While you’re still thinking about EZ Mil’s song, you might want to listen to this as well

It is pretty obvious that many Filipinos are divided when it comes to rapper EZ Mil’s “Panalo (Trap Carinosa)” track. While many praised it for its modern patriotism, some pointed out a historical inaccuracy in the viral song’s lyrics, depicting the beheading of Filipino warrior Lapu-Lapu.

Mactan Shrine (Photo from @nqc2021)

Though the rapper has already apologized for twisting facts in his song, the situation goes to show that even if Filipinos clamor for these “Pinoy Pride” moments, depicting our history correctly is far more important than fame and online virality. 

While we are talking about Filipino music, being proud of our country, and Lapu-Lapu, we would like to ask: Have you ever heard of the song “Bagani”? 

As the Philippines celebrates the 500th anniversary of the Victory in Mactan, the National Quincentennial Committee (NQC) picks “Bagani” to be the official theme song of the 2021 Quincentennial Commemoration in the Philippines (2021 QCP).

NHCP Chair and National Quincentennial Committee Executive Director Rene Escalante and National Artist Ryan Cayabyab

“The primary consideration of the committee in choosing a theme song was that it should capture the music preference of the young Filipino population (i.e., pop) yet respectful of the Filipino musical heritage,” the NQC says. “The song celebrates the heritage of nobleness and compassion in a Filipino, driving him or her to do great things for his or her people and the world as always.”

Composed by young artist Roel Rostata, “Bagani,” a Manobo word which means “warrior,” was among the nine music entries gathered all over the country by Philpop, with the guidance of National Artist for music Ryan Cayabyab. Written back in 2014, the song was enhanced with the help of OPM Jungee Marcelo who arranged the melody to its current form. The song was officially performed by Anthony Castillo and his a capella group, Pinopela, and was first heard on Dec. 14, 2019, the start of the 500-day countdown to 2021 QCP on April 27.

Roel Rostata

In a conversation with the Manila Bulletin Lifestyle, 27-year-old songwriter and composer, talks about his process of creating “Bagani,” from his early beginning as a musician to the message he wants to give to his fellow Filipinos through the song.

When did you know you wanted to become a music creative?

Roel: My passion for music and songwriting started way back when I was in grade school, probably grade 5 or 6. That’s the first time I participated in a performance related to singing and guitar playing. I was also tasked to write songs and jingles for student affair campaigns and began to join Church choir.

What’s the inspiration behind ‘Bagani’?

Roel: The song started out as a school project. My college professor asked me to write a song about Filipino heroism in modern times. I later developed it in a songwriting camp I got accepted to which is the Philpop Songwriting Bootcamp 2019. The song is focused on giving the listeners hope, inspiration, and motivation on whatever they dream to achieve despite all the challenges blocking their way, helping out fellow Filipino who are in need, being selfless, and proud of your identity.

What so you wish to impart to the listeners through the song?

Roel: I would like to quote the song “Sige Lang” by Quest, because I was inspired by this song also.

Walang imposible, sige lang sige, abot mo ang mundo

Malapit, malayo, sama sama tayo hanggang sa dulo

Ano man ang pagsubok di susuko, alam kong kaya mo

Sige lang sige, sige lang sige

Walang imposible.

I want to let everyone know that everything is possible if you put your heart, mind, and perseverance to your dream, with God being the center of it. Let us be heroes in our own little ways.

Here's "Bagani," theme song of the 500th anniversary of the Victory at Mactan and other related events, collectively…

Posted by National Quincentennial Committee, Republic of the Philippines on Friday, January 1, 2021

Source: Manila Bulletin (https://mb.com.ph/2021/02/04/2021-qcps-bagani-is-a-nationalistic-song-done-the-right-way/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=2021-qcps-bagani-is-a-nationalistic-song-done-the-right-way)