It was an epic and victorious night for Pinoy Pop and OPM at the Awit Awards 2022.
As Pinoy Pop continues to be on the rise and be recognized locally and globally, we can all say that Filipino music is at its best over the recent years. And this is on full display at the Philippine Association of the Record Industry’s 35th Awit Awards where P-pop and Original Filipino Music take center stage.
Held at the Newport Performing Arts Theater on November 23 and curated by MYX, this year’s Awit Awards saw a diverse mix of newcomers and established names getting their much-deserved accolades and proving yet again the vibrant music industry that the archipelago nurtures. From SB19 and BGYO to Maymay Entrata and Maris Racal, here are some of the memorable highlights from the triumphant night.
SB19 proved themselves worthy of the title, Kings of P-pop, as they led the winners’ list with seven Awit Awards trophies. SB19 took home Best Global Recording for their comeback single What? and Most Streamed Artist award. They also won Best Pop Recording and Best Dance Recording for their banger single Bazinga. For their track MAPA, the record-breaking pentad won Best Performance by a Group Recording Artist, Best Vocal Arrangement, and Most Streamed Song.
Following the recent release and success of their sophomore album BE:US and their US debut, the five-member BGYO achieved another career milestone as they were voted the Favorite Group Artist at this year’s Awit Awards, a proud moment for their ACEs. P-pop’s breakout boy group was also nominated in the Best Performance by Group Recording Artists category.
More of P-pop greatness was in full display as the multilingual six-member ALAMAT showed their stunning musicality and moves with a passionate performance of their track Maharani.
These are for you, Liwanag. We love you. 💙💛🙏 https://t.co/hmCbzbp3tG— Ben&Ben (@BenAndBenMusic) November 24, 2022
The nine-piece band behind the hits like Pagtingin, Araw-Araw, and Leaves, Ben&Ben went home victorious as they bagged five Awit Awards wins. Their second album, Pebble House, Vol. 1: Kuwaderno was hailed as the Best Album of the Year, one of the top awards of the night. For their single Upuan, the folk-pop and pop rock group won the Best Musical Arrangement trophy and the Best Music Video award for Lunod, which was helmed by Jerrold Tarog. Ben&Ben’s collaborative song Sabel with Filipina singer, rapper, and Asia’s Soul Supreme, KZ Tandingan, also won Best World Music Recording and Best Collaboration.
Our favorite pop diva Maymay Entrata turned the heat up on the stage with a fiery performance of her hit anthem AMAKABOGERA. The actress-singer, MTV EMA nominee, and MPOWERED hitmaker also claimed this year’s Awit Awards Favorite Female Artist award, as she should.
The multi-talented, unproblematic, and breakthrough love team of the year, Alexa Ilacad and KD Estrada, also graced the stage of the Awit Awards as first-time presenters. KDLex, who both looked stunning and were warmly received by the crowd, gave out the trophies for the top awards of the night including Song of the Year, Record of the Year, and Album of the Year.
Young and all-around performer Darren Espanto conquered the night as the Favorite Male Artist of the year. The 21-year-old singer behind Pabalik Sa’yo, Tama Na, and Calum Scott’s Heaven took the Awit Awards stage to dedicate his win to his Darrenatics and to his mom and sister who were also at the event.
Belle Mariano gets another Awit Award, as this year’s Breakthrough Artist. Congrats, @bellemariano02!— Awit Awards (@AwitAwards) November 23, 2022
Follow @awitawards and @myxglobal on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for more #AwitAwards2022 updates. pic.twitter.com/jPB5c8uCbV
One-half of the New Gen Phenomenal Love Team, DonBelle, Belle Mariano showed us all the multi-faceted woman that she is after winning two Awit Awards trophies this year. Produced by Star Music, Belle’s debut single Sigurado was voted the Favorite Song while Belle herself was declared as this year’s Breakthrough Artist. With the release of DonBelle’s An Inconvenient Love on the same day, we are truly witnessing Belle Mariano in her winning era.
LEANNE & NAARA
It was also a victorious night for the emerging Filipino indie pop singer-songwriter duo Leanne & Naara. For their vibey track Anticipation that will ultimately make you groove hard, Leanne & Naara nabbed the Best R&B Recording and one of the highest recognition at the Awit Awards, the Record of the Year trophy. Leanne & Naara also got a nomination for Best Performance by Group Recording Artists.
The Awit Awards continues to honor the Filipino artist with graphic designer Paul Ramirez’s cover art for Paul Pablo’s ‘Kalawakan’ under Warner Music Philippines winning the Best Cover Art category. Congratulations! #AwitAwards2022 pic.twitter.com/8Rt1KNsLHJ— Awit Awards (@AwitAwards) November 23, 2022
Another up-and-coming, proudly queer voice in the Philippine music industry by the name of Paul Pablo got the spotlight after winning the Best Cover Art award for his dazzling Kalawakan art piece. Make no mistake, apart from the cover art, the music of the Davao-based artist is equally mesmerizing, combining electro-pop, synth-pop, disco, and R&B elements. An LGBTQIA+ advocate, Paul Pablo seeks to raise the rainbow flag in the Filipino music scene ever so proudly.
.@MissMarisRacal wins the Best Regional Recording award for her song ‘Asa Naman’ in tonight’s Awit Awards 2022 ceremonies live at the Newport Performing Arts Theater. The single is released under Sony Music Entertainment Philippines. #AwitAwards2022 pic.twitter.com/iD37t3vwQR— Awit Awards (@AwitAwards) November 23, 2022
Young multi-hyphenate Maris Racal also shone at the evening with the Best Regional Recording trophy for her single Asa Naman. Co-written and produced by Maris’ beau Rico Blanco, Asa Naman finds Maris going back to her Visayan roots. During the Awit Awards night, Maris thanked her supporters in her native language, specifically expressing her goal to empower her fellow Visayans.
“We all know that when we write songs, we should write our truth,” said Maris Racal, “and part of my truth is that I’m born in Tagum, Davao. Bisaya akong dako!” She also encourages her fellow regional songwriters to not be afraid of producing music in their native language. “Huwag tayong ma-intimidate na magsulat ng kanta sa first language natin kasi music should be celebrated,” Maris continued. “Kahit anong lingguwahe man ‘yan, tayo’y iindak.”