By NR RAMOS
MANILA, Philippines – It is common to see girls screaming themselves hoarse, if not literally going crazy over good-looking male and female idols that make up the currently very popular Hallyu trend, particularly K-pop. But what to make of boys that do the same?
A recent report on GMA News revealed that there’s a growing number of young male Pinoys that are as rabid fans as their female counterparts in rapt adoration of imported South Korean music talents. Not only do they buy album after album of these pop gods, they also try in earnest to save their earnings just to be able to attend their concerts.
Indeed, more than just memorizing the song lyrics, aping the dance moves, and combing their hair in the manner of their heroes, they also collect all sorts of memorabilia they could get their paws on. These include shirts, posters, even rare energy drink cans bearing the images of such K-pop idols as Girl’s Generation and Super Junior.
There’s a lesson to be gleaned in such dedicated adulation, this according to respected Filipino musician Jim Paredes of APO fame, who believes that the establishment of such strong rapport between fan and star is a result of hard work and perseverance that involves not only the artists themselves but the South Korean nation as a whole — and it’s something we Filipinos should strive to emulate.
“They have five, ten year contracts, [in the course of which] they come out very polished, they are taught everything,” he said in the same report. “Ang ginagawa nila magkasabwat and record company ang radio, TV, media, government, everything…in promoting them. Pati na ang tourism [department] kasama dun.”
Paredes maintains that the growing clamor for these foreign acts only serves to highlight the fact that we are yet to come up with a good answer that will serve to combat the slow decline of the relative importance of Original Pilipino Music [OPM] in the consciousness of young Pinoy music lovers.
Not that he believes it’s too late for the local industry to rise up to such a challenge, insisting that key to this, is learning to appreciate what is truly ours.
“Koreans sing Koreans, Chinese sings Chinese, tayo lang ang hindi ganu’on,” he explained. “Globalize the Filipino who speaks Filipino to the world.”
“Remember that our most successful recording ever was ‘Anak,’ it was in Tagalog. Tri-nanslate sa maraming languages ang mabili pa rin ‘yung Tagalog.”