Naga City Ex-Mayor and his dream for Bicolano local artists

LEGAZPI CITY- Former Naga City Mayor and lawyer John Bongat is now back in producing music and fuels his dream for Bicolano artists.

“Gusto kong tulungan din ang ating mga local artists natin na [walang] opportunity na makilala, pero magagaling naman. Baka naman sa talent ko bilang isang compositor ay [makatulong] o swertehin [upang] makilala naman ang mga Bicolano singers,” Atty. Bongat said in an exclusive interview with Bicol.PH.

‘Ikaw ang Ligaya’ is so far his biggest comeback composition released last Saturday, Feb. 11 to welcome Valentine’s Day.

It is performed by the Bicolana rising star, Venus Capayas, and arranged by John Carl Deniña.

Atty. Bongat also said that his composed songs are mostly inspired by love, social issues and prayer.

He highlighted the importance of giving the local artists the right platform to showcase world-class talents.

“Hindi dapat tayo confined lang dito sa Bicol. Kung world class ang ating mga artistic works, kailangan makita sya hindi lang ng Bicolandia, kundi ng buong Pilipinas o kung suswertehin ng buong mundo,” Atty. Bongat added.

Since his political career as the city mayor, Atty. Bongat made a name for himself in the music industry for launching song projects to bring the music scene in Naga City together.

Atty. Bongat stated that his writing journey was a surprise and only a few Nagueños know this other side of him. 

“Gusto ko na makilala ang mga Bicolano na world class tayo, we should be proud to be Bicolanos,” Atty. Bongat said.

In partnership with Musika Publiko’s Bikol Pop,  local original music advocates, singer-songwriter Karl Ramirez and Rise above Pilipinas’ Roger Palacio, they are currently looking forward to build an organization that will cater to cater local artists and Bicol talents.

In the past years, Atty. Bongat wrote numerous songs namely: ‘Waiting for you’ (1996), one of Roselle Nava’s songs which was covered by R&B musician Kris Lawrence, and ‘It’s in you’ (1997) sung by Ariel Rivera. 

His first Bicol song is titled, ‘Padangaton ang kadlagan’ (1996). 

Atty. Bongat also composed ‘Salamat Ina’ (2010), ‘Ikaw ang Liwanag’, ‘I have faith in you’ and a song for Naga City, ‘Kupkupon mo po Kami’ (2020), and ‘Yamang Dagat’ (2021).

For those who want to listen to his composed songs, you may visit his YouTube channel at John Bongat Music. I Aaron John Baluis