Earlier this year, singer Ebe Dancel decided to leave his band of more than ten years, Sugarfree. This month, Ebe starts on another journey as a solo artist.
As a fitting prelude, Ebe starred in a mini-concert on Thursday, September 29, at the Teatrino in Greenhills. Present were his close friends, fans, and people from Warner Music, his current record label. Celebrities spotted at the event were Champ Lui-Pio, Yeng Constantino, Buddy Zabala, Sitti, Rico Blanco, and Arci Munoz.
"I’m here to play new songs from the new album, and the new album alone," Ebe emphatically declared at the start of the show, as if to dispel any hopes of him reprising any of his band’s previous hits.
PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) and other members of the press were able to talk to Ebe before the concert started. How did he feel that night?
"Hindi ko alam. Naghahalo yung... Naghahalo, e. May kaba... Pero mas nangingibabaw yung tuwa," he answered.
Ebe immediately expressed gratitude to the people who continue to encourage and support him.
"Not everyone gets a second opportunity sa industriyang ito. And even though I was gone for only a few months, it felt like years. Tapos, pinaramdam sa akin ng label, ng fans, na hinintay nila ako. I won’t let you guys down; I’m back for good."
ALBUM. Ebe’s new album, Dalawang Mukha ng Pag-ibig, contains ten originals.
The singer-songwriter said the title is an allusion to the emotions one gets when in love.
"Kasi ang pag-ibig, e, at its best, can make us feel two different emotional extremes. You enjoy it, yet it feels sad. Yan ang pananaw ko sa pag-ibig. Medyo ano talaga e, ganun ka-passionate yung tao umibig. Walang gitna, e," he said.
The singer performed many of the tracks in the mini-concert, with a new band behind him.
He started the concert with the rock songs "Maligalig" and "Isang Probinsyano sa Maynila." Fans in the front row stood up and grooved along to the infectious beat while he sang.
The next songs were poignant pieces: "Wag Kang Mag-Alala" and "Paalam Kahapon."
Ebe said "Wag Kang Mag-Alala" is one of his favorite songs in the new album. "Paalam Kahapon," on the other hand, was written to let his friends know what he has gone through after his break-up with Sugarfree.
The next song "Lapit" was written for his wife, Nikita.
"The most beautiful thing I ever saw in my life was seeing her walking down the aisle," he shared. What he regrets is not being able to offer a song for that moment; all the songs he had written then were sad songs, or songs about failure.
"So, I said, one day, I’m gonna write a song about it, so my kid can use it." And that song is "Lapit."
In the next songs, Ebe performed with his good friends: Sitti, radio DJ Francis Brew, and Sancho Sanchez.
Ebe sang another original composition, "Wag Na Munang Sabihin," with Sitti. The song is not in the album, because Sitti had already released it as a single. Ebe said he had to sing with her because she’s a good friend.
Ebe sang "Hanggang sa Dulo" with Francis Brew, and "Ikaw ang Aking Tahanan" with Sancho Sanchez.
The song "Muli," Ebe’s carrier single, ended the night with a ray of optimism.
When PEP.ph asked Ebe what he thinks about his latest venture, he replied: "You know, I came out with something that I’m really proud of, that the label is really proud of, so whatever happens, I’m here to enjoy the ride. That’s the one thing we were never able to do last time. Sobrang intense, e. So now I’m just here to enjoy myself."