Parenthood becomes Nonoy Zuñiga
‘I’m happy even just to watch them sleep’
In his “Beginnings” CD under Universal Records, balladeer Nonoy Zuñiga gives listeners a taste of the kind of music he played when he was just starting out. Among his song choices for the album is the Cat Stevens original, “Father & Son,” which Nonoy covers as a tribute to his father.
Nonoy has raised a brood of music lovers, five of them, with wife Grace Maroket—singers, guitarists, even a rap artist.
In this Q&A with the Inquirer, he discusses happy times with his brood, their musical gifts and what makes him extremely proud of them.
Did you ever imagine yourself becoming a father of five children?
Nope! When I woke up, they were already there! Ha ha ha! And I love all of them!
What’s the most difficult part of raising them?
Only that when I ask them to do a chore, there’s some resistance, or it takes a while before they do it. Of course, this doesn’t apply to all of them all the time. So, I would say, instilling obedience and discipline are still the most difficult. You either learn to control your temper or lose your mind.
How do you deal with an errant kid?
What I habitually do is, I talk to him or her first. If that doesn’t work, I resort to warning—at least three times. If that still doesn’t work, I either confiscate a favorite gadget or ground the child. I used to spank them.
What are your happiest moments with them?
Just being with them and making the most time out of our time together … watching TV, surfing the Net together or while on vacation … even simply watching them sleep.
How do you compensate for the times when you’re busy with your music or work?
If it’s okay, I bring them along, or we pig out over the weekend.
Have they shown interest in music as well?
Yup! All of them love music. As a parent, I encourage them to do what they like best whether it’s singing, acting, dancing or playing an instrument. Also, they are active in church as members of the worship team. My daughter emcees church events.
Do you have anything in common with them that is music-based?
We all love to sing and watch bands perform live.
What surprising things have you discovered in your children lately?
Wow, they grow up really fast! Zigmund, my youngest at 13, suddenly can sing very well.
Ziggy, at 15, plays his electric guitar magnificently and with gusto. In a very short time, Zack learned to play bass guitar like a pro. Aside from singing, Zeph loves emceeing church activities. My eldest son Jonah, who is in Los Angeles, flawlessly does the rap like Timbaland and makes the best bibingka in LA.
What would you give up for your kids?
My leg? Hehehe.
Kidding aside, I would give up anything and everything for their sake.
What are you most proud of as a father?
That they all put God first in anything they do and use their talents for His greater glory.
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