MANILA -- Twelve-year old Thurston Alex De Villa Bruce was battling nerves at the sound check prior to the press launch of Sony Music Philippines’ new batch of artists.
“If it is kids my age, then I don’t have a problem,” Bruce shared.
However, when the lights are turned on, the young rap artist from Batangas is a showstopper.
Bruce was the first act to perform during the press launch at 12 Monkeys last Wednesday, July 24, and she performed two songs – her debut single, “Mind Is a Weapon” and “Pull It Off” that captured the assembled media.
Shocked and surprised at being signed this young to an international record label, Bruce still had to ask he parents and pinch herself while doing that if this is all real.
“I was just rapping to (Fil-American) artist Ruby Ibarra – the video was posted on YouTube – and the next I know, I am getting a phone call from her to perform with her,” shared Bruce. “Then I meet local rap artists like Loonie, Ron Henley, Abra, and many others… it’s amazing.”
While young girls her age are more into their gadgets, streaming, and going out on gimmicks, Bruce said she continuously immerses herself into hiphop. “My parents are big hiphop, rap, and R&B fans so that is how I discovered all this. It is through hiphop and rap that I have been able to express myself," she said.
The young lass is old school, too, citing Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, Eminem, Tupac Shakur, Kanye, Nikki Minaj, and 50 Cent as some of her influences. “I cannot say that I am very good at it,” she said of penning verse and rhyme. “My beats are done by Jim Poblete, Jim Dacanay, and Michael Cursebox Negapatan. Sometimes I get help in songwriting because I have difficulty. I am still young and learning. Freestyling is something I still cannot do. But I will learn it.”
While she is thrilled that people like her music, Bruce said that she would like to be known more for her music rather than seen as a novelty artist.
“I know people look at me as a young girl. I hope that they also pay attention to the songs and words. I think ‘Mind Is A Weapon’ says something about what I am doing. It is scary performing in front of audiences and older people, but that is why I use my mind. To tell myself that I can do it,” she said.
“And this is for others. A message to them that they can do anything they want to do. They just have to put their mind to it.”
According to Sony Music Philippines general manager Roslyn Pineda, they look forward to promoting Bruce’s music and she if they can match her with some of the more renowned hiphop artists in their roster to create some synergy and give her a boost.
“I hope to work on an album soon,” summed up Bruce. “I just have to put my mind to it.”