Ogie Alcasid considers singing with his parents as one of the highlights of his upcoming concert titled 25 Years: I Write The Songs.
On August 16, the singer-songwriter will mount a concert that will feature 25 songs and “more than 25 guests” at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Ogie plans to feature a formidable lineup of guests whom he personally texted. These include Ryan Cayabyab, Noel Cabangon, Jaya, Kuh Ledesma, Ebe Dancel, Gloc 9, Randy Santiago, Dingdong Avanzado and Jamie Rivera.
Of course, his wife Regine Velasquez will also have her share of the spotlight during the concert that will mark his 25th anniversary in showbiz.
Now that his contract with GMA Network officially ended last June 30, Ogie says that he will be using this time to prepare for this major concert that will look back on the highlights of his career.
“This concert will feature songs that I’ve written and what time of my career when I wrote these songs,” says Ogie.
To date, Ogie has not yet announced whether he will renew his contract with the Kapuso Network or move to a new TV station.
In an interview with Ogie at Ryu Ramen along Tomas Morato, the singer explained that his manager Leo Dominguez is doing the negotiations on his behalf.
“Itong buong July hanggang August, magpapahinga ako…I just really want to focus on the concert. That’s the truth…Yung negotiations, si Leo [Dominguez] na ang bahala dun. Kunsaan man siya mag-negotiate, he will take care of it. But as far as I’m concerned, sabi ko sa kanya, mag-focus muna ako sa concert... In terms of scheduling, maganda siya.
“Noon, hirap na hirap ako na may concert at may taping. Nagagasgas ang boses mo. Ayoko na ng ganun, medyo may edad na tayo.”
What are Ogie’s considerations when choosing a TV network?
“Sa contract, madali naman akong kausap,” says Ogie with a smile. “My basis for deciding would be…obviously, number one, I pray for my decision. I don’t make a personal decision unless I pray. My decision would be: Where am I needed? Where would I be effective? Sino ang pwede kong tulungan?
“Hindi ko na iniisip yung sa akin kasi okay na okay na okay na ako.”
He admits, “It’s going to be a big transition for me: should I stay or should I go?”
As a performer, Ogie laments the fact that artists like himself are limited by the network war in the entertainment industry.
“Ngayon, competition is so intense. Tatlo na ang network at may cable pa. Lumalaki ang industry. Obviously, networks will hold on to what they invested on. Kami as artists, sana hindi ganun. Sana malaya kaming makakapunta sa kahit saan. But that’s not how it is.
“I came from a time na nakakapagpromote ako sa ABS-CBN, nakakapagpromote ako sa Channel 13, sa Channel 9, at Channel 7. Ang our songs could be played everywhere.
“But now, nagkakaroon ng monopoly of talent and even content—like songs. It can’t be helped. Ganun talaga. Ganun ang labanan.”
What is the advice of Regine to Ogie when it comes to his contract?
“My wife is always very supportive of me. What she always tell me is, ‘saan ka masaya.’ Ang hirap nun kasi masaya tayo kahit saan, e. Nandun ako [sa point na], saan ka ba kailangan?’
“In terms of monetary [compensation], I’m good,” declares Ogie.
JUNIOR OPM AMBASSADORS. As the president of OPM (Organisasyon ng Pilipinong Mang-aawit), Ogie is constantly on the lookout for ways to increase interest for original Pinoy music.
He points out: “Nasa point na ko na binabalik ko na lang. Marami pa akong pwedeng gawin pero it’s not for me anymore. I’d rather do it for the industry. I’m happy that since naging president ako ng OPM, parang nararamdaman ko yung interes sa OPM.
“The organization has been tirelessly promoting OPM and it’s catching on with other organizations. A lot of organizations are lining up to partner with OPM. I think it’s because they realize that OPM [original Pinoy music] needs help. It’s a worthy cause.”
Ogie Alcasid shared this photo on his Twitter account with the following caption: "Awarding Daniel Padilla, Yeng Constantino and Abra. Congrats! Mabuhay kayo at ang OPM!"
In fact, last June 7, Ogie led a ceremony that named four young artists as junior ambassadors of OPM. These are Daniel Padilla, Yeng Constantino, Julie Anne San Jose and rapper Raymond Abracosa, more popularly known as Abra. Daniel, Yeng and Abra were able to attend the awarding ceremony held at the Pagcor Grand Theater during the finals night of OPM@PAGCOR 3: The Search for the Next Total OPM Performer.
When asked why he chose these four young singers as junior OPM ambassadors, Ogie explained: “They were my personal choices.
“When I was judging Himig Handog and I saw Daniel Padilla perform. I saw what kind of impact he had on fans and the people there, I said, ‘Wow! I haven’t seen a singer with this kind of impact for a long time.’ Yung parang panahon ni Ariel Rivera na nagwawala ang mga girls.
“Sabi ko, these kinds of people can bring OPM music to the younger generation. Let’s face it: younger people listen to Kpop.
“Nag-tweet ako and grabe yung Twitter ko, pinuno ng fans ni Daniel. Then there was one fan who suggested, ‘Sir, why don’t you make him a junior ambassador for OPM?’ I thought, ‘That’s a fantastic idea!’
“Noong nagkaroon kami ng OPM@PAGCOR 3, in-award-an namin ang first four ambassadors namin. Basically, their responsibility is to promote OPM to their fans. Hopefully, they could grace OPM occasions. Sila ang magiging face ng OPM sa kabataan.”
Daniel has released two albums that both reached Double Platinum status. Last April 30, the ABS-CBN actor had a sold-out birthday concert at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
There are those who criticize the young actor’s singing but Ogie is a firm believer of Daniel’s talent. “Big hit ang songs niya ang he is a very good musician himself.
“I like the boy: magalang and he’s a good person.”
Ogie defends Daniel by saying: “Music is about all about taste. Hindi naman lahat gusto ang boses ko. Hindi naman lahat gusto ang mga kanta ko. I cannot convince everybody to like my songs. Respetuhan lang.
“But if you’ll ask for my opinion, mayroon siyang style. At yun ang hinihiling ng pop music na may sarili kang style, may sarili kang diskarte, at may sarili kang charisma. Yung pag kinanta mo, inaangkin mo ang kanta. And you sell: that’s pop music.”
To date, Abra’s music video of “Gayuma” has reached over 22 million views on YouTube. Ogie says of this feat: “Ang dami niyang views! He represents the music of the youth, which is hip-hop. He represents musicians na hindi nag-major label. Ang galing, di ba?”
Abra’s upbeat song “Gayuma” also won awards such as Favorite Music Video and Favorite Urban Video during the 2013 MYX Music Awards. This song (which features Thyro & Jeriko Aguilar) also earned the Best Collaboration plum at the 2013 Urban Music Awards.
GMA-7 singer-actress Julie Anne has a strong following that allowed her self-titled album to reach over 60,000 units sold for combined physical CDs and digital downloads.
“Grabe ang achievement ni Julie Anne sa CD sales, on YouTube and online downloads,” notes Ogie.
(Read: Julie Anne San Jose's album reaches Quadruple Platinum Record status)
The OPM president then describes Yeng as “one of the most brilliant young songwriters we have.”
Ogie reveals that Abra and Daniel Padilla will also be part of his anniversary concert, 25 Years: I Write The Songs, that will take place on August 16 at the MOA Arena.