Differences in Music Preference Between Westerners and Filipinos

If your wife is Filipino you have certainly come across “Magic Sing” and if you are contemplating entering a relationship with a Filipina you certainly will.
Almost every Philippine home has a “Magic Sing” karaoke machine (or similar brands), even poor homes built of hollow blocks with no coating outside and no tiles on the floor often have one.

The Magic Sing microphone is basically a digital mic that turns your television (Filipinos usually have massive flat screens) into a karaoke machine.

Singing is what the pop culture in the Philippines is all about. Singing is at the center of several modern reality shows, and even Filipino celebrities, like boxer Manny Pacquiao or the former president Gloria Arroyo, sing in public .

What a Westerner might find a bit strange about the music taste of Filipinos though, is that the song lists of the most famous Karaoke machines feature songs that have no apparent connection whatsoever. Pop songs of the “70’s and “80’s such as “Woman in Love” by Barbara Streisand for example or, let’s say “Tragedy” by the Bee Gees may appear in the same song list as hard rock songs like “Smoke on the Water” by the Deep Purple or songs by such bands as The Scorpions, Kansas etc.

We in the Western world tend to divide ourselves into different music genre lovers such as rockers, rappers, punks or those who love disco music, pop etc., while most Filipinos lump all these styles together in the same karaoke device.

While I find it a little weird that my wife likes singing Celine Dion’s songs as much as she likes singing “Dust in the Wind” by Kansas (and the list of unlikely combinations could go on and on), this is in reality something I take advantage of to establish a common ground and build the “bridge” I often mention in this blog

I play the guitar and I love fingerpicking and this is a wonderful way to build a bridge with a Filipina, as the songs my wife learned through karaoke include tons of acoustic songs I have grown up with, like the rock ballads of Led Zeppelin, Scorpions etc.. So, one of the ways I create a common ground with my wife is by playing rock ballads I like on the guitar (and that she learned through “Magic Sing” how to sing) while she sings along.

So, because through the “Magic Sing” Filipinos learn how to sing “a bit of everything”, your Filipino wife can most likely sing one of the songs you like and, if you are a guitar player, you could actually go to Pampanga or other areas where Filipinos produce handmade guitars and get yourself one that you can use to make your own version of “Magic Sing” with your Filipino wife.

I got a solid-top acoustic guitar that can be hooked to an amplifier at the Pampanga Shopping Mall for only 5000 pesos and this guitar is my powerful tool for “music bridge building”.

There are actually lots of Filipino acoustic songs you could learn how to play and by playing these songs you could actually go the extra mile and build instant rapport with Filipinos. I am talking about songs like “Sa Kabukiran” by Freddie Aguilar, “Ordinary Song” by Marc Velasco, “Himig ng Pag-ibig” by Asin, “Pagdating ng Panahon” by Aiza Seguerra and countless others that you can have fun playing while your Filipino spouse sings along.

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