"Yung panahon din ngayon, people like to hear something that they are already familiar with. So, sa akin, okay lang din naman to give our audience what they want. Plus, I happen to like naman all the songs. It's an opportunity for me to do this also kasi these are the songs I used to listen to on the radio, and wishing that one day, I'll be able to have my own version. It has come true na," says Regine Velasquez about her all-revivals album under Universal Records.

Photo: Courtesy of Universal Records

Asia's Songbird Regine Velasquez faced the entertainment press, including PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal), at the launching of her first album with Universal Records (UR) titled Low Key. The launch was held on the 9th floor of Universal Tower in Quezon Avenue yesterday, November 14.

Compared to her previous albums, Low Key has Regine singing mellow songs—all covers. Some of the tracks include Terri Gibbs's "Tell Me That You Love Me," Don McLean's "And I Love You So," Rita Cooldige's "I'd Rather Leave While I'm In love," Katie Irving's "I Never Dreamed Someone Like You Could Love Someone Like Me," Orsa Lia's "No Walls, No Ceilings, No Floors;" Cat Steven's "How Can I Tell You," Dennis Lambert's "Of All the Things," Dan Fogelberg's "Longer," Janis Japlin's "At Seventeen," Christopher Cross's "Never Be the Same," and the Beatles' "Strawberry Fields Forever."

Noticeably, Regine's rendition of the songs is more restrained, a far cry from the usual belting that she does in most of her albums.

"Yeah, that's why it's called Low Key, 'cause it's more relaxed, more laid-back," she agrees. "Hindi naman talagang pinigil, ‘no, but the songs are mellow din kasi, e. So, ang hirap namang magtititili ako na... It doesn't really call for it."

Who chose the tracks in the album?

"UR, of course, helped with the selection of the songs," says the Asia's Songbird. "Pero pinili ko talaga yung mga songs na I'm very familiar with. And most of these songs talaga are my favorites, the songs that you hear on the radio... Pag nag-iisip ka ng kantang favorite mo, parang kinakalimutan mo na. But when you hear it, you'll just say na parang, ‘Oo nga, alam ko ang kanta na ‘to.' And you sing along with it, di ba?"

PEP asked Regine why she decided to do an all-covers album again, like her last album with Viva Records, Covers 2.

"Kasi uso na naman siya ngayon, e," she replies. "Hindi pa ako nauubusan ng kantang ire-revive, e. I would really love to record naman an all-original album, kasi I haven't done that in a while.

"Yung panahon din ngayon, people like to hear something that they are already familiar with. So, sa akin, okay lang din naman to give our audience what they want. Plus, I happen to like naman all the songs. It's an opportunity for me to do this also kase these are the songs I used to listen to on the radio, and wishing that one day, I'll be able to have my own version. It has come true na.

"Pero like I said, I also would like to record original songs. Anyway, kapag gumagawa naman ako ng pelikula, gumagawa rin ako ng soundtrack. I'm able naman to do that, e. Like the theme songs, usually ginagawa nang original. Kung hindi man yung theme song, may ginagawang kanta especially just for the movie. So, nagagawa ko pa rin naman ‘yon," explains Regine.

Regine also reveals that she has songs in the album dedicated to her parents, Gerry and Tessie Velasquez. For her father, Regine recorded Dan Fogelberg's "Leader of the Band" while she picked Billy Joel's "She's Always A Woman To Me" for her mom.

What about a song for her special someone, Ogie Alcasid?

"Actually, if you listen to the whole album, halatang in love ako!" laughs Regine. "Halata talaga, kasi sabi nga ni Ms. Kathleen Dy ng Universal, very emotional yung album. So ‘yon, yun lang ang maiko-comment ko diyan."

REGINE'S NEW LEADING MAN. Before the start of the presscon proper, the music video of "Tell Me That You Love Me," Regine's first single in Low Key, was shown. In the music video, Regine was paired with half-Brazilian, half-Japanese model Akihiro Sato, who is one of the Top 10 Cosmopolitan bachelors this year.

What can she say about her leading man?