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Stories, essays, readings, facts and trivia on Philippine music and the local music industry

Music for Mass Entertainment

The Consumerist Lifestyle

This is the music of highly urbanized and industrialized towns and cities. It is produced mainly for mass entertainment and it is what we know as “pop” music. When we talk of the music industry in this country, it refers mainly to this type of music (ex. Ryan Cayabyab’s Kay Ganda ng Ating Musika, George Canseco’s Ngayon at Kailanman, and many others called OPM by their producers).

Pop music needs no introduction. It was inculcated in us by the American music industry through radio, television, movies, and other electronic media. Its most energetic adherents are the highly urbanized youth.

Though called OPM, Philippine popular music is mostly American in form and style and only its words are in Filipino. It is the least indigenized or “Filipinized” of all the foreign-influenced music traditions in the country. It is more accurate to call it music with OPL (Original Pilipino Lyrics). Notable exceptions are the works of songwriters who have, to a certain degree, Filipinized the pop music idiom, like Freddie Aguilar’s Anak, Florante’s Handog, Gary Granada’s Salamat Musika, and Louie Ocampo’s Ikaw.

Pop music’s origins are traced from the North American culture of entertainment and cultivation of instant pleasures. This music is variously called pop, mass media, entertainment and commercial music. Pop culture is the culture of the 3Ms – Mickey Mouse, McDonald and Madonna.

Pop music is also a culture of celebrities and superstars, its hype leading to the adulation of pop icons and the proliferation of clones.