The restrictions caused by COVID-19 control measures have not completely shutdown creativity, passion and desire to extend help to those who had been impacted by business closures.
An online home concert "Laban Kabayan" to raise funds for international students who lost their part time jobs was recently undertaken by MENM Productions and the Association of Pinoy Students in Australia (APSA). The local artists who generously donated their talent for the cause was joined by a Filipino-American artist who is based in New York City. This is Eric G who is a songwriter, performer and producer who has extensive credentials in showbiz.
This is not the first time that Eric G has extended help to an initiative here in Australia. The first time was performing in a home concert for Nourish the Children Foundation organised by Sheila Raptis in 2017. He did not hesitate to extend his tour at the time to include a stop in Sydney for that event.
"Ever since performing in Sydney 3 years ago and I saw the Opera House on the water of the theatre, it became my dream at the point to one day perform there! As of right now, just focusing on getting back to the Philippines and release my Jack en Poy music single through VIVA."
"I am delighted to be involved in the online concert for a good cause through the nomination by Ate Sheila to the organisers. I had the pleasure of working and being kindly hosted by Sheila a few years ago. I had the challenge of being up at 4am for the performance but enjoyed the opportunity to be part of it. I realised I was the only non-Australian involved. I also enjoyed working with and watching the talented local artists."
Sheila Raptis of Radio Bandila [Alive 90.5FM] was equally appreciative of Eric G. She commented:
"Eric G & I met 6 years ago. He shared his original songs with me and as a Filipino radio broadcaster, I was more than happy to play his music on air. His passion to perform here in Sydney made his way to our house concert for the benefit of the Nourish The Children Foundation and recently assisting us Laban Kabayan FB Live Concert. His heart is as big as his voice, always willing to help and be a part of helping those in need. He is a great guy overall, and always a pleasure to work with."
Eric started performing in 2009, with his first TV show appearance being in Kababayan L.A. - a Filipino show in Los Angeles. He released his first album Move in January 2010. Later in June that year he won the TFC Singing Contest in NYC Philippine Independence Day and performed with Sarah Geronimo. Thereafter he has performed in several concerts and fashion shows in NYC, LA and other places. His second album Dreams was released in June 2014.
Other highlights of his music career includes opening the Octoberfest concert of Charice in NYC in 2013; receiving three times successively the recognition of MIFA Most Influential Fil-Am Award- in 2014, 2015 and 2016; performing in an event in Manny Pacquiao residence; working with Kuh Ledesma and performing in Kuh Ledesma's 35th Year Anniversary Celebration with Gary Valenciano, Regine Velasquez, Jaya and others.
In May 2016, he released his 3rd album Black and White and was guest in ABS CBN's DZMM Radio and other radio stations. He toured parts of the USA, Manila, Singapore and Australia with this album release.
Eric was interviewed by Radio Tagumpay* regarding his participation in the concert. In that interview, Eric was also happy to share some personal insight.
He said: "I was born in Caloocan City. I was am 1 of 4 children to Cesar and June Garzon. I was 2nd. The family migrated to the U.S in the mid 80's and settled in New York. It took my dad three times to apply for a VISA to finally be approved! It was definitely a tough process.
"I took piano lessons; although I hated it at first and didn't realise it would stay with me and actually use it on my records and LIVE shows. I later took saxophone in high school. I love performing but surprisingly more fond of writing and producing - especially for other artists - because I can impart what actually gets performed and heard - to be an influencer rather be influenced."
"The biggest challenges were to get my songs out to ears that mattered. I was always confident that if able to do so, I would have an opportunity. But honestly that wasn't my concern as much because I knew once the fans came, big labels would soon follow."
Eric has signed up with VIVA Records in 2018 and looks forward for the 'new normal' to be here to be able to go back to the Philippines to push on with that collaboration. We hope that when the boppy Taglish song Jak En Poy is released that we will once again see Eric G on Australian shores.
Radio Tagumpay airs on Mondays, 2-4pm at Triple H 100.1FM, which can be streamed via: https://www.triplehfm.com.au/ Eric's interview will be aired on June 1, 2020.