Arnel Pineda, Another Filipino We Should Proud Of

Arnel Pineda
Arnel Pineda, Another Filipino We Should Proud Of, Arnel Pineda (singer-songwriter) is the newest member and lead singer of the American rock band Journey. Pineda enjoyed a successful musical career in Asia for the last 25 years.

Pineda, born in the Philippines, began singing at age 5. His parents, both tailors, encouraged him to enter amateur singing contests. When Pineda was 12, his mother died after a lengthy illness, leaving his family in serious debt. Pineda's father took his three siblings to live with relatives. Pineda, as the eldest, had to quit school and collect scrap metal, bottles and newspapers at the pier in Manila to earn money. Pineda was living in the streets, sleeping in Luneta Park or, when possible, on a wooden bench at a relative's house. In a TV interview with Jessica Soho ("Kapuso Mo"), Pineda described waiting and watching while his relatives ate breakfast in the mornings, hoping some food would be left over for him to eat. Pineda dreamed of becoming an engineer. Reflecting on his childhood, Pineda said he felt no self-pity. He always kept a positive outlook, thinking "Gaganda rin 'to" (Things will get better).

Videos of The Zoo performing cover songs by Journey, Survivor, Aerosmith, Led Zeppelin, Air Supply, The Eagles, Kenny Loggins and other popular acts from the 70s, 80s and 90s, began appearing on YouTube.com in February 2007. On June 28, 2007, Neal Schon of Journey contacted Noel Gomez, a longtime fan and friend of Pineda who uploaded many of these videos, to ask for Pineda's contact information. Schon sent an e-mail to Pineda inviting the latter to audition for Journey. Pineda initially dismissed the e-mail as a hoax, but after being persuaded by Gomez, he finally replied to Schon's e-mail. Ten minutes later, Pineda received a phone call from Schon.On August 12,Pineda, along with his manager Bert de Leon, flew to Marin County in San Francisco for a two-day audition. The star-struck Pineda was welcomed warmly but he described the audition as "nerve-wracking, tense".

On December 5, 2007, Pineda was announced as the lead singer of Journey. CNN Headline News ran the story as part of their "News to Me" segment.

Pineda debuted as the lead singer of Journey on February 21, 2008 at the Viña del Mar International Song Festival held at the Quinta Vergara Amphitheater in Viña del Mar, Chile. Videos of the Vina del Mar performance are available at the Festival's home page and on YouTube.

The band also performed at the Estadio San Carlos de Apoquindo in Santiago on February 23rd (with Peter Frampton and Earth, Wind and Fire).

There was supposed to be a third concert at Viña del Mar Casino in Valparaíso on February 24th but this was cancelled due to electrical problems at the venue.

Chilean media acclaimed Pineda's performance: "Journey made an outstanding show making clear that Pineda's choice is the best choice to fill front-man's position."


2 Comments on "Arnel Pineda, Another Filipino We Should Proud Of"

honey on March 04, 2008 said...

wow! astig ang pinoy!

+ Liz + on March 05, 2008 said...

wow ang galing... pinoy na pala lead singer nila.. nice to know that.

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