Cha-Cha treats listeners to mellow, reflective Agwat

Jerry Donato - The Philippine Star
Cha-Cha treats listeners to mellow, reflective Agwat
After releasing the upbeat, sentimental Pasko Pa Rin last year, the teen recording artist Cha-Cha Cañete treats the young and young-at-heart to a mellow, reflective single. Her rendition is easy on the ears, while the narrative is relatable.

MANILA, Philippines — Cha-Cha Cañete follows up her upbeat, danceable and sentimental Pasko Pa Rin with the mellow, reflective Agwat. Her rendition is easy on the ears, while the song narrative is relatable. The young and young-at-heart will enjoy it. Agwat can be read as a tale of romantic relationships or the social “divide” and distancing all are experiencing.

According to the information given to media, composer Jungee Marcelo said that Agwat is not actually just about romantic relationships. The song can also be about relationships with friends and co-workers and everyone’s hot topic nowadays, politics. Listeners may have the freedom to make their own interpretations about the song. This latest development in Cha-Cha’s recording career shows that she is in the “experimental” phase or still exploring her musical foothold. The night is young for Cha-Cha, so to speak, to focus on a particular, niche musical genre. After all, she is exploring plans and possibilities as a storyteller.

“I’m thinking and considering all aspects when it comes to songs that I sing,” replied the 16-year-old senior high school student-singer when asked about her considerations in giving her nod to a musical project in a recent media call. “Marami akong audience, marami akong supporters na mga bata, na mas bata pa sa akin, mga 12 years old below. Like I have one girl who would comment and say that I’m her favorite and send me letters. I consider that age of my fans, hindi ako pwedeng kumanta ng kung ano, ano lang.”

As an up-and-coming artist, Cha-Cha sees herself as a role model to the young and has to be mindful of the ideas the latter can pick up from her every song.

“Hindi ako pwedeng maglabas nang kahit na ano na baka dun sila mag-base ng personality nila, na baka mapapasama pa yun sa kanila,” added she. “I consider the overall message of the song and as for the genre, I want to experiment with (and try my hand at) different styles in singing. I feel like kahit sinasabi ng mga tao na magaling na ako right now, I think I can still improve (myself) more and widen my range in terms of singing.”

What’s the advantage and the learning curve for artists like her being in what she calls the experimental stage? “Na parang nag-fo-form pa lang kung sino ba talaga ako as an artist and as a person (I’m starting to form and shape what I will become as an artist and as a person). This stage is experimental because, as a person, I’m still developing, my voice is developing, too, nag-de-develop pa rin yung mga kanta ko. Maybe in the future, I can do mature concepts. But for now, I try to be relatable for those (listeners) of my age. Hindi ko muna masyadong ti-na try na maging mature masyado kasi I don’t want to rush things. I want to enjoy what I have now.”

Even if Cha-Cha has just begun a promising recording career, the artist knows that singing is her calling.

“I’m really enjoying it,” said she, “hindi naman sa hindi nahihirapan, pero kahit nahihirapan ako, I’m doing this because I want to.” Along this enjoyable musical ride, Cha-Cha is willing to give all her efforts and time to release quality ditties and performances for her supporters, who deserve to experience the best version of herself. Cha-Cha, in a media statement, said that she loves singing for “it bridges generations, it takes away language barriers, it speaks out to people in situations and more importantly, it brings happiness and good memories to listeners.”

With that, the former Goin’ Bulilit mainstay is now a teenager and with a better grasp of what music should be and her role as a singer.

“Definitely, it has helped me,” said Cha-Cha about how her showbiz stint made the artist in her appreciate the creative process that recording songs entails. “By now, alam ko na yung mga kailangang gawin, the do’s and don’ts, lalo na sa industry na ito, kailangan sobrang ingat ka. So, I think nakatulong yun dahil simula bata pa ako na de-develop na yung parang mga etiquette ko (on) dealing with people. I know the difficulties and hardships artists have gone through. Alam ko yung mga pinagdaanan nila. Even if I did mostly comedy before, I needed to understand what we were doing. It helped me in the stage when I would internalize (the emotions of the voice in the song), and visualize what I and Mr. Jungee and other composers would like to happen to the song.”

Given today’s way of working together through platforms like Zoom and with the strict health and safety protocols in place, Cha-Cha had only respect and admiration to the people behind Agwat. “Kahit mahirap yung mga circumstance ngayon, nagawa pa rin namin itong kantang ito (Despite the challenging circumstances, we were able to make the song),” said she.

Through appreciating the singer’s rendition and the song’s narrative, artists like Cha-Cha hope that listeners will have a reflective, good time.

(Watch the music video of Agwat on ABS-CBN Star Music’s YouTube account or via https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=60gggdF7igw. The song, released under Star Music, is also available on Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer and its lyric video on YouTube.)

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