Why JK Labajo isn't into accepting awards | Lifestyle.INQ

OCTOBER 27, 2022

juan karlos labajo yt vevo
JK Labajo. Image: screenshot from official video of "Boston" via YouTube/juan karlos

Being an accomplished singer, it is quite ironic that JK Labajo does not enjoy receiving awards and recognition.

This he revealed in an online press conference for Janine Berdin’s latest single, “Pagod Na Ako,” last Monday, Nov. 15. Labajo is the arranger and producer of Berdin’s song.

“It feels nice but at the same time I don’t like it. [It’s like] if you try to compare me to all of the actual legends in the OPM industry, I’ve made nothing but a dot in this vast circle,” Labajo revealed.

While he feels elated each time he receives an award, Labajo feels he’s not really into “accolades and names.”

“Marami akong awards na hindi tinanggap, actually. Because back then da-drama-drama ako, so feeling ko napaka-cool kapag hindi mo tanggapin ‘yung awards,” he said.

(There were a lot of awards I did not accept in the past, actually. Because back then, I was having this sort of drama, so I felt like it’s cook not to accept awards.)

But he is clear in his decision to shun away receiving awards. His reason? “I wasn’t doing it for any of those things.”

“I wasn’t making music for the sole purpose of being called Asia’s next singing guy or the next total performer or the next whatever. I’m not after those things,” Labajo said.

For him, doing music is “really all about again being able to execute the ideas” and “being able to put out the thing that [he wants] to put out and share with the people.”

juan karlos labajo yt vevo
JK Labajo. Image: screenshot from official video of “Boston” via YouTube/juan karlos

“Once I release something, once I put [out] the song in public, that’s not my song anymore. That’s the people’s song,” he explained. “For example, ‘Buwan’ is the Filipino people’s song. It’s everyone’s song. And that’s what makes me happy… when I look back and I see how peoples are consuming, listening to ‘Buwan’ and some songs that I make. That’s what makes me happy, not the awards.”

As he arranged and produced Berdin’s single, does this mean he’s now on a comeback trail in music?

“No, actually,” he insisted. “I’m just really enjoying my time. I don’t know. I guess marami lang iba’t ibang bagay (there’s just so many different things), there’s so many things going on internally that has to be taken cared of especially when it comes to paper and everything like that, like contracts and what not.”

“I don’t have any specific comeback, ganito, ganyan (this and that) or ‘JK is back.'” Labajo added. “Wala naman akong planong gano’n. So, hindi.”

(I don’t have such plans. So, no.) JB


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