Raymond Lauchengco releases new album, The Promise


Pitong taon na ang nakalipas mula noong huling gumawa ng album ang '80s actor-singer na si Raymond Lauchengco.

Ngayon ay nakalabas na sa mga music stores ang kanyang latest studio album na The Promise sa ilalim ng Viva Records.

Very personal daw ang bagong album na ito ni Raymond dahil siya mismo ang pumili ng mga songs at binigyan niya ng sarili niyang interpretation.

“This is my 8th studio album since I’ve been in the recording industry way back in 1983.

“The last CD I did was in 2007 pa, titled Full Circle.

“Now, in this new CD album, mas special siya because of the songs I’ve chosen.

“Ever since I started recording, nakilala ako singing songs that are sad like 'Farewell,' 'I Need You Back,' 'So It’s You,' 'Shadow of Time' and 'Saan Darating Ang Umaga?'

“This time, more on the love ballads na tayo ngayon. It’s like a tribute to the music I’ve grown accustomed to during the ‘80s and other music from different decades.

“It’s a flashback of sorts for those music lovers who miss the songs of 30, 40, or 50 years ago!” kuwento ni Raymond nang maging panauhin siya sa The Jon Santos Show ng Viva Channel noong June 5.

Ang carrier single ng The Promise album ni Raymond ay ang sarili niyang version ng “Nothing’s Gonna Change My Love For You” na unang pinasikat ni George Benson.

Meron din siyang cover versions ng mga awitin nila Barry Manilow (“Can’t Smile Without You”), Elvis Presley (“Can’t Help Falling In Love”), Melissa Manchester (“The Promise”), and The Beatles (“Till There Was You”).

“I also have my own interpretation of 'I’ll Never Break Your Heart' by The Backstreet Boys; 'Langit Na Naman' by Hotdog and a composition by Wenjo Cornejo titled 'Magmula Ngayon.'

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“And since I started in theater, I also have my own version of two songs from the musical, Camelot.

“So it’s an album for everyone—there’s something for every member of the family,” dagdag pa niya.

PHOTOGRAPHY. Nabanggit ni Raymond na kaya siya natagalan gumawa ulit ng album ay dahil nag-concentrate siya sa kanyang photography business.

“I was into photography for about five years.

“I had my own studio and I became busy doing portraits, product shoots, album covers and other advertising work.

“I was really busy at parang nakalimutan ko na muna ang career natin sa showbiz.

“But now, busy tayo promoting my new CD and I hope that people will still remember me and get a copy of The Promise,” aniya.

ACTING. Sa larangan naman ng pag-arte ay open naman si Raymond sa kahit na anong role na puwedeng ibigay sa kanya.

“Okey pa rin naman ako when it comes to acting. The last acting job I did for TV was the series, Bagets, sa TV5.

“Sa movie naman, I had a guest role sa In Your Eyes nila Claudine Barretto and Anne Curtis. That was in 2010.

“Then in 2012, I did Of All The Things with Regine Velasquez and Aga Muhlach.

“I’m not choosy naman. Pero mas gusto ko talaga ang singing, e. I am more of a performer than an actor, so to speak,” diin niya.

EARLY YEARS. Naging active si Raymond bilang aktor sa ilalim ng Viva Films noong early ‘80s. Ang naging breakout role niya ay sa pelikulang Bagets kunsaan nakasama niya sina William Martinez, JC Bonnin, Herbert Bautista at Aga Muhlach.

Ginawa rin niya ang Cross My Heart, Saan Darating Ang Umaga?, Bukas Luluhod Ang Mga Tala, Hotshots at Bagets 2.

Gumawa rin ng pelikula si Raymond sa ilalim ng Regal Films, ang Joey Boy Munti at Remember Me Mama.

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UNFORGETTABLE. Nagkuwento si Raymond ng kanyang mga hindi malilimutang karanasan noong busy pa siya sa paggawa ng pelikula.

Inamin niya na tinarayan siya ni Maricel Soriano sa unang shooting day nila ng Saan Darating Ang Umaga?

Pagbabalik-tanaw niya, “My first shooting day of that movie, nakatikim kaagad ako ng taray from Maricel Soriano.

“Nagkaroon kasi ng problema sa schedule ko. I was booked by Vicor Records for a show same day ng first shooting day ko.

“So I was really late when I got to the set. Kaagad akong pumunta kay Marical to apologize. That was my first time to meet her kasi hindi pa kami magkakilala talaga.

“Ayun, galit na galit siya sa akin kasi nga ang aga nga raw niya sa set tapos ako na lang ang hinihintay.

“Nanliit talaga ako kasi nga kahit na sino naman magagalit sa nangyaring iyon.

“E, si Maricel pala, laging maaga 'yan sa set. Kaya nakakahiya yung pangyayaring iyon.

“But Viva explained everything to her and nagkaayos naman kami.

“And to this day, me and Maricel, we’ve been very good friends.”

ON SHARON, NIDA AND NESTOR. Maganda naman daw ang naging karanasan niya na makatrabaho si Sharon Cuneta at mga yumao nang sina Nida Blanca and Nestor de Villa.

Kuwento pa niya, “I’ve known Sharon even before we started working sa Cross My Heart and Bukas Luluhod Ang Mga Tala.

“My dad was Sharon’s music teacher kasi. Kaya bata pa lang kami, magkakilala na kami and it was a joy working with her talaga.

“With Tita Nida and Tito Nestor, they became like our real mom and dad when we were shooting Saan Darating Ang Umaga?

“Iba kasi noon talaga. Unlike now, kulang ang oras ng isang artista because of the many things he or she has to do in one day. Kami kasi noon, kapag shooting, shooting lang talaga at walang ibang lagare.

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“I remember how nice it was to be in the company of both Nida Blanca and Nestor de Villa. Masaya silang katrabaho and we would miss one another long after the shooting was over.

“Now that both of them are gone, I pray for them because they showed me such kindness when I was starting in the business.”

BILIBID SCENE. Pinakahindi malilimutan ni Raymond ay ang shooting niya ng Bukas Luluhod Ang Mga Tala sa New Bilibid Prison sa Muntinlupa. Isinama raw siya ng kanilang direktor na si Emmanuel “Maning” Borlaza sa mga tunay na prison inmates para maging realistic ang acting niya.

“I had a scene na ire-rape ko sana si Eula Valdez. Pero nahuli ako and I was locked up in the Bilibid prison.

“Si Direk Maning, ayaw niyang gumamit ng mga ekstra to play the inmates. Gusto niya totoong mga nakakulong doon.

“So when we started rolling, I was really crying kasi natakot talaga ako. Baka kasi magkagulo, yun ang nasa isip ko.

“But the scene came out good and I was relieved na natapos namin agad yung eksena sa loob ng bilibid.

“Sa sobrang takot ko, I promised na hindi na ako ulit gagawa ng gano’ng eksena!” sabay tawa niya.

FAMILY MAN. Isang happy and contented family man si Raymond. Walong taon na silang magkasama ng kanyang misis na si Mia Rocha. Anim na taong gulang na ang anak nilang si Natalie.

Kung sakali raw na hilingin ng kanyang anak ang kanyang basbas para pumasok sa showbiz, hindi raw niya ipagdaramot ito.

“Okey lang naman sa akin. Basta nasa tamang edad lang siya and hindi niya mapabayaan ang studies niya.

“I’ve been through that and I have wonderful experiences to share with my daughter.

“I want her to be ready when she does entertain thoughts of being in showbiz.

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“She can be sure that I will be here to support her all the way,” pangako niya.


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