Pinoy music fest rocks London suburb

by Patrick Camara Ropeta, ABS-CBN Europe News Bureau

Posted at Jun 22 2012 11:53 AM | Updated as of Jun 22 2012 07:53 PM

Ekiz band performed their usual mix of pop rock at a music marathon in northwest London
LONDON - A Filipino music festival united over a dozen acts across the UK to stage a concert in a northwest suburb of the British capital, showcasing original tracks alongside OPM and Western classics.

Noypi Music Festival, now in its third year, showcased 14 Filipino acts in an 8-hour music marathon at St Mary?s Hall in Harefield, with artists coming from London, Surrey, Berkshire, Devon and Hampshire.

“We know Filipinos from around the world are talented. Here in the UK, there are lots of very talented singers, drummers, guitarists and performers. It’s amazing. So we just want to gather them in a single event,” said Sanie Sotto from the band d?SPS, organizers of the event.

Morris, lead guitarist of F#, added: “We enjoy the music and we are proud to play music in this country even if we’re not English. We?re Pinoy, and we?re proud to be Filipino.”

The event featured veteran acts alongside fresh talents from the music scene, covering a range of genre from pop and electronic to rock and metal.

“Last year I was here but I didn’t play and I was just watching. This year I’m getting involved, so it’s brilliant,” said Vance Alan, a 17-year-old Filipino bassist from mixed British band The Virtues, which only started 6 months ago.

Bassist Vance Alan with his newly formed band The Virtues backstage at the Noypi Music Festival in Harefield

“I enjoy it because it makes me feel younger, joining all these people,” added Marie Socorro Watson, a seasoned vocalist with extensive stage experience in the UK, Japan, Kuwait, Abu Dhabi, and the Philippines.

“They are so willing and enthusiastic. I love to support our Filipino musicians in the UK. Although I have been in the industry for a long time, they look up to me like a big sister.”

Musicians from the event spoke highly of their Filipino heritage, claiming that the Philippines have an edge in music due to an innate national talent in the arts.

Watson explained: “As Filipinos, I think it’s in our blood. Perhaps we inherited it from ancestors, including the Spanish who are fun-loving people. Everyone has a talent, especially in music, even the newcomers here, it’s just impressive.”

“Filipinos are just talented. We can’t be beaten when it comes to music. We are naturally good, and we are innovative. We play from the heart,” added Sotto.

Noypi Music Festival 2012 featured d?SPS, Ekiz, Andthen, The Virtues, Manila Sound, Majica, Kalayu, Jammer Project, Rage of Angel, Doppelganger, F#, Smoke, Marie Socorro Watson, and Riversion.

Electronic duo Andthen made their debut performance at the Filipino music event with a soothing set