Maria Aragon releases single to aid Yolanda victims

By Rhia Alcantara, ABS-CBN Canada

Posted at Jan 23 2014 08:37 AM | Updated as of Jan 23 2014 04:37 PM

YouTube sensation Maria Aragon

WINNIPEG - Filipino-Canadian singer Maria Aragon released a single to benefit typhoon Yolanda victims in the Philippines.

A new single by YouTube sensation Maria Aragon called, "United We Stand", was released early this week to benefit victims of typhoon Yolanda.

The Aragon's song for the Philippines has a deeper connection as her parents' hometown was one of many that were ravaged by the typhoon.

"Hindi ako makatulog sa una dahil nanay ko siyempre matagal na rin kami hindi nag-kita, naiiyak ako kapag napapanood ko yung palabas sa tv. Siyempre kahit hindi ko kamag-anak, nakakaawa talaga," said Aragon's mother Menchie.

The same sentiment remains for many kababayans abroad even if months have already passed since the typhoon hit the Philippines.

"It's very emotional and I guess, I couldn't even imagine being in that situation and losing so much. Even though this terrible and devastating thing has happened, the Filipinos still came together. They have this incredible strength that really can't be broken. Whatever happens we can be okay because we have that sort of faith and we have that bond and we have that strength," Aragon said.

Aragon was joined by the Winnipeg Philharmonic Choir and all-Filipino Highlight Group during the recording of the song, a true bayanihan practice seen within the local community.

"It was very cold outside, the snow was blowing in the door and within about 20 minutes there were probably about 75 very wonderful people in the studio and it just felt warm... It was just positive all around," said John Paul Peters, producer/engineer of Private Ear Recording.

The single is now available on iTunes and can be purchased for $1.29 with proceeds set to help typhoon victims.

"Even though these terrible things do happen, we can make a difference and we can be strong for those people. Even though we weren't affected personally, we can still be hope for them so that is what 'United We Stand' is all about and I hope that you guys please support the song and please send your love to the Philippines," Aragon said.

"United We Stand" was originally written after hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans in 2005. The song's author, Naomi Streimer, has agreed to resurrect the song so Aragon can help typhoon victims in the Philippines.