Humble beginnings are cliché in this land of rags, but layer it with rap as a genre and the only one we’ve got is Gloc-9. Moving from love and dance rap to socially relevant music, Gloc-9’s songwriting is one that’s unique in these shores premised as it is on his own personal history of struggle, yet refusing as it does narcissism or self-aggrandizement. Here are songs that insist on looking at nation, with compassion on the one hand and fearlessness on the other, where the demand for fundamental change is cloaked in words familiar and painful. That in the end these reveal the times to its core, as we should know it, can only be the point.
In the past three years Gloc-9 has risen to become the one Filipino musician to bravely engage with the travails of nation. That he has been embraced by mainstream television and radio while he has remained unflinching in his critical stance about current society, therein lies his music’s power. Pinoy rap lives. And his name is Gloc-9.
Tungkol Kay Gloc-9
Si Gloc-9 ay umusbong hindi bilang rapper kungdi bilang tao mula sa Binangonan Rizal, tagahanga ni FrancisM, naging empleyado ng fastfood chain at ng malaking media company bilang music researcher, bago na-diskubre bilang rapper. Gumawa ng love at dance rap, ngunit paglao’y makikilala sa paggawa ng mga kantang patungkol sa personal na pakikipamuhay sa araw-araw ng kahirapan, sa harap ng krisis ng tunggalian sa Pinas na kinalakhan.
Walang patumangga ang pakikilahok ni Gloc-9 sa mga usaping bayan. At sa panahong yinakap na siya ng telebisyon at radyo, nagiging mas malinaw pa ang halaga ng pakikilahok na ito. Ito ang hinihingi ng kasaysayan sa bawat manggagawa sa sining, at ito ang hindi ipinagkakait ng kanyang panulat. Iisa ang pangalang katumbas ng Pinoy rap sa panahong ito. Ang pangalang ito ay Gloc-9.
– Katrina Stuart Santiago, February 2012.