to join McKinley Hill Beer Festival activities can avail any of the featured beer pairings available from October 1 – 31 at participating establishments such as Pugon Roasters, Rufo’s Famous Tapa, Agave Mexican Cantina, Uncle Cheffy, Seafood Island, Sauceria, Wursty Wursty, 121 Grille and Restaurant and Marciano’s. Guests can show their receipts to the event marshal at the event venue.

For more information, please call the Megaworld Lifestyle Malls Concierge at 709-9888, 709-0888, 0917-8380111 or visit www.megaworldlifestylemalls.com.

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One Night of Queen rocks Manila concert scene in October

The Manila concert scene will be in for a treat as the world-renowned One Night of Queen goes on stage at The Theatre of Solaire Resorts and Casino on October 24 and 25. Headlined by Gary Mullen and his band, The Works, the concert pays homage to the greatest band of all time, Queen.

Dubbed as the best tribute band of the Queen, Gary Mullen & The Works has been touring the world to bring to life the timeless rock anthems of Queen. Their two-hour energy-filled concert never fails to amaze audiences.

Gary’s spot-on imitation of Freddie Mercury, the legendary front man of Queen, continuously gets rave reviews since the start of their tour which coincided with the induction to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame of the Queen in 2001.

Concert-goers and fans of the Queen flock to see the show of Gary Mullen & The Works to re-live the most-lauded performances of the iconic band. They rock and roll while they listening to monster such as like Radio Gaga, A Kind of Magic, Love of My Life, Another One Bites the Dust, We Are The Champions, Bohemian Rhapsody, I Want to Break Free, We Will Rock You, to name a few.

“Gary Mullen & The Works are probably the closest you’ll ever come to experiencing the magic of Queen if you never managed to see the real thing,” says international newspaper The Royale Gazette.

Proudly presented by Solaire Resorts & Casino, MKFAE Productions, Inc. and Royale Chimes Concerts and Events Inc., One Night of Queen performed by Gary Mullen and The Works is guaranteed to rock and give you an unforgettable musical experience.

For tickets, head to any SM Tickets, TicketWorld or TicketNet Outlet. You may also call telephone numbers 8919999 (TicketWorld), 4702222 (SM Tickets) and 9115555 (TicketNet).

For more information and to win free tickets to the show, check out One Night of Queen in Manila, the official Facebook page of the event.

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All Spotlights on Neo Domingo

After his boy band’s stint in X Factor Philippines and winning this year’s Dreams Get Real Search for the Next OPM Star, Neo Domingo proves that he’s worthy of all the spotlights with singles, music videos, gigs and his own album under his belt.

In fact, Neo is the voice behind the hit “Pagbigyan Mo Na” and the dance craze hit “Kaching-Kaching” (which features Fifth Element). His soon-to-be released debut album “Ano Tayo?,” wields strong influence on social media and is highly anticipated. In an interview, Neo said that the album showcases hi versatility and his love for OPM novelty songs.

Listening to this 25-year old lad, one can attest that he can surely captivate any crowd anywhere. This makes Neo one of the sought-after artists for corporate shows, bar gigs, and other special events.

With his wonderful voice and good looks complimented by large following both from netizens and fans, Neo is probably the next big star we all have to watch for,

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Powerhouse line-up rocks SaGuijo’s 11th anniversary celebration

Cafe SaGuijo, Makati’s indie rock venue celebrated their 11th anniversary last October 3 with powerhouse line-up of OPM rock bands.

While SaGuijo has always been jam packed on ordinary days, last Saturday’s anniversary celebration was a huge show and large gathering of fans, rockistas, bands and supporters who all wanted to see and party with their favorite bands. A fitting salute to SaGuijo‘s over a decade support to up and coming and indie fans by providing not just a venue to jump start their career but a nest where one can just relax and jam.

Performances from Veronica & I, The Buildings, Oh, Flamingo!, BP Valenzuela, Up Dharma Down, Imago, Assembly Generals, Sandwich, Pedicab, Yolanda Moon, Giniling Festival, Run Dorothy, Autotelic, Fools and Foes and Tandem’s 91 complemented by their fans and supporters high intensity roars made the event a memorable one.

Imago, as expected almost brought the house down with their numbers while crowd favorite, Giniling Festival featured a new drummer. The feel went almost wild with Gilas succumbing to China at the FIBA Finals contributing to the bands exhilarating almost bitter performance.

Cafe SaGuijo, established in 2014 was the brainchild of Angelo Carlos who with friends started a cafe to chill and jam. Over the year, it attracted attention and notoriety as most memorable and historical event would eventually happen in SaGuijo like After Image and Eraserheads reunion shows. Since the owners are rockistas themselves, SaGuijo became a venue for after parties of bands to chillax which always end up with impromptu performances that would magically transform into a gig.

The residential location and feel of SaGuijo not to mention its proximity to Makati’s Central Business District all contributed to SaGuijo’s allure specially among yuppies wanting to relax over a beer or two.

SaGuijo is located at 7612 Guijo Street, San Antonio Village, Makati. Follow them on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

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Listen to JBK’s music with style

The Philippines is not yet through with boy bands. Exceptionally talented JBK (an acronym of three member’s names Joshua Bulot, Bryan and Kim) became popular via Facebook after their a cappella cover videos of OPM, Indonesian, and Malaysian songs became viral.

Because most of their videos were shot in fire exits of a condominium (and constantly getting into trouble with the security guards for it) JBK gained the moniker #FireExitBoys.

JBK, managed by well known star-maker Chris Cahilig, was discovered after they won the McJim Classic Leather’s Dreams Get Real Season 1 talent search.

Since then the band launched a string of successful singles including radio hits Anong Meron Ka and the viral song Damang-Dama, which so far gained over 1.2 million views on Facebook. Damang-Dama later became the official single of Camella Homes.

This October, JBK will release their self-titled album JBK with five original tracks.

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Song Review: Gloc 9’s Payag

It is very seldom that you stumble upon a song that can hit you in multiple levels. More so, the artist’s genre creates no hindrance in communicating the message across. You do not need to be a hip-hop or a rap fan to appreciate Gloc-9’s latest offering, Payag.

In a time when everyone has a say on about anything, Gloc-9 poetically and lyrically wakes us with Payag. Gloc-9 did this in not-so-subtle yet poignantly written lines like “halina sa lugar kung saan masaya lahat ng kawatan” or accusing lines like “kahit na dinoktor ang lahat ng detalye / lagi syang napagbibigyan.” His courage in evoking our angst and disgust in the prevailing system makes Payag rise.

A Gloc-9 song is not complete without his insane analogies that will make any poet envious yet would admire a hip-hop royalty like Gloc-9. Only a genius can think of matatamis na salita and compare it to latik na di niluto sa gata. Simply telling us that their (whoever are in the position higher than ours, not just politicians) words are not complete, shallow and not real.

A poet in me is screaming—“I would have thought of that first!”

The most interesting feature of Payag is not just the entertainment value of the song. The higher level of Payag poses a very timely question that no other song in our generation dared to ask. Why do we always agree? Why can’t we say no? Why can’t we be more vigilant and question those who are in power? Our generation already has the tools and yet why do we remain complacent? In fact the song ends ambivalently inquiring if it might be our fault by just nodding, in accepting without defiance. Reminding us of the old saying, “walang abusado, kung walang nagpapa-abuso.”

Payag is not just another hip-hop song or just another Gloc-9 hit. It is something we need to wake up and be prepared for next year when we will again choose our leaders. We hope to hear more songs like this. Evoking yet entertaining. Inspiring and enabling.

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