A record-breaking number of entries were submitted for the 2013 edition of the Philippine Popular Music Festival, which eclipsed their initial year’s record of nearly 3,000 songs.

    “Your theme, your genre, your song” is this year’s main message, encouraging everyone to write songs limited only by their creativity. The response to the call for entries was tremendous, generating 3,383 submissions not just from within the Philippines, but from Filipinos all over the world.

    Philpop MusicFest Foundation’s executive director Ryan Cayabyab shares that this is the most diverse collection of entries. “I heard a lot of rock, pop, rap, hip hop, folk, RNB, ballad, a sprinkling of swing and dance music. There are some attempts to do a modernized kundiman and quite a lot of novelty songs that visibly entertained the adjudicating panel. I can’t wait to hear the top 12 that this year’s special panel will present in the finals night on July 6.”

    Respected and renowned industry professionals, from record label executives, musicians, composers, singers, artists, radio personalities and people from the academe make up the adjudication panel. The organizing committee had to fill around 140 seats throughout the four-stage screening process.

    Through the direction of its chairman, business tycoon Manny Pangilinan and its president Ricky Vargas, the foundation’s endeavour is to involve itself in nation building through music. With the guidance of board members Ogie Alcasid, Noel Cabangon and others, they have set out to identify deserving songwriters who can inspire and spark positive change through their songs and are given the opportunity to shine.

    The million-peso champion of the first-ever Philippine Popular Music Festival is former Akafellas member Karl Villuga with his song “Bawat Hakbang.” The composition, which was about overcoming a personal crisis, was interpreted by Villuga along with his former group mates and balladeer Mark Bautista. “We are looking forward to again stage the biggest and most illustrious song writing competition in Philippine history with an even more songwriters vying for the P1 million grand prize this 2013”, says Cayabyab.


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