Filipino American rapper Apl.de.ap of Grammy-winning American hip hop group The Black Eyed Peas, who is visiting Ho Chi Minh City to get ready for the launch of his new music product in collaboration with a local singer, is upbeat about Vietnamese singers' opportunities to shine globally. On his five-day trip from Tuesday to Saturday, Apl visited Vietnamese Australian singer/composer Thanh Bui, who made it to Top 8 of the 2008 Australian Idol, and Thanh’s students at his Soul Music Academy.
The Filipino-American rapper and Thanh are also working together on a music project to release a song titled “Just like you” composed by Thanh himself.
The song, featuring JR, one of the singers at Apl’s BMBX Co., is set to be launched next Tuesday.
The piece, recorded in Manila, the Philippines and edited in Los Angeles, US, will be distributed in 15 Asian countries.
“Thanh and I share lots of things in common, including being on the jury of The Voice singing reality show. We’ve both cherished dreams of bringing Asian singers to the world. Just like Thanh, who returned to Vietnam, his home country, to help train young local talents, I also come back to the Philippines to incubate youth with singing abilities and guide them to the global arena,” Apl shared.
Thanh is also set to visit Apl’s company and music school in the Philippines later this month.
“Vietnamese singers are entirely capable of shining in the global arena. Thanh is such a good example. My own and Black Eyed Peas’ success mostly comes from our readiness to think big and never to give up on our dreams,” the rapper stressed.
Apl and his band performed in Vietnam 10 years ago.
Born Allan Pineda Lindo, Apl, 40, had a tough childhood and once suffered temporary blindness. He was adopted by an American family.
A citizen of both the US and the Philippines, Apl is now a successful rapper, record producer, and occasional drummer.
The Black Eyed Peas has sold 74 million records globally and pocketed six Grammy Awards.
Apl is also known as an education ambassador, who represents several scholarship funds, and education associations in both the Philippines and US.
He has also built libraries and music schools to train young music talents.