I am blessed to have made many friends around the world through YouTube, many of whom are talented musicians who are sharing their wonderful skills with the world. Dennis Dizon lives in Australia and is one of these incredibly talented musicians. I was thrilled when Dennis accepted my request to collaborate on a project. I asked Dennis to perform the hit single “Ikaw Lamang” by Gary Valenciano so that I may accompany his admirable skills on the keyboard with my own rendition. This post marks my third collaboration.
During this production, I asked Dennis a few questions about his life. Music has permeated his life in a variety of ways and my son, Ever, who also aspires to pursue a career in music, wanted to know more about my friend in Australia. Dennis kindly obliged my request and here is what Dennis has shared:
“I've always viewed performing as a "hobby" as my main job was in Music Retail management. You could say my first paid job was being an assistant organist when I was 15 years old playing for Church services and weddings. By the time I was 18, I had progressed to doing wedding receptions, special functions and concerts. I participated in a TV Talent Quest show, from that got an offer to join a band as a keyboard player. I was 21-yrs-old and did some gigs with them. However the drummer kept getting intoxicated, so that was the end of that Band. Another band I started to work with, the guitarist decided to leave before we could get it off the ground, so that's when I decided it was better to be a solo performer. I have not participated in creating a studio album as I was busy with my Retail Management work having been promoted to manage the Flagship retail Piano and Keyboard Store in Australia. On top of that I was the Director of a Music school. Then, on weekends I was doing a gig at a Club. I was working 7 days a week so I couldn't really fit anything else in. I have performed on a concert platform with other musicians as a solo performer.”
Regarding advice for aspiring musicians:
“Perseverance, hard work, and a good head on your shoulders, are all admirable traits. For aspiring musicians, my advice is to have a plan, have goals, and strategies so you know where you will be in 5 or 10 years. In my case, I decided to adopt a 3 point strategy, which was: 1. Music Retail management; 2. Teaching and; 3. Performing. I am pleased to say I was able to achieve all that I had set out to do. My other advice is to have high ethics and moral code so that you know what is acceptable conduct and what is not. Some great musicians with so much talent unfortunately fall by the wayside due to not having a high standard for themselves. For young performers regarding stage presence my advice is to watch those who have succeeded and see what they do that produces the X-factor. What is it about their performance that makes the audience feel the WOW-factor? From my experience you must love what you are doing and give 110% in every performance. Make your performance entertaining.”
A BIG “Thank you” goes out to Dennis Dizon for sharing his experiences in music and for his sage advice for aspiring musicians, as well. I am Absolutely Grateful for his collaboration with me for this beautiful, heart wrenching song about unrequited love. My understanding from the lyrics is that, this is a person singing to someone dear, who doesn't know quite yet how much they are loved. The singer longs to tell that person, of their affection, that they want to spend the rest of their lives together, but hasn't done so yet. At this point, the singer feels all of these emotions inside and yearns to reveal their intentions. "I wish for you to hear ..."
It is a song that my wife and I have loved since it was released. Remarkably, the theme of this song pertains to a period within my own life when I had no clue that a young woman named Catherine Gipaya had affections for me, from afar, that lasted for 10 years, before we finally met. After, what I believe to be our destined meeting, our new relationship quickly bloomed into true love and Catherine became my wife soon afterwards.
“Ikaw Lamang” is a song released as a single in 2005 and made popular by Gary Valenciano from his album titled Pure Heart. It was written by Ogie Alcasid.