Noel Cabangon pushes for Linggo ng Musikang Pilipino proclamation

DUMAGUETE CITY, Philippines – Musician Noel Cabangon is pushing for a mandatory week-long celebration of Filipino music to encourage the public to have a deeper appreciation of homegrown acts.

Cabangon is the president of the Filipino Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (FILSCAP), an organization dedicated to protecting musicians’ rights in the Philippines.

The idea for Linggo ng Musikang Pilipino is an offshoot of the Pinoy Music Summit held on March 19, 2014. Cabangon took it up with the National Commission of Culture and the Arts (NCCA), which will be the implementing agency.

“We kicked off the idea with the Pinoy Music Festival last September,” Cabangon told Rappler on Wednesday, November 12. He proposed the celebration be held on the last week of July because of the Philippine Pop Music Festival (PhilPop), and also as a prelude to Buwan ng Wika in August.

“We have Linggo ng Wika,” Cabangon said. “We should have one for music, too.”

Anteing up EO 255

Cabangon cites the existence of Executive Order 255, which requires radio stations to play 4 Filipino songs every hour, but says there’s “limited compliance.” He hopes the implementation of Linggo ng Musikang Pilipino will make homegrown music flourish more, for “80% of music played in the Philippines are foreign.”

“We met with the NCCA. They’re just polishing the draft, hopefully before the year ends it gets signed by PNoy.”

Cabangon disclosed that he already had informal talks with President Benigno Aquino III. “I had the chance to tell him about this,” he said. “He had some comments also, because what he wants is total playing of Filipino music, unlike the [Metro Manila Film Festival] na Metro Manila lang and cinemas lang. Ito, all music users.”

But Cabangon added the proposed Linggo ng Musikang Pilipino will not be an "order to perform or play more Filipino music."

“We’re not going to compel malls, radio [stations], business establishments and other areas where music is being played," he said. "This is just to start a tradition.” –

Marga Deona

As Rappler’s senior producer, Marga manages the live broadcasts and distribution platforms of Rappler’s videos. She also writes about the intersection of technology, culture, and businesses, with the occasional sports and music features.