Ailee, Cheesa, Jake, Matt, Nicole, Pia, Regine, and Sheléa lend their voices for “KAIBIGAN: A Troy Laureta OPM Collective Vol. 1”

Putting Philippine love ballads in the limelight…

Filipino-American music director to the stars Troy Laureta has released “KAIBIGAN: A Troy Laureta OPM Collective Vol. 1” featuring the voices of world-class artists AILEE, Cheesa, Jake Zyrus, Matt Bloyd, Nicole Scherzinger, Pia Toscano, Regine Velasquez, and Sheléa.

Co-produced with ABS-CBN Music International, “KAIBIGAN: A Troy Laureta OPM Collective Vol. 1” seeks to put legendary Pinoy love songs in the global spotlight.

The fresh music collection, released just last Sunday (November 22), kicks off with a short intro of “Harana” followed by eight Filipino tracks rendered by musicians from the US and Asia performed by Troy’s friends he met in his musical journey. 

Korean-American artist AILEE interpreted Martin Nievera’s “Kahit Isang Saglit,” a staple in the Laureta household being one of the karaoke anthems of Troy’s father.

“AILEE is a massive star from South Korea, and I am such an admirer of her extraordinary gift. I knew she would be perfect to interpret and do this song justice,” he said.

YouTube star Matt Bloyd, whom Troy described as a “phenomenal singer” from Los Angeles is the singer behind the rendition of Jay-R’s “Bakit Pa Ba,” which is one of Troy’s favorite songs by his OPM songwriting idol, Vehnee Saturno.

America’s “The Voice” season 2 quarterfinalist Cheesa, meanwhile, rendered the Jessa Zaragoza original “Bakit Pa.” “I grew up singing ‘Bakit Pa’ with my little sister, Cheesa. We knew we had to revive this song together, put our spin on it and bring it back to our childhood days,” Troy divulged.

He also tapped former Pussycat Dolls member Nicole Scherzinger to do a version of Regine’s original song “Pangako.” “I wanted Nicole to do this song because of its significance of a promise. Nicole and I share Filipino roots, and although we’ve been in America, like the song says, we promise to never forget, never leave, [and] always love our roots,” Troy explained.

For the song “Kailangan Kita” written by Ogie Alcasid, he selected “American Idol” season 10 finalist Pia Toscano to do the interpretation. The New York-based singer who loves Filipino music, according to Troy, has an incomparable talent for belting out love songs.

Jake Zyrus was chosen to sing “Usahay,” a song Troy dedicates to his grandmother and mother who hail from Cebu. “I wanted to do a stoic, simple version of this song with Jake, concentrating on his tone and drawing out the emotion that exudes from a song like ‘Usahay,’” he said. 

Troy also included “Patuloy Ang Pangarap,” composed by Jonathan Manalo and first recorded by Angeline Quinto, for its encouraging message of following one’s dreams. He tapped the American singer, songwriter, and pianist Sheléa whom he believed was perfect for the song.

Troy ends the album with a track dedicated to his grandfather, a special rendition of “Hanggang Sa Dulo ng Walang Hanggan” by Asia’s Songbird Regine Velasquez. 

“I owe a lot to Filipino music and this song expresses my undying love for my culture, our music, and my roots,” he disclosed.

Check out "KAIBIGAN: A Troy Laureta OPM Collective Vol. 1," out now on digital platforms worldwide. Stream its lyric videos on Star Music’s YouTube channel.

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