OPM: Hearing it straight from our musiciansBy Joseph R. Atilano
Whoever said that OPM is dead or dying?! Then, he has to take a look around, to think really well first before speaking, and not rely only on what is available in the mainstream for information and ideas.
This is the problem with writers, bloggers, and reporters who easily make sweeping and condemning statements for ratings, publicity, and media mileage, and who assume with such certainty that they can dictate or rather impose with utmost certainty that they are bigger—and I dare say—better than the topics and subject matters they are covering or writing about.
NOBODY is bigger than the whole entire music industry. We are all mere products of the music around us. We are fans, followers, supporters, defenders and musicians. Anyone who can say OPM is dead and has the audacity and gall to even sound sarcastic and condescending with his remarks and reporting is coming from a place of his own “CAGED” belief that he is better than everyone else.
That he is the “leader” and everyone must either follow what he says or respect him/her without questioning. I say to that: he/she is a person who has “small thinking” but big with self-absorption! Hindi mamatay ang OPM, basta may pinoy na natitira and lumalaban to have their original music heard.
We will always stand a fighting chance, we will carry on our dreams, positive influences and music to the next generation! Marami tayo. We will never lose what is rightfully ours! That is OPM.
Now I believe it’s high time we heard it straight also from the musicians on this important matter. As this affects them the most and they haven’t been given more opportunities to have their voices heard. I asked them all the same questions. “What does OPM mean to you, in general or in particular? What are the first thoughts that come to your mind when you hear OPM?”
Here are their answers:
· Sans Fojas of Kastigo – “When I hear the term OPM what comes to mind are the genres of music that are not correctly represented in our country (e.g. pop rock, or even pop, marketed as rock). Independent producers, record labels and musicians have the responsibility to be clear about what kind of music they are creating and giving. This is needed in order to educate fellow musicians and listeners better, especially the younger generation, who are the future of music.”
· Atty. Vin Dancel of Peryodiko – “OPM-music made by Filipinos in whatever genre. Basta pinoy ang may gawa, at galing sa creative process niya, kesyo pa kung saan o ano ang pinaghugutang impluensya eh OPM para sa akin. Opm, pinoy music, Filipino music. basta gawa natin. Eh atin yun eh!”
· Johnny Alegre of Humanfolk – “The three OPM components, Original, “Pilipino” and Music, are each contentious subjects worthy of exposition. But in my view, OPM must be music written by a Filipino, performed by a Filipino, and must originate from the Philippines.”
· Bobby Balingit of the legendary punk band The Wuds – “opm original pinoy music.. pero mas bagay. Komersyal na pagtataguyod ng musikang gawa ng pinoy? Ewan ko men, kahit di na tawaging opm basta tama yung kanta na nakapagtataas ng antas ng pagkatao ng mga Pilipino.”
· Pol Calinawan (owner and founder) of Bandstand.ph – “OPM = Original Pilipino Music it is not Original Pilipino Music, since this would mean restricting it to Music in Tagalog or Pilipino language, which is not true. OPM is rendered in various languages. Hence, I coined: OFM Home of Original Filipino Music.”
· Bong “cosmic” Luib of Cosmic Love – “opm for me… it was never born, it haven’t died it was there along… wala pang mga castiulla me OPM na!!! baka naisip nila patay na OPM kase ang mga nakikita lang yung mga old greats… mga showbiz peeps na wala ng nagawang bago since 80’s…kase monopolize nila yung scene eh…ayaw nila bigyan chance yung mga banda sa baba… alam niyo ba na manila ang isa sa pinaka maraming at diverse na music scene??? WE ARE ONE OF THE BEST MUSICIANS IN THE WORLD… OPM is dead? OPM is just a brand name… PINOY MUSIC IS SO ALIVE AT DI SIYA MAMATAY WHETHER, U LIKE IT, LOVE IT, HATE IT OR NOT!”
· Nyko Maca of Sinyma – “Original Pilipino Music. The words speak for themselves, first to bring something fresh, new, and creatively free born. Then to recognize your roots and simultaneously offer new values as an artist within the nation and internationally, living local and being global. And finally, the most beautiful part of all, that magic we call music which moves the heart regardless of race, genre, or time.”
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