KZ Tandingan has learned a lot about show business from the time she released her debut album three years ago.
These include the notion that mainstream popularity inadvertently kills the artist within.
“Akala ko nga kasi datin ganu’n, na babaguhin ka ng industriya,” she shared in a recent interview. “Eh, hindi naman pala. If you stand your ground, they will respect it.”
This is what she wants to impart to underground artists, who, as good as they are, remain reticent in going mainstream.
“Nanghihinayang nga kasi ako na ang dami nating magagaling na artists, as in super talented, pero hindi naririning ng karamihan,” she said. “Ang dream ko is to be able to convince them na hindi dapat matakot sa mainstream.”
It was Yeng Constantino who instilled in her the idea that “you could stay true to yourself, stay true to your music, yet be in the mainstream.”
“Si Ate Yeng, she showed me na pwedeng ganu’n, of course, merong mga compromises pero hindi kayang baliin ninuman kung ano ka, kung ano ang paninindigan mo.”
At this point, KZ is all about widening her reach, making sure she gets to display everything she’s got in her latest album “Soul Supremacy” under Star Music.
The “ASAP” Soul Sessionista’s new album features 11 songs with three additional tracks as bonus.
Like in her debut compilation, the OPM soul singer has written songs for her latest release. These are “Halik Na Lang” and “Intro Lude.”
Other songs in this much-awaited album of “The X Factor Philippines” season 1 winner are “Labo” by Jungee Marcelo, “Nag-iisa Na Naman” by Kiko Salazar, “Dapithapon” by Rox Santos, and “Imposible” by Gabriel Tagadtad.
Also part of this collection are the tracks “Afraid” by KidWolf, “With You” by Shorya Sharma, “Siya’y Darating” by Edwin Marollano, “Sayang” by Arlen Mandangan, and “Sa Aking Mga Kamay” by Aristotle Pollisco known to most as the rapper Gloc9.
The album’s additional tracks are “Sayo” which is the Tagalog version of “With You” written by Jonathan Manalo; and the hit song “Mahal Ko O Mahal Ako” with words and music from Edwin Marollano, winner of “Himig Handog PPop Love Songs 2014.”
Completing the bonus tracks is the song “Ikaw At Ako Pa Rin,” the “We Love OPM” mentor’s duet with her boyfriend, singer-songwriter TJ Monterde.
“Very diverse talaga itong collection na ito because I want people to know na hindi lang iisa ang style ko, na marami pa akong pwede i-offer,” KZ said.
“Ako kasi talaga as an artist I don’t want to be boxed,” she added. “Gusto ko ma-explore lahat ng avenue na pwede kong i-display ang artistry ko.”
With everything going great for her, we asked KZ if she feels like she has arrived, and she said, “I hope so.”
“Parang ang yabang naman ng, ‘Yes, I have arrived.’ Gusto ko isipin na kahit paano kilala na ako ng tao, alam na nila ang kakayanan ko. Kung hindi pa man, eh tuloy-tuloy lang ako.”
“Soul Supremacy” is available digitally. Physical copies will soon be available in record bars nationwide. (With report from Jojo P. Panaligan)
Tags: Aristotle Pollisco, debut album, Edwin Marollano, Jonathan Manalo, Jungee Marcelo, KZ Tandingan, KZ Tandingan to underground artists: Come out, mainstream popularity, Manila Bulletin, Manila Bulletin Entertainment, mb.com.ph, Soul Supremacy, Star Music, underground artists, wherever you are, With report from Jojo P. Panaligan, Yeng Constantino, “We Love OPM”