The Hip hop culture was known for negativity and bad influence because most see this culture as promoting violence, gangs, drugs and alcohol. However, with many prominent artists releasing music for awareness and positive impact, the Hip hop culture is now being heard and patronized.
2Pac, Eminem, and Kendrick Lamar are examples of Hip hop artists who released music under the Political Hip hop genre. Political Hip hop is a sub-genre of Hip hop that turns rap music into a call for action. These songs tackle social issues such as drugs, racism, the justice system and more.
Bono Giuseppe Nisperos Nool is a local artist in Baguio City who has been rapping since 2005. He was named after the Rock artist “Bono Vox” because his parents were musicians and avid fans of Rock music. During his childhood years, he would sleep through rock music and eventually developed his music talent which he got from his parents.
Bono wanted to rap ever since he watched Francis Magalona, a well-known rapper in the Philippines. During his elementary years, he would buy CDs and articles related to rap and there he started memorizing verses.
Upon entering high school, Bono started his journey as a rapper. He joined gangs which were also inclined to Hip hop. As a gang member, he had many experiences. He recalls coming home and wanting to share what happened on that day to his parents but he can’t seem to do so. Then, he found Hip hop as a medium to share those experiences.
During his college years, he stopped joining gangs, “Tumatanda na tayo” Bono said. But that did not stop him from pursuing his career as a rapper. He wanted to leave a legacy so he made Makabayan rap music. Why Makabayan rap? Bono had observed the social issues surrounding him and the kind of government during his time. “Ang dami kong tanong”, Bono said and he had these questions all expressed in his music.
“Makabayan rapper and realistic rapper”, this is how Bono labeled himself as an artist. He wanted his music to be heard and recognized so that many people would also see the issues that he sees and hopefully act upon these issues. Therefore, fulfilling his goal of having a legacy had started with in his own community.
Bono is fully aware of how he struggled as an artist. He recalls how people turned off the lights on him, turned off his mic while rapping and more so from being financially unstable. Despite these, he still pursued and is still pursuing his endeared career. Why did he stay? He related that question to “Bakit ka humihinga?”. “Dito ko nilalabas kung sino ako” Bono recounts.
He sees Hip hop as something that is always there for him, he sees it as in inspiration to deal with problems, “This is my Life” Bono said. Today, Bono makes music to simply enjoy Hip hop. He would still like to make Political rap music but also discover other themes and topics for his rap music.
Bono was able to do a collaboration with Kokoi Baldo with their song Luha’t Alon which was played in Myx Philippines. He was able to produce an album entitled Hyperglycemia EP which is available on Spotify. He was also able to produce a single titled Two Six Double Love which was uploaded in YouTube. Bono has also been joining battle leagues like Sunugan Emcee and Debate in Baguio and Manila and his videos are also uploaded on YouTube.
What’s Bono’s advice to future rappers? “Walang elevator” Bono said, “there’s no button in life that leads you all the way to the top easily”. He emphasizes on being patient and not giving up because a person’s time to be heard will come eventually. “Dugo’t Pawis ito” Bono said as he describes the industry he is in. He encourages future rappers to never stop as hard work will pay off in the future.
Through Triadic Events and Promotions, Bono hopes for artists like him to be known not just locally but nationally and internationally. According to him, he is thankful because this is the first time that a movement like this is happening for local artists. He sees this movement as a stepping stone for Triadic Events and Promotions to further help more local artists and more people develop and showcase their craft.
Bono would like to acknowledge Trill Audio, Hukbong Lyrikkkall, Pamilyari Entertainment, Malvar Boiz, Palma Bad Boiz, HQ Productions, Pine Cone 2600, Inkspired (Justice Laigo), Debate Rap Battle League, My desk, Zaki, Marivs, Represent the Hood Ent. and The Shop Recording Studio.