MANILA - Rock singer Bamboo Mañalac is unaffected by those who criticize the way he chooses contestants in the reality singing competition "The Voice of the Philippines."
Mañalac, who is one of the four coaches on the show, recently drew flak online for choosing Makati-based singer Lee Grane over Marikina-born band vocalist Dan Billiano; and acoustic singer Paolo Onesa over the father-and-son duo Mark and Willy Cordovales during the battle rounds.
In an interview on ANC's "Headstart" on Friday, he reiterated that he is "a coach first before a judge."
"The choice between Willy and Paolo, again, I'm looking for the voice, someone... with a versatile voice who I can sort of train. I think it's easier to teach than to correct, that's my thing," Mañalac explained.
"I just thought he did a great job," he added, referring to Paolo. "I think the boys, they performed better but I think the tone, the richness of the voice, the honey, the glint in the eye, I think Paolo had that."
"That's what I love about the show, everyone got to express [his or her] opinion. Social media is part of the show. It's awesome that they get to express their opinion."
Mañalac said he "did not even flinch" upon reading the negative comments about him on social media.
The rock singer went on to call himself "an old dog."
"I'm an old dog. I've been around [for quite some time] so I'm pretty solid, I have a foundation of who I am and what I am doing, and my work speaks for itself," he said.
What would disturb him, however, is the idea of his team members in "The Voice of the Philippines" get "attacked."
"I only get bothered when they start attacking kids on my team. Because they are kids, they are not ready with this yet," he said. You know what I mean. They are not ready for reality TV. So that bothers me, when they are attacked. That's when I feel I have to say something."
Mañalac said his stint at "The Voice of the Philippines" is a good learning experience for him as an artist.